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The Heretic

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  1. The Heretic added a topic in Play   

    2016 NFL Super Bowl thread
    This will be the 50th Super Bowl, between the Denver Broncos & Carolina Panthers. I hope it'll be a classic, either way, tho Las Vegas opened the game at -5 for Carolina.
    I will post my picks next Wednesday. 
    Feel free to add your thoughts! 
    • 10 replies
  2. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Conference Championship Picks   

    The AFC championship game sounded like a great game by all accounts.   
    Of course I failed to watch it, due to family commitments: my little sister's birthday party at a nice Persian restaurant by the beach. That I forgot to set up the DVR is entirely my fault. Were it the Super Bowl...   
    Glad that Peyton Manning gets a chance to limp off the sunset with a ring. 
    I did manage to catch the first quarter of that horrific NFC title game: Carson Palmer suffered a Full Delhomme (quarterback turns the ball over 5 times) at the worst possible time.  
    Stopped watching the massacre by the middle of the second quarter. Palmer was up against a potentially all time great team on the road, fighting off that 10 years of Bengals stink, etc.   I should've known better. 
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  3. The Heretic added a topic in Play   

    2016 NFL Playoffs - Conference Championship Picks
    That Packers-Cardinals game will go down in history as one of the most memorable ever.
    Because I lucked into 4-0 last week, I have even less confidence in predicting the last games before the Super Bowl.

    New England Patriots @ Denver Broncos (+3)
    or Brady @ Manning XVII
    While the Patriots lost to the Broncos back in November, that was with QB Brady throwing to nobody - no WR Amendola, Edelman, or TE Gronkowski for the final minutes of the fourth and in overtime. While Brady will have his weapons back, it's true that he hasn't had much luck in Denver, career-wise: 2-6, and zip -2 in the playoffs. Right now, Brady is the superior QB, with that quick release, but Manning has the superior defense and homefield advantage.
    QB Manning wasn't great last week against the Steelers, but that could be factored by dropsies that infected his receiving corps (7 drops). Manning is a mortal 5-11 against Brady all-time, but he's at least 2-2 in the playoffs, and the home team won all games. However, because Manning is a pale shadow of his former self (throwing 17 picks to a mortal 9 touchdowns) it won't be enough to prevent Belichick and company from making their 7th Super Bowl.
    New England by 2
    Arizona Cardinals @ Carolina Panthers (-3)
    It is rare to see two Heisman trophy winning QBs in Palmer and Newton face off in the playoffs, and even more so when they are the two top QBs from the past year.
    The Panthers absolutely must pressure Palmer, refuse to allow him time to throw, or he will pick apart that defense. The Cardinals had trouble with QB Wilson, who is the closest thing to Newton in the NFL. The Cardinals are pass-oriented, while the Panthers base everything on their number 2 ranked rushing attack. Both teams are about equal defensively, with Cardinals slightly better against the run, and the Panthers slightly better against the pass. Palmer has the superior WR corps in Fitzgerald,, but Newton is the more physical QB.
    The biggest problem for the Panthers is that their secondary is crippled, and cannot really cover all three of the Cardinals' receivers (Fitz, Floyd, Brown). The Cardinals have enough depth to control the Panthers' receivers, including TE Olsen.
    The NFC title game is a crapshoot, because in the past 8 years, all NFC title games have been decided by a single score or less, and four went into overtime. The strongest reason to go with the Panthers is that they haven't lost at home all season long. But the better reason to go with the Cardinals is that their defense is more reliable than the Panthers' receiving corps.  
    Arizona by 3
    Last Week: 4-0
    Playoffs to Date: 7-1
    • 6 replies
  4. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Divisional Round   

    A hard-fought, but well-earned 4-0 this weekend. Meaning I'm off to celebrate:

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  5. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Divisional Round   

    If I recall correctly, Muraii is a Steelers fan?
    The Steelers have a history of performing well in the playoffs, and Rothlisberger is one of the most clutch QBs in league history. His shoulder is "numb" enough to play today. Meaning they pumped him full of enough painkillers to knock out a family of four. 
    That said, the Broncos receivers are dropping easy ones from Manning. ETA: five in the first half alone.

