Friday, October 2, 2009

Week 4 Picks: I'm Not a Moral Victory Kind of Guy

Football Outsiders (FO) managed to increase their percentage of correct picks on the season after week 3, so everything is the way it should be right? Wrong! They only went 7-9, which boosted their % correct from 37.5 to 39.6..................I believe they call that a moral victory. Unfortunately, moral victories don't make money in gambling and making money in gambling is the point of this exercise. In the words of Mike Singletary, "I want winners!" FO will now have to pick at about 58% the rest of the way to make it back to 55% of the season (had the numbers wrong last week), which is the threshold for making money from picking games. In related news, I am beating the 55% threshold, and Bill Simmons of is roundhouse kicking it in balls.

After a couple bizarre weeks of mostly picking underdogs, FO's system seems to finally be adjusting from preseason projections to actual events and has picked some sizeable favorites this week. That said, FO again has no 'high arbitrage' picks, which are their locks of the week, which will keep these 'locks of the week' at 0-2 through almost a quarter of the season. Their 'reasonable' picks are 4-9 and their 'stay away' picks are 15-18.

The standings:
Sports Guy: 10-6 last week, 34-14 overall (70.8%)
DCLS: 10-6 last week, 27-21 overall (56.3%)
Random monkey throwing shit at a dartboard: 24-24 overall (50.0%)
Football Outsiders: 7-9 last week, 19-29 overall (39.6%)

As usual, the FO picks are listed in order of confidence, and I have bolded a team wherever I differ (home teams in CAPS).
  1. St. Louis +10 over SAN FRANCISCO - I read the ESPN the Mag article on Mike Singletary and there is no way the 49ers don't come out like William Wallace's army at the end of Braveheart.

  2. KANSAS CITY +9 over New York Giants - I am punching myself in the balls as I say this, but how can you pick against the Giants right now?

  3. JACKSONVILLE +3 over Tennessee - I don't have a grasp on Jacksonville yet, but they have issues and I think the Titans need this game a little more.

  4. San Diego +7 over PITTSBURGH - Am I missing something here? How are the Steelers any better than the Chargers right now? Polamalu is still out....anybody.....Bueller?

  5. MIAMI +1.5 over Buffalo - Chad Henne in his first game against a team that has not been all bad, no thanks.

  6. NEW ORLEANS -7 over New York Jets - What a test for the new-look Jet defense. Maybe my Redskin need for Sanchez to fail is driving this pick, but I'll keep taking the Saints until they dissapoint me. FO feels a bit better about this game, with the Saints as their #2 straight-up pick.

  7. DENVER +3 over Dallas - Denver, really? Worst 3-0 team by far to my eyes, but the FO metrics have them as the 3rd best team so far. I don't buy it.

  8. Oakland +9 over HOUSTON - I usually can't back Jamarcus Russell and his 41% completion percentage (I think he's smurking in the photo because he knows how dumb the Raiders are for drafting him and paying him mountains of money to suck). I still don't have a good feel for Houston, and this game could be telling if they have any hope to reach the mediocore heights I predicted for them. Andre Johnson being shutdown by Nnamdi Asomugha is a big factor in this pick.

  9. Tampa Bay +7.5 over WASHINGTON - No way we lose this game......right? I know Stafford was a rookie QB, but Josh Johnson is probably even more raw, and with worse weapons. We are only the #6 best straight-up according to FO.....oh how the mediocore have fallen.....

  10. INDIANAPOLIS -10.5 over Seattle - I am shocked that at this FO pick because they love Seattle. I know Hasselbeck is out, but they also like Senecca Wallace. FO has this as their #1 overall straight-up pick.

  11. Baltimore +2 over NEW ENGLAND - Game of the week and a tough call. That Pats might just show that they are back to being the best team in the AFC, but also might just show that they are 'just another playoff team'. I'm going with Ray Ray and Flacco's eyebrows.

  12. MINNESOTA -3.5 over Green Bay - Neither of these teams has a good win. The Vikings 3 wins have been against the Browns, Lions, and 49ers (on a miraculous play). I'll take the points and the motivated Packers. There will probably be a lot of Packer fans in the stands too.

  13. CLEVELAND +6.5 over Cincinnati - Cincy is for real, and the Browns are just awful. But they changed QBs! Yeah from this guy to this guy. I actually don't think Brady Quinn is that bad, but I do think Derek Anderson is an abortion.

  14. CHICAGO -10 over Detroit - Tough pick, but then I remembered that the Lions had lost 19 straight before last week. FO has da Bears as their #3 straight-up pick.

And as you can guess after reading this, that ESPN article on Singletary made me extremely bitter that the Skins have Zorn instead of Singletary.

(Image courtesy of

1 comment:

  1. I guess I'm just gonna have to bet my life savings on the Giants this week. What a joke of a spread.


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