Cook’s NFL Picks: Week 3! (Now with 100% More Eva Marie)

I gotta say, it’s really tough to get excited about the NFL this season. Apparently it’s not just me since ratings are down across the board. Every time I turn on the TV for some NFL coverage, it just gets too depressing to watch. Players getting hurt left & right. Concussions. National Anthems. People overreacting to what people do during National Anthems. There just isn’t anything good coming out of this league right now.

Even when you try to talk about the play on the field and ignore all the off-field stuff, you get things like the Bengals/Steelers game where the officials basically handed the game to Pittsburgh because Mike Brown is too cheap to bribe people. The other game I watched Sunday had a 9-3 final score. Honestly, the NFL sucks right now and it’s tough to see it getting better anytime soon. But here I am writing about it because it gets hits. Actually, if I really wanted to get hits I’d be writing more about Eva Marie. That lady is a ratings draw, and she always puts me in a good mood.

Hey…I think I’m onto something here! Maybe including various pictures of Eva Marie in NFL team colors will make the column more fun for me to write and for you to read. It could work! Let’s see how it goes…oh, and if you’re reading at work you probably shouldn’t be. Just saying.

Sunday, September 25

Denver at Cincinnati (-3)

Everybody was selling their Denver stock before the season started. How could they expect to contend for the playoffs, or even win any games at all, with Trevor Siemian at quarterback? Look at that tough early schedule, they could easily start out 0-3 & dig themselves a hole they can’t get out of, right?

Right?

Not so much.

They beat the Panthers & beat the Colts and now they’re going to Cincinnati to take on a Bengal team coming off of another heart-breaking loss at the hands of the National Football League officiating crew. How will the Bengals respond? Probably not very well if recent history is any indication. It’s hard to blame them. When the NFL is deadset against the possibility of your success and will do anything to stop it, it’s tough to get excited about games. Take the Broncos and the points here.

evabroncos

Oakland at Tennessee (-1.5)

Y’know, if the Raiders wanted to stop anybody from scoring it’d probably work out well for them. Tough loss last week to a Falcons team that was looking for answers and found them in the form of the Raider defense. Derek Carr & Amari Cooper are still getting things done on offense, but they need some help on the other side of the ball or they’re going to be looking at a lot of 35-28 type of losses this year. I can’t see it happening this week though, the Titans are easily the weakest offense the Raiders have played so far and can probably be held under twenty points.

evaraiders

Arizona (-4) at Buffalo

The Bills are feisty and you know Rex Ryan’s bunch will make things difficult late for Arizona…but the Cardinals just have the more talented team up & down. Better offense. Better defense. I think the Bills can get it to a touchdown difference but that’s about it.

evacardinals

Baltimore (-1) at Jacksonville

The Jaguars were a team everybody wanted to buy into heading into the season. The Ravens were a team nobody wanted to buy into heading into the season. I’m still not impressed with the Ravens beating the Bills & the Browns, but I suspect they’ll be 3-0 since they haven’t played anybody yet. This could get annoying for other AFC North teams like the Bengals that actually have to play good teams this season. Ravens gotta love that third place schedule!

evaravens

Cleveland at Miami (-9.5)

We got another new quarterback in Cleveland? Seriously? I gotta do this Fun Facts nonsense again? OK…

kessler

-93rd pick in the 2016 NFL Draft
-started three seasons at USC and had four different head coaches
-2013 Las Vegas Bowl MVP
-Looks like the biggest douche in his pictures out of all the new QBs

Well, with the turmoil he experienced at USC he should be ready for anything the Browns throw at him. The Dolphins looked good in garbage time in New England and I think they’re more than ready to have themselves a home game instead of being on the road against two of the best teams in the league.

evadolphins

She’s in the water. It’s the best I could think of for Dolphins, ok?

