by John Fredericks, Jack Fredericks, and Nate Perry
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Here are my week three selections
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John Fredericks: Are the Rams for real? Is the 49er’s defense what they said it is? In the infamous words of Dennis Green: “They are who we thought they were!” After 15 years, I still have no idea what the hell that ever meant.
For making selections, week three of the NFL separates the contenders from the pretenders. After two weeks, I am exactly .500 at 12-12 ATS. So I lost the vig. I am about to go on an insane roll. I feel it!
Jack Fredericks: The Mississippi Marxist went an embarrassing 5-8 last week. After 4-3 start to the 12:00 games, I won only one more game (Go Cowboys) and took a huge swing and miss on the Lions. However, just like my hero, Sleepy Joe Biden, I’m down, but never out. I’m expecting a huge comeback this week. I’m vaxxed, masked, and ready for a $40 trillion Green New Deal! Let’s do this.
Nate Perry: #NoPickNate made the only profits of the week going 4-2 with a limited selection of games. I’m at a super-spreader wedding event this weekend and have only one pick due to my limited time and internet connection and that’s Saints +3. There will be commentary, but that’s the only play I could encourage anyone throwing their money at.
Chicago Bears at Cleveland Browns (-7)
John: Justin Fields will make his first start for da Bears. He’s the future of the franchise no doubt, but he debuts at the Dog Pound. Not a pretty site. The Browns are in a lousy mood, and the vision of Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney throwing helmets at people is not a first game look Fields scripted out. Oh, and Chicago’s O-Line is a sieve. That too. This game should be -10, but Bears bettors who like to part with their money drives the line down. Lay the touch, it’s my best bet. Brownies -7
Jack: I agree with John (my dad) here, since the Browns looked good last week and are at home against an anemic Bears team with a rookie QB. However, John also confused the word “sight” for “site,” so I’m not taking the Browns. No Pick
Nate: I’m not sure the Browns can blow anybody out. I can’t lay this many points with the Browns, but I’m likewise in no hurry to bet Justin Fields in his first start. If I had to pick, I’d probably take the touchdown and expect Fields to perform a little bit better than last time out, but this game is just ugly. No Pick.
John To Nate: Here we go again: #NoPickNate folds on games like a cheap suit in the rain. #GrowAPair
Arizona Cardinals (-7) at Jacksonville Jaguars
John: LMAO! I love watching Urban Meyer get embarrassed in the NFL. I am really having too much fun, almost as much fun as watching the Colts lose. Both are fake news media creations, like Biden won or got 80 million votes. Next stop for Urban Meyer: Austin Peay. The Cards read their own press clippings last week and pulled a V out of a hat, in a game they should have lost. Not this week. Another blow out and easy money. Lay the wood, grab a beer, sit back and watch Coach Meyer whine. Gotta Love it. Jags need to play the Jets ASAP. Cards -7
Jack: Arizona should have beaten Minnesota handily last week. Instead, they barely escaped with a 2-0 record. The Jaguars don’t seem to understand that the basic concept of football is to score more points than your opponent. I’m actually not sure they understand who their opponent is from week to week. I said I wasn’t picking any team in the AFC South and I’m sticking with that. ‘Zona -7
Nate: I agree with those guys. Jaguars are an absolute circus, but there’s something I just don’t wholly trust about this Arizona team — mostly just Kliff Kingsbury actually being a good coach. At some point, Urban Meyer has to get his squad together. This is a pass for me, but I think this game probably ends in a Cards blowout most of the time. No Pick
John to Nate: Kliff who? Coaches who spell their names wrong never win.
New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots (-3)
John: Well, that was quick. One week of heaven and bliss and then Famous Jameis crashes back to earth. The Saints went from wow to ow. I like Billy B in these trap games, at home with that ominous bell ringing on third down. At least with the Pats I know what I get: three yards and a cloud of dust. Maybe Jameis can get some free lobster while he’s in New England, it’s cheaper there than the crab-legs in Florida that made their way under his coat. Obviously, he thought those were too expensive. A forced pass in a crowd, an interception here, a pick there, and you cash your ticket. Pats -3
Jack: This is a game that #NoPickNate would pontificate on for twenty-five minutes and then refuse to pick. I’m inclined to agree with him here. I don’t know who the Pats are and I don’t have a lot of faith in the Mac-Attack to have what it takes to cover. I think the Saints probably right the ship, but I went 0-4 in the NFC South last weekend, so I’m taking a week off. No pick
Nate: Oh, this is my big pontificating game and my only pick for Sunday. I don’t trust the Pats, but I do trust Sean Payton to get things back. The problem for New England is that they are vulnerable against the run (Jets gained 152 yards, 4.9 avg.) which should allow Kamara to open things up for Jameis and the Saints offense. Take the Saints in a buy-low spot after getting roughed up last week. Don’t let recency-bias get you here. Geaux Saints +3
John To Nate: Three picks later in the red zone and you’ll be downing the Reno bourbon.
Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans (-5)
Jack: Hello Nash-Vegas! The Titans return home from a season defining come from behind victory in the House of Boom. They are not likely to repeat the puke show they put on in their first home game – where their 70,000 fans booed them off the field. This team showed guts last week in the fourth quarter. As my 17-year athlete son Joe told me last week after Derick Henry gained 7 on a first down run with 10 minutes to go — down by 14 on the road: “Dad, I can smell a win.” I smell one here, too. By the way, Carson Wentz may not play. Damn. If he is deemed healthy at game time, but more on Tennessee. I’m pumped. Titans -5
Jack: Fake News Fredericks is wrong here once again. The Titans doubled down on their run game in the second half against Seattle and caught Pete Carroll by surprise. The bottom-line is I’d rather take the points against the streaky Titans than lay five in the hopes that Jacob Eason starts. Indianapolis has a Democratic mayor. Go Colts. Colts +5
John to Jack: Says my once 10 year-old son who cried his eyes out in Atlanta when the Titans lost the Super Bowl on last play on a tackle…uh-huh. You’ll be crying again at 4:00 PM EST.
Jack to John: I’ll pray for you. Titans 1-2 on Monday.
Washington Football Team at Buffalo Bills (-9.5)
John: Oh my. You can’t bet Washington. Their season’s claim to fame is the Giants missed a field goal. We all root for Taylor Heineke, but this is the NFL and these are grown men. The Bills coming home – last home game before you have to show a VAX card to get in. Sounds like a party in Orchard Park. Bills big. Bills -9.5
Jack: Once again, I disagree with The Godzilla. He’s the ultimate reactionary gambler and plays right into the hands of the Vegas oddsmakers. The Swamp we’ll keep this close enough to cover. Swamp +9.5
Atlanta Falcons at New York Giants (-3.5)
John: The Atlanta Clown Show Vs. the Swamp dwellers. Sounds like a 1950’s B horror flick. I’ll pass on this combined 0-6 scrimmage. Sorry Arthur, I shop Lowe’s. No Pick
Jack: Here’s a tip: the Giants suck. So do the Falcons. This newsletter’s readership can flip on Newsmax during this game because it’s going to be a stinker. No Pick
John To Jack: The truth comes out! You are a secret Newsmax watcher!
Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers (-4.5)
John: The vaulted Steel Curtain looked more like a plastic shower strap last week. When Carr beats you with big play after big play, it’s like whoa, are we all hype?
Ben is slimmed down on some crazy Keto diet or something, and he looked halfway stable last week, but also missed several key connections. Can you really envision the Steelers losing two straight at home, the second being a division game? Yes. The Bungles should be 2-0. This game has got upset written all over it. Bungles + 4.5
Jack: I don’t know what the “Keto” diet is, but Ben has never been afraid to eat, Keto diet or not. I think this is a trap game for bettors. The Raiders are a lot better than people think and the Bengals have shown that they are probably good enough to play in the Big Ten, so that’s something. Republicans think they can hold onto that Senate Seat in Pennsylvania. PA is blue, baby! Steelers -4.5
Nate: I keep thinking that Joe Burrow will show up and finally win a road game. Didn’t happen last week, probably not this week. My guess is that Big Ben and the Steelers continue to own the Bengals at home — they’ve gone 6-2 in their last eight games in that situations. No play for me, but as with most controversial issues, I tend to agree with Jack more than John. No Play.
John to Nate: Download my APP! And by the way: Trump won.
Baltimore Ravens (-8) at Detroit Lions
John: Call me crazy, but I don’t like this game. It’s a let-down for the Ravens, and Detroit showed life for at least a half in Wisconsin. This is called a trap bet. I don’t bet 8-point games, somehow you lose either way. It’s like 3-card Monty. No Pick
Jack: I agree with John here. Eight is too much to lay at home, but I took the points with the Lions last week and got burned so I’m off the Goff train. Good luck losing another one, Lions. No Pick
Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs (-7)
John: Don’t bet against the Chiefs at Arrowhead. And never, ever bet the Chargers in a big game. They will rip your heart out. And take your money. The Bolts are the most over-rated team in the NFL, going on the road with all the hype and glitter only Hollywood could bring. This is not cushy SoFI stadium or whatever that tax-payer funded plush-bowl is called. I don’t think the Chiefs like the prospect of being 1-2. It’s like an old man protecting his house. I’ll take the old man. Chiefs -7
Jack: The Oracle of the Deplorables has picked only one dog so far this week. That doesn’t bode well for his .500 record. Trump lost. Chargers cover. Chargers +7
Nate: No play for me on this one, but I’d probably lean towards taking the points against KC. Feels like a track meet in the making where whoever has the ball last wins. Both of these teams score when they want. In a one-possession game, you want to have those points in your back pocket. Over 54.5 is also probably worth a hard look. No Play.
