NFL Week 14 open thread

posted at 12:01 pm on December 8, 2013 by Jazz Shaw

Ed is still tied up on unfortunate personal business this weekend, but the NFL must grind on and traditions must be upheld, so I’ve been er… volunteered to step up to the helm again. But since we can hardly blame Ed for his absence, allow me to kick things off with the expected Pollyannish prognostication and set things up for Pittsburgh. Based on nothing more than their compared records, the Steelers could really have their hands full as they host the Dolphins today, but recent trends make me think otherwise. Antonio Brown has been burning up the secondary for Big Ben Roethlisberger and Miami still has trouble with the pass. Their recent performances don’t inspire much confidence on the ground side of the game, either. The Vegas line has the Phins down by 3, but I think the Steelers will blow things open a bit wider. Pittsburgh over Miami, 27-17.

Of course, we couldn’t have me doing this gig without bringing up my long suffering Jets. While still mathematically in the wild card hunt, even I have been forced to concede that I’ve got a better chance at winning a Pulitzer this year. Still, Gang Green is playing Oakland today, a team which should – in theory – be completely beatable. The Jets are sticking with Geno Smith for reasons which I can’t begin to explain, but on the plus side, their injury chart is down to essentially zero. Even the betting line has the Jets up by 3, so I’ll cross my fingers and call for a low scoring, error filled victory for New York, 13-6 over the Raiders.

Thanksgiving week gave Ed very little to be thankful for, combining his various picks from turkey day and Sunday for a 4 out of 9 record. Let’s try to lift his spirits by doing a little better this week.

  • Colts at Bengals (1 pm, CBS) - Cincinnati and Indy have matching records, but seasonal momentum looks like the story here. The Colts have been falling apart on offense with poor performances by Andrew Luck in several outings, much to the destruction of my fantasy league team. The Bengals are still undefeated at home, and I don’t see that changing today, beating up on the Colts 30-17.
  • Falcons at Packers (1 pm, F0x) - The Pack will start Matt Flynn who should see his fortunes improve against a depleted Atlanta pass defense. Meanwhile, Matt Ryan will probably spend some time on his backside as Green Bay’s pass rush has been improving. The Packers haven’t been doing well at home this season, but the weather is turning ugly and the Lambeau Field magic will make a comeback. Packers over Atlanta, in a low scoring, defensive showdown, 17-9.
  • Giants at Chargers (4:25 pm, Fox) - All the sports pundits have been quick to write off the hapless New York Giants, and they’ve certainly given them plenty of reason to feel that way. But it’s December and we’re all allowed to expect a few miracles. The Vegas line has the Chargers up by a few, but I’ll go with the upset and say that New York will unplug the Chargers in a close one, 30-27.
  • Panthers at Saints (8:25 pm, NBC) - At the beginning of the season, if you’d asked me what this match-up would look like, I’d have laughed. The Saints should have been an overwhelming favorite. But the Panthers have grown into essentially the premier defense in the league. Still, the Saints have a remarkable record playing Sunday night games (9-3) and the Superdome is a huge advantage. This one should be close, but the Saints will manage to beat the Vegas line which has them up by 3, beating the Panthers in a 27-23 race.
  • Cowboys at Bears (Monday 8:40 pm, ESPN) – The Monday night match-up has two strong offenses and two struggling defenses facing off. Given their uneven performances, it’s a tough one to call but should make for a high scoring, big play battle that will be fun to watch. Tony Romo is doing well, but it won’t be enough to shut down Da’ Bears. Chicago over Dallas 41-31.

 


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Fire Tomlin, already. As Cowher’s team has retired or moved on the last couple of years, Tomlin’s incompetence has become glaring. Steeler fan all the way, but come on, this is embarrassing.

msupertas on December 8, 2013 at 12:10 PM

Seahawks. Pretty much all that needs to be said.

kcewa on December 8, 2013 at 12:10 PM

Go Pats!

dogsoldier on December 8, 2013 at 12:10 PM

Fire Tomlin, already. As Cowher’s team has retired or moved on the last couple of years, Tomlin’s incompetence has become glaring. Steeler fan all the way, but come on, this is embarrassing.

msupertas on December 8, 2013 at 12:10 PM

I’d rather have Arians as head coach.

