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Digital Dads NFL Pre-Game: Week 7

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

Can Matt Ryan lead his offense against the Lions to victory?

Another week passes by in this glorious NFL season, and another sub-par selection of winners. I went 8-5 last week, no thanks to the Bills choking. All you had to do was run the fucking ball to kill some clock, then kick the game winning field goal. But no, you are going to pass to the exact same receiver on the same pattern that your last interception came on. That was idiotic. Didn’t Fitzpatrick go to Harvard? Meanwhile, the Bucs are proving me wrong every week, which if you’ve read this column for more than a year is an annual occurrence. I don’t know what it is, I cannot pick that team correctly. Maybe it’s cause I hate them so very very much. Then, the Lions lost in a game full of mistakes on both sides. So those are three picks right there that I really wish would have gone my way. Well, if wishes were turds, I’d have to flush. So that brings me to 61-29 (68%) on the season. In the big picture, that ain’t bad. Here’s what the ESPN guys are doing:

Allen 59 31 66%
Golic 66 24 73%
Hoge 64 26 71%
Jaws 61 23 73%
Mortensen 54 36 60%
Schefter 61 29 68%
Schlereth 63 27 70%
Wichersham 62 28 69%
Accuscore 64 26 71%

Really that math should be recalculated, as some of them haven’t picked all the games. There have been 90 games, yet Jaws has only picked 84. I just want to beat Accuscore by the end of the year. The worst picks by any so-called expert have to belong to this guy. 

It should also be noted, scoring was way down last week, I think that the defensive secondaries of most teams are finally starting to wake the fuck up. A lot less blown coverages and big defensive plays are showing that the lockout hangover might have finally worn off. Now, on with the picks!

Featured Game

Atlanta at Detroit Line: -4.5
Well, I was wrong about the Lions. I said they’d be undefeated come Thanksgiving, but a lack of run defense and some serious red-zone penalties kept them behind San Francisco last week. Even though the Niners gave them plenty of chances to bounce back. The Lions could be in trouble this week (and my fantasy team) as Javid Best might be sidelined after suffering a concussion last week. They shipped in Ronnie Brown from Philly, but he’s yet to pass the physical. So there goes the running game. But Stafford, Calvin Johnson and the tight ends can carry the offense, but not without the play action. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out. Thankfully, they are at home where the noise is sure to fluster Matt Ryan, who likes to call plays at the line. Might want to start practicing those hand signals now Matt. If the Lions give up the kind of yards on the ground they gave up to the Niners, they will lose this game. I’m torn, but I’m sticking with the Lions just cause I have more fantasy players on that team.

Tailgate City (The Rest)

Seattle at Cleveland Line: -3.0
The Browns. What can be said about my team? Well, Colt looked alright against the Raiders, but it wasn’t until the last five minutes. Whatever they did on their bye week didn’t seem to have worn off. Hillis was a non-factor, leaving with a hamstring injury. Madden Curse anyone? The Browns were pathetic. The Seahawks are just coming off a bye week and have to roll to the east coast again. Though last time, they managed to win the game late with some smart defense. I’ll buy that. Charlie Whitehurst looks to be getting the start over Tavaris Jackson, which could actually be a good thing for the Seahawks, looking to find that magic they lost when Hasselbeck left. I’m going to go against my gut on this one though, and take the Browns to win at home. I’ll probably be wrong (as I usually am when I follow my gut) but I gotta pick my boys every once in while right?

Houston at Tennessee Line: -3.0
The Texans could not get the running game going against the Ravens last week, and that killed them. The Titans aren’t going to make it easy for the Texans this week, as this game may as well be a playoff for the division. Both have massive losses at wide receiver, both teams haven’t been able to really establish a running game. Both teams have defenses that can be up at times, down at others. This is a very evenly matched game. Houston’s defense might be a bit stronger, but they have to find a way to control the bevy of tight ends that the Titans employ. Are they blocking or running slants? No one knows! Titans to win at home.

