Thursday, January 20, 2011

13 comments NFL Championship Round Picks

Last week was a banner week for all of us, except for Bill Simmons. Not only do we all have over .500 records, it looks like we are currently in a three-way tie at 5-3 for 1st place in the Bottom of the Barrel 2011 NFL Playoff Challenge. This week is the AFC and NFC Championship games, so everyone get excited. This week, J.S. will start off first and I will go last again. Do enjoy our picks and our ramblings.


Does anyone else realise that last week we had four games, where the results were the exact opposite of their regular season counterparts?

Baltimore @ Pittsburgh (Week 4) 17-14
Green Bay @ Atlanta (Week 12) 17-20
Seattle @ Chicago (Week 6) 23-20
New York @ New England (Week 13) 3-45

Try picking these's hell. Back into the fire...


Line: Green Bay -3.5

Pick: Green Bay 28-20

I was wrong. And the most irritating kind of wrong. The wrong where you get all the small details basically right, only you know them in an entirely irrelevant context and have missed the point entirely. Green Bay's running game and the "James Starks OMFG!" movement was a sham (66 yards on 25 carries). It's offensive line has to take some of the blame for the lack of running game and kept Rodgers on the run much of the night. The special teams were awful (missed FG and a kick return TD). There was no tight end threat to speak of (Quarless had 2 catches for 14 yards) or out of the backfield (Jackson and Kuhn 3 catches combined for 21 yards). So, you know, yay! Less yay is the fact that my pick was some 28 points off. I just didn't realise that these handicaps weren't reasons to pick against the Packers, but reasons to be stunned into loose jawed awe by Aaron Rodgers performance these last two and a half months or so. Dismissing the games in which he was concussed and didn't play, here are the stats for Rodgers the last eight games, in playoff type (or actual playoff) atmosphere and pressure;

189/258 (73.3%), 2411 yards (9.3ypa) 22TD, 2INT. His rating is 127.21. His team averages 31.8ppg. Brady's regular season rating was 16 points lower. It's the difference between Brady and Freeman.

That was a perfect, or near perfect, game he played against the Falcons, and the fact he has so little help really, just makes his performance even more impressive. Green Bay were near unstoppable on Saturday, moving the ball at will against a defense that knew what was coming, rested and on their home field. The Packers put 42 points on them with more than 2 minutes remaining in the third quarter. They ended five consecutive drives with TD's. They didn't punt all night. Between 5 minutes left in the first quarter and 4:48 in the third quarter, Green Bay had 383 yards of offense. In a half of football. They talk about torture porn, this was football porn. Against a 13-3 team in their building.

This is the second week straight we've seen Green Bay cut up a defense, and while Philly and Atlanta are not the cream of the crop on that side of the ball, they are presentable. It also bears mentioning that while I have also been mildly sceptical of the Green Bay defense (not that it was bad, just maybe closer to average than advertised, especially in run stopping) they have done a great job on two of the best offenses, in Atlanta and Philly, in the NFL. I still wonder against the rush (28th in the NFL in ypc against). B.J.Raji is a much improved player, but I'm not sure he's an elite nose tackle (ie. Hampton, Wilfork, Ngata etc) and having a big, confident, powerful D-Line is critical in run stopping in the 4-3, which is a difficult formation to control the run to begin with. However, considering the nature of the Green Bay offense (which has gotten on top by 14 early against the Eagles and was up by 14 by halftime against Atlanta), they have taken the run game brutally away from their opposition so far. It's not like there aren't weaknesses, and readily identifiable weaknesses, but again, it simply hasn't mattered, that's how transcendent Rodgers has been. Make no mistake, I've learnt my lesson and been appropriately humbled. You win, Aaron Rodgers, I cry uncle - these guys are going to the Super Bowl.

I thought the Bears were OK against the Seahawks, but did not live up to my expectations with an easy draw. They got out to a 21 point lead and basically stopped trying, and while many of the 24 points Seattle scored were relatively meaningless freebies, they still challenged Chicago enough that they had to keep scoring. I don't think that's a recipe for this team to win. Bears fans will be enthused that they have the home field (though they lost three games in Illinois this year, they can't rely on homefield) and have shown the ability to put numbers on the board (because I tell you right now, you are not holding Green Bay's scoring down like they did last time), but what if Green Bay put 24 on before halftime and Cutler HAS to throw? That's not a scenario, in a big playoff game (and Rodgers is not only hot, but relatively seasoned now), Cutler vs Rodgers, the Bears want to see.