Ward Cleaver on December 8, 2013 at 12:17 PM

…Lions!…go wittle putty cats!

KOOLAID2 on December 8, 2013 at 12:17 PM

Jetboy and Jazz together,it’s quite lovely.

celtic warrior on December 8, 2013 at 12:21 PM

The only thing I hate about December coming – I know it means football will be over soon.

Ward Cleaver on December 8, 2013 at 12:21 PM

Congrats to Michigan State.

I’m ready for college basketball to start. This NFL season has been boring IMO.

That being said games in the snow are always entertaining.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 12:27 PM

Fly, Eagles Fly…!!!

JohnGalt23 on December 8, 2013 at 12:30 PM

The only thing I hate about December coming – I know it means football will be over soon.

Ward Cleaver on December 8, 2013 at 12:21 PM

They really do need a spring league/minor league system. There has got to be some way to make it profitable…

JohnGalt23 on December 8, 2013 at 12:31 PM

OT: War Eagle!

Galtian on December 8, 2013 at 12:31 PM

In obozo’s America lyin’ trumps the Constitution, so I’m going Lions 57, Eagles 13.

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 12:39 PM

I hate to say this.But as i get older i find myself not caring about football. my advice is don’t get old.

gerrym51 on December 8, 2013 at 12:40 PM

My prediction: The Texans will not lose it’s 12th game in a row today. Finally, a Sunday without a defeat.

On a related note, Gary Kubiak proved that he’s one of the classiest coaches out there by taking out this ad in the Houston Chronicle today, following his firing Friday. Best of luck Kubs.

TXUS on December 8, 2013 at 12:41 PM

Die NFL, you malignant politically correct tumor on American existence. I believe a Republican senator is now going after your tax exempt status. May it lead soon to your end.

rrpjr on December 8, 2013 at 12:46 PM

My Ravens should handle a decent Minnesota team. As long as they focus on stopping Peterson they should be fine…and Dennis Pitta playing should give the offense a boost!

ManWithNoName on December 8, 2013 at 12:49 PM

Tomlin is an Obama story. Get bin laden because of predecessor but screw everything else up. Steelers dislike white leaders just like America does.

Mormontheman on December 8, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Turn off this out-of-control league. The players are a criminal gang; the owners are from the most sickening part of the 1/2 of 1%; the league has been infiltrated and is now run by the bed-wetting liberal media; the broadcast is a national shame.

Fuc_k the NFL.

Jaibones on December 8, 2013 at 12:55 PM

PS Bears will lose by 20 to the Cowboys, much to my shame and horror. The Bears defense sucks it.

Jaibones on December 8, 2013 at 12:56 PM

While I’m hoping my Niners get a little revenge on the Seahawks today at home, all roads in the NFC playoffs will go through Seattle—one tough park for an opponent to play in. With Crabtree back, and a sound defense, the Niners could/should win this game with a close score, 24- 20.

After this game, the 49ers may have only one more game at the famous Candlestick Park, (what Niner fans called “the Stick), before moving over to their new park in Santa Clara next year. Having attended a few games at the old Kezar Stadium in the 60’s, this Niner fan has enjoyed the ups and downs of the 49ers, including the awesome 80’s, (with Montana, Clark, and Company becoming a franchise dynasty), at the Stick. So many instant classics took place at the Stick, which I’ll write about at the end of the season, (as will many Bay Area sports-writers, who will dust off the cobwebs from their old type-writers one more time).

The Niners are currently sitting on the final playoff spot, #6 Wild Card, with an 8-4 record, with the “new insurgent” Carolina Panthers just ahead of them at 9-3. A win today and a Carolina loss to the Saints won’t change much, since the Panthers squeaked out a 10-9 win on Nov. 10th, giving them a head to head tie-breaker. Go Niners!