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  6. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Divisional Round   

    Seattle, having scored 21 straight, after being down 31-0 at halftime, demonstrates character. But they need two more scores to at least tie, and there's only six minutes left.
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  7. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Divisional Round   

    This game reminds me of the 1994 NFC title game between the 49ers and the Cowboys, where two absolutely loaded teams played for the third year in a row. But everything went wrong for Dallas: slippery field, early turnovers, missed opportunities, etc. Let's  see if the Seahawks have any character in the face of such a challenge. 
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  8. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Divisional Round   

    Indeed. Back to back Hail Marys? Against a blitzing defense? Terrorize a Super Bowl favorite without three top receivers? Aaron Rodgers is the best deep ball thrower I've ever seen in my entire life. 
    And now it's onto Seattle-Carolina!  
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  9. The Heretic added a topic in Play   

    2016 NFL Playoffs - Divisional Round
    A solid opening weekend for the playoffs where all the road teams won, sent the home teams and their crowds packing, swearing "Just Wait Till Next Year!" 
    Kansas City Chiefs @ New England Patriots (-5)
    The Chiefs will not be pushovers, but getting a week off might be enough to get the Patriots' receiving corps healthy enough to bounce back from that late season slide. WR Edelman is expected to hit the ground running, and help take pressure off QB Brady and TE Gronk. Moreover, the Chiefs' top WR Maclin is hobbled, which will not help QB Smith take the top off of the Patriots' secondary. The Chiefs' unholy pass rushers Hali and Houston are banged up, but if healthy, they can shred that overrated Patriots' OL. Worse yet, Coach Belichick hasn't forgotten that ass-whipping they got in Kansas City not too long ago.  
    New England by 6

    Green Bay Packers @ Arizona Cardinals (-7)
    It looked like Rodgers is back to his old self, but that was against a shitty Washington defense. The powerful Cardinals will quickly dominate the overrated Packers' defense and control their offense, erasing all of Rodgers' options. The Cardinals' WR corps will run roughshold allover the Packers' greenhorns in the secondary. The Cardinals are already Vegas' favorite for the Super Bowl, and will not break a sweat before halftime.  
    Arizona by 13

    Pittsburgh Steelers @ Denver Broncos (-7)
    Too bad the Steelers suffered a Pyrrhic victory over the Bengals because they'll be too injured to pose anything but a pasty for the bloodthirsty Denver defense, who's rested after a week off. QB Rothlisberger's busted shoulder won't be healthy enough to take and make deep throws, and his top target WR Brown isn't likely to return from that nasty concussion in time. As for QB Manning, he's healthy enough and experienced enough to play and win.  
    Denver by 11
    Seattle Seahawks @ Carolina Panthers (-3)
    Easily the most anticipated of the weekend, this matchup will be between evenly matched teams: both loaded with Super Bowl caliber defenses and clutch QBs at the helm. The biggest advantage the Panthers have is their great TE Olsen, who terrorized the Seahawks a couple of months back. However, it is unlikely that the Beast will even suit up for this game, having mumbled his way out of Seattle.   
    Carolina by 4
    • 15 replies
  10. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Wildcard Weekend   

    I won't post picks until tomorrow night or early Wednesday morning, but for now, here's what I think of the Divisional round weekend:
    Kansas City - New England. The Chiefs will not be pushovers, but getting a week off might be enough to get the Patriots' receiving corps healthy enough to bounce back from that late season slide.
    Green Bay - Arizona. It looked like Rodgers is back to his old self, but that was against a shitty Washington defense. The powerful Cardinals will quickly dominate the overrated Packers' defense and control their offense, erasing all of Rodgers' options.
    Pittsburgh - Denver. Too bad the Steelers suffered a Pyrrhic victory over the Bengals because they'll be too injured to pose anything but a pasty for the bloodthirsty Denver defense, who's rested after a week off.
    Seattle - Carolina. Easily the most anticipated of the weekend, this matchup will be between evenly matched teams: both loaded with Super Bowl caliber defenses and clutch QBs at the helm.
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  11. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Wildcard Weekend   

