Sorry for the weird upload timing on this one, forgot Sunday was NYE and had plans. Let’s just get the pics out of the way first! I got most games right this week but the ones I had to draw were some of the best ideas I had.

This was not a chaotic week. The Panthers locked up the #1 draft spot for Chicago and David Tepper threw his drink on a fan. It’s hard to think of a bigger disaster of a season in recent memory. Normally having the #1 overall pick is the one major consolation prize to having a season this bad and the Panthers couldn’t even get that right. The Ravens are now clearly the best team in football. The Vikings and Browns, both starting their 4th QBs of the year, have taken very different paths. The Vikings are horrible. The Browns are somehow spectacular, but I’ll get to that.

The Eagles are massive frauds, but I’ll get to that too. The Broncos! Now that’s some weirdness. The Russell Wilson drama is getting ugly and while it’s easy to side with the Broncos because Russ has not lived up to that contract in the slightest, the way they treated him is also vintage Sean Payton Shitty. Telling him they’ll bench him if he doesn’t change his contract to allow for more flexibility. My brother in christ you gave him that contract, you have to eat it. The funny part is that if the Broncos had simply benched him without explaining I don’t think anyone would have complained. Throw a vague “performance issues” or “want to see the young guys” out there and everybody buys it, even with Russ doing better this year than last. Deliberatley try to hold him hostage into changing his deal and all you’ve done is get the NFLPA involved and it might cost the Broncos yet another 1st round draft pick. Incredible work, Payton. Mr Scandal himself just can’t help it.

Not a lot else stood out to me. The Dolphins lost Chubb in garbage time (Bad!) and the Lions got screwed by the officials again. The Seahawks are painfully mediocre. The Buccaneers laid an egg just when they had the NFCS in their sights. The Bears have arrived at an interesting place in that the last 3rd of the year they’ve taken the steps forward that they were supposed to take well before this. Fields is playing reasonably well, the coaching isn’t a disaster, and the team won some games. So what now? They have the first overall pick and as of right now, I think also #7. Do you cut the bait and start over from scratch with a new QB and staff or keep trying to make this work? I’d probably trade Fields for even more draft capital and start over anew but I have no idea what the Bears are going to do.

The Giants gave the Rams a better run for their money than I would have expected. The defense continues to be underappreciated and held back by the offense not supporting them. They had Stafford seeing ghosts. I really hope the rumored schism between Wink and Daboll is a load of bullshit because Wink’s done the best job out of all the coaches this season. On the plus side, being competitive and still losing is basically the best-case scenario right now for the future. I’d love to see them embarrass the Eagles next week draft picks be damned. But I’d happily settle for competitive. As long as they put up a fight they can send this disaster of a year out on a reasonable note.

Most of my affection for the Browns went out the window the instant they gave a sex pest the biggest contract in NFL history. That anger has stayed with me and I do not feel the warmth towards them I used to. That said, it is very hard to not enjoy this current ride. To see them reach the playoffs, to even be thriving, under Joe Flacco of all people, is delightful. They are injured to hell and still winning. A guy off the street who came back purely for the love of the game has saved the season for them. Kevin Stefanski might deserve coach of the year for this and the Browns might deserve Chaotic team of the year. If the Browns are going to succeed in this current tainted regime, this would be the funniest year to do so. To get a ring despite Watson instead of because of him would honestly give Browns fans the dreams they’ve always wanted without giving the pieces of shit who put this into motion the satisfaction that they made the right move as immediately next year the albatross of a contract begins to truly weigh them down.

The Lions are absolutely cursed. After a miracle drive to end the game against the Cowboys the Lions decided to go for the win because Dan Campbell doesn’t fuck around. They went for 2, got a conversion to a big boy lineman, and celebrated. What felt like a minute later the joy had been sucked out of the world as they took the play away because the lineman had failed to declare himself eligible, so the formation and play was, by rule, illegal.

Or did he? Footage of the moments before the play show Taylor Decker (the lineman in question) talking to the ref and the ref seemingly acknowledging him. However, it appears that the official instead believed that a different player (Dan Skipper), who was jogging onto the field at the time, was the one who reported as eligible. So they declared the wrong player to the world and rendered the play illegal. This is not the Lions fault. They did everything according to the rules and the officials fucked it up. You can blame home-cooking for Dallas if you want, but the reality is this was likely just straight-up incompetence. Same as it’s been all year. Just another excellent game ruined by refball at the end. The NFL of course deflected all blame onto the Lions because they will never pretend the officials got it wrong even though they removed that officiating crew from the playoffs.

We continue to watch the officiating deteriorate in real-time. I’m not sure the refs right now are any better than the infamous replacement refs from several years ago. Something has to be fixed, but we all know it won’t happen.

