Tag Archives: Vikings

BTL Week 10 NFL Picks

Went 7-5 versus the spread last week. Had some hits, had some misses that I didn’t see coming. But ever so slowly I’m inching closer to the right side of above 50%.

I’m going to keep this week’s pick’s post short. There was a lot that went on this past week that was bigger than football and I myself found myself less concerned with the NFL, fantasy football and making picks against the spread than paying attention the bigger issues. So in the spirit of conciseness. On to the picks.

Last Week: 7-5 / To Date: 69-75

Packers -2.5 over TITANS

REDSKINS -1.5 over Vikings

BUCCANEERS +2.5 over Bears

PANTHERS -3 over Chiefs

EAGLES over Falcons

JETS over Rams

SAINTS -3 over Broncos

JAGUARS -2.5 over Texans

CHARGERS -4 over Dolphins

STEELERS -3 over Cowboys

Niners +14 over CARDINALS

PATRIOTS -7.5 over Seahawks

GIANTS +1 over Bengals 








BTL Week 5 NFL Picks

There is a scene in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade where Walter Donovan tells Indiana Jones before he leaves for Venice to “trust no one”. Indiana never heeded his advice as he fell for the beautiful Fräulein Dr. Elsha Schneider,  who would turn out to be a Nazi spy.

Last week I felt the  same. My motto was,”Trust no one but Belicheck”. And even I found a way to screw that up! An absolute horrid week going 3-13 against the spread. To be fair the football season has been very wonky so far. But I feel a turn around coming this week because it can’t get any worse. I already nailed the Thursday Night Game, something that has eluded for the most part of the season.

I’m also changing the format just for this week. I don’t have enough time to give my thoughts on each pick, so this week, just the pick only will be posted. Be back next week with the old format and hopefully a much better record!

Last Week: 3-13 / To Date: 28-45


Cleveland (+10.5) over PATRIOTS

LIONS (+3.5) over Eagles

Bears (+4.5) over COLTS

Titans (+3.5) over DOLPHINS

RAVENS (-3.5) over Redskins

VIKINGS (-7) over Texans

STEELERS (-7) over Jets

Falcons (+4.5) over BRONCOS

Bengals (-2) over COWBOYS

Bills (+1) over RAMS

OAKLAND (-3.5) over Chargers

Giants (+7) over PACKERS

PANTHERS over Buccaneers (no spread because of the Cam Newton concussion)


Best Bets:

Bengals (-2) over COWBOYS

Giants (+7) over PACKERS

VIKINGS (-7) over Texans







BTL Week 3 NFL Picks

The Spaghetti Vendor struck back in Week 2 going 10-6 against the spread. I was almost unanimous with my early slate in covering seven of the first eight games. Only to trip up in the late afternoon games that featured a little too much of the “everybody believes in us” Kool-Aid; Oakland, Tampa.

Through the first two weeks I stand at 16-16 against the spread; well, 16-17 if you count the “PBS football clinic” Belicheck and company ran for three and half hours Thursday night. I swear, this is the last time I go against Belicheck. Everybody and their grandmother thought surely their was no way for Belicheck to actually pull out a victory against a probable AFC playoff team right? I mean not with Jacoby freaking Brissett?! Done. I’ve learned my lesson, I will never go against God’s gift to football (Belicheck, not Brady). Well……except if Eli is in the way (like really? Eli Manning of all people, is the freaking kryptonite to the greatest coach of all-time? The football gods must have a weird sense of humor). Anyways, I digress, onto my picks.

As I said before, my record is a tick below .500. The season has been pretty wonky so far, most teams haven’t fully revealed their scent yet. But I think I’m pretty close to being on the plus sides of these picks………..or I may just start turning to mush. Gambling is a hell of a drug right?!

(Home team in caps, pick in bold)

Last Week: 10-6 / To Date: 16-17

Week 3:

Cardinals -4 over BILLS

Okay, okay, Let’s get this out of the way first. The Cardinals proved me wrong last week. Doesn’t really change my opinion other then I gave the young Bucs too much credit. I know Arizona looked off against NE in Week 1 but those Pats very well might go 16-0 again. They slammed down the gauntlet in an absolute must win at home. Now they get to travel east for a road date with Buffalo. Rex Ryan just fired his OC, even though the defense has been the bigger problem. I think any road game going across country to play the early game is tough but I trust Arian’s to battle it out and hold the pathetic Bills offense in check while the offense takes care of business. Take AZ laying the four points.