Rovin on December 8, 2013 at 1:03 PM

My prediction: The Texans will not lose it’s 12th game in a row today. Finally, a Sunday without a defeat.

On a related note, Gary Kubiak proved that he’s one of the classiest coaches out there by taking out this ad in the Houston Chronicle today, following his firing Friday. Best of luck Kubs.

TXUS on December 8, 2013 at 12:41 PM

We’ll take him. He can’t be any worse than Frazier.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 1:08 PM

rrpjr on December 8, 2013 at 12:46 PM

Tampa Bay fan? Maybe Falcons?

lowandslow on December 8, 2013 at 1:09 PM

My Ravens should handle a decent really lousy Minnesota team. As long as they focus on stopping Peterson they should be fine…and Dennis Pitta playing should give the offense a boost!

ManWithNoName on December 8, 2013 at 12:49 PM

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 1:10 PM

Can’t argue with the Panthers/Saints pick.

My heart says Carolina but my head says New Orleans. All is not lost though, if Carolina splits with NO and wins the rest of their games (totally within the realm of possibility), then they should get the wildcard.

guinneach on December 8, 2013 at 1:13 PM

The snow is really coming down in Philly. It’s a real mess.

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 1:15 PM

Day-um is it snowing in Philadelphia! I can barely see the players.

rbj on December 8, 2013 at 1:21 PM

On a related note, Gary Kubiak proved that he’s one of the classiest coaches out there by taking out this ad in the Houston Chronicle today, following his firing Friday. Best of luck Kubs.

TXUS on December 8, 2013 at 12:41 PM

A real throwback. Kubiak was always classy even @ Denver.

Fred

jrsrigmvr on December 8, 2013 at 1:26 PM

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 1:15 PM

rbj on December 8, 2013 at 1:21 PM

It is helpful that Fox is able to super-impose yard line numbers and of course the scrimmage and first down lines. I’ve always been curious as to how the hell that technology works, but being able to do the numbers is taking it to a new level.

TXUS on December 8, 2013 at 1:28 PM

Philly announcer: “I think that’s Jim Schwartz on the sidelines, but it could just be some random guy.” LOL

Penfold on December 8, 2013 at 1:33 PM

TXUS on December 8, 2013 at 1:28 PM

It’s great for games like this one. But a pox on the house of the guy who developed the glow puck when FOX covered the NHL. This game is great. Faces full of snow, makes me wish I was a kid again.

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 1:33 PM

I hate to say this.But as i get older i find myself not caring about football. my advice is don’t get old.

gerrym51 on December 8, 2013 at 12:40 PM

…watch college football…you’ll feel younger!

KOOLAID2 on December 8, 2013 at 1:52 PM

Redskins have pretty much given up on the season. Who wants to get hurt playing for a 3 and 13 team? No professional who values his future in the NFL and after retirement will sacrifice himself for a loser, that’s for sure.
.
Already: 24 – 0, Chiefs over Redskins, early in the 2nd.
.
Let the acrimony and blame increase in volume and intensity. This may cause Snyder to change the team name, huh? From Redskins to Barrycaders, indeed.

ExpressoBold on December 8, 2013 at 1:55 PM

The snow is so bad in Philly that Detroit didn’t risk a field goal at the 12. They also went for the two point conversion instead of the kick.

nobar on December 8, 2013 at 1:57 PM

Just sitting here contemplating the idea of Philly’s weather today making it to the Meadowlands on Feb. 2. Fun times.

jon1979 on December 8, 2013 at 1:58 PM

Peterson is rolling on the ground in pain and can’t walk. Perfect illustration of the Vikings’ season.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 2:02 PM

Just sitting here contemplating the idea of Philly’s weather today making it to the Meadowlands on Feb. 2. Fun times.

jon1979 on December 8, 2013 at 1:58 PM

I hope it is a blizzard. Stupid idea to have a SB in a non domed cold weather stadium.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 2:03 PM

Tomlin is an Obama story. Get bin laden because of predecessor but screw everything else up. Steelers dislike white leaders just like America does.