Another thing that worries me is the Bears pass protection. I know, I know, it's better (allegedly, they gave up three sacks to the middling pass rushing Hawks), they are able to run more week 7 onwards blah, blah, blah. But even if it is better, we are talking from fucking atrocious to slightly below average. Even in that, best case scenario, this is still a very concerning area, as the best thing Green Bay does defensively is rush the passer (47, second most in the NFL). Clay Matthews is something of a psychopath out there and there's no doubt Woodson's hard hitting ability and pass rushing instincts set him apart from other cornerbacks. I worry about Cutler here, not only sacks but being rushed into poor decisions. I'd be stunned if Chicago get away with a clean sheet here turnover wise (Green Bay was second in the league with 24 INTs), and if you give Rodgers extra possessions, you're in a world of hurt. Their only hope is Hester and I almost expect him to take one to the house in this one, considering how pathetic Green Bay are here, but Rodgers is a force of nature right now. A team putting in a halfhearted performance against a poor quality team last week (when Rodgers was twisting the knife in ruthlessly, Chicago was seemingly bored, getting Matt Forte to try and throw away the game), and wasn't that great to begin with is not knocking Green Bay even with Soldier Field, especially to a team so used to playing there.

Aaron Rodgers, I was wrong, but I won't be this week.


Line: Pittsburgh -3.5

Pick: New York 16-13

I don't know. There you go. You're here reading the picks of a man who opened his two picks with "I was wrong" and "I don't know". Something about these championship games gets me everytime. Last year the hardest pick for me was the Minny/Norlans game. I went back and forth on that seemingly forever before finally and appropriately settling on the wrong option. This is the hardest pick so far these playoffs for me and I have similarly gone back and forth on it. "Two months ago me" is screaming at "present day me" not to overthink it and take the Steelers, but something about the Jets is alluring to me (maybe it's because I've gone 4-1 in games they play in against the spread the last two years). Anyway, I don't know, and am gonna think this out loud in this post (I'll post the pick, above this, after I've finished my stream of consciousness) in dot point form (perhaps I've been reading too much from Ben's picks).

1) I think the Jets will be able to run a little. More than most. I think they will be reliable in short yardage situations. I think they will be able to work draw plays in 2nd and even 3rd and long well. I think they will break one 15-20 yard run. I think they can get 3 yards a carry for the rest of the game. I think this represents a lot better than most teams achieve against Pittsburgh. The Jets aren't greedy here, they aren't trying to reinvent the wheel or be heroes, they're only hoping for 16-17 points. This kind of ground game, with good special teams play (and I don't rate Pittsburgh's at all, particulary returning punts, last in the league in that category and they gave up a kickoff return TD against the Jets last time) that the Jets have had all year, you can get those points without throwing too much. The goal for New York is for Sanchez to throw less than 30 times (29 in the win against the Steelers earlier in the year, 25 times against the Pats, 31 against the Colts, 23 last year against the Bolts and 15 last year against the Bengals), which in turn affects...

2) I think the Jets can protect Sanchez. Sanchez has barely even seen a defensive end or outside linebacker in the last two weeks (1 sack), and the main worry in pass protection the Jets seem to have is whether or not he remembers what a pass rusher looks like. The Jets did not concede any sacks, or even any QB hurries against the Pats. I cannot emphasise how highly I rate this line - I think it's the best in the league. If anyone can stop Harrison, Woodley, Polamalu, it's these guys (conceded just one sack earlier this year to the Steelers). I think it's plausible the Steelers get shut out sack wise.

3) Which is good, because I don't think Sanchez will find too many open receivers. I thought the corners (Ike Taylor in particular) had a great day against Baltimore. And I'm not sure Holmes/Edwards are better than what Baltimore serve up out wide. Plus without the inside passing threat of the quality of Heap/Rice (it's a big dropoff to Miller and Mendenhall/Moore), guys like Clark and Polamalu can help the corners more outside. I actually thought Ryan Clark was Pittsburgh's best defensive player outside James Harrison last weekend. If he's playing well, it's scary the amount of players opposing offenses must account for on every snap. Whatever chances Sanchez has to throw deep, he has to hit that receiver. Ben will come up with another big long completion (like last week); can Sanchez get one of his own? He has made these throws in the past.