Lions +7 over PACKERS

My instincts were right Sunday night about my Green Bay Packers. Starting out with two straight road games in tough for any team. But given the current level or should I say, offensive ineptitude the Packers and particularly, Aaron Rodgers, is playing at, Green Bay can’t be trust to lay 7 points to anyone except maybe the Browns. Now Rodgers could snap out of it and Lions aren’t world beaters. I just don’t think that Green Bay can get to 27 points with ease anymore, it may take more time for this group to step up. I like the Lions to keep it competitive throughout, they have a good shot to win if the GB offense/Arod have a repeat of last week and Demarious Randall gets no safety help again. Take the Lions and the points.

Raiders +1 over TITANS

The Raiders bandwagon got a little lighter last week. The darlings of the AFC got a rude awakening when they let Atlanta run them up and down the field. Which may happen from time to time with this YOUNG of a roster. Stacking success, I said it last week, it is the last thing that a team like the Raiders need to learn. To be playing at their potential week in and week out. Through two weeks the Raiders set the defensive record for most yards allowed. Not good at all. Now Tennessee played a very good Vikings team to a draw until their defense took over and played well enough at Detroit to squeak out a win. The Titans defense looks dependable, their running game is solid, so I expect them to put points up on Oakland. But, I just like the overall talent edge the Raiders possess to win on the road. Oakland is the better team, it’s games like these where they need to show it. Oakland and the point in a close one.

DOLPHINS -10 over Browns

The Dolphins are another team that started out with two very tough road games; in Seattle and in Foxborough. With hopes for some home cooking, they couldn’t have drawn a better opponent to get them back into the win column, the Browns! Cleveland gave Baltimore a run last week but Baltimore may be the “good bad team” this year. Ten is a lot for a team like the Dolphins to be swallowing at home but the Browns are injury-riddled, talent-less and are tanking. Go with the team that needs a win desperately. The Browns are just desperate to get the season over with.

Ravens -1 over JAGUARS

The Jags had everybody nearly fooled about being a possible playoff contender, turns out they may just suck at the first 30 mins of football. The Ravens also got down big to the Browns (which worries me, really? Down 20-2 to the freaking Browns!!) but rallied late. I’m really torn on this game, on one hand I down trust either team too much after the first two weeks but I surely trust Jon Harbaugh more than Gus Bradley. Take the Ravens laying one, but be cautious of a Bortles comeback.

Broncos +3.5 over BENGALS

Home team usually gets 3 points, so the line here says that the Bengals are a half point better than the defending SB champs. After last week’s dismantling of Indy and the way this defense CONTINUES to play as if it’s the 2015 Playoffs all over again, I can’t swallow the 3.5 points when Denver just needs to get to 17-20 points because I do not see Andy Dalton and his limited offense so far being able the score 20 plus points. Trevor Siemian is the perfect quarterback for this team and after going into Carolina and handling that stage, I think he has more than enough to win this game. Take Denver and the 3.5, they are as dependable as its gets (until next week when Cincy plays out of its mind on Sunday).

PANTHERS -6.5 over Vikings

This one is a tough spot for the Vikings. Fresh off a two game winning streak and fresh off losing their franchise running back for the year most likely. Minnesota has to travel to Carolina and this has all the makings of a let down game. The Vikings defense is legit and I look for them to keep Cam Newton in check, but I’m just not sure they’re ready to play lights out again for the second week in a row. The Panthers got their swagger back last week but also showed they can’t be trusted to put opponents away for good as the Niners made attempts time and again to back door cover. But I’m going with the Panthers being a touchdown better than Minnesota. Take the Panthers laying 6.5.

GIANTS -3.5 over Redskins

This has all the makings of that “Eli shits his pants game” that happens a couple times a year. The Giants look to be markedly better than the Washington professional football team (nod to Joe House), they have the skill players and the quarterback to hang thirty on this team. So why am I so nervous? Well, because Eli could throw 4 touchdowns or 4 picks in this game and neither would surprise me. So why am I picking them? Kirk Cousins sucks, thats why. He duped all of us into thinking he was a franchise quarterback, hell he even duped the Redskins front office (should’ve signed that extension Kirk). This team is not particularly good on either side of the ball and at home, I like the Giants to make an early statement for the NFC East (until they blow this game and remind all of us that gambling on them is basically waterboarding yourself). Take the Giants and pray for some good signs early from Eli.