Denver at Miami Line: -3.0 UPSET SPECIAL!!
How’s this for lame. Before the game, Miami plans on honoring the 2008 Florida Gator National Championship Team – including visiting QB Tim Tebow. Talk about degrading. Not only will this fire up Tebow and the Denver Broncos with false bravado, but it will totally demoralize the Dolphins. Why in the hell are they still going through with this idiotic presentation? The original idea was to sell tickets, but now? It’s just moronic. “We can’t get out of our own way,” said Sparano. Of course, he was referring to the play of his team, rather than the poor decisions by the marketing department. It should also be noted, that after losing to Denver (as Miami will) Sparano is probably going to be out of a job. If he isn’t, I’ll be surprised. That being said, the Miami Dolphins have nothing to give any pundit a reason to pick them. Denver on the road.

Chicago at Tampa Bay Line: +1.5 CRAPFEST OF THE WEEK!!
Apologies to both the Bears and the Bucs. The London game is always an automatic crap fest. One team is always tired and plays like shit, it always rains and the crowd is confused and the stadium is never full. These games are a bit depressing to watch sometimes. Either way, it doesn’t matter what happened last week, the Bucs will win this game because they flew over to London on Monday, giving the guys time to adjust and get a proper amount of sleep. Meanwhile, the Bears opted to practice at home this week, then fly over on Saturday. Bone-head move guys. The Bucs already learned that lesson once, and that’s torture on the body with the time change. Fatigue is going to be the enemy of the Bears, which is why the Bucs will win.

Washington at Carolina Line: -3.0
The Redskins found some mystical way to lose against the Eagles, even though their defense smacked around Vick. The problem was pretty clear, as Rex Grossman tossed four picks to the Eagles defense. He was benched, and now John Beck is going to be the starter. That’s good news, because the kid can run. Sure, he’ll make mistakes but like Tebow he’s got a weak defense his first week out. Meanwhile, Cam and the boys almost pulled one out of their asses last week against the Falcons, but three interceptions killed them. Not to mention allowing a comeback. I expect this game to go about the same, though I can see an upset brewing. Though since the Panthers are favored on the line, it wouldn’t be an upset. Anyway, like an awkward virgin on prom night, the Panthers can’t seem to seal the deal. Redskins on the road.

Kansas City at Oakland Line: -3.5
Raiders Offensive coordinator Al Saunders said about Carson Palmer starting; “As long as he’s breathing.” Sorry Boller, you are nothing but pine warmer. Palmer was acquired by Oakland from the Bungles for a draft pick or something. Either way, it’s a good deal for the Raiders, but don’t you think Palmer will be a bit rusty coming back from semi-retirement? Especially with only four days to learn the plays in Oakland? Thankfully, he’s up against the Chiefs. Now, the Chiefs aren’t terrible, but they sure have not been playing lights out defense. What’s that? They are terrible? Oh, yeah, so they are. The Raiders, coming off a win over the hapless Browns are fired up, looking at a serious run for the playoffs. Kansas City will be a minor speed bump. Raiders to win at home.

Pittsburgh at Arizona Line: +4.0
A lot of so-called experts are picking the Cardinals to somehow snap out of their mediocrity and beat the Steelers. While the Steelers defense and run game took a little while to get going, it’s going. The Cardinals defense is also not going to have an answer for the deep threat of Ben to Wallace. Not to mention that Hines Ward guy still plays football – apparently. Either way, Kolb isn’t nearly as sharp as he appeared to be as backup in Philly. The Cardinals are probably looking to enter the Andrew Luck lottery as well. A loss here will help. Steelers to win on the road in this rematch of that one Superbowl where Arizona lost.

St. Louis at Dallas Line: -10.5
I really wanted to make this one my upset special this week, but I just picked up the Dallas defense in fantasy since the Bills have a bye week and I don’t like to bet against myself. The Rams, well, they showed up against Green Bay in the second half on defense, a little bit. They held the Packers after the half, but also didn’t score. They seem to be lagging on that scoring bit a lot lately. Sigh. They just suck. 400 yards of offense and only three points to show for it. The Cowboys, a team that I picked to win their division, still haven’t stepped up to be the team that they are on paper. I think they lay down a whipping this week, but they really have to get their shit together if they hope to compete with the Redskins. Cowboys at home.