The final week of the season doesn’t hold much in terms of potential surprise this year. The NFC South is still up in the air with the Bucs controlling their destiny, both the Falcons and Saints need to win (they face each other) and have the Bucs lose to the Panthers (lol). So I guess the Panthers could potentially cause chaos. The Bills and Dolphins are playing for the division and the Bills are not yet clinched for the playoffs so that one is for all the marbles. Both Indianapolis and Jacksonville control their own destinies for the playoffs with a win, and the Colts could steal the division if the Jaguars blow it against Tennessee. Houston also gets into the playoffs if they beat the Colts. Green Bay is into the playoffs with a win as well over the Bears, giving the Bears an opportunity to cause chaos. The Vikings appear to have the most unlikely outside chance out of every team, needing to beat the Lions and have GB, SEA, and either TB or NO lose. So if you love chaos, root for that.

The Eagles are frauds. Massive frauds. Something is rotten in Philly. The defense is now under the control of Matt Patricia and they still look terrible. The offense is pathetic and seems to be based entirely around having the talented players just win every matchup against their opponents. The team is falling apart at the worst time and I expect them to be one and done. Side note: hell yeah

Dolphins? Yeah, they haven’t done very well against good teams all season and the Ravens are clear favorites for the Super Bowl now, but letting them hang 56 points on you? Well, at least Mike McDaniel can say he’s been on the giving and receiving end of a total meltdown this year, so that’s neat.

Washington? Minnesota? Chargers? Bucs? All good picks. And yet, the Carolina Panthers remain our unwatchable kings. Thank god we only have to witness one more game from this team.



BETS FOR NEXT WEEK – YOU DECIDE! Is there a bet you were particularly sad didn’t get made this year that you think deserves a second chance? An idea you’ve had the whole time and want to see?! Only condition is that it has to line up with who I am already picking to win. I’ll hold off on deciding as long as possible until the day of the games to give everyone the opportunity.

Mike Tomlin clinched his 17 straight non-losing season in a row, maybe one of the most unbelievable coaching records out there considering some of the shit the Steelers have trotted out during that timeframe, including this season. The Ravens have nothing to play for as they’ve already clinched home-field. Yet I still cant quite pick against Baltimore. Even backups would enjoy sending Tomlin home sad.
If the Steelers win, I will draw…(please read the top of this section if you have not yet done so)

The winner of this game is a playoff team and potentially a division winner if the Jags lose. All the marbles are here. I’ll take the home team, and Indy has historically been a horrible place for the Texans.
If the Texans win, I will draw…

The Jaguars win the division with a win. If they lose and some other things happen, they could be eliminated. Titans have nothing to play for but spoiler, but that team is a mess.
If the Titans win, I will draw…

The Vikings have spent the year proving why backup quarterbacks are backups. The Lions are going to be fresh off the bullshit loss and angry. Dan Campbell does not rest.
If the Vikings win, I will draw…

HATE WEEK! Love that these two bitter enemies are fighting for the right to be the division winner solely if the Bucs manage to lose. I’ll take the Saints.
If the Falcons win, I will draw…

Bill Belichick would probably relish his potential final game in New England being one last vintage destruction of the Jets.
If the Jets win, I will draw…

Bucs, you are being handed the division on a silver platter. If you fuck this up, you deserve every insult thrown your way.
If the Panthers win, I will draw…

The battle of Ohio has always trended towards the Northeast in recent years and I’d have to imagine Joe Flacco knows how to beat the Bengals.
If the Bengals win, I will draw…

If the Bears defeat the Packers and manage to eliminate them from the playoffs in the process, everyone on the team probably stays employed. That said, the Packers own the Bears.
If the Bears win, I will draw…

Commies probably don’t even want to suit up for this game knowing what’s coming. Would you? Has anyone put forth full effort for a company you know is about to sack you? They don’t deserve it.
If the Commies win, I will draw…

Antonio Pierce is coaching for his job, so going out with two losses would be embarassing. Broncos DGAF. Raiders at home.
If the Broncos win, I will draw…

Giants have an opportunity to spoil the Eagles fun and division chances by upsetting the squad but the Giants just aren’t good.
If the Giants win, I will draw…

The Seahawks have been one of this season’s more understated disappointments. They squeaked into the playoffs last year off the back of Geno playing better than expected and yet this year they look even worse. The defense isn’t good, the offense is muddled and rarely plays to potential. This team may make the playoffs but it won’t feel deserved and they certainly won’t go anywhere. The Cardinals are bad, but I’ll give Seattle the nod just because they are desperate.
If the Cardinals win, I will draw…

Same ol sorry ass Rams meme even if the 49ers are resting everybody. Rams are pretty locked in place so they don’t have much to play for either.
If the Rams win, I will draw…

Chiefs can enter the playoffs on a mid note by stumbling to victory against a bunch of losers who don’t even want to be there anymore.
If the Chargers win, I will draw…

All the marbles here we go. I’m going Bills. The Dolphins have struggled and have gotten less fun as the season has gone on while the Bills have righted the ship since firing Dorsey. I’d be afraid of the Bills right now.
If the Dolphins win, I will draw…

If we get a tie, I will draw…