BUCCANEERS -5 over Rams

Yep, taking the home favorites a lot this week. This one is a rather easy call. The Rams have yet to score a touchdown this year. I’m still buying Tampa and Jameis stock by the handfuls even in the wake of last week’s beatdown. Jameis will bounce back at home (as most young QBs do) and the young Bucs have enough firepower to score at least 17 on LA. As for the Rams, i don’t care how good your defense is, I see no possible way the offense gets to double digits on the scoreboard. One of my best bets of the week, Tampa giving 5.

Niners +10 over SEAHAWKS

I have said before that I don’t like swallowing double digit points often, and especially this early in the season. The Seahawks have scored one more offensive touchdown than the Rams have this season and that came on a two minute drill in Week 1. Their offensive line might be bottom 5 in football. Russell Wilson is already hurt and the Seattle offense suddenly is lacking elite playmakers on the outside. As for San Francisco, they are flawed, but but some reason I like them this year. Being that it is a division game, and yes on the road, I just haven’t seen enough from Wilson and company to really play downhill and make this a blowout. The only that happens is if Gabbert makes some crucial turnovers to the Seahawks elite defense. That is a very real possibility, but i’m still grabbing the points, SF to cover.

CHIEFS -3 over Jets

This one was another tough one to call. The Jets are dealing with some injuries with their WRs. Brandon Marshall may not play. Meanwhile, the Chiefs look to welcome back Jammal Charles, albeit in very limited action. Since the Chiefs are getting healthy and the Jets may not be fully 100% at receiver, I like KC to take this game. Not much else to say here, go with the home team.

COLTS -2.5 over Chargers

I’m convinced that outside of Andrew Luck, the Colts are absolutely terrible at football. It’s like those years when the Mariners had Griffey or ARod, hell even Felix Hernandez and for the love of god they could never muster enough talent around them, and they wasted some of their best years. So why am I picking the Colts when the Chargers have looked far better in the first two weeks. Self preservation. Indy NEEDS this win. Start 0-3 and could can almost write them off. It might not be pretty but Andrew Luck will put this team on his back to notch the Colts first victory this year. Colts at home because their playoff lives depend on it.

Steelers -3.5 over EAGLES

Probably the lock of the week along with Tampa over LA. The Steelers look to be the second best team in the NFL so far. They have elite talent at every level on offense and Le’Veon Bell isn’t even back yet! Carson Wentz and his merry band of birds have looked good so far…..against Cleveland and Chicago, probably two of the bottom 5 teams in the NFL. Here they get to play with the big boys. I don’t see things going smoothly for Wentz once he gets down 10 in the first half. The Steelers are as dependable (health permitting) as it gets.

Bears +7 over COWBOYS

Risky play here going with Brian Hoyer here but a few things stand out to me. The Dallas Cowboys have not shown me enough to be favored by 7 at home. If they hung 27 plus on NYG and WAS to start then yes, you deserve the -7. Second, it’s Sunday Night Football, these Dallas games are always close. I look for a high scoring affair, taking the over (44) in this game is another savvy bet. But I like for the Bears to hang with the Boys long enough to make it interesting. I like Dallas to win but not by more than a score.

SAINTS -2.5 over Falcons

Drew Brees gets to come home to his fortress of solitude. Now the dome hasn’t been as untouchable recently as you might believe, but, Atlanta’s defense is pretty shoddy and I see another Saints v. Raiders Week 1 affair in store for MNF. If this was in Atlanta, I’d give the nod to them, but it is not. I’m taking the better coach, better offense and better quarterback in this one. Saints laying 2.5


Best Bets:

Steelers -3.5 over EAGLES

BUCCANEERS -5 over Rams

DOLPHINS -10 over Browns





BTL Week 2 NFL Picks

6-10 against the spread last week. OUCH!!! Thats almost as bad as the beating our native Rams took!

