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Thursday, 22 September 2022 19:23

Kibbles and Picks 2022 – Week 3

And so it begins.

With Stella’s correct call on the final game of Week 2 – Philadelphia over Minnesota – she ended the week with a 10-6 record, one better than my own 9-7. Hence, she is in the lead, a lead I don’t expect that she will relinquish for the rest of the season. It’s just a question of how deep the hole gets, you know?

Probably pretty deep, if history is any indicator.

That being said, there’s potential for a big week here – maybe even one of our biggest ever – because Stella and I are at odds on TEN of the week’s 16 contests. If I (unlikely) or she (much more plausible) should go on a big run, there’s a big lead that could be established. Sure, it’ll probably wind up being like 6-4 or whatever, but hey, if one of us goes 8-2 or 9-1, it’s going to be one hell of a hill to climb (apologies for the mixed metaphors – deep holes, tall hills, it’s chaos).

Published in Sports
Thursday, 15 September 2022 17:13

Kibbles and Picks 2022 – Week 2

Nothing like getting off to a lukewarm start, eh?

In a Week 1 packed with the unexpected, it probably shouldn’t be that surprising that both Stella and I struggled a little with our picks. We split the six games in which we were at odds, with the rest of the slate playing out in a similar fashion. The end result? Each of us finished about .500, but just barely – 8-7-1, thanks to the frankly ridiculous tie between the Colts and the Texans.

But hey – I’m not playing the scoreboard, I’m playing my opponent. And any week that doesn’t end with her having some kind of massive lead over me is a good week.

We’ve got a similar situation here in Week 2, but this time, we’re in disagreement on seven contests, which means that one way or another, one of us is almost certainly going to be in the lead come this time next week. And yes, I know that you have a strong suspicion about which one of us that will be – it’s the same suspicion I have … and it ain’t me.

Published in Sports
Thursday, 08 September 2022 18:46

Kibbles and Picks 2022 – Week 1

Holy crap! It’s back! The world’s greatest man-versus-dog NFL picks feature is gracing your internet once more!

That’s right – Kibbles and Picks has returned for a (I can’t believe I’m even typing this) tenth season. When this season is done, I will have spent a full decade cheerfully getting humiliated by my dog’s uncanny football predicting acumen.

For those who are unfamiliar – welcome! Also, Kibbles and Picks is a weekly feature wherein I pick the winners of every NFL game on the slate. My adorable pooch Stella also picks the winners of each game. We do that for the length of the season and at the end, I am inevitably defeated.

For those who are too familiar – and keeping score – of the previous nine seasons, Stella has achieved victory in seven. Yep, you read that right. I have only managed to outpick my dog in two of nine seasons, and it’s worth noting that one of those was in just our second season. So if you want to say that I’ve only won one of the last seven, that would also be accurate. Hurtful, but accurate.

Why do I subject myself to this nigh-inevitable humiliation each year? Who can say? Hope springs eternal, I guess; it’s tough to walk away from such a lengthy ongoing experiment, even if the results are most assuredly in at this point. Stella, on the other hand, just enjoys the process, though it should be noted that neither her enjoyment nor her fundamental adorableness mean that she’s going to take it at all easy on me.

It's on.

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And the status quo is maintained.

While it was one of the best weekends of playoff football we’ve seen in a long time, neither Stella nor I had a lot of success in our picks, with both of us going 2-2. We split the games on which we agreed – we both had Kansas City winning their game and we both whiffed by picking the Packers – and then we each got one right in the games on which we differed. I was correct in picking the Bengals to beat the Titans, while Stella had the Rams taking down the Buccaneers.

Now, this means that I have all but sealed a postseason K&P victory, particularly since we differ on just one of the two conference championship games. Still, we carry on – there’s still plenty of room for me to embarrass myself. Meanwhile, Stella’s indifference to the postseason crown continues to emotionally wound me even as I can’t help but strive for the win.

Published in Sports
Friday, 21 January 2022 15:30

Kibbles and Picks 2022 – Divisional Round

It’s nice to feel a bit of pride in this space. Been a while.

I had a nice clean run in the Wild Card round, correctly picking five of the six winners – whiffing only on the Patriots, who as you’ll remember got their clocks absolutely cleaned by the Bills in Buffalo. Stella’s weekend was not as strong – she hit on the Bills but missed on both the Bengals and the Niners. Hence, my 5-1, her 3-3.