    I skipped both games on Saturday, because they were the boring ones, and I was showing a couple from Brazil the Promenade in Santa Monica. But we returned back just in time for the horrific meltdown by the Cincinnati Bengals.
    As for yesterday, I figure the blown kick was the football gods' capricious about face, finally favoring the Seahawks after they blew all those fourth quarter leads they held in the regular season.  
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  12. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2016 NFL Playoffs - Wildcard Weekend   

    Tweeted this yesterday:
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  13. The Heretic added a topic in Community   

    New Year's Resolutions
    I used to despise the idea of resolutions, for a variety of reasons: people were generally hypocritical or lacked the capacity of following through, making this practice a joke. So for the longest of time, my resolution was simply not to make any. Of course, if I followed that, I had a resolution of my own.
    But in recent years, I figured out a formula of overcoming the common problems others had with resolutions: keep the goal much more humble and immediate, but one that was repeatable, and intended to continue. Like finish drawing a page or two the next week. That eventually built self-discipline and by making that resolution a habit, I ended up with an activity with built-in momentum. 
    This year, my resolution is to redistribute my earnings to support up and coming artists that I already like. 
    What are yours? 
    • 2 replies
  14. The Heretic added a topic in Play   

    2016 NFL Playoffs - Wildcard Weekend
    Hopefully you all had a great New Year's holiday. I know I did, by hosting a party and inviting the elite of the elites. As for the NFL, I'm just happy there are no more Lame/Shame of the Weeks to waste time over.  
    Kansas City Chiefs @ Houston Texans (+3.5)
    Two incredibly hot teams collide in Houston: Chiefs have won 10 in a row while the Texans have won 7 of their last 9, and have given up only 10 points per game during that period. They finished the season third in total defense, thanks to the incomparable DE J. J. Watt and DC Crennel. Basically this game will be a low scoring affair, so take the under no matter what. However, the Chiefs will exploit their decided advantage at QB and the Texans' lack of RB Foster. The Chiefs are the second most efficient team according to Football Outsiders' metric. For what it's worth, the Texans haven't had much success against top 10 defenses this season. Moreover, they've lost their left tackle Brown, and they're facing Justin Houston without their best pass blocker.  
    Kansas City by 3
    Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals (+3)
    The Steelers have had their way with the Bengals lately - beating them 4 out of their last 5 matchups. Worse yet, the Steelers have a vastly superior QB in Rothlisberger over playoff virgin AJ McCarron. While the Bengals have a decided advantage at almost every other position, the quarterback position might be the most important position, especially in the playoffs. The Steelers do have the most powerful passing attack in the league, besides the Cardinals, thanks to excellent pocket awareness and lethal speed and quickness at all four WR spots. If the Bengals force the Steelers into a one-dimensional offense, they can dictate the tempo and win the physical aspect of the game. Steelers RB DeAngelo Williams isn't likely to play after injuring his ankle last Sunday in Cleveland. After all, the Bengals aren't the only ones with a poor track record in the playoffs: the Steelers haven't won in the money season since 2011. But the advantages at key positions will be too much.   
    Pittsburgh by 4
    Seattle Seahawks @ Minnesota Vikings (+5.5)
    It'll be the Ice Bowl revisited, if the weather prognostication is correct. Yes, the Seahawks beat the Vikings 38-7 a few weeks ago. It's too hard to believe that the Vikings will have solved the Seahawks by now, even if they've picked up their play in the past month. QB Wilson has been on the hottest streak of his career over the last 7 games - hotter than any other QB over the past 30 years except Steve Young in 1994. Moreover, the Seahawks defense remains as stout as ever, finishing first in scoring defense for the fourth year in a row. However, the Rams have perfected the formula for beating the 'Hawks by taking the tempo away from them. They do have an excellent pass rush capable of exploiting the Seahawks' leaky offensive line, and the NFL rushing king in Peterson. But will that be enough against a veteran Super Bowl-caliber team?  
    Seattle by 7
    Green Bay Packers @ Washington Ethnic Slur (-1.5)
    The Packers have fallen ass-backwards into the playoffs, no thanks to a crappy offensive line and a shitty WR corps that can't get open. It is a miracle that QB Rodgers didn't end up in the ER unit after getting sacked 14 times in the last two weeks. His completion percentage and yards per attempt and passer rating are the worst of his career. The Ethnic Slurs actually do possess a solid pass rush, spearheaded by LB Kerrigan and DE Baker, which should exploit the Packers' godawful OL. Better yet, the Slurs' offense is clicking on all cylinders. They've won 5 of their last 6 games, thanks to a second-half awakening by QB Cousins. While the Slurs are new to the playoffs, their homefield advantage at FedEx Field will carry them through to the next round.  
    Washington by 6
    • 6 replies
  15. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2015 NFL Week 17 Picks   

