Time for round four of this year's NFC West featured columnist competition!
For those of you who are unfamiliar with this competition, please click here for a brief outline of the rules as well as a small bio of each contestant.
In short, this is a pick 'em competition. Contestants are in teams of two, each representing the team they write for on Bleacher Report.
Each week, I will publish an article which announces the picks, such as this. Additionally, I will publish a results article once the games are completed, which will include weekly and yearly standings.
Observations from Week Four Picks
- Unanimous Consent Weekend! Everybody likes the Bears, Giants, Colts, and Vikings —This is turning into a "Usual Suspects" of sorts. Not for the teams who are selected unanimously, but for the teams who are picked against. This week again features the entire panel picking against the Lions and Chiefs, and if it weren't for a drug-induced selection by Scotty (see below), the Rams would be on this list.
- The Underdog Returns - Last week featured only one "Underdog Bonus" eligible pick, but this week the Bonus returned with a vengeance. Week four features nine Underdog picks. Rob (Jacksonville), Scotty (St. Louis), Ron and Seth (Cleveland), Andrew and Dray (Tampa Bay), Dray again (NY Jets), and Steven (San Diego and Oakland) all partook, while Chris managed to escape drinking the Kool-Aid. If Dray can hit both Underdog choices he could cover some serious ground this week.
- Teaming Up - The Underdog Bonus is one thing, but when teammates join up (and are the only two contestants to pick a certain upset) it makes the competition a little more intense. Ron and Seth partnered in picking Cleveland to upset Cincinnati, while Andrew and Dray partnered in picking Tampa Bay over the anaemic Redskins. If either of these Underdog Bonus picks hit, this could create some separation in the team standings.
- No More Splits - Unlike week three, where the contestants were split on a number of decisions, there is only one game which split picks in week four: Baltimore at New England. Seattle and Arizona were torn on who to take, with one contestant taking each, while St. Louis both took New England, and San Francisco both took Baltimore.
- Ron and Seth: The Even Couple—Starting in week four, there is a new league standard of compatibility. Ron and Seth agreed on an unprecedented FIFTEEN picks in week four. This could be a week when these two vault up the standings. Here's an example, using only two games: if New England and Cleveland both win, St. Louis will jump six points on San Francisco, who is currently in first place. If these two put together a successful week, they could rise quickly. If they put together a shoddy week... (you know where I'm going with this)
- Homer Alert—There were no significant homer picks to be had in week four. Andrew and Dray supported the Niners, but San Francisco is heavily favored anyways, while Rob and Scotty dissed the Seahawks and Ron and Seth did the same for St. Louis. Arizona is on a bye, so Steven and Chris are taking a week off from having to choose their team or not.
- Quick Note - For the first time, I (Scotty) picked against the Seahawks. Can they beat the Colts? Maybe, but they are 12 point underdogs and I've already been burned twice this week...It's time to be a man and at least try to pick objectively.
Without further ado, here are the picks. Please comment below with your thoughts.