MARLBORO, NY – Admittedly, it has been a very disappointing NFL season for me with my Cheesy Bruin’s FREE NFL Picks segment here at MTM. Where I’ve been documented the past three years at an above 60% clip, my failures over the last four months are uncharted and epic for as long as I’ve been picking games… and that dates back to the age of eight. BUT… It’s the second season of the NFL – the playoffs – and I’m coming in heavy on a few selections today:
San Diego Chargers of Los Angeles at Cleveland’s Baltimore Ravens:
A field goal point-spread is Las Vegas’ way of saying two teams are evenly matched and that’s what the oddsmakers would love for us to believe. But let’s dig a little deeper on this game.
Point #1: The Chargers wound up two games better during the regular season than the Ravens, who because of their division title, are enjoying home cooking for this game. This two-game difference would normally put the handicap at a Pick ‘Em and tells us the installation of Baltimore as favorites are the better team today in Las Vegas’ minds.
Point #2: Los Angeles was a sterling 7-1 on the road this year and we all know how difficult it is to win on the road in the NFL but still find themselves underdogs.
Point #3: The Chargers also debunked the myth that West Coast teams fail miserably when traveling to the East Coast as they went 4-0 in the 1:00 time zone this year. I’m a firm believer in taking the home team when these Left Coast teams visit, especially in the playoffs when colder climes can swing the advantage to the host team.
Point #4: The MTM Edit Team could not find Mr. Bruin’s #4, so they are placating Angry Ward with a Vikings [ahem] representative.
Point #5: The Ravens recently frustrated the Chargers a few weeks ago in a 22-10 win also at Baltimore.
Point #6: The Birds are peaking at the correct time as they’ve won four straight and seem to be a more formidable offensive team with Lamar Jackson as a dangerous dual threat.
Point #7: Short Matt (who never offers advice on NFL games) is all over the Chargers, as he wrote a few days ago. He’s also a mush, though, and needs to stick to predicting rugby matches. Add it all up and it’s a landslide. The Pick: BALTIMORE -3 over Los Angeles
Philadelphia Eagles at Chicago Bears, 4:40 p.m.
I really don’t have much to go on in picking the Total in this game today. Everybody knows how daunting the Bears defense is. Nick Foles is one Khalil Mack sack from sitting on the sideline with rib problems he first experienced a few weeks ago. Nate Sudfeld is his understudy, by the way. The Bears are competent – if not unspectacular – on offense, while the Eagles will give up their share of points. Doug Pedersen will have to try to keep pace with the Bears today. Like I said, it’s not much to hang your hat on but it’s also the first Bears home playoff game in a dog’s age. They’ll be pumped so ride the wave of momentum and cross your fingers. The Pick: Philadelphia/CHICAGO OVER 41.5
That’s all for now. Leave your thoughts below and come back tomorrow for misguided Iggles phan, Buddy Diaz.