Mormontheman on December 8, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Something up with the Rooneys. Old man was one of the first to endorse Odumdum, got to be Irish ambassador out of it. Then they had a coach set to replace Cowher, and Tomlin comes out of nowhere “because of a great presentation”. Ring a bell. Somebody should shake that family tree. Lot of white guilt going on there.

msupertas on December 8, 2013 at 2:06 PM

Peterson is rolling on the ground in pain and can’t walk. Perfect illustration of the Vikings’ season.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 2:02 PM

Metaphor for the fans.

msupertas on December 8, 2013 at 2:07 PM

The snow is so bad in Philly that Detroit didn’t risk a field goal at the 12. They also went for the two point conversion instead of the kick.

nobar on December 8, 2013 at 1:57 PM

Craziest game ever. And the Lions are dominating because Eagle’s offense just can’t adjust. I think we sat Bush. Bell is tearing it up (minus his two fumbles).

NotCoach on December 8, 2013 at 2:09 PM

For all of the members of the Bill Belichick Fan Club here, the lowly Cleveland Browns just shut out the Patriots in New England in the first half.

That is all.

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 2:32 PM

Jeremy Ross dashing through the snow for 6. Go Lions.

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 2:53 PM

What a bunch of pansies. No field goal/goal kick attempts in the snow capped game.

nobar on December 8, 2013 at 3:07 PM

Redskins have pretty much given up on the season. Who wants to get hurt playing for a 3 and 13 team? No professional who values his future in the NFL and after retirement will sacrifice himself for a loser, that’s for sure.

Wonder who caught this “disease” first–your Redskins or my Texans?
By the way, that is an observation which makes a whole lot of sense.

jazzuscounty on December 8, 2013 at 3:16 PM

Craziest game ever. And the Lions are dominating because Eagle’s offense just can’t adjust. I think we sat Bush. Bell is tearing it up (minus his two fumbles).

NotCoach on December 8, 2013 at 2:09 PM

Not so much anymore.

Nick_Angel on December 8, 2013 at 3:24 PM

Stop me if you’ve heard this before but Jeremy Ross goes dashing through the snow for another 6.

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 3:28 PM

Stop me if you’ve heard this before but Jeremy Ross goes dashing through the snow for another 6. the Lions have found another way to choke.

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 3:28 PM

FIFM

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 3:44 PM

Cool snow game. I don’t watch much, but this is interesting.

wolly4321 on December 8, 2013 at 3:44 PM

Wave bye-bye to the Colts…

CPT. Charles on December 8, 2013 at 4:07 PM

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 3:28 PM

…they’re getting snowed!

KOOLAID2 on December 8, 2013 at 4:08 PM

The end of the Ravens/Vikings game is incredible.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 4:15 PM

…they’re getting snowed!

KOOLAID2 on December 8, 2013 at 4:08 PM

That was an avalanche.

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 4:17 PM

The snow is so bad in Philly that Detroit didn’t risk a field goal at the 12. They also went for the two point conversion instead of the kick.

nobar on December 8, 2013 at 1:57 PM

If I’m not mistaken, every PAT attempt in that game was a 2 point effort. I don’t think there was an attempted FG. It was ridiculous.

And Teh Awesome Sauce…!!!

JohnGalt23 on December 8, 2013 at 4:31 PM

JohnGalt23 on December 8, 2013 at 4:31 PM

actually the lions tried once but it was blocked.

Fred

jrsrigmvr on December 8, 2013 at 4:41 PM

Speechless. Final New England 27, Browns 26.

(Ducks for cover)

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 4:44 PM

Speechless. Final New England 27, Browns 26.

(Ducks for cover)

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 4:44 PM

That ending was about if not as crazy as the Vikings/Ravens.

See this is what I get for saying the NFL is boring this year.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 4:59 PM

NFL.com is having trouble admitting the Dolphins beat the Steelers. :)
http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2013120806/2013/REG14/dolphins@steelers#menu=drivechart&tab=track

WannabeAnglican on December 8, 2013 at 5:06 PM

Speechless. Final New England 27, Browns 26.

