Not everyone likes the NFL. Not everyone likes sports. But EVERYONE likes money.
Having established that as fact, I shall do my best to win you money each week. Let’s set up some parameters.
1. I will pick winners against the spread for the five best games each week. I will decide which are the best games because I am writing this.
2. I will bet $1000 each week, spreading it out over the five games based on my confidence in each. The more I bet on a game, the more confident I am in that pick. I will keep track of my winnings (ha!) all season long and I will use those winnings to treat my readers to a rollicking night out at Dave & Busters.
3. To set up some competition, I will compete against my cat, Ruby. Ruby loves straws for some reason, so I will designate two straws as the two teams and she will LITERALLY DRAW STRAWS. I feel confident that I can beat my feline nemesis because not only is she a cat, but she’s not even a smart cat and she doesn’t follow the NFL that closely.
4. I will suggest a non-monetary bet that the teams, their cities or their fans should make. I will call this “The Stakes.” This will make sense later, hopefully.
So let’s get started. Home teams in CAPS.
Saints +4.5 over PACKERS ($200)
The Superbowl Champion Green Bay Packers had about a million injuries last year, while Drew Brees threw about a million interceptions. People really seem to like the Saints this year, and I tend to agree. They lost Reggie Bush, which can only be a good thing. I’ve been watching a lot of Kardashian-themed programming lately and Kim seems really nice and kind of boring. I once saw an episode where Reggie left a vitriolic voicemail on Kim’s phone (which she of course played for her friend and brother. Oh, and the camera, too) because he saw her with Miles Austin. Come on, Reggie, you can never go against the family.
Ruby’s pick: Saints
The Stakes: The losing city must eat only raw-vegan food for a week.
RAVENS (-3) over Steelers ($100)
I’ll just get this out of the way right now, I am a huge Ravens fan. I hate the Steelers with a passion. I was basically forced to draft Ben Roethlisberger in a fantasy draft last night and it made me physically ill. As you can see by my wager I don’t have a ton of confidence in this pick. The last time the Ravens beat the Steelers with Ben Roethlisberger, Justin Bieber was still in middle school.
By the way, I’m really upset that this game is being played so early in the season and I’m sure Steelers fans would agree. These games are meant to be played in the cold, or at least after the leaves have changed. The first matchup should be week 6 at the earliest and the second should be around week 15.
Ruby’s pick: Steelers (I know she secretly hates me)
The Stakes: If the Ravens lose, they will immediately forfeit any games in which Ben Roethlisberger is the opposing quarterback. If the Steelers lose, Ben Roethlisberger will have to register as a Sex Offender. The bad kind.
Eagles (-5.5) over RAMS ($300)
Quick, name five Rams defensive players. Exactly. Throw in the fact that Sam Bradford (who is awesome and handsome) is throwing to a bunch of rejects, a short white guy, and a guy with a hyphenated last name, and you’re in trouble.
The Rams are a hipster team. People that think they are smart like to think that they’re something special even though they actually suck and you haven’t heard of half of them. Someday the Rams will get on a UPS commercial and blow up and finally be good again but until they actually have good players, they’re still the Rams.
Ruby’s pick: Rams
The Stakes: If the Rams lose, they can only play Bon Jovi songs during home games, and Mike Sims-Walker has to choose either Sims or Walker. If the Eagles lose they will all have to grow ironic mustaches for the rest of the season.
REDSKINS (+3) over Giants ($250)
Let’s all memorialize the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and remember the incredible sacrifices made by so many during and after the attacks on DC and New York by watching millionaires who are not from DC or New York try to give each other concussions in a stadium located in Landover, MD that is essentially an edifice to greed and serves as home to a team that has an OUTRAGEOUSLY RACIST NAME. If you could guarantee me at least 20 drunken fights, I might go ahead and proclaim this as one of the most American things that will ever happen. I’m going with the team with the more American name even though Americans tend to be huge fans of things that don’t exist.
Ruby’s pick: Giants
The Stakes: If the Giants lose, every piece of 9/11 memorabilia sold for a profit must also include an image of the Pentagon in addition to the World Trade Center towers. If the Redskins lose, they must change their name to something slightly less offensive.
Cowboys +4 over JETS ($150)
Apparently I hate New York. I’ve never been to Dallas but I’ve been to New York and it doesn’t seem like the kind of place where football is a big thing. Seems like more of a soccer town. Of course, considering the Jets play in New Jersey, that shouldn’t matter. I’m just going with the town that screams “football” both literally and figuratively.
Ruby’s pick: Cowboys
The Stakes: If the Jets lose, NBC and ESPN will no longer be permitted to show images of Manhattan during prime time Jets games. They must show images of Hoboken. If the Cowboys lose, they must allow people to mess with Texas for the rest of the season.
Season Record 0-0, 0 money won
Ruby’s Season Record 0-0