    Typically, my picks ended with a resounding thud, and the playoffs promise to be no easier.  
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  16. The Heretic added a post in a topic Introduce yourself here...   

    Proof that once a Galilean, always a Galilean!  
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  17. The Heretic added a topic in Play   

    2015 NFL Week 17 Picks
    This week promises very little in way of excitement and anticipation, due to a glut of 6-9 teams.
    Another season in the books, another round of playoffs to look forward to. As always, I enjoy writing about the NFL, even if I'm proven wrong, just like every other prognosticator out there. And as always, thanks for reading!

    Game of the Week
    Seattle Seahawks @ Arizona Cardinals (-4.5)
    Despite clinching a first round bye, Coach Arians does not believe in resting his guys. No risk it, no biscuit. But I think the Seahawks have revenge on their minds, eager to redeem themselves for  that choke job earlier in Seattle. The Seahawks were healthy, playing in Seattle, and their defense scored a touchdown. It wasn't enough. And this Sunday? The 'Hawks lack a running game, and are playing in Arizona, and will not be as lucky to score a TD on a return. Unless RB Lynch suits up...
    Arizona by 3

    Rest of the Week
    Minnesota Vikings @ Green Bay Packers (-3.5)
    Even though both teams are already in the playoffs, there is nothing like a division title on the line during the last week of the season. Expect a good old fashioned brawl, a slobberknocker of yore. A steady diet of All Day Adrian Peterson, and checkdowns on third and short. While Rodgers is nearly invincible on the frozen tundra, in a division game, the Packers' offensive line is a joke.
    Minnesota by 3

    Lame of the Week
    New York Jets @ Buffalo Bills (+3)
    This matchup already writes itself: former Jets Coach Ryan plays spoiler, eager to knock his old team out of the playoffs. But are the Bills actually capable? After all, QB Fitzpatrick was the Bills' starting quarterback for 4 seasons before they dumped him. No matter what happens in the playoffs, this has been a great year for rookie Coach Bowles and the Jets.
    New York by 3
    New England Patriots @ Miami Dolphins (+9)
    After blowing last week, the Patriots need this game to clinch the top seed throughout the AFC playoffs. Then again, perhaps they didn't exactly blow last week - it effectively eliminated a more dangerous foe in the Steelers.
    New England by 7
    New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta Falcons (-4)
    Having beating the hitherto unbeaten Panthers, the Falcons are still basking in the afterglow. But the Saints are rolling behind QB Brees' hot streak. Then again, we are talking about a great WR in Julio Jones going up against one of the worst secondaries in recorded history.
    Atlanta by 3
    Detroit Lions @ Chicago Bears (-1)
    The Disappointing Bowl between two consistently inconsistent team, led by streaky quarterbacks. Due to a bunch of bad breaks, the Lions are better than their record. Then again, according to the immortal words of Bill Parcells, you are what your records says you are.
    Chicago by 1
    Philadelphia Eagles @ New York Giants (-3)
    The Eagles summarily fired Coach Kelly for being a tyrant, but it's too late for the team since he threw away 5 good players. The bigger question is whether if this is the final game in Coach Coughlin's illustrious career. I fully expect the Giants to actually show up collectively. After all, the loser gets London next year.
    New York by 3
    Washington Racial Slurs @ Dallas Cowboys (even)
    What a difference 12 months make. The Cowboys were hailed as the next great team, and now look at them. The Slurs were a laughingstock, and now every DC citizen worships at the feet of Coach Gruden and QB Cousins. HOW YOU LIKE THAT? Then again, this is a game that neither team really needs to win.
    Washington by 1
    Tennessee Titans @ Indianapolis Colts (-6.5)
    There's no reason to watch this game, stuck with mediocre backup QBs and coaches on their way out. Then again, Chuck Strong is notorious for regrouping his team against all odds. The Football Gods may be cruel enough to allow the most screwed up playoff berth in NFL history.

