SuperContest Week 12 Picks: Approaching The Tipping Point

By Adam Kramer   Nov. 23, 2014

A .500 record in one the most well-known football contests in the world is not going to earn you much of anything. In fact, picking as many picks right as you do wrong is sorta assumed when you plop yourself in the Westgate SuperContest. That is the point of entry. Anything less should be mocked; anything more comes with a follow-up question: How much more?

If the answer is a considerable amount—as it is with many SuperContest hopefuls—than the result might just be an enormous sum of money. If that is not the situation—and it is most certainly not for me, as I navigate my first SuperContest entry courtesy of Odds Shark—than you have to reshape expectations.

As it stands heading into Week 12, I am one game under the .500 mark. The overall output has improved over the past five weeks, but again, the results are what they are.

I finished the week going 3-2 with my picks, the two losses being Buffalo on Thursday and Indianapolis in truly dumpster fire-ish fashion on Sunday night. The three wins came with Arizona, Kansas City and Houston.

Let us turn our attention forward to this week, where things—for once—got off to a good start. As always, the goal (beyond simply getting to .500) is to beat Odd Shark’s game-picking super computer until it feels real computer sadness.

Fade accordingly.

Raiders (+7) vs. Chiefs: Finally, a Thursday winner. Despite Oakland’s best efforts to avoid covering this game in the second half, we start the week 1-0 and, for the time being, hit .500. Now, will it last?

Giants (+3.5) vs. Cowboys: This is an interesting line. I’m backing New York, keeping the dream alive that Eli Manning will avoid throwing double-digit interceptions.  If that’s the case, cover ahoy. (Maybe.)

Texans (-1.5) vs. Bengals: Arian Foster’s status is worth watching, although Alfred Blue—a former LSU option—looked good spelling in. Let’s assume that Foster does not play and deal with the drop off. This is the Mallett-Dalton TCU-Arkansas game you always wanted, and I’m going with the one more likely to kill a spectator with an errant throw.

Seahawks (-6.5) vs. Cardinals: Seattle should bounce back here, even if this isn’t the same Seahawks team many of us expected to see this season. Drew Stanton, while more than serviceable, gets a taste of a still impressive pass rush.

Lions (+7) vs. Patriots: The #FadePats trend continues here, even though such trends have resulted in horrendous pick violence before. (See: Last Week.) The timing of this game is interesting, however, especially with Green Bay on deck for Brady and Co. The Lions don’t win, but they play tight.


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  • SuperContest Week 11 Picks: Bouncing Back from Bearegeddon

    By Adam Kramer   Nov. 15, 2014

    I picked the Bears last week. Let’s address this waterfall of sadness out of the gate.

    Take these rotten vegetables and hand them out. I want you to throw them at me until they are all gone, or until I’m no longer standing. Whatever comes first. (Let’s assume I fall first.)

    My respectable two-week run in Westgate SuperContest feels like ancient history. My first go-around in the contest—courtesy of Odds Shark—has been an avalanche of errors with the occasional positive here and there.

    After solid back-to-back showing, including my first 5-0 week, things turned south. I lost with the Bears (gross), the Bills (gross, especially given their love of punting) and the Buccaneers, which can happen when you bet Tampa Bay. I won with the 49ers and the Lions, which pushed the overall results to 2-3.

    Turning our attention toward Week 11, we are reminded that it is in fact Week 11. There are not many of these left, which is why—regardless of standing—we’re hoping to remain competitive. Oh, and we’re certainly hoping to beat Odds Shark’s super computer, which remains the primary objective.

    Bills +5 vs. Dolphins: Buffalo’s offense decided—again—that it was not going to make the trip. As a result, here’s an 0-1 start on the week.

    Texans +3 vs. Browns: Let’s assume Arian Foster doesn’t play, which means it will come down to Ryan Mallett in his very first start. So why is this line only three? I’m efforting to find out here, apparently, and I think Houston surprises.

    Chiefs -1.5 vs. Seahawks: Seattle playing out of its building is a much different animal, and the same could be said about Kansas City at home versus away. Ultimately, I think you’ll get an ugly, low-scoring matchup, one that KC will finish ahead in.

    Cardinals -2.5 vs. Lions: The loss of Carson Palmer is significant, although Drew Stanton should come in—weapons at his disposal—and play well. The adjustment shouldn’t be all that significant; Arizona is still a really quality team.

    Colts -3 vs. Patriots: I’ve gone against New England a handful of times this season—in this contest—and lost each time. Here, however, I expect the Pats to be the popular pick given how they’ve looked, and I’m going the other way to back the bearded wonder instead.

     


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  • SuperContest Week 10 Picks: Seeking Sustainability

    By Adam Kramer   Nov. 08, 2014

    It was shaping up to be a 9-1 run, and it came down to Peyton Manning and the Broncos at New England. Then, the Michael Bay ‘splosions came and the Broncos were dismantled by the Pats, halting the *hot streak.

    *Please note: “Hot” is relative. “Luke warm” seems more appropriate.

    The overall result isn’t terrible. Over the past two weeks in the SuperContest, I’ve trudged my way to an 8-2 overall record. Our first appearance, courtesy of Odds Shark, hasn’t always been rainbows and candy and fun, but it has gotten better.

    Last week the good featured the Dolphins, the Buccaneers and the Vikings. The not-so-good included Carolina against the Saints and, well, the Broncos, of course. Oh, the Broncos.

    Turning the attention to this week—one of the most difficult batch of games to select from thus far—here is where I’m going with my five selections. As always, the goals are somewhat simple: Don’t embarrass myself and beat Odds Shark’s super computer into tech oblivion.

    Good luck. Fade accordingly.

     

    Bills (+2) vs. Chiefs: I’m higher on Buffalo than most, especially at home. Kansas City at 5-3 only giving two seems like a promising sign in the Bills’ favor. I look for them to win this outright.

    Lions (-2.5) vs. Dolphins: Following its destruction of San Diego, many might assume that Miami is on track to repeat such efforts this week. The return of Calvin Johnson is enormous, however, and I like the Lions to sneak past in a close one.

    Bears (+7) vs. Packers: Chicago has very quickly garnered the reputation of being completely inadequate. Some of this is based purely on results, of course, although the abandoning of the Bears seems a bit premature. They don’t win this game, but they stay close.

    Buccaneers (+1.5) vs. Falcons: We’re back on the Tampa Bay wagon, picking a team that is the opposite of settled on its quarterback. And yet, Atlanta remains a mystery—especially outside the dome—which is why we’re taking the short dog.

    49ers (+5) vs. New Orleans: It is not particularly fun picking against the Saints in the dome, although San Francisco, coming off tremendous disappointment, might be the team to push this trend. A Saints’ field-goal win will do just fine, thanks.


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