It was a 1-1 split for the Picks in the Championship games.
Pittsburgh was the winner, as the Steelers did the unthinkable and
dominated the Broncos in Denver. The Steelers and Big Ben came out
throwing, opened up an early lead, then sent the dogs after Jake Plummer.
Poor Jake flashbacked to his Arizona Cardinal days, and turned the ball
over several times. Denver never new what hit them. Carolina was a major
loser, as the Seahawks shut down WR Steve Smith and the Panthers didn’t
know what to do. It was not a good day for Jake’s, as Seattle got in
Jake Delhomme’s face and he also turned the ball over several times. I
was not sold on Seattle, but that win
was very impressive. Seattle is obviously the best team in the NFC, but
are they one of the top 2 teams in the league? That’s the question
we’re forced to answer in order to make our pick.
I would like to take this moment to thank everyone for their
support this year. This newsletter is a lot tougher to put together than
it looks and it’s good to know people appreciate the effort. It’s
tough to make these predictions because I know my selections affect your
bottom line, but rest assured my money is where my mouth is. When the
Picks go down, so does my pocket book. This week the Superbowl was
especially tough to pick, because the BPR went against my
selection. I hate doing that, but I feel the team I selected is the better
one. Now, it may not go our way, due to injuries, turnovers, bad calls, or
who knows what, so do not go overboard with your wager. There’s only one
game on the board and it’s the one that everyone knows everything about,
so there is no value in the line. Bottom line here is, don’t make a huge
play on a game that we may not have looked twice at otherwise. Have a
great off season, Thanks and Good Luck, Ben
Last week, the Seahawks dismantled the Panthers in a dominating
performance to pave the way to the franchise’s first ever Superbowl.
Coach Mike Holmgren had a brilliant game plan, shutting down WR Steve
Smith, and forcing QB Jake Delhomme into some costly errors. Seattle made
the defensive adjustment the Bears refused to make and dominated the game
at home. Seattle is a solid team and they are especially strong on
offense. QB Matt Hasselbeck has finally come into his own and does not
make very many mistakes. RB Shaun Alexander is one of the best in the game
and, with the help of a top notch offensive line, he has the ability to
dominate. The only area where the Seahawks offense may be a little
deficient is at the WR position, although this unit has gotten over their
propensity to drop the ball in key situations. The Seattle defense is
young, fast and has added 7 new starters this year. They rotate defensive
linemen, have solid LB’s and their secondary is solid. This defense is
fast, but where they may have a little problem is, they’re a little
light in the britches. In other words, they may get pushed around by a
bigger stronger team. The Seahawks got here by dominating their division,
which includes San Fran, Arizona, and St. Louis. This division, the NFC
North, is probably the weakest in the league. The Seahawks also faced the
easiest schedule in the league and the toughest teams they faced
Jacksonville, Atlanta, Washington, Dallas, and the Giants all gave them a
hell of a time. In fact, Seattle lost to Washington and Jacksonville and
barely got by the other 3. Late in the season they faced Indy at home,
while the Colts were resting starters, and only beat Tennessee, on the
road, by 4 points. A Superbowl team should not be tooth and nails to beat
one of the worst teams in the league, with the playoffs on the line.
Seattle also got here with benefit of the home field and has not played a
meaningful road game since December 18th. Not much of a
Superbowl resume if you ask me.
The Steelers on the other hand, literally kicked in the door to get
here. Pittsburgh is led by QB Big Ben Roethlisberger, in only his second
year, Ben has been a dominant force. He is 26-4 SU as a starter and
unflappable. The RB duties are shared by Fast Willie Parker and the
Bus, Jerome Bettis. This will most likely be Bettis’s last game
and he is playing in his home city, Detroit. The WR’s are very capable
especially Hines Ward and Antwaan Randle El is a wildcard, the master of
the trick play. The Steeler line is big and solid and will not be pushed
around. The Pittsburgh defense is a force to be reckoned with, they have a
solid line, the LB corps is led by “Crazy” Joey Porter and
their secondary is one of the best in the game, anchored by safety Troy
Polamalu. Polamalu is a freak of nature, he can defend the pass, blitz the
QB, or chase down RB’s like a LB, and he is the key that makes the
Steelers Zone Blitz package work. The Steelers play a base 3-4 defense and
the only 3-4 defense the Seahawks faced, Dallas, gave them fits at home.
Last year, after a 15-1 regular season, Ben was a little shaky in the
playoffs. This year, in the playoffs, the Steelers have dominated their
competition, shutting down the Bengals in the second half and literally
kicking the crap out of Indy and Denver, 2 teams arguably better than
Seattle, and lets not forget, those were all road games. Pittsburgh is the
first #6 seed to make it to the playoffs and only the second team
to win 3 road games to get here. They are also the first team to
win 9 games on the R and are 16-2 SU on the R the last 2 years. Now,
that’s a Superbowl resume.
