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Kibbles and Picks 2017 - Week 11

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That’s how you do it.

Big weeks from both Stella and myself – we each went 11-3. This means that Stella’s lead remains at six games, but it should be noted that the only games either one of us got wrong were ones on which we disagreed. We went 3-3 in the six that we contested … and 8-0 in the rest.

We picked some football is what I’m saying.

Of course, great week or no, I still made up no ground. That’s another week gone. We’re almost to the three-quarters mark of the season here – I’m running out of time to make my move.

I’ve got a shot this week – Stella and I are at odds on six of Week 11’s 14 games. It’s another chance to make a move … or tread water … or fall further behind. I have to hope for a big showing to narrow the gap, though even if I’m perfect, I’ll still only tie her.

First up is the Detroit/Chicago contest. This seems like an easy call to me – the Lions have been up and down, but I don’t see the Bears coming up with an answer for Matthew Stafford’s gunslinging ways. I also like the chances that Detroit’s defense gets into rookie QB Mitchell Trubisky’s head. Stella isn’t worried about Trubisky – she’s counting on the Chicago running game, led by Jordan Howard, to control the pace of play and grind it out on their home field. She’s expecting a poorly-timed turnover or two out of the Lions offense and a narrow victory for the Bears.

I’m rolling the dice with the road team in the Ravens/Packers tilt. While I have no love for really anything that Baltimore has done in recent weeks, the truth is that I have to take some swings to have any shot at catching Stella. So I’m gambling that Green Bay’s offensive woes will continue and that the Ravens can eke out a road win. Stella’s no Packers truther, but she also thinks that this bad Green Bay squad has more than enough to take down an even-worse Baltimore team – particularly at Lambeau. We agree that it will be an ugly game, but she’s picking the home side.

In one of the coin-flip who-cares games that we see more often as the season plays out, Tampa Bay is taking on Miami. I went with the Dolphins. Why? Pretty much because they’re the home team. Neither of these squads is going anywhere this season, but I think maybe the Dolphins can swing a slight edge. Stella figures that the Buccaneers outgun the Dolphins in terms of skill position players – she really likes Doug Martin and/or Mike Evans to go off in this game, even with backup QB Ryan Fitzpatrick under center. She’s picking Tampa Bay to go into Miami and pull off the W.

I’ve become a Los Angeles Rams believer. I’ve liked what Jared Goff is doing and Todd Gurley has been pretty much the best running back in football to this point in the season. Sure, they’ve got their work cut out for them against a strong Vikings defense, but I think they’ve got enough juice to manage a road win. Stella likes this Rams team too, but she doesn’t think they can take down the Vikings. She thinks people are underestimating the quality of Minnesota’s offense; they’re going to score some points against L.A. And she thinks the Rams attack will stumble against the Vikings, with Goff’s youthful inexperience leading to some struggles to move the ball.

Oh look – another game no one except gamblers and man-versus-dog pick columnists cares about. I’m picking Houston to win at home even though they’re terrible and their current quarterback might be the worst in the league. Plus some of their best defenders are hurt. And I’m STILL picking them to beat the just-as-bad Cardinals. Stella told me to tell you that her take is exactly the same – just change “Houston” to “Arizona” and “Cardinals” to “Texans” and you’ve got her pick. All we know for sure is that this dumpster fire is easily the most unwatchable game of the week.

Finally, I’m picking Denver to beat Cincinnati, but I’m not super confident about it. That should tell you all you need to know about how far the once-mighty Broncos have fallen. Still, I have to believe that this formerly exceptional defense can muster up enough juice to take out a disinterested Bengals team. Stella thinks that Denver’s QB situation is hot garbage and that their defense is subsisting on little more than reputation at this point; she doesn’t love Cincinnati, but she thinks Andy Dalton is good enough to put up numbers against the Broncos. She’s calling this pick a calculated risk, but she ultimately likes her chances.

And there we go. I’m doing my best, but when 11-3 doesn’t move the needle, I’m probably in trouble. Still, I feel like I’ve got an OK shot at moving up a few games as Week 11 plays out.

Stella, as always, remains unconcerned.

(winners in caps)

-

ALLEN’S PICKS

Thursday, Nov. 16

Tennessee at PITTSBURGH

Sunday, Nov. 19

DETROIT at Chicago

JACKSONVILLE at Cleveland

BALTIMORE at Green Bay

Tampa Bay at MIAMI

LA RAMS at Minnesota

Washington at NEW ORLEANS

KANSAS CITY at NY Giants

Arizona at HOUSTON

Buffalo at LA CHARGERS

Cincinnati at DENVER

NEW ENGLAND at Oakland

PHILADELPHIA at Dallas

Monday, Nov. 20

Atlanta at SEATTLE

Week 10 record: 11-3

Season record: 88-58

 

STELLA’S PICKS

Thursday, Nov. 16

Tennessee at PITTSBURGH

Sunday, Nov. 19

Detroit at CHICAGO

JACKSONVILLE at Cleveland

Baltimore at GREEN BAY

TAMPA BAY at Miami

LA Rams at MINNESOTA

Washington at NEW ORLEANS

KANSAS CITY at NY Giants

ARIZONA at Houston

Buffalo at LA CHARGERS

CINCINNATI at Denver

NEW ENGLAND at Oakland

PHILADELPHIA at Dallas

Monday, Nov. 20

Atlanta at SEATTLE

Week 10 record: 11-3

Season record: 94-52

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