Home field advantage? It only works if you’re, you know, good at football. Or if you have a total cupcake team coming to town. Otherwise, while the home crowd can give you an edge, it can’t completely paper over your failings.
But, you say, the Ewoks had home field over the Empire in Return of the Jedi and did well, right? True, but line up 11 Ewoks against even the lowly Raiders and no hackneyed Lucas script could create a favorable outcome.
So this week I’m going against conventional wisdom: I’m picking the visitors in nine of the 15 games this weekend. At times, it’s the visitors who are far too dominant to be swayed by a bit of crowd noise, while in other cases, the home team is just not that good.
Anyway, here are your picks. Winners in italics. And remember, despite my record last week, this is for entertainment purposes only. Don’t wager on this stuff, man.
Indianapolis at Houston: I love Houston’s scrappy ways, and the quarterback is sporting a fine beard these days. It won’t help.
Jacksonville at Tennessee: Honestly, I could see the Jags pull off the upset here, because the Titans are a bit Titanic lately.
Baltimore at Tampa Bay: Woe betide the Jack Sparrows, for the Angry Birds will want some payback after last week’s debacle.
Denver at N.Y. Jets: *insert typical evil mastermind laughter here*
Detroit at Minnesota: The Lannisters aren’t afraid to jettison members of the family who don’t do their duty, and so Detroit booted their kicker. It was overdue.
New England at Buffalo: Brady has a chip on his shoulder the size of Smaug.
Carolina at Cincinnati: Another one that could go either way, but that Carolina line may very well consist of Ewoks at this point.
Pittsburgh at Cleveland: Browncoats forever! (Seriously, Firefly fans need to adopt the Browns, and vice versa.)
Green Bay at Miami: The Packers have come to take all the fish.
San Diego at Oakland: *insert more evil mastermind laughter here*
Chicago at Atlanta: The way these two are playing, I expect Benny Hill music on every down.
Dallas at Seattle: Paul Allen and Jerry Jones remind me of Gandalf and Saruman.
Washington at Arizona: This week, the Cards will look up Ben Franklin’s old journals and create a Frankenstein monster to play quarterback. But they don’t need to — they got this.
N.Y. Giants at Philadelphia: Upset of the week! I’m calling it now. Though I wish I could just hop over to Sunday on the TARDIS to be sure….
San Francisco at St. Louis: Normally, the Niners would just dominate. But they’re approaching Jets levels of dysfunction.
Bye: Kansas City, New Orleans
Last week’s record: 12-3
Season record: 45-31