4) This offensive line of the Steelers is a tremendous concern. Baltimore got to Ben with regularity (causing a turnover this way also), and they only have one pass rusher (even if he did play out of his mind). What about the Jets? The same Jets who sacked Brady (equally as good, or close, to being unsackable as Ben) behind an exponentially superior line, no less than five times last weekend. And that was with Rex being remarkably and uncharacteristically restrained in respect to blitzing for the second week in a row. I think in this game he will cry havoc, and let slip the dogs of war and God knows what happens then. Remember, an O-Line that just can do nothing in terms of pass protection can kill a game for a team, regardless of the other virtues of the team. This is a terrible, and critical, mismatch.

5) But I do not think you can just dismiss the Steeler's mystique. Ben is so great in those intense situations down the stretch. When he threw that streak to Antonio Brown (he can complete a 55 yard throw to fucking Antonio Brown in a huge moment, my God, this man's balls must be made of steel) you just knew it would be complete. It was foretold in the prophecy. He's almost creepily good with the game on the line. He's probably even more clutch than Brady and Manning in those situations, and his 8-1 postseason record in the past 9 speaks to that. Heinz Field does psyche out kickers, and in a game with lots of field goals, this is likely to be an issue. Hell, I'm intimidated just here at my computer, an ocean away, just picking against them.

6) But after this cathartic, point by point, personal journey, I've think I'm going to. Look, the Jets have a fairly substantial intangible aura about them as well. They have already collected the road San Diego, road New England and road Indianapolis playoff stamps. If they beat Pittsburgh they get a free sub. I mean they are 4-1 in the playoffs the last two years, with every game on the road. That's amazing. They were the underdogs in every contest. Even Sanchez has to be given some props here, he's been calm at least, even when things are going bad. You can't go 4-1 on the road against excellent teams over two years without at the very least making a few big plays...he has. I'm surprisingly not worried about them here. They thrive on the challenge, and the talk does really seem to help when it comes to the playoffs. They look like playoff specialists to me; Pittsburgh's equal in that department.

Give me the Jets.


Green Bay Packers v. Chicago Bears

1. I believe I have mentioned this every week, not to brag but to explain part of the reason for my picks, but I chose the Packers to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. At the beginning of the season, like everyone else, this was really just a guess based on looking at their roster on paper. Now, I believe more than ever it is going to happen. Of course, there is still the whole matter of playing the Bears this week in Chicago for the right to go to the Super Bowl. It just feels like Aaron Rodgers is getting the attention he deserves and this may be his year to "break out" in the playoffs.

(I went through my archives and looked up all the times I had mentioned "Aaron Rodgers," and frankly it is embarrassing. I mention him 85 times. Even I start annoying myself looking back. I had a fetish for Brian Brohm too, and somehow believed he had talent...mostly, I just plead for Rodgers to get a chance.)

Last week's game against the Falcons was a great all-around performance by the Packers and they just seem like they are peaking. Of course the Bears looked really good as well against the Seahawks. I'm not sure why people seemed to be overlooking the Bears last week. They shut down the Seahawks in the first half of last week's game and didn't really ever let up until the fourth quarter. I still don't know if I can pick them to win against the Packers, but they took care of business last week.

2. What I find interesting is the idea latched onto by the media that the Packers are now running the ball effectively with James Starks. True, he hasn't been bad, but he only ran for 2.6 yards per carry last week against the Falcons, while Rodgers threw for 366 yards. Maybe I am still reeling from the FOX announcers talking about Starks excessively last week. The Packers are still going to throw the ball better than they run it. The Bears are 2nd in the NFL in defending the run, so I look for them to try and shut down any semblance of a running game the Packers may have. The Packers leading rusher had 31 yards in the first game against the Bears and 21 yards in the second game against the Bears, and in the second game Aaron Rodgers was the Packers leading rusher. I don't see the difficult in running the ball changing. The road to the Super Bowl for the Packers is through Aaron Rodgers' arm and a defense that needs to create turnovers. The Bears can stop the Packers from running the ball and I think they can hurry Rodgers as well because that Green Bay offensive line still hasn't shown me it can be trusted against a good pass rush.

