Bowl season kicks off Saturday with two games on the schedule. Nevada and Arizona face off in the New Mexico Bowl in Tucson, and Toledo and Utah State play in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise. We are going to pick every bowl game against the spread, but these are not “official picks” unless we indicate them as so.
New Mexico Bowl: Arizona -9 ½ vs. Nevada
PiRate Pick: Nevada
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Utah St. -10 ½ vs. Toledo
PiRate Pick: Toledo
PiRate 13-point Teaser
Nevada +22 ½ vs. Arizona
Toledo +23 ½ vs. Utah St.
Nevada and Arizona UNDER 89
Toledo and Utah St. OVER 45 ½
N F L
This has been one of those topsy-turvy seasons in the NFL, and our picks have followed that same trend. We have a lousy week one week and then go 5-0 the next. Overall, we are above the waterline, posting a small profit for the season, but we are not getting clients banned from sports books this year like we did in 2011. We’re going with seven selections this week.
1. Cincinnati -4 ½ vs. Philadelphia
Bengals absolutely must win this game or they are almost assuredly out of the playoff race. The Eagles showed signs of life last week, but can they do it two weeks in a row with nothing to play for? We see Cinti winning by double-digits on the final Thursday night game of the season.
2. St. Louis -3 vs. Minnesota
Jeff Fisher-coached teams have a knack for shutting down opponents that must run the ball to succeed. This Rams defense will not shut down Adrian Peterson, but they will lower his rushing average by one and a half to two yards per attempt. Christian Ponder will not get it done, and the Rams will move above .500 and stay alive in the playoff race, while knocking the Vikings out of contention.
3. Buffalo +5 ½ vs. Seattle (game played in Toronto)
Seattle must travel 2,500 miles east to Ontario and play in a game three times zones ahead. This comes after the Seahawks destroyed Arizona last week. We see a major bounce this week and believe the Bills have a shot at the upset. We’ll take the points here, thinking that if Seattle wins, it will be very close. We just hope it doesn’t go to overtime. Six points would kill us here.
4. 13-point Teaser
Cincinnati +8 ½ vs. Philadelphia
Chicago +16 vs. Green Bay
New York Giants +14 ½ vs. Atlanta
Tampa Bay +16 ½ vs. New Orleans
5. 13-point Teaser
New Orleans +9 ½ vs. Tampa Bay
St. Louis +10 vs. Minnesota
Cleveland +14 vs. Washington
Denver +10 ½ vs. Baltimore
6. 13-point Teaser
Indianapolis +22 vs. Houston
Carolina +16 vs. San Diego
Buffalo +18 ½ vs. Seattle
Pittsburgh +11 ½ vs. Dallas
7. 13-point Teaser
Dallas +14 ½ vs. Pittsburgh
Oakland +10 vs. Kansas City
New England +7 ½ vs. San Francisco
New York Jets +14 ½ vs. Tennessee