Green Bay at Minnesota Line: +9.5
Remember that time that Donovan McNabb turned out to be a bust? Oh wait, that was last week. For all concerned, the Donovan McNabb era in purple should be over. Christian Ponder, the rookie Qb with the quick feet, has been named the starter after relieving McNabb against the Bears last week. While he didn’t score, he moved the team down the field, which was more than McNabb did. The Vikings are hurting on offense, Peterson is their only weapon but even he is stifled by an offensive line that can’t get out of it’s own way and certainly can’t create any pocket protection. Thankfully Ponder knows how to run, and he’ll have to be running against one of the best defensive fronts in the league. There is no upset brewing here, the Vikings are going to get whipped, but it’ll be fun to watch Ponder escape pressure. Packers to win.

Indianapolis at New Orleans Line: -14.0
The Saints are coming off a 2-1 road trip, tired and hungry. Hey, what’s this? A five course meal being delivered right to their door? I’d like my rookie quarterback rare please. Indy, also in the Andrew Luck lottery, clearly has no faith in their young rookie Painter. Or at least the media doesn’t, as Painter has already been replaced by Andrew Luck on paper. So, their season is bonked. Still looking for their first win, they ain’t gonna find it in New Orleans. Saints to win.

Baltimore at Jacksonville Line: +8.5
Last but not least, the Jaguars. Another rookie QB is about to get squashed like a bug. If Gabbart thought the Steelers were tough, wait until he meets Ray Lewis and friends. The Jags have shown some spark lately, but they really are lacking when it comes to pass protection, passing and pass defense. So, there’s that. It should be a nice, rough game with plenty of silly penalties for the Jags. Ravens to win on the road.

In the Sauna (Bye Week Teams)

Bye Week at Buffalo
So was that bad play calling or a terrible decision by Fitzpatrick that lost the game for the Bills against the Giants? Either way, the Bills better take a step back and deflate those heads. After the Patriots win, the Bills are looking a bit normal.

Bye Week at Cincinnati
The Bungles have been the surprise team of the season, led by young ginger Andy Dalton. They enter the bye week at 4-2 and poised to make a run at the division title. Of course, they have to find a way to beat their division foes first.

Bye Week at N.Y. Giants
The Giants defense seemed to wake up late in the game against Buffalo, a week after the offense lost the game the same way Buffalo did. The defense needs to keep it strong if the Giants can hope to hold off the rest of the division and overtake the Redskins.

Bye Week at Philadelphia
The Eagles, are for real? I still don’t think so and won’t be sold. While they won last week, Vick still made a laundry list of mistakes, but coupled them with some good play too. We’ll see if that huge contract pays off. Oh yeah, Vince Young is really that bad.

Bye Week at San Francisco
Huge win for the Niners over the Lions. I didn’t think I’d ever be saying that. But Harbaugh is doing a good job leading this team and turning Alex Smith into a real NFL QB. Now, if he can only get that offensive line to sharpen up a bit.

Bye Week at New England
What needs to be said about the Patriots? They pulled off a Tom Brady-esque comeback against the Cowboys and sustained their home win streak. Brady and Bellichick also tied Shula & Marino for most wins by a coach/QB duo. Slap on the back chaps.

Digital Dads NFL Pre-Game: It’s Not Fantasy, It’s Football

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

Will Peyton be able to avoid injury to be a worthy fantasy pick?

Well, by now you’ve read my AFC predictions, and read my NFC predictions. If not, go do that now. I’ll wait.

Ok, welcome back. You can see there are a few surprises on there this year, like the fact that I picked the Lions to actually make the playoffs and my true hatred for the Bucaneers didn’t shine through. Then there are some more obvious picks, like the Packers, Steelers and Patriots making it back to the playoffs with relative ease. I’d also look for Kansas City to do surprisingly well this year, which makes me glad I have Matt Cassel on my first fantasy team.

Speaking about fantasy football, I’m in four leagues this year, two of them pay leagues and I’m running one of those. Being the commish isn’t difficult, until I have to start approving stupid trades. Like the one I offered the other day, hoping to acquire Peyton Hillis, who went very early in our draft. I offered up L.T., who went very late in our draft. I was also a bit surprised that Peyton Manning wasn’t taken until the 13th round or so. Is the possibility for a re-injury that scary that people aren’t drafting him?