3. Offensively, I loved what the Bears did last week. They showed great offensive balance. They ran the ball with Taylor and Forte 36 times and used the running backs and tight ends in the passing game very effectively. The Packers did a great job of shutting down Tony Gonzalez last week and they will look to do the same against Greg Olsen. The Bears have a running back that is capable of catching the football out of the backfield, which isn't something Michael Turner could do. If I am the Bears I would continue to try to run the ball against the Packers and force them to worry about play-action. While Gonzalez didn't hurt the Packers last week, they did let Michael Jenkins and Brian Finneran catch 10 passes for 114 yards. The week earlier Jason Avant hurt the Packers. So if the Packers dedicate a cornerback to stopping Greg Olsen then the Bears will have chances against the Packers nickel corner, Sam Shields. Mike Martz is very good at creating mismatches and I think he will look to do that with his second or third receiver.

4. The Packers love to bring cornerbacks on the blitz from the side and create pressure in a quarterback's face. It is so cliche and I say it all the time, but the Chicago offensive line has go to protect Jay Cutler. If the Packers are able to get pressure in his face and force him into bad decisions then this game could favor the Packers quickly. If the Bears are able to pick up the pressure from a blitz and allow Cutler clear throwing lanes then the Bears will win this game. The Packers have sacked Jay Cutler nine times this year in two games. That's not a good statistic for Bears fans. That has to be cleared up or the Bears are going to find themselves on the losing end. I look for Mike Martz to try and counter some of the Packers blitzing using screen passes and slowing down the Packers pass rush by running the ball. The supposed key to beating Jay Cutler is to get in his face and make him force bad throws. What has been ignored among the Packers love we are hearing is they were only 18th in the NFL in stopping the run. They can be run against.

5. This is a Super Bowl caliber Chicago Bears defense. Teams have passed the ball well against them (20th in the NFL) because they have had to play from behind a lot...much like what the Seahawks did last week. The Bears defensive strategy is to frustrate opposing quarterbacks by making them throw shorter throws. The quick slants over the middle and open receivers out of the backfield may not be there like they have been the past couple of weeks. Can Aaron Rodgers stand being patient and taking what the defense gives him? The Bears front four have the ability to get to the quarterback and the Green Bay offensive line can be a bit shaky. The Bears are going to try and run the ball against the Packers and take pressure off of Cutler when possible. The Packers will try to run the ball enough to keep the Bears honest and prevent them from pinning their ears back and going at Aaron Rodgers. Other than that, they will want to attack the middle of the field. I think the Bears are going to be the toughest fight yet for the Packers and they are going to frustrate Rodgers. I feel like this is going to be a game that will be decided by which quarterback doesn't become frustrated first. The Packers defense will make one more play to win the game. I can't go against my Super Bowl pick at this point.

Chicago Bears (+3.5) over Green Bay Packers 17-14 (though I still think the Packers will win)

New York Jets v. Pittsburgh Steelers

1. I can not lie. I was looking forward to the Pittsburgh-New England matchup a little bit more than this one. Still, this will be a good matchup as the Steelers look to avenge the loss to the Jets 22-17 earlier this year. I recall that being an exciting game and I have no doubts this one will live up to that billing and more. After watching Mark Sanchez throw the ball against the Patriots, I am still surprised the Jets won the game against the Patriots (mostly it was the defense of the Jets that won the game). He is just not an accurate passer. He throws the ball high and no matter how many times Phil Simms made excuses for him, I just couldn't buy them. I've never been on the Mark Sanchez train, even coming out of college, but he has won games as a pro. I won't deny him that, but when the time comes to throw a pass that isn't a slant or a dump-off pass to a running back, I am not sure he can make the throw. He just looks so inaccurate at times. Brian Schottenheimer does a great job of keeping him in his comfort zone, but based on what I have been seeing over the past couple of games, and even this season, there's going to be some Mark Sanchez interceptions in the future if he keeps throwing the ball inaccurately.

2. What I am most excited about in this game is the Steelers are the best team in the NFL at stopping the run and the Jets have the 4th best run offense in the NFL. Something has to give. The Jets have to run the ball and prevent Sanchez from having to throw the ball in third-and-long situations. Of course, having said that, the Jets only ran for 106 yards in the last meeting against the Steelers and won the game. The real difference in that game probably came with the two turnovers Ben Roethlisberger (not just "Ben" like all of these stupid announcers call him. I don't care that his name is hard to say, just say it, don't call him "Ben" like you are best friends with him) had in the form of fumbles. The Steelers defense is going to try and put Sanchez in situations where he may commit a turnover. Sanchez is generally pretty good (at least in the playoffs) about taking care of the ball. Not to repeat myself, but take away his slants and I think the Steelers will find success.