(Ducks for cover)

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 4:44 PM

That ending was about if not as crazy as the Vikings/Ravens.

See this is what I get for saying the NFL is boring this year.

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 4:59 PM

With 1:01 left in the game, the score was Cleveland 16, NE 14.

No one here in New England is celebrating-Gronk got hurt again.

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 5:06 PM

gophergirl on December 8, 2013 at 4:59 PM

With 1:01 left in the game, the score was Cleveland 26, NE 14.

No one here in New England is celebrating-Gronk got hurt again.

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 5:06 PM

FIFM

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 5:07 PM

Snow game was craaaaaazy but a very satisfying win for the Eagles.

Fly Eagles Fly!

thebrokenrattle on December 8, 2013 at 5:20 PM

64 yd field goal @ Demver. Awesome

Fred

jrsrigmvr on December 8, 2013 at 5:48 PM

The Packer fans would have been wearing tank top, shorts and sandals in this kind of weather, it’s what they live for.On the other hand in Fresno the Mountain West Championship game was played between Fresno State and Utah State.The game should have been a sellout but attendance was only 31,600 because it was a balmy 30-32 degrees outside.Pathetic showing.

jeffinsjvca on December 8, 2013 at 5:55 PM

Demver

freudian slip?

Fred

jrsrigmvr on December 8, 2013 at 6:03 PM

Kudos to the Tea Party for this.

lostmotherland on December 8, 2013 at 6:33 PM

Kudos to the Tea Party for this.

Toure on December 8, 2013 at 6:33 PM

Wrong sport, champ.

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 6:40 PM

lowandslow on December 8, 2013 at 1:09 PM

I loved football as a kid. I played. My first hero was Pete Demerle, all-American high school wide receiver and all-American at Notre Dame. I was a freshman the year he led my homw town New Canaan High to the state championship. But for a blown knee in the Orange Bowl he would have been the next Raymond Berry. He simply didn’t drop the ball. I remained a big fan through my 20s. But something happened to the sport, especially the NFL. Or maybe it was what happened to all professional sports. Today it’s a grotesque malformation, embodying some of the worst of human and corporatist behavior — the greed, meretriciousness, PC cowardice and ugliness — of contemporary society.

rrpjr on December 8, 2013 at 8:04 PM

meretriciousness

rrpjr on December 8, 2013 at 8:04 PM

I had to look that up. Bing gives as related searches…
Meretricious Definition
Meretricious Persiflage
Meretricious Used in a Sentence
Merititious
Georgia Meretricious Relationship
What Is a Meretricious Relationship
Michael Mann Hockey Stick Fraud
Meretriciousness Definition

Flange on December 8, 2013 at 8:27 PM

BTW, Cutler is out. Sean Lee is back. NO WAY the Bears put up 41 on Dallas.
(I have no idea who wins though.)

WannabeAnglican on December 8, 2013 at 8:36 PM

WTG 49ERS in defeating the Seahawks 19-17, leaving the Niners at 9-4. Can’t believe I’m rooting for the Saints tonight!?!?

Rovin on December 8, 2013 at 9:12 PM

Where were you?

Tonight, in 1980

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 10:34 PM

Don’t be sad that football is almost over? Hockey is ON!

Much faster, only one timeout (30 sec./game), non-stop action.

Less boring!

Go Avs

francesca on December 8, 2013 at 10:42 PM

Don’t be sad that football is almost over? Hockey is ON!

Much faster, only one timeout (30 sec./game), non-stop action.

Less boring!

Go Avs

francesca on December 8, 2013 at 10:42 PM

Long Live Don Cherry!

Del Dolemonte on December 8, 2013 at 11:53 PM

I may have to eat my words. I am in shock about how bad this Dallas D is. Wow.

They may have to fire their Defensive Coordinator for the 2nd year in a row.

WannabeAnglican on December 9, 2013 at 10:04 PM