While analyzing the Championship Games 2 weeks ago, although I
selected Carolina, I said to myself, if Seattle does win, I’m going to
bet Pittsburgh or Denver with both fists in the Superbowl. Then after the
games, I was a little hesitant, because the Seahawks have the BPR
in their favor and took apart Carolina quite easily. It took me several
days before I made my final decision, but Pittsburgh is obviously the
better team, winning impressively on the road. Seattle is good, but got
here with the benefit of a cake schedule and the win over the Panthers is
a little suspect. You have to take into account the Panthers were just in
a dog fight with the Bears and Bucs, lost their starting RB and best
defensive lineman, and all the Seahawks had to do was shutdown Steve
Smith, game over. The Steelers have the better defense, by far, and can
come at you from many different ways. Yes, the offensive match up is in
Seattle’s favor, but Big Ben is getting better every game and what’s
Shaun Alexander going to do when he gets hit in the chops? I may be going
against the BPR, but I have to side with the better overall
team. I am hoping the 4 point spread does not come into play, like it did
last year, because picking the winner and losing to the spread is pretty
tough to take. I’m still sick over picking the Pats the last 2 years and
losing money. I also don’t like the fact that everyone is on the same
side, but I don’t think those points are going to matter. Take
Pittsburgh, they’re the better team and deserve to be here.
SUNDAY FEBRUARY 5, 2006
BPR Plays in Bold
ATS (Unless otherwise specified.)
SU / 11-6-1 / 5-3 SU R / 3-4-1 R / 11-7 O-U /
O-U R / 5-6 O-U Art / 1-2-1 RD / 2-2 v AFC /
Art / 4-2 SU + 3-3 ATS v Playoff teams /
R Playoffs / 1st Superbowl / 20-20 SU v > .500 /
v > .500 teams / 3-9 SU + 4-8 ATS as RD /
on R since Dec. 18th / Easiest Schedule Faced /
Off + #16 Def + #28 Special /Holmgren’s 3rd SB/
11-8 SU + 10-4-5 P-offs / 44.5 Avg. Pts /
Avg. Points For – 16-4 Avg. Points Against /
Dyson, T Hunter ? /
SU / 12-7 / 9-2 SU R / 16-2 SU R /10-8-1 O-U/
O-U R / 0-3 O-U Art / Opp-Turf /41.3 Avg. Pts/
/ 5-1 RF / 3-1 v NFC / 4-2 Art / 4-1 SB /
SU + ATS v Playoff Teams / 8-4 R Playoffs /
11-9 SU + 10-9-1 ATS Playoffs /
1st Superbowl Lost to Dallas, But Covered /
v > .500 teams / 14-5 R v > .500 Teams /
Youngest QB ever in SB / Bettis returns Home /
#6 Seed to SB, 2nd team to win 3 R games in SB /
Off + #4 Def / 19th toughest schedule /
Avg. Points For – 16.3 Avg. Points Against /
26-4 SU + 20-10 ATS / 29-7 SU last 2 years /
Harrison ?, DE Kirschke Prob, LB Frazier Doubt
up big time, but ran out of gas. Too many injuries and too many road
games.Great defense, need one more weapon on offense and watch out.
defense, but came up short v Carolina. No adjustment for WR Steve
Smith. Lovie going in right direction. Need more weapons on offense.
Will Grossman be #1 QB?
Offense, defense will get better. Team imploded at halftime of
Playoff game v Pitt., fight in locker room with WR Chad Johnson.
Team was too young and dumb, but watch out.
their asses handed to them by Pitt. Good all around team, but fell
short when they got hit in the mouth. Especially disappointing
because it happened at home. Will be back.
of chokers, from the Coach to the Kicker. If they couldn’t do it
this year, they should stop wasting everyone’s time. Pitt kicked
their butts and they didn’t deserve to be in game.Manning is all
sizzle and no steak.
team getting better. Jags are in every game and had a bad match up
with Pats. QB is good and getting better and they will be back next
year. Good defense.
boned in Denver. Will be back next year, probably better and
stronger. Coach is the best in the business and he will put this
team together every time. Better than Humpty Dumpty.
season, but don’t have what it takes in the playoffs. Defense is
not very good and Manning played like his brother in clutch. Now you
know why their dad never played in p-offs.
team, comes to play. Good defense and QB Simms is getting better.
Gruden is a good coach and if they can upgrade their offense, they
will be a solid contender.
great strides, especially on defense, and gave the Seahawks all they
could handle in Seattle. Need to upgrade their offense big time,
defense is solid.