3. The Steelers offense will also probably have trouble running the ball as well. The Jets are 3rd in the NFL in defending the run and Pittsburgh is 11th in rushing offense. Much of the Steelers success this year, at least in my mind, has been their ability to run the football with Rashard Mendenhall. The difference in the Jets and Steelers, I believe, is even if the Steelers can't run the football they can have success in the passing game. Ben Roethlisberger has shown his ability in the past to extend plays and find an open receiver and I have been impressed with the Steelers wide receivers. Though Hines Ward isn't quite the receiver he used to be, Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown have stepped up lately to give the Steelers four solid receivers to go with Heath Miller. The Steelers offensive line have to keep the Jets away from Roethlisberger. As always, I have doubts this can be done, because I don't completely trust the Steelers offensive line at at this point.

4. The Jets on defense are going to put a ton of pressure on Roethlisberger and see if they can start to crack the Steelers offensive line. Roethlisberger likes to hold onto the ball at times a bit too long and the Jets are going to try and take advantage of that. The Jets secondary is going to do a much better job than the Ravens secondary did I would imagine. I doubt they will give up a long pass at the end of a half (like the Ravens did on the long bomb to Antonio Brown) and they will pay more attention to Heath Miller in the red zone (I am thinking of the touchdown he caught where everyone except the Ravens knew he was getting the ball). The biggest key for the Jets is to prevent the big play and not allow Roethlisberger two hours to stand back in the pocket and wait for a receiver to get open. I am not sure if it was the gameplan or not, but the Patriots had success running against the Jets when they did run the ball and I am pretty sure we can look for one trick play on the part of the Steelers that will get the Steelers crowd fired up.

5. This is an odd pick for me. I believe the Jets may be able to run the ball at a somewhat effective pace and I think the Jets defense will be able to force Roethlisberger into either (a) making quick decisions and taking short passes or (b) making a mistake like a fumble or an interception. I think the Steelers defense isn't going to make Sanchez's life very easy either. On third down, they are going to take away the quick slant and force Sanchez to put the ball on the money to his receivers. Sanchez looked great against New England, but like Joe Flacco last week, the Steelers have a way of making quarterbacks look bad. They held Derrick Mason and Anquan Boldin to one catch last week and have the ability to do the same to Santonio Holmes and Braylon Edwards. Statistically, Flacco was a better quarterback than Sanchez this year and seemed to (on paper) have similar weapons to work with. I think the Steelers are going to stop the Jets from running the ball effectively enough to force Mark Sanchez to beat them and in a close fourth quarter will take advantage of the aggressiveness of Antonio Cromartie for a touchdown catch. This was a tough pick because the Jets are really streaking, but I think the streak ends in Pittsburgh this week.

New York Jets (+3.5) over the Pittsburgh Steelers 16-13 (But I think the Steelers will win the game)


Green Bay Packers vs. Chicago Bears

In order to avoid repetition, I shall refer you to my ramblings from Tuesday. That and the Bears are a home underdog. I'll take the 3.5 points, especially in a close matchup, and the pissed off Bears fans who are underdogs to their arch rivals.

Chicago Bears (+3.5) over Green Bay Packers, 24-23.

New York Jets vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

All the New York Jets' bravado has disappeared. Rex Ryan and Mike Tomlin cannot seem to get enough of each other. Antonio Cromartie's criticisms have taken a backseat to Santonio Holmes' praise. The Jets, it seems, are serious. Under normal circumstances, I would praise them for their business mentality and ability to focus purely on themselves. But clearly this is not how the Jets roll. You do not go from brash vocalizers to quiet internalists in a matter of days. As everyone knows, the Jets were in the same position last year. They were in the familiar underdog role against Indianapolis and perfectly willing to flap their gums. This year, however, their seems to be a slight difference. The Jets, for all intents and purposes, are not totally underdogs. Despite everyone's seemingly complete unwillingness to acknowledge the Jets' victory at Pitt earlier this season, we cannot ignore it. The Jets know they can win.

From the outside, it seems that the Jets are deer in the headlights. Unlike last year, their recent silence and praise reeks of, "holy shit, it won't be surprising if we win this game. We can't fuck around."