    Tennessee by 6

    Baltimore Ravens @ Cincinnati Bengals (-7.5)
    Although the Bengals are playing after a short week, it's hard to believe that the incredibly short-handed Ravens will pose much of a challenge. Their QB is Ryan Mallett, for chrissakes! The Bengals are still kicking themselves for blowing a 14 point lead in the first quarter over the Broncos. It might have cost the Bengals a first round bye, forcing them to play against a dangerous opponent in the Chiefs, Steelers or the Jets.
    Cincinnati by 6
    Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cleveland Browns (+10)
    Even though the Steelers shat the bed last week, they will not have the slightest problem focusing against the Browns. After all, the Steelers have won 21 out of the last 24 matchups. I expect Big Ben to drop 400 plus yards and 4 to 5 touchdowns over the hapless Browns.
    Pittsburgh by 11
    Jacksonville Jaguars @ Houston Texans (-6.5)
    The Texans are one victory away from nailing the AFC South division title. Moreover, QB Hoyer will be available to lead the team to a shootout victory over the upstart Jaguars and their fleet of quick receivers.
    Houston by 4
    Oakland Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs (-7)
    While the Chiefs are incredibly hot, they actually perform inconsistently. After a close call last week, the Chiefs are due for a better performance.
    Kansas City by 6
    San Diego Chargers @ Denver Broncos (-8)
    Thanks to that incredible comeback Monday night, the Broncos are poised to seize the first seed in the AFC, assuming the Patriots stumble again. As for the Chargers, they're horribly decimated beyond all reason. I expect the Broncos to run the ball, and then exploit the Chargers with play-action passing.
    Denver by 11
    Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Carolina Panthers (-10.5)
    The Panthers no longer have to worry about the undefeated season, thanks to the Falcons. Which means they can focus on the team in front of them, rather than some mythical goal that lies with the 1972 Dolphins and the 2007 Patriots. Totally bad news for the Buccaneers. I expect fresh roadkill.
    Carolina by 13
    Shame of the Week
    St. Louis Rams @ San Francisco 40 Whiners (+4)
    Even though the Rams have won three in a row, they're still impossible to predict. However, the 40 Whiners stink to high heaven.
    St. Louis by 6

    Last Week: 11-5
    Season to Date: 150-89
    • 2 replies
  18. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2015 NFL Week 16 Picks   

    How about them Dirty Birds?!!  
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  19. The Heretic added a topic in Play   

    2015 NFL Week 16 Picks

    There seems to be an inordinate amount of Lame games this week, what with the playoffs right around the corner. Even though the playoff picture remains unsettled, there's just too many teams dead in the water, polluting the schedule.
    Hopefully you all will have a great Holiday break this week.