Washington at NY Giants (-4.5)

The Josh Norman/Odell Beckham Jr. rematch should be worth the price of admission. I know everybody says they’ll behave themselves, but I have my doubts. Should be a close NFC East game, so I’d take Washington and the points even if I think the Giants will end up winning.

evaredskins

Detroit at Green Bay (-7)

Has Aaron Rodgers told us to R-E-L-A-X this week? You know it’s coming because the Packers haven’t looked like world-beaters since the start of the season. Jacksonville hung close & Minnesota beat them last week. I’m expecting another close game this week, since apparently that’s all the Lions do this year. Wish they would have beat the Titans so I could still be in the Survivor column, but it is what it is.

evalions

Minnesota at Carolina (-7)

I write this as there are riots going on in the city of Charlotte, North Carolina over issues way too important to discuss in this forum. The history of these types of events that happen way too often for anybody’s liking on either side of the issues at hand tells me that this situation will calm before Sunday and the game between the Vikings & Panthers will take place as scheduled in Charlotte.

Teddy Bridgewater. Adrian Peterson. Matt Kalil. The Vikings’ starting quarterback, running back & left tackle. The three most important positions on an offense. All three will not be available to the Minnesota Vikings until further notice. Peterson may be available for the playoffs, but it’s tough to argue that any team has been bitten harder by the injury bug than the Vikings have. Yet, here they are at 2-0, including a victory over their top rivals in the NFC North: the Green Bay Packers. Why? Sam Bradford is doing work, but more importantly than that the defense is doing work.

The Vikings are at their best when people doubt them. Mike Zimmer’s teams have always been like that. He uses the haters to fuel his players. They’re going into this game against the defending NFC Champions as the clear underdogs. Whether the Vikings win or not, I expect them to keep this game close.

evavikings

I don’t have much to say about the Panthers yet, which is fine because that’s Jeremy Lambert’s account.

San Francisco at Seattle (-9.5)

As much as Trent Dilfer & his San Francisco front office buddy want to believe there’s dissention in the ranks, the 49ers certainly look like a team that’s united. Seattle should win this game, but it’s hard for them to even score 9.5 points these days so I’d bet the 49ers here.

eva49ers

Close enough, right?

Los Angeles at Tampa Bay (-5.5)

Famous Jameis took a buttwhooping from the Arizona Cardinals just like the Florida State Seminoles took one from the Louisville Cardinals last week. People thought I was joking when I called it, but they know I’m not joking now. I think things will get for Jameis this week. The Rams defense is always legit against the Seahawks, but I don’t like it traveling cross-country to play a team that was absolutely embarrassed last week. The Buccaneers will be ready for this one.

eva5_zps6okbweve

Pittsburgh (-3.5) at Philadelphia 

I hope that Eagles fans are right and everybody should climb aboard the Wentz-Wagon after two victories over inferior competition. Sadly, I think reality arrives for Carson and his followers this week. The Steelers should take this pretty handily.

evasteelers

NY Jets at Kansas City (-3)

Rough week for the Chiefs in Houston, but I think that KC barbecue home cooking will be much more to their liking. The Jets were looking good for most of their first two games and managed to win one of them, but if they don’t close here they won’t beat the Chiefs.

evachiefs

San Diego at Indianapolis (-3)

You get Philip Rivers & Andrew Luck together and you expect a high scoring game with very little defense. Should be fun to watch! The Colts have had a rough start but i think this is the week their luck finally turns around. The Chargers are a team that could rival the Vikings for more snake-bitten this season, but at least they still have their QB.

evacolts

Chicago at Dallas (-7)

Why do we keep having the Bears involved in prime time games? Honestly. Just because they’re in Chicago doesn’t mean that the rest of us should have to be subjected to their poor excuse of a football team on a weekly basis. At least it gives me good reason to go to bed early on a Sunday night so I can be ready to go early Monday morning.

(I also went to sleep early this past Sunday. It’s probably going to be a thing that happens regularly except when the Bengals play. This is what happens when you get old.)

I can’t pick the Bears with a straight face. I don’t exactly love the Cowboys, but this is the kind of game you need to win by more than a touchdown if you expect anybody to take you seriously.

evacowboys

Monday, September 26

Atlanta at New Orleans (-3)

Last week I was all about the Saints scoring a ton of points against the Giants & the Giants scoring a ton of points against the Saints. That didn’t really happen. This week, though. I know these teams can bring us that high-scoring type of game we’re hoping & praying for. The Falcons offense looked really good last week and their defense looked pretty darn bad like it usually does. Expect a score in the 30s, and expect a win at home for the Saints.

evasaints

Well I don’t know about you folks, but I sure feel happier now! Thanks Eva!

 

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