That attitude could easily bring the Jets demise. As this season's history has proven, they need to feel like the underdog. They need the media to give them no shot. The Patriots' 45-3 destruction gave them that impetus for their impressive win last week. Their two game losing streak before the first matchup with Pittsburgh had the entire city of New York completely jumping off the bandwagon.

The entire week, the previous few paragraphs convinced me to pick the Steelers. But to be perfectly honest, one factor swayed me the other way: the 3.5 point spread. As with the NFC Championship, there's no reason why this game will not be close again. The Jets' offense slows the game down to an unprecedented state of boredom. When games come down to field goals, I'll take the points. That and I'm a New York Guy.

New York Jets (+3.5) over Pittsburgh Steelers, 17-14.


Anonymous said...

Comprehensive... though the second group of picks, the lines don't match the final scores. The lines have favorites winning by 4, but the final scores chosen have favorites winning by 3.

Bengoodfella said...

Anon, I can explain that by the fact I am an idiot. I did this last year too on my picks. I am not a gambler, obviously, so I figured I had gotten the lines wrong. I have fixed it to reflect the correct lines.

Thanks for pointing that out and reading.

Anonymous said...

No, you had the lines right originally, but if you pick Green Bay -3.5, which is the line, then the final score has to be Green Bay winning by 4. 17-14 is a Chicago cover.

J.S. said...

Ben, you seem to have picked the two favs by 3 points, and they both are giving more than yeah, who are you taking against the spread?

Bengoodfella said...

I QUIT! I need a line advisor. Why am I such a moron?

I am taking both Pitt and GB to win, but not cover. This is why I don't gamble, I am too stupid to figure out the lines.

J.S. said...

So Ben takes the Jets and the Bears for our comp

Bengoodfella said...

But I think the Packers and Steelers are going to win!

J.S. said...

Yeah, but this is about the spread

Bengoodfella said...

I get it. I just wanted to make it clear that I thought Pitt and GB would win the game...even though it doesn't really matter.

Nunyer said...

I feel your pain BGF... I swore off gambling a long time ago... which was smart and thanks to my wonderful 0-4 record against the spread in last week's matchups.

I think the GB / CHI matchup favors the Packers... so I will pick the Bears to win.

I also like the Steelers at home. Their defense, if playing well, is something that the Jets haven't seen yet in the playoffs... So, I will pick the Jets to win.

Bengoodfella said...

I think I just suck at writing down lines. I did well for two weeks, which was an accomplishment for me.

I like the idea of picking against your own instincts. It may work.

Anonymous said...

Honestly, I think you are just missing the whole point of the betting lines. Looking at your revised picks, you can't just change a -3.5 to a +3.5. The -3.5 is set. It's the line. It's what you are picking off of. So, you either pick with or against that set line.

If a team, say Green Bay, is -3.5, it means literally that. You subtract 3.5 points from the Green Bay's final score. So, if Green Bay wins 17-14, you subtract 3.5 from Green Bay's score, and it's then "13.5-14", so Chicago wins, or covers in betting terms, and your bet is lost.

So, it doesn't matter who you think will win, it matters who wins with the spread. So, if you think Green Bay will win, you must commit to Green Bay winning by 3.5 points, or realistically, 4 points or more. The inverse for Chicago. If you pick Chicago, Chicago can still lose by 3 or less and still cover the bet, because they are getting 3.5 (+3.5) points.

The point of all this is anyone can bet the Patriots all season long. Okay, I put $100 on NE for 16 games, I'm going to make money most likely right? Because of this, Vegas creates a point spread to diffuse the obvious bets where they'd lose. NE will be -10 sometimes, and even if you think they'll win, in order to collect on your bet, they have to win by more than 10. Lines are simply an evening out of the multitude of factors so the house keeps the bettors honest.

Bengoodfella said...

Anon, I didn't really have "revised lines," I didn't change my picks or anything. I just put a the wrong "+" or "-" in front of the pick. Sorry, I am missing the entire point of the betting lines. I was trying to predict the score of the game and who I thought would win. So I am betting on Chicago, if I was really betting, but I do think Green Bay will win the game.

Maybe I'm missing the point of gambling. I don't really care. I am betting on Chicago and NYJ and just wanted to let everyone know I thought Green Bay would win the game to see if I could pick the winner and score correct. Obviously if I was really gambling I wouldn't do that.

I hope I didn't ruin the entire gambling world's fun. It'd be a shame.