Aaron Rodgers has been the number one QB pick in a lot of leagues, as he was in ours. Even though the set rankings had Arian Foster at number one. My number one pick was Calvin Johnson as I was drafting eighth and I knew I wanted a top notch and primary receiver on my team. Plus, I ended up having plenty of choices for QB, ending up with Cassel, Rothlesberger and Josh Freeman. Freeman should have a good year, but I think he’ll throw just as many picks as touchdowns. Rothlesberger is always good for some points, but I think Cassel is going to be the star. Last year his TD to interception ratio was ridiculously good. And if you were wondering, someone did draft Tebow. Last round, a sentimental pick for a Gators fan.

For most fantasy teams, the big questions are coming in at the running back position. There aren’t a lot of backs around the league that are going to be primary ball carriers, so depending on how your league scores, should help you decide which back to pick. If the reward for yards is high, get a back like Shonn Greene. He’s going to be taking most of the handoffs, leaving L.T. to handle the short yardage stuff for the Jets. Then there is Talbert in San Diego who was a surprise break out last year, and should do well again this year, getting the primary load. However, if you can pull someone like Gore or Mendenhall, guys who are going to be primary backs, get ‘em, but you better have a good back up in case they get injured.

There are so many wide receivers out there, you should have no problem getting someone with high stats. Aside from Johnson I also netted Greg Jennings and Hines Ward. You can’t ask for a better receiving core for a fantasy team. I also got Devin Hester, since my league scores for return yards. That’s a huge bonus for a guy like Hester, or Josh Cribbs of the Browns, and Percy Harvin of the Vikings. These guys play both WR and special teams and should net plenty of yards per game. Supplement that with a reliable tight end that gets a fair amount of action, like Ben Watson in Cleveland and you’ve got some serious contention right there.

As far as defense goes (you’ll notice I skipped talking about a kicker, there are 32 starters, pick one) my picks are Detroit or Kansas City. Both these defenses are going to be good, especially Detroit when it comes to sacks. Of course, you can always go with the reliable Steelers D if you can get them. I don’t suggest picking the Bills defense. Another good defense should be Houston, believe it or not. They should be available off waivers.

In other news, Kerry Collins has come out of his short retirement to backup Peyton in Indy. Frankly, I think the Colts made a wise choice because Collins could definitely lead that team to the playoffs. The Colts are nothing without Peyton, but I think they could get by with Collins. Don’t bother picking him up though, as he won’t be starting but maybe the first game.

Next week: Week 1 Predictions! Finally!

Bye Bye 2010 on Digital Dads TV

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

When you know it is going to be last Digital Dads TV of the year, the energy level instantly goes up.

When you add in the fact that we were giving away a Microsoft Kinect, it just makes that energy level even higher.

As if that wasn’t enough, add in Steve Garfield skyping in, while Clarence Smith Jr. calls in and Maggie Rulli in studio and well…just watch and you’ll see all the fun we had!

Don’t forget that Digital Dads TV is live every Monday from 2-3 PM Eastern on The Pulse Network and then we post the show recap right here on Wednesdays.

As always, here are links to other items we talked about on the show:

We are already booking guests for 2011, so don’t hesitate to e-mail us and we’ll see what we can do together.

Digital Dads NFL Power Rankings

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

How many Pats fans with they were that chick? (Image: Stetson)

I’m sure there are tons of New England fans out there that wish the season ended right now. Today. Last night was the last game. A massive blowout of the New York Jets. The Jets fell apart and the Patriots took advantage. Like I said in my picks last week, the Jets can’t afford to “get lucky” against the Pats, and they didn’t. Brady, and his manly locks, was at the top of his game last night. Striking with precision and poise and firing up the defense.

That being said, it’s no surprise to see the Patriots back in the top spot again this week. One would think they could hold on to it, but the season ain’t over yet. There were a couple surprises this week on the playing field, and the biggest one has to be the Colts. Since these are my power rankings based on algorithms that I come up with in my head, I can do what I want. And I dropped the Colts like a rock.

If you can’t tell, last weeks rankings are in those curvy line boxes next to this weeks ranking. Pay attention. Power Rankings. Now.

1. (2) New England Patriots (10-2): That wasn’t a win against the Jets, that was a statement. It stated “back the fuck off, this is our division.”