    Game of the Week
    Green Bay Packers @ Arizona Cardinals (-4.5)
    Both teams have already qualified for the playoffs, but the Cards can nail down a bye week with a win. The Packers are still chasing the NFC North division. It's just too bad that the Cards' top defensive back, Mathieu won't be back until next season. And here comes QB Rodgers!
    Arizona by 3
    Thursday Game of the Week
    The Next Los Angeles Team @ the Retro Los Angeles Team (-5.5)
    Will anyone even show up for these teams, with their feet out the door, bags packed, etc.? However, the retro LA team has plenty of talent that promises to improve next season. The Next LA team rode a wave of nostalgia last week in their blowout win over the Dolphins in San Diego. Also, this will be the great Charles Woodson's final game at Oakland.  
    Retro Los Angeles team by
    Rest of the Week
    Washington Ethnic Taunt @ Philadelphia Eagles (-3.5)
    With the NFC Easy title on the line, the Taunt need this game, while the Eagles need this and next week. After all the Taunt ran allover the Eagles back in week 4, and the defense got to QB Bradford easily. WR DeSean Jackson will be back to terrorize the Eagles' secondary. Advantage to the Taunt. Then again, they're back on the road, and QB Cousins is overdue for a letdown. Advantage to the Eagles.
    Washington by 3
    Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons (+7)
    What is nominally a Lame of the Week is actually a historic game: can the Falcons, who, shockingly, are still in the playoff race, play David to the Goliath of Carolina? Last week was a classic trap game for the Panthers, as they blew a 28 point lead to the Giants. But they survived. Now it is a matter of health vs momentum, whether the Panthers keep playing hard or play it safe and rest certain players. However, the Falcons are intimately familiar with the Panthers.
    UPSET POTENTIAL: Atlanta by 3
    New England Patriots @ New York Jets (+3.5)
    While the Patriots need this for the first seed, the Jets need to keep apace of the Chiefs and the Steelers for the wild card. It's just too bad that the Jets have won only twice in their last 9 games vs the Patriots.
    New England by 6
    Cincinnati Bengals @ Denver Broncos (-3.5)
    Backup QB McCarron didn't shit himself last week, but the Broncos defense will not be kind in the slightest. However, the Broncos' replacement QB, Osweiler, has had trouble scoring in the second halves of games for 3 weeks.
    Denver by 3
    Lame of the Week
    Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens (+10.5)
    What used to be the best and nastiest rivalry is now a standard Lame of the Week. If the Steelers could drop 34 points and 354 yards passing on the number one ranked pass defense, what records will be broken in this game? They're fielding a M.A.S.H. unit out there with third stringers and castoff against the most powerful passing attack in the league. It will get ugly real fast.

    Pittsburgh by 21
    Dallas Cowboys @ Buffalo Bills (-6)
    Backup to Backup QB Kellen Moore wasn't so bad last week, but the Bills are much better at home.

    Buffalo by 6
    Chicago Bears @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3)
    While QB Winston is having a great rookie year (3000 yards passing and 20 touchdowns), the Buccaneers are too undisciplined (first in NFL with 134 penalties). Both teams are stuck in mediocrity - not quite good, but not quite terrible.
    Tampa Bay by 3
    Cleveland Browns @ Kansas City Chiefs (-12.5)
    As the first team in NFL history to blow their first 5, but win their next 8, the Chiefs are the team that nobody wants to play - or talk about, either. They still have a shot at the AFC West division, thanks to the backsliding Broncos, and will not lose focus. Not against a suckass team from Cleveland.  
    Kansas City by 10
    Indianapolis Colts @ Miami Dolphins (even)
    QB Luck can come back and help the Colts win the last two games for the playoffs. No matter who wins this game, both coaches will be fired.
    Indianapolis by 3
    The Current Houston team @ The Old Houston team (even)
    Both teams will be playing their backup quarterbacks in Weeden & Mettenberger. The current Houston team needs this game to stay ahead of the Colts in the AFC South. As for the Old Houston team, cursed with the incompetence of QB Mettenberger, they will not be able to do anything against that ferocious defense spearheaded by J. J. Watt.
    Current Houston by 7
    Jacksonville Jaguars @ New Orleans Saints (-3.5)
    No, the Jags haven't won in the Superdome, but this is a perfect opportunity: the Saints have blown 9 of their last 12 home games, and given up 40 points and near 450 yards a game in their last 4. Plus the Jags deploy a competent passing machine with Bortles and a fleet of receivers. Hey, is QB Brees even suiting up after a torn plantar fascia?
    Jacksonville by 6
    St. Louis Rams @ Seattle Seahawks (-13.5)
    After 7 wins in the last 8 games, the Legion of BOOM Seahawks are officially back, baby! With QB Wilson at MVP level, and owing the Rams payback for that upset back in week 1, the pick is easy. FYI, the Rams have checked out mentally. If I was forced to resort to Case Keenum at CenturyLink, I'd mentally check out too.
    Seattle by 17
    New York Giants @ Minnesota Vikings (-4.5)
    The Vikings can nail the NFC North by grabbing both final games. As for the Giants, they still have a shot at the NFC Easy division, but they'll have to go without ODB, Jr. Luckily, the Vikings don't have the tools to exploit the Giants' pathetic secondary. Then again, their passing attack is below average without the presence of ODB.
    Vikings by 4
    Shame of the Week
    San Francisco 40 Whiners @ Detroit Lions (-7.5)
    While the Lions are still kicking themselves over two clutch defeats to Seahawks and the Packers, the 40 Whiners have mailed it in.
    Detroit by 6
    Last Week: 12-4
    Season to Date: 139-84
    • 4 replies
  20. The Heretic added a post in a topic Yo! Star Wars!   