I’m not going to sugar coat it, I fell behind the eight-ball faster with my picks than Andrew Luck and the Colts did against the Cooter led Lions last week. But in the world of gambling, there is always tomorrow! There is always another game and so far in Week 2 I am 1-0 with my pick of the Jets +1 over BILLS. Here are my picks (I can’t get any worse right)

(Home team in caps, pick in bold)

Last Week: 6-10 / To Date: 7-10

Week 2:

STEELERS -3.5 over Bengals

The NFL Game of the Week is first up on the docket. The Steelers had as an impressive win as anyone did last week with Big Ben in mid-season form, Antonio Brown un-guardable  and being able to run the ball at will. Then again it was against the Redskins, are they really that good? As for the Bengals, they squeaked out a win versus a quality team in the Jets. This screams that old talking head reference, “you know, you can throw records out the window when these two teams matchup” Phil Simms-esque type of line. Bengals are a good team, but can they put up 30 plus points on the road, i doubt it. Only thing that stops this Steelers team is health and Belicheck, and the Bengals can’t count on either on Sunday.

Titans +6  over LIONS

I believe in a Cooter led Lion’s offense. I love their addition of Marvin Jones, the “Catch Brothers” Theo Riddick and Ameer Abdullah and Matthew “I may finally be putting it all together” Stafford. They hung 39 on the road versus the Colts. Two problems though, the Colts might really, really suck at football (sans Luck), and the Lions are still the Lions. Do they really deserve to be getting 6 points at home? I still believe that the Titans were victimized by a top 5 NFL defense that once of couple of balls bounced the wrong way, their fate was sealed against the Vikings. The Lions don’t own anything close to that defense. If the line was -3 or lower, I’d grab the Lions. For now I’m gonna need one more week to see if Jim Bob Cooter is the next Mike Martz. Take the Titans and the points.

Ravens -6 over BROWNS

The experts are talking a lot of Ravens playoff sleeper buzz, and I’m buying. They had the injury-season from hell last year. A coach named Harbaugh still calls the shots and they get to face the ass crack of the NFL in their old ancestral home. Don’t over think this one, the Browns are tanking and the Ravens know what a 2-0 start usually means in the Harbaugh era.

Cowboys +3 over REDSKINS

Yep, get use to it, taking another road dog. This one can really go either way, but gun to my head, I like Dallas to control the clock and the game with their elite rushing attack. I know Zeke Elliot got off to a slow start last game but I look for that to be corrected this week. Cousins really disappointed me on Monday night, I’ve already dropped him from my fantasy team. Too many missed throws that could’ve been had. Division games are always close, it could be a loser leaves town match. I like the Cowboys to keep hope alive and I’m getting points.

Saints +5 over GIANTS

I didn’t get to watch last week’s game for the Giants (too busy crushing beers at the river), so I can’t tell you if their off-season makeover on the defensive side of the ball is completely legit. It is not like the Giants lit up a hapless Dallas D either. They’re home so I expect for them to play better against possibly even worse defense in New Orleans. So why am I going with the Saints as the road dog? I just can’t get past the 5 points, -3 then yes, I’d take the G-Men. 5 seems a little much with the firepower the Saints have to make it interesting, despite Brees’ road struggles. I like the Giants to win a close shootout, but the Saints to cover.

PANTHERS -13.5 over Niners

I am usually not one to take the home favorite with this high of a spread (especially my misfire w/Seattle last week). The Niners looked very good against possibly the worst NFL offense in quite a while. I was listening to Michael Lombardi this week on BSPN (Bill Simmons Podcast Network), he had some pretty interesting facts on the Niners offense. Most revealing was that Gabbert’s yard/completion was below 6 yards. If the Niners can’t stretch the field vertically, you can forget about running on the Panthers (despite last week vs DEN). You have an angry Panthers team that absolutely cannot start 0-2. If the Panthers start out fast, like they did all of last year, I don’t see the Niners making comeback. Despite my fears of a late backdoor cover, this is a statement game for Carolina.

Dolphins +6.5 over PATRIOTS

Gronk is very iffy to play. The Dolphins defense played fantastic in Seattle last weekend and the Patriots may be due for a let down game. I always have faith in Belicheck but for the Pats to be giving 6.5 with Garoppolo, just seems a little high for me. I think the mantra of the Brady-less Pats during these four games is to just win, no matter the fashion. I like the Pats to win but my gut says watch out for the Dolphins to make things interesting. Especially without Gronk.

