Last week: 11-5
Last week: 7-9
It’s Christmas Eve and we still haven’t wrapped Bill Cowher for the people of Cleveland, so let’s get right to it…
Jacksonville (plus 12) at Baltimore
Feschuk: The Ravens get in the playoffs with a win. The Jags get in the playoffs with a win, a rip in the fabric of the space-time continuum, an earthquake that plunges California, Florida and 27 other states into the sea and a New England loss. Pick: Baltimore.
Reid: In a related item, they’re making a big budget version of Land of the Lost. Flacco sort of looks like a sleestak. Pick: Jacksonville.
St. Louis (plus 15) at Atlanta
Reid: That spread’s so big, it can nearly block out Mark Bulger’s advanced age. Pick: St Louis.
Feschuk: The Rams owners really want to sell their team. I mention this just so you’ll understand why there’s a “If You Owned Me, You’d Be Futile By Now” sign on the back of Bulger’s jersey. Pick: St. Louis.
Denver (plus 8) at San Diego
Feschuk: Give up this many points to take Norv Turner? I’d rather sign my organ donor card in the presence of Amy Winehouse, then loudly announce that I’m going to go have a nap in the new T-shirt she gave me for Christmas, which has a liver-shaped hole over where my liver resides and a bunch of arrows pointing to the hole with instructions to “Cut Here.” Pick: Denver.
Reid: That Amy Winehouse! She’s always plotting. This is Norv Turner’s chance to show that he’s not going to let destiny steal his claim to world’s losingest loser. Pick: Denver
Chicago (plus 2) at Houston
Reid: Kyle Orton’s going to get a big new contract. But not the playoffs. Pick: Houston.
Feschuk: In the spirit of the season…
I heard Mommy dissing Kyle Orton
From our bleacher perch at Soldier Field
She told him, “Kyle, you blow!”
He got picked and she yelled “D’oh!”
And then she used some words I only hear on HBO!
Cleveland (plus 11) at Pittsburgh
Feschuk: How bad are the Browns? Playing a team with nothing to gain, a team poised to play second- and third-stringers, the Browns are still double-digit underdogs. In a job-security competition, Romeo Crennel would lose right now to a Hooters waitress who spends the holidays gaining 15 pounds, undergoing a sex change and returning to work with an eye patch and five-o’clock shadow. Pick: Pittsburgh.
Reid: That waitress has a name and its Ben Rothli-whateverthehelltherestofitissomethingwithagithink. Crennel has the stink of death about him. Or maybe that’s just Kellen Winslow Jr’s rotting ego. Pick: Pittsburgh
Miami (plus 2.5) at New York Jets
Reid: Hagler-Hearns. McEnroe-Borg. Khan-Kirk. And now Pennington-Favre. Pick: New York Jets
Feschuk: Pennington-Favre? They got married? I guess I wasn’t misreading the homoerotic undertones in those Wrangler commercials. Pick: Miami.
New England (minus 6.5) at Buffalo
Feschuk: Coach Dick Jauron’s future is apparently going to be decided in “conversations” among Bills executives after the season ends. Here is a complete list of words expected to come up during these conversations: “Fire” and “his ass.” Pick: New England.
Reid: Dick Jauron is a defensive genius and with JP Losman playing that late season stretch of games he certainly gave opposing defences lots to be grateful for. Pick: New England.
Washington (plus 3) at San Francisco
Reid: Singletary’s future with the club likely depends on the outcome. Expect Vernon Davis to fumble, fall down and cry like Jamie Lee Curtis. Pick: San Francisco.
Feschuk: This presents an interesting thought experiment: if a man is willing to drop his trousers to inspire his team and keep his job, what will he expose in the event that he gets fired? Just to be safe, better borrow that face-blocking-out pixelator thingy from the producers of Cops. Pick: Washington.
Detroit (plus 9) at Green Bay
Feschuk: The Lions look to complete their perfect season and set an example to children everywhere about the true meaning of sportsmanship by helpfully removing their own rear ends to make it easier for the Packers to hand their asses to them. Pick: Green Bay.
Reid: Detroit is so good at losing that they actually look like winners when they lose this historic 16th game. Rod Marinelli will then be asked to coach the Maple Leafs. Pick: Green Bay
Carolina (minus 3) at New Orleans
Reid: A meaningless game – and no one does meaningless like the Saints. Pick: New Orleans.
Feschuk: Not entirely meaningless, slapdick – a Panthers loss and Falcons win means Carolina is a wild card, not a division winner. That makes all the difference in the world. (Another thing that makes all the difference in the world, especially at this time of year: hard liquor.) Pick: Carolina.
Dallas (plus 1.5) at Philadelphia
Feschuk: Despite the fact their locker room has been a breeding ground for futility, lameness, infighting, selfishness and dozens of hand prints made from rib sauce (please, someone get Wade Phillips some Wetnaps for Christmas), Dallas needs only to win this game to make it into the post-season. As if that’s not reason enough to tune in, remember that the coach who loses this game will, in an elaborate post-game ceremony, be eaten by the winning coach. (Watch out, Andy – that Gatorade jug is filled with gravy!) Pick: Dallas.
Reid: This is a game where character counts. And by character I mean not being named Wade Phillips, Terrell Owens, Tony Romo or Sarah Palin. What does she have to do with this pivotal match up? You’ll see soon enough America! Pick: Philly
Tennessee (minus 3) at Indianapolis
Reid: Dungy always rests his players. Just look back to the first five weeks of the season. Pick: Tennessee.
Feschuk: I always look forward to the annual Jim Sorgi Bowl. It’s become a Christmas tradition for me, like eggnog and waiting outside the mall in my car until well after closing in order to “accidentally” run down incompetent retail sales clerks. Pick: Tennessee.
K.C. (plus 3) at Cincinnati
Feschuk: Good news for everyone who’s terrible at their job: Herm Edwards has received a vote of confidence from the owner of the Kansas City Chiefs. So put your feet up on your desk. Smile helplessly as your subordinates to set the copier on fire. It’s all there in Herm’s forthcoming book Beats Me: How I Somehow Keep My Job and You Can Too! Pick: Cincinnati.
Reid’s pick: Cincinnati.
Oakland (plus 13) at Tampa Bay
Reid: Jeff Garcia bleeds so well. Unlike his throwing lately. Pick: Oakland.
Feschuk: Tom Cable says he’s applying to be full-time coach of the Raiders. He just needs to submit his list of references and paperwork confirming his masochism. Pick: Oakland.
Seattle (plus 6) at Arizona
Feschuk: That’s quite an elaborate ruse that Arizona is pulling on the rest of the league – intentionally getting blown out of every game they play against a good team in an effort to psyche out their first-round playoff opponent. In fact, they may go so far as to get blown out in the playoffs too. Then they’ll really have the rest of the league where they want them. Pick: Seattle.
Reid: Last week we got our first look at Matt Leinart in some time. Two out of his last three plays he went down like Alanis Morrisette. Pick: Arizona.
New York Giants (plus 6.5) at Minnesota
Reid: Giants have nothing to play for. Vikes look recently like they have nothing to play with. Pick: Minnesota.
Feschuk: Can you believe the Vikings are going to be the three seed in the NFC? The lesson as always: it pays to be geographically proximate to the Detroit Lions. Pick: Minnesota.