New York Jets at Denver Broncos (-11)
John: The perennial dumpster fire goes west! A mile-high wing-dinger! My choices: watch this game or get an un-approved booster shot? I’ll got to CVS and get another jab. It’s simply a cost-benefit analysis: booster jab or Jets? Jab wins. No Pick
Jack: This line is crazy high and the Broncos look primed to cover. I can’t bring myself to lay eleven points on Denver. Jets stink, but don’t touch this game. No Pick
Miami Dolphins at Las Vegas Raiders (-5.5)
John: No Tua, no Dolphins. My dream scenario in Vegas is the Raiders are a 5.5-point favorite (this is it!) and Chucky has a 4-point lead with the ball on the opposing team’s 5-yard line, fourth and two with :45 seconds to go the other team has no time outs. 100,000 Vegas fans bet the Raiders and want Chucky to kick the field goal. Or he can run out the clock. Cover – and lose his fans’ bets? Former Eagles Coach Doug Pederson would kick for the 3 in a New York minute. What will Chucky do? Raiders -5.5
Jack: This game poses a problem for me, because I inexplicably love the Fish and the Raiders. Then again, Vegas has the largest hospitality industry union in the country. Raiders in a blowout. Raiders -5.5
Nate: This feels like a trap. Miami is down a starting QB, flying cross-country, playing a team that has been surprisingly competent and the line is still only 5.5. Something isn’t right here. The guys are probably right and the Raiders roll, but I can’t stop overthinking this one in classic liberal fashion. No Pick
John To Nate: Here comes the cerebral college professor side of Nate. Ugh.
Jack to John: Trump lost.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Los Angeles Rams (-1)
John: This Rams bunch are the real deal. Tampa won’t go 17-0. I like the Rams pressure up the middle. Bucs secondary is suspect, could be exploited. Here is how this plays out: Rams win game three, Bucs win game 19 at the NFC championship. Does anyone like the bright yellow glow in the dark pants the Rams wear? I have to don my Rayburns to watch their games. It’s like a bad hairdo in Texas. Rams -1
Jack: I disagree with John here. Rams failed to cover last week and TB-12 looks poised for another insane playoff run. If I’m getting points with the Bucs, I’m taking the points. Touchdown Tommy is +550 to win the NFL MVP. Bucs +1
Nate: Feels like a coin flip and the odds reflect that. Rams get host Tampa and should be fired up to show people they are a contender here. I can’t bet against Tom Brady. I think John is right, Tampa loses somewhere and this is a spot that makes sense, but I can’t pull the trigger. No Pick.
Seattle Seahawks (-2) at Minn. Vikings
John: I have no clue who shows up. The Vikes’ are facing 0-3 at home, they have their backs against the wall. The Boomers blew a late game last week and showed 4th quarter fatigue in getting worn down by The Beast. This is one of those games where whoever I bet loses. Plus I’ve lost 127 Vikings games in row dating back to Bud Grant. I liked that old ex O-line head Minny coach who had the pencil in his ear and sold his super-bowl tickets on E-bay, then took his family on a cruise. Bring him back. No Pick
Jack: I love the Seahawks here. I just don’t have enough faith in Kirk Cousins to keep this game close. I figure the Seahawks win by six. The left coast continues to dominate, while the rest of the country attempts to reconcile with systemic racism. Abolish the police. Pick the Seahawks. Seahawks -2
Nate: The Vikings have to win soon — or Mike Zimmer is gonna be looking for a job — and I’m reluctant to bet against them especially in a good spot like this. The problem is that the Vikings sort of suck and can’t close out a game. No Pick
Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers (-4)
John: I’m settling in for this one! Bring me your finest meats and cheeses, and your coldest beer. Add in a shot or two of good bourbon and I’ve got a Sunday night party going! The fam is out, getting back late from a baseball tournament from Lynchburg after 10 PM. It’s me, Sammy the Cat and Sunday night football! I’ll give the cat a snack for every Packers score! Cheese heads win in the Bay on the day the Astros eliminate the Oakland A’s. More beer. Let the celebration begin! Bring on the ChiSox! Cheese-heads + 4
Jack: I have never seen John take a shot of bourbon in my life. I guarantee he’ll be asleep by halftime. Everyone’s least favorite car mechanic bounced back with a boring Monday night game. I love the ‘Niners here, but I’m staying away from the game. No Pick
Nate: How can you begin to tell anything about which GB team will show up. In my gut, this feels like an easy SF win, but who knows. 49ers should move the ball at will against a Packer defense that is suspect (and that’s probably a generous term). If you have to, I’d back those boys from the Bay, but I can’t bet against Rodgers right now. No Pick
John to Jack: Ok, Grey Goose Vodka.
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys (-4)
John: Wow, what a fun game! Now we’re talking! I love the Eagles with the points as this is a back and forth affair that goes down to the wire. Jalen Hurts vs. Dak plus crazy Cowboy fans plus Jerry Jones getting pissed plus that Eagles defense dancing after every Birds stop plus I get four points! Eagles + 4
Jack: The Cowboys are the better team here and the Dak-Kellen connection should have a highway named after it in Fort Worth. Tough to lay four in a state that unconstitutionally banned abortions, but I’m going with the Cowboys. Cowboys -4
Nate: I cannot be unbiased here. Eagles, Philadelphia and everything associated with them are just awful except for cheesesteaks (and, unfortunately, Jalen Hurts). Go Cowboys. No Pick.
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John Fredericks is the Publisher and Editor In Chief of The Virginia Star.
Photo “The Rams” by All-Pro Reels. CC BY-SA 2.0.