Due to the debut of our college basketball coverage on Thursday, we are issuing our parlay selections a day early this week.
After losing both long shot parlays last week, our profit for the season has fallen to just 9% for the season, but unless we go crazy and take too many illogical selections in the playoffs, the PiRates are guaranteed of having a second consecutive profitable year.
Once again, we are shunning the college bowl games, as there are too many intangibles in these games. However, in Week 17 of the NFL season, you have a host of teams with nothing to gain or lose, and some teams can actually lose by winning–as their draft status could be damaged.
One team that will most likely end up with one of the worst five records, the Los Angeles Rams, actually cannot help their draft status by losing to Arizona. The Rams gave up their first pick to the Tennessee Titans in order to move up to the top of the last draft and take Jared Goff.
Cleveland can upset Pittsburgh and then lose the top pick in the draft if Seattle beats San Francisco. It is our opinion that Browns Analytics’ gurus, Sashi Brown and Paul DePodesta, will invest the top pick in a package to another team to receive multiple picks, as no one superstar is going to turn Cleveland around in 2017. Cleveland needs a franchise quarterback, but there really is no clear cut prospect out there that is a sure future star. The Browns could increase their picks to double digits like last year, and they could still pick up a potentially good Mason Rudolph or even possibly DeShaun Watson or Brad Kaaya in the last part of the first round.
There are a handful of games this week where one team has everything to play for while the other team has nothing to play for. The Money Lines reflect that in their odds, so we won’t actually receive added benefits by selecting these games. However, it figures that these teams will be trying harder to win, while the oppositions’ players may be trying to avoid injury in meaningless games.
Therefore, we go with just one parlay this week, using three teams that have everything to gain by winning playing against teams that have nothing to play for hurting their draft order.
|1. NFL Parlay at +159|
|Atlanta over New Orleans|
|Washington over N. Y. Giants|
|Kansas City over San Diego|
Atlanta will be playing for a first round bye in this early game. The Saints have nothing to play for, and Drew Brees may see limited action in this game.
The New York Giants cannot afford to risk injuries to key players in a game in which they will be the number five seed no matter what happens. However, the Redskins must win to get into the playoffs.
Kansas City needs to win and then root for Denver to beat Oakland in order for the Chiefs to win the AFC West and wrap up a bye. Because Oakland plays Denver at the same time that KC will play SD, the Chiefs will begin this game knowing they have a chance. Hopefully, if Oakland does beat Denver, it will be a game in which the outcome is not decided until long after the Chiefs have dominated the Chargers.
We are not issuing a choice in the Detroit-Green Bay game. The winner of this game will take the NFC North and get a wildcard round game at home. The loser will either be out of the playoffs (if Washington wins earlier in the day) or in the playoffs as the #6 seed (if Washington loses.) Because we will not know until the conclusion of the Giants-Redskins game what impact it will have on this game, we will not use it in our selection. Some of you that like to go for broke and make a major payday on one long shot might consider adding the red hot Packers into the selection and raising the Parlay Payout to better than +200.
Some of you also might like looking at a single play in the Houston-Tennessee game. There is nothing on the line here, but Tennessee will be too one dimensional with its running game, as Matt Cassel cannot run like the injured Marcus Mariota. Cassel is not the best at using the play-action pass, so the Texans’ defense will most likely limit the Titans’ running game and then win in an ugly, low-scoring game.