    Aye. Saw it Thursday night, had a few days to digest. Fell asleep in the middle cuz I had been up since 3am that morning. 
    In a nutshell: Where the original was mostly a homage to Buck Rodgers or Flash Gordon, pulp adventure books of the 40s, SW7 is more like a SW remix. 
    However, it's less for die hards and more of an event film, one that satisfies: hence the high cinemascore grade and box office records. 
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  21. The Heretic added a post in a topic "Does Fascism lurk around the corner for the US?"   

    Something must be wrong with your computer, because I can write in a word program and then copy the contents, and paste them in a thread. 
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  22. The Heretic added a post in a topic 2015 NFL Week 15 Picks   

    To comment on MSP's contrarian picks: 
    Indeed, the Texans are starting a third string QB that's won a playoff game in T. J. Yates. While the Colts' third string, Whitehurst, was doing what?  That might be enough to pick the Texans.   
    Miami has problems in the secondary, due to injuries and lack of talent. That's why the Chargers have a shot, and since it's their final game in San Diego, as well as the last game for some of the veterans like Gates, etc., it'll be enough to inspire them to a farewell gift for the Diegans. 
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  23. The Heretic added a topic in Play   

    2015 NFL Week 15 Picks
    When you slip from the heights, you hit a few rungs on your way to mediocre-ville, looking for excuses. But sooner or later, you run out of them and it's time to pick yourself back up.
    Game of the Week
    Carolina Panthers @ New York Giants (+5.5)
    Well, well, well. The Giants are giant-killers, and they're facing another undfefeated team in the Panthers. The Giants beat the 13-0 Broncos in 1998. and the 13-0 Bears in 1934. And the 18-0 Patriots in 2007. For what it is worth, it's nearly impossible for any team to finish a season undefeated in the NFL. Ever.
    Carolina by 4
    Thursday Game of the Week
    Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ St. Louis Rams (even)
    A real snooze-fest, except for two brilliant rookies in QB Winston and RB Gurley. At least the Buccaneers are still fighting, as evidenced by their squabble on the sidelines, whereas the Rams have packed it in.
    Tampa Bay by 3
    Rest of the Week
    Denver Broncos @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-6.5)
    It won't matter if QB Manning is back, cuz the Steelers look like the hottest team in the league, having scored 30 plus in 5 straight games. And the Broncos aren't known for scoring lately (only 1 measly touchdown in the last 2 games). Yes, the Broncos have a great defense, but the Steelers put up 30 on the 2nd ranked defense in the Seahawks.
    Pittsburgh by 1
    Arizona Cardinals @ Philadelphia Eagles (+3.5)
    Which Eagles will show up: the one that beat the Patriots, or the one that went belly-up against Detroit and Tampa Bay? Then again, I doubt it matters cuz the Cardinals are completely locked in with the number 1 offense in the league. They just might be the most well-rounded team in the entire league. 
    Arizona by 3
    Lame of the Week
    New York Jets @ Dallas Cowboys (+2.5)
    No matter what the standings say, the Cowboys are cooked with the incompetent QB Cassel. Moreover, the Jets are tied in a threeway with the Steelers and the Chiefs for the playoffs, so they have more to play for.
    New York by 6
    Tennessee Titans @ New England Patriots (-14.5)
    Although this game is easily the Lock of the Week, stranger things have happened. This year. With the Patriots. Against a team that already had been blown out by 30 twice.
    New England by 11
    Buffalo Bills @ Washington Racial Taunt (even)
    Every week, QB Cousins is improving, and thanks to a godforsaken division, the Taunt has a shot at the playoffs. Then again, we are overdue for a multiple interception game from Cousins. As for the Bills, they're undisciplined (first in penalties) and are expected to miss the playoffs. Again. For the 16th straight year.  
    Washington by 4
    Kansas City Chiefs @ Baltimore Ravens (+7.5)
    Alex Smith has evolved into the perfect Coach Reid QB: a ball-control QB that never turns the ball over (1 pick in the last 10 games). Moreover, the Chiefs are dominating teams with defense and running the ball. And the Chiefs have a shot at the division, believe it or not.
    Kansas City by 10
    Houston Texans @ Indianapolis Colts (no line)
    Although both teams are tied for first place in the division, the Colts are collapsing worse than my picks. Both teams are going with third string quarterbacks, even though this is a high stakes game: whoever wins will likely make the playoffs. And I doubt QB Luck's first game back is in a game against the Unholy Terror known as J. J. Watt. But he's not exactly 100%.
    Indianapolis by 3
    Atlanta Falcons @ Jacksonville Jaguars (-3.5)
    The Jaguars have developed a powerful passing attack with QB Bortles and WR Robinson & Hurns. Expect the Falcons to continue their complete freefall, no thanks to QB Ryan's missing confidence. The Falcons' line won't block anything, and their receivers won't get open. Since Ryan is immobile, he's doomed every game. 
    Jacksonville by 3
    Chicago Bears @ Minnesota Vikings (-5.5)
    A tough stretch for the Vikings, but they've beaten the Bears in Chicago a month ago. That should get them over the slump. All they have to do is win out, and they'll steal the division from the Packers.
    Minnesota by 4
    Green Bay Packers @ Oakland Raiders (+2.5)
    All the Packers have to do is block Khalil Mack, who sacked Osweiler 5 times last week. After all, they got their running game going last week, which will take pressure off QB Rodgers. But they are notorious for being inconsistent away from the safe haven of Lambeau Field. Then again, the Raiders are consistently inconsistent, from week to week, irrespective of where they play. And since they were pretty good last week against the Broncos...