HOUSTON -2.5 over Chiefs

That was not a pretty win by KC last weekend to let a weaker Chargers team hang with them blow for blow until the end. Houston has all the right things in place to make a unabated run for the AFC South crown, but it all comes down to the health of J.J. Watt and the arm of Brock Osweiler. With the plethora of skill players now at his disposal, Brock has the ability to play any way they want. Ground and pound with Lamar Miller, outside the hashes with the human highlight reel DeAndre Hopkins and a suitable running mate in Will Fuller. If Watt and his talented defensive mates play up to par, I don’t think KC can keep up. Take Houston.

RAMS +6.5 over Seahawks

I am very torn on this game. In my opinion it goes either of two ways, a Seahawks blowout (w/possible Jeff Fisher firing, I don’t care if he just signed an extension!!) or a an ugly knock em out street fight like last week with the Dolphins. The Rams have always had the Seahawks number, including two wins against them last year. The Seahawks offensive line is an absolute disaster, the Rams boast probably the best front four in the business. I just can’t see Aaron Donald and Robert Quinn being quite for two weeks in a row. Especially with the first regular season game in LA in over 20 years, I know my So Cal faithful will be boozed up like Eagles fans at The Vet back in the 80s! I still believe the Seahawks squeak this one out but Donald and Quinn will make Russell Wilson’s life a living hell while doing so. Rams to cover.

Buccaneers +7 over CARDINALS

I was literally just about to put Cards -7 up there and then I realized that my instincts about them being frauds (more specifically Carson Palmer, the rest of the team may be legit) after last years playoff run maybe right. The only reason I picked the Cards to cover last weekend was because I thought Belicheck was throwing away this game when Gronkowski was ruled out. I think the Cardinals are really talented but I am not sold on Carson Palmer. I think he’s hit his regression this year and I think Jameis and his Bucs have enough spunk to really make things interesting in this game. The Buccaneers have all the weapons to go blow for blow with the Cards. “In Shape James” (nod to Bill Simmons), is athletically gifted enough to evade the Cards pass rush and make plays downfield. The only caveat is that the Bucs played a horrid Atlanta team that may be bottom 5. I’m sticking with my gut, the Cards are not for real and 7 is too much to be laying with this talented of a team coming to town.

Jaguars +3 over CHARGERS

I cannot for the life of me figure out why the Chargers are getting -3 in this game, even with the home field advantage (which they don’t have if you’ve ever been to a game there). The Jags played my Packers down to the wire in Week 1. I knew the game was going to be tough but the heat was way more of a factor than i thought it would be. The Chargers played great in KC, recent history has shown us that they are a far better away team than home team. I just don’t see a Bolts win here in the wake of Keenan Allen being done for the year. I think the Jags, especially defensively are good enough take get the to job done. Take the Jags and the points.

RAIDERS -4.5 over Falcons

Momentum is a real thing, despite what Bill Barnwell may tell you. The Raiders have plenty of it after Jack Del Rio just beat Sean Payton in a nut-sack game to see whose balls were bigger. The Raiders have the makings of elite talent everywhere you look. And now they get to come home and face an abominable Falcons team that just got shellacked by Jameis and his Bucs? The only thing that worries me is this is a young team and the ability to repeat success and stack quality wins without getting too ahead of themselves is the last thing a good team needs to do to before becoming a legit contender. We’ll find out this weekend.

Colts +6 over Broncos

The Colts maybe in there first steps to going 6-10 and getting Pagano fired, or they maybe be stepping into their first upset victory of a 10-6 playoff season. I have no clue, this team is so jekell and hyde it could be anywhere in between. I do know this, the Broncos, until I see Trevor Siemian take some major strides in pushing the ball downfield, should never be favored by more than 4 against anyone with the offensive firepower of Andrew Luck. I don’t care how good your defense is, I don’t see you blowing out the Colts and holding a double digit lead without him mounting a comeback. It’s in their DNA, they get down and then they rally. Plus the Colts always play Denver well. Something tells me that the Colts can more than cover, and maybe even win. The first one to 20 points takes this game.