2. (1) Atlanta Falcons (10-2): That win against the Bucs looked harder than it was. Matty Ice likes a comeback.

3. (4) Chicago Bears (9-3): The Lions put up a fight for a little bit, but the Bears showed why they are a 1st place team.

4. (7) Pittsburgh Steelers (9-3): Their violent cage match with the Ravens ended with a win, but will it be enough to hold the division?

5. (3) New York Jets (9-3): The Jets aren’t out of it yet, but they’ll be on the shame bus for at least a week.

6. (5) New Orleans Saints (9-3): A close win for the Saints, who didn’t seem to think they needed to bring their defense with them.

7. (6) Baltimore Ravens (8-4): This hurts the Ravens more than Big Ben’s nose. It has to be wins from here on out if they want that wild card.

8. (8) New York Giants (8-4): The battle for the NFC North is going to come down to the Giants vs. Philly. No one cares about the Redskins.

9. (9) Kansas City Chiefs (8-4): With the Raiders win over the Chargers, the Chiefs are now running away with the division.

10. (11) Philadelphia Eagles (8-4): A huge win for the Eagles, if they hope to beat the Giants for the division they better step it up a notch.

11. (17) Jacksonville Jaguars (7-5): The Jags drubbing of the Titans was only highlighted by the Colts also losing, catapulting the Jags into first place.

12. (12) Green Bay Packers (8-4): The Packers need to beat divisional teams. Like the Bears. I know they play the Bears again.

13. (14) St. Louis Rams (6-6): Uh, this team is in first place at 6-6. Sickeningly enough, the 4-9 Cardinals still have a chance at the division. Really.

14. (10) San Diego Chargers (6-6): This team flip flops more than a drunk politician on a cocaine bender on the tea cup ride.

15. (16) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-5): Told you. The Bucs can’t beat a winning team. Who do they have left? Three losing teams then the Saints. Sadly, they could make the playoffs.

16. (20) Oakland Raiders (6-6): Only a game behind the division leading Chiefs. Let me repeat that – only a game behind.

17. (21) Cleveland Browns (5-7): Mathematically, the Browns still have a chance. Realistically, it may be too little too late.

18. (23) Seattle Seahawks (6-6): They just skittered by the scrappy Panthers, but a win is a win is a win.

19. (22) Tennessee Titans (5-7): Nice ass kicking by the Jags. The only reason they appear to have risen a couple spots is to make room at the bottom for even worse teams.

20. (13) Miami Dolphins (6-6): Whoops. The Browns defense was too much for the Fins. See ya next year.

21. (26) Dallas Cowboys (4-8): Huge win over the Colts. Massive, crazy win over the Colts. It won’t be enough to salvage a season, but still big.

22. (18) Indianapolis Colts (6-6): Oh how the mighty have fallen. That home loss to the hapless Cowboys puts the Colts nearly out of contention.

23. (19) Washington Redskins (5-7): The RedSkins are really slapping themselves for resigning McNabb long term.

24. (25) Minnesota Vikings (5-7): Nice win against the Bills. Now do that against a real team. The only plus here is that Favre is out. Vikings might have an outside chance.

25. (15) Houston Texans (5-7): Getting smacked around by the Eagles does not bode well for this struggling team trying still to find an identity.

26. (24) San Francisco 49ers (4-8): Even at 4-8 the Niners still have a chance to rally and win the division. I am not kidding.

27. (30) Detroit Lions (2-10): They put up a nice fight against the Bears for a bit, but were outmatched in the end. This team should have done much, much better this year.

28. (27) Buffalo Bills (2-10): No fucking way this team doesn’t get first pick in the draft next year.

29. (28) Arizona Cardinals (3-9): The Cardinals are the one NFC West team that actually doesn’t have a shot at the division.

30. (31) Cincinnati Bengals (2-10): The Bungles almost pulled off a major upset, but fell apart in the very end. That’s too bad. But not really.

31. (29) Denver Broncos (3-9): Josh McDaniels is available, maybe the Cowboys will hire him. Or the Vikings. Or the NFL Network.

32. (32) Carolina Panthers (1-11): I’m hoping they win at least one more game so the Bills can get first pick in the draft.

The shoe cables a repent reward near the visible.