    Packers by 3
    Cleveland Browns @ Seattle Seahawks (-14.5)
    All of a sudden, the Seahawks have returned to their Super Bowl form. Even better yet, QB Wilson has reached another level in recent weeks (16 TDs and no picks in the last 4 games). And the Browns?

    Seattle by 13
    Cincinnati Bengals @ San Francisco 40 Whiners (+4.5)
    Even though QB Dalton doesn't need thumb surgery, the Bengals don't need him to beat the pathetic 40 Whiners.  
    Cincinnati by 5
    Shame of the Week
    Miami Dolphins @ San Diego Chargers (even)
    Both teams suck. But this might be the Chargers' last game in San Diego.
    San Diego by 2
    Detroit Lions @ New Orleans Saints (-3.5)
    Another suck-ass matchup on Monday Night?
    Both teams will score early & often. Since the Saints are 12-4 on Monday nights with Coach Payton...
    New Orleans by 3
    Last Week: 8-8
    Season to Date: 127-80
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  24. The Heretic added a post in a topic "Does Fascism lurk around the corner for the US?"   

    Indeed, it is my experience that first generation immigrants to America are often more "american" than those born in America, due to a higher work ethic and greater commitment to American values. 
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  25. The Heretic added a post in a topic "Does Fascism lurk around the corner for the US?"   

    Interesting article on why Fascism is rising.
    Its argument, in a summary:
    Fascism first emerges in stages. The first stage is stagnation, when economic inopportunity creates a feeling of injustice. Prosperity declines and society fights over who gets their share. That leads to the second stage of fascism: demagoguery. Both the left and the right grow more extreme, shattering the center, creating room for a new politician who combines the worst of both extremes - a socialist for certain people, and nationalist who privileges the blood of people over resources. And he claims prosperity belongs only to the people. The third stage is tyranny, and the finally, self-destruction. 
    Who's polishing the brass on the TItanic?  
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