VIKINGS +2.5 over Packers

If you have ever listened to me on the BTL Packers Podcast, you know me as the pessimistic Packers fan. I prefer the term realist but call it what you want. I was very concerned about the first two games. I foresaw the tough game with the Jags in the heat. I am even more wary of the Vikings game in their new dome, AP coming off a bad game looking to make amends and that crazy talented Zimmer-coached Vikings defense who has always kept Rodgers under wraps. It is going to be a close game either way. I don’t see the Packers being able to pull away even if they play well. I like Rodgers with all his receiving weapons and I like the GB secondary. Thats about it. I am very worried about the middle of the Packers defense against the run, I am worried about a new addition to the offensive line playing his first nationally televised game in a dome that may or may not have crowd noise piped in. I think Eddie Lacy is still one more off-season away from fully getting back into shape. And I am worried about the most annoying trend ithat is happening in big Packer games lately; someone vital to the defense/offense ends up out for the game or worse sometime in the mid-first quarter. I think the Vikings knew they could squeak past the Titans, not show any relevant film of a Bradford led offense. I expect the Vikings best shot, because I know Zimmer has them convinced they can still win the division. I don’t like picking against my team, but take the Vikings to cover and possibly win.

Eagles +3 over BEARS

Not an entertaining matchup, I don’t have a whole lot to say here. I like the talent on the Eagles slightly better than the Bears. It will be Carson Wentz’s first road game and a nationally televised one at that. I was impressed by what some football experts had to say about his first start. I’ll take Philly and the points.

Best Bets:

Jags +3 over CHARGERS

Ravens -6 over BROWNS

STEELERS -3.5 over Bengals




BTL Packers Podcast 3.1

Here is Season 3 of our BTL Packers Podcast. Give us a listen to find out our thoughts on the cutting of Josh Sitton, signing of Jared Cook, which Packer makes the leap this year and much, much more!


We’ll be back in two weeks to recap Week 1 & 2. Give us a like and share the podcast. Find us at http://www.btl-sports.com




Week 13 NFL Picks

Week 13:

Jets @ Giants / Line: NYJ -1

  • Giants (+1) over JETS

Cardinals @ Rams / Line: AZ -4.5

  • Cardinals (-4.5) over RAMS

Falcons @ Buccaneers / Line: EVEN

  • BUCCANEERS over Falcons

Seahawks @ Vikings / Line: SEA -1

  • VIKINGS (+1) over Seahawks

Texans @ Bills / Line: BUF -3

  • Texans (-3) over BILLS

Ravens @ Dolphins / Line: MIA -3.5

  • DOLPHINS (-3.5) over Ravens

Bengals @ Browns / Line: CIN -10.5

  • Bengals (-10.5) over BROWNS

Jaguars @ Titans / Line: TEN -2.5

  • Jaguars (+2.5) over TITANS

Niners @ Bears / Line: CHI -8.5

  • BEARS (-8.5) over Niners

Broncos @ Chargers / Line: DEN -3.5

  • Broncos (-3.5) over Chargers

Chiefs @ Raiders / Line: KC -2.5

  • Chiefs (-2.5) over RAIDERS

Panthers @ Saints / Line: CAR -7

  • Panthers (-7) over SAINTS

Eagles @ Patriots / Line: NE -10.5

  • Eagles (+10.5) over PATRIOTS

Colts @ Steelers / Line: PIT -7.5

  • STEELERS (-7.5) over Colts

Cowboys @ Redskins / Line: WAS -4

  • REDSKINS (-4) over Cowboys


Week 11 NFL Picks

Home Team in Caps:

10 AM Games:

Raiders over LIONS (Best Lock)

Colts (+5) over FALCONS

Jets (-3) over TEXANS

Buccaneers (+5.5) over EAGLES

BEARS (+1) over Broncos

Rams (+2.5) over RAVENS

Cowboys (-1) over DOLPHINS (Best Lock)

PANTHERS (-7) over Redskins


 1 PM Games:

Chiefs (-3) over CHARGERS

SEAHAWKS (-13) over 49ers

Packers (+1) over VIKINGS


SNF Game:

CARDINALS (-4.5) over Bengals


MNF Game:

PATRIOTS (-7) over Bills