The last time we spoke about the Las Vegas SuperContest here at NESN.com, we were this close to making a nice chunk of change.
Playing under the umbrella of Team OddsShark, the NESN crew of Mike Cole and Ricky Doyle came painfully close to winning the four-week mini contest to end the season as part of the premier NFL handicapping contest.
Are they over that loss (of potentially $20,000)? More or less.
But it’s a new season, and we’re back with Team OddsShark for another season of the SuperContest with a new chance to finish in the money — just don’t ask us about last year.
On to the Week 1 picks.
New York Jets (+8.5) over Buffalo Bills, Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
New Era Field, Buffalo, N.Y.
So, you might think we’re still on tilt from last year when our first pick is the Jets, and honestly, you might be right. But it just might be a lunatic who wins this thing. And we’ll roll the dice with the Jets not because they’re going to be good — they’re still going to suck. But the Bills aren’t a whole lot better, right? At the very least, they’re not 8 1/2 points better than any team. Tyrod Taylor is a question mark coming off a concussion, and the Jets did beat the Bills twice last season. A big reason for that? They ran like crazy, and if there’s one area in which the Jets might not be putrid this season, it’s the running game.
Houston Texans (-5) over Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, 1 p.m.
NRG Stadium, Houston
OK, so we’ll just go ahead and ignore these two teams played two close games that were decided by a combined four points last season — less than Sunday’s spread itself. But the Texans didn’t have J.J. Watt for either game. We need to see something — anything — out of the Jacksonville offense before we believe in the Jaguars whatsoever, and a matchup against one of the best defenses in the NFL is a huge task. Also, don’t sleep on Tom Savage, who came out of the bullpen against the Jags last season (after two Brock Osweiler picks) and completed 23 of 36 passes for 260 yards in a win.
Washington Redskins (+1) over Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday, 1 p.m.
FedEx Field, Landover, Md.
The Redskins struggled in the preseason to find any sort of rhythm, which is concerning. But if you’re going to give us a point at home, we’ll gladly take the team that’s won the last five matchups. And don’t forget: Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz was miserable on the road last season (72 passer rating). But this really just comes down to getting that point at home.
New York Giants (+4) over Dallas Cowboys, Sunday, 8:30 p.m.
AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas
We wouldn’t be surprised if the Giants won this game outright, and neither should you. The G-Men swept the season series last year (including an opening week win on the road), and they match up well with the Cowboys. They were one of just a few teams capable of slowing down Ezekiel Elliott, and they also were able to neutralize Dez Bryant. These two teams always seem to play close games (last season’s games were decided by a combined four points), so we’ll take the Giants, especially considering Dallas’ offseason seemed to focus on everything but football.
Los Angeles Chargers (+3) over Denver Broncos, Monday, 10:10 p.m.
Sports Authority Field At Mile High, Denver
Two of Melvin Gordon’s four best games last season came against Denver, and the Chargers won both. Teams could run on Denver last season, and while the Broncos added some defensive depth, they didn’t really acquire a difference-maker who can solve those run problems. Los Angeles knows it can hang with Denver, so while this might not be an outright Chargers win, we’re confident that rushing attack will keep it close enough to cover.
Thumbnail photo via Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports Images
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