NFL Week 15 Picks: As Predicted By My 12-Year-Old Son
Let's face it—he's got as good a chance as any of the "experts." The NFL has become so unpredictable that when I was doing this last night, I decided to have him make all the picks, scores and reasons.
Every game listed, including explanations, will be by my kid Zach. He's a football fan, but not a lunatic like most of us are.
He played this past season on the offensive line and defensive line almost every down. He works hard, the part that makes me the proudest.
The picture above is his coach telling him how hard he worked after the last game of the season.
Let's see how he does.
San Francisco at San Diego: Chargers by 9
The Chargers are at home, and they're playing great football. San Francisco just doesn't have the weapons to beat them. Chargers should win easily and cover.
Kansas City at St. Louis: Rams by 1.5
I pick the Chiefs because if I don't, you'll beat me. OK, he didn't really say that, but we're both Chiefs fans, so it's an easy one—to pick, that is.
Houston at Tennessee: Titans by 1.5
I can't believe the Titans are the favorite in this game. Even though Houston has not played very well, they've played better than Tennessee.
Houston wins a close one on the road.
Jacksonville at Indianapolis: Colts by 5
This is a very big game. The Colts could actually miss the playoffs if they lose this game. Peyton Manning has to come up big. The Jags keep cutting it close, but they'll come up short this week.
Colts win and cover.
Arizona at Carolina: Panthers by 2.5
The Panthers are the favorite? Huh, what? Why? I don't care how bad the Cardinals have been; the Panthers shouldn't be a favorite over anyone.
This should be a thriller. Game of the week.
Cleveland at Cincinnati: Bengals by 1.5
Cleveland plays hard every week. The Bengals do not. However, they just have too much talent to be this bad all year.
Even if by mistake or luck, they'll manage to win one more game this year. Even though I like the Browns, I'll pick this one.
Cincinnati will win and cover in a bore-fest.
Buffalo at Miami: Dolphins by 5.5
The Dolphins are coming off a big win and can still get in the playoffs. The Bills only have three wins, and Miami should be able to win at home.
OK, this is one that I would have argued with him on, but it's his call.
Dolphins win and cover.
Philadelphia at New Jersey: Giants by 2.5
No, that's not a mistake—they play in New Jersey, not New York. Those of us here in Jersey think they should either say it or get back over the river. I digress, however. Back to the kid.
This is one of the biggest games of the week, if not the year. The Giants are playing well but go up and down.
Philadelphia is playing great and I think can go into the Meadowlands and pull off the upset.
Washington at Dallas: Cowboys by 6
Two teams that are going in opposite directions. Though the Cowboys' season is done, and their record indicates it, this game will be more what we would have thought early in the year.
Dallas wins and covers.
Detroit at Tampa: Buccaneers by 5.5
Tampa has been playing well all year, and the fight seems to be going out of the Lions. Losing their star quarterback was a big loss for this team.
Tampa is too strong and at home should handle the Lions, and the spread.
New Orleans at Baltimore: Ravens by 1.5
Another one of the week's great games. The Ravens defense has not been as great as expected. New Orleans is heating up, and I look for the road upset.
Atlanta at Seattle: Falcons by 6
Seattle is a nice story but not good enough, even at home, for the Falcons. Kansas City went there and showed what a decent team can do, and Atlanta is better.
The Falcons should sail through and cover easily.
New Jersey Jets at Pittsburgh: Steelers by 6
That's right—no mistake again. They play in New Jersey too. We really wish they would go back across the river.
The six-point spread must come from assuming the Jets will kick two field goals and the Steelers will score a couple of touchdowns.
It will, however, be uglier than that for the Jets. They aren't getting into the end zone, again. That's OK; they're getting used to it.
Denver at Oakland: Raiders by 6.5
So sad for a Chief fan to have to pick this. Can they both lose? The truth is, the Raiders, schizophrenic as they may be, are on the rise.
The Broncos—well, enough said.
Raider win and cover easily.
Green Bay at New England: Patriots by 11
Aaron Rodgers, no Aaron Rodgers, makes no difference, forget it. The Patriots are rolling though the NFL once again, and the Packers, who have been a disappointment anyway, won't get in their way.
If Rodgers can't go, it may get very ugly.
The Patriots roll, cover, do what they want.
Chicago at Minnesota: Bears by 3
Poor Vikings might have to play outside in the big bad cold.
That said, the Bears were exposed for who they are: a mediocre team. This week they play another mediocre team.
I like the Vikings to win outright.