(Stella would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone – not that they need reminding – that the only title that matters is the regular season title. She will not be taking questions.)

Published in Sports

Well … it could have been worse?

It will surprise no one to hear that Stella has once more triumphed in Kibbles and Picks, outpicking me for the seventh time in nine seasons. However, I was able to battle back from the frankly embarrassing 15-game deficit of a couple of weeks ago; thanks to two consecutive 12-4 weeks, I was able to regain a little bit of my dignity.

I mean, I still lost to a dog, so dignity is a bit thin on the ground, but I’ll take what I can get.

Here are our final records:

ALLEN

Week 18 record: 12-4

Season record: 165-106-1

-

STELLA

Week 18 record: 8-8

Season record: 174-97-1

-

That’s right, folks! I wound up losing by just nine games! I got that lead down into single digits! Barely, but it counts! Let’s hear it for moral victories!

It’s worth noting, however, that even with my late-season push toward respectability, this might be one of the most dominant performances that Stella has ever put up in Kibbles and Picks. Even with a bit of a fade at the end, Stella was correct on 64% of her picks, whereas I managed just 60.7% for the year.

Published in Sports
Friday, 07 January 2022 14:47

Kibbles and Picks 2021 - Week 18

It’s not over, but it’s over. A concession would not be out of place right now.

Look, I did well in Week 17 – 12-4 is a solid performance – but 12-4 isn’t nearly the sort of elite performance that I needed to make up real ground against Stella. But her 10-6 week means that I gained just two games – her lead sits at an all-but-unassailable 13 games.

Is it possible for me to catch Stella? Technically, yes – all I would have to do is correctly pick 13 more winners than her this week. Now, is that likely? Not in the slightest: I would have to have at worst one of my best-ever weeks and Stella would have to put up her all-time worst week (and by a fair bit, too).

And so, for Week 18, I have instead chosen a more mitigatory path.

I made a couple of reaches, but ultimately, we’re at odds on seven games. That’s the most reasonable number I could get to without taking some absolutely wild swings, so we’re crossing our fingers to basically only lose by single digits. That said, I’ll also tack on some unofficial picks at the end as a non-canonical stab at an actual win.

Published in Sports
Friday, 31 December 2021 16:04

Kibbles and Picks 2021 - Week 17

Well … I suppose that’s that.

The combination of my utterly mediocre 8-8 Week 16 and Stella’s frankly mind-blowing 14-2 means that we’re pretty much done here. That’s all she wrote. Stella’s lead is up to 15 games, and with just two weeks remaining, it seems awfully unlikely that I’ll be able to take the power back.

Basically, I’m hoping that I can get her lead back down into the single digits before the season is over. If things stay as they are, this will be the largest margin of victory Stella has ever put up in all our years of Kibbles and Picks. And hey – she’s not even done with me yet.

We’re looking at seven games in which we differ here in the season’s penultimate week. Seven. So basically, if I get all of these right … I’ll still be eight games behind with a week to play. And considering how things have gone for me in recent weeks, getting all of them right feels pretty unlikely. Even so – that’s why they play the games.

Published in Sports
Thursday, 23 December 2021 13:39

Kibbles and Picks 2021 - Week 16

Time is slowly running out for me.

I performed perfectly well in Week 15 – I went 10-6 in my picks – but Stella did me one better, landing at 11-5 for the week. That allows her to gain yet another game, putting her lead at nine with just three weeks left in the regular season. At this point, getting beaten by double-digits feels considerably more likely than any kind of significant comeback.

We’re at odds on seven games this week, so I suppose I could make some progress, but let’s be real – we all know how this is going to play out. The truth is that if I can keep her lead under 10 for the season, I’ll be satisfied. Moral victories are still victories, after all. Right?

Right?

Published in Sports
Thursday, 16 December 2021 14:07

Kibbles and Picks 2021 - Week 15

Ah yes – I was overdue for a spinning my wheels week.

Despite a strong 11-4 record in Week 14, I was unable to make even the slightest dent in Stella’s lead; she too went 11-4, leaving her eight games ahead with just four weeks left. If I’m going to make a move, I’d better do it soon.

I’ve got a shot at making some movement happen this week – we’ve got a full slate of games and Stella and I differ on seven of them. In an odd quirk, only three of those games will actually take place on Sunday – we’re at odds on the Thursday game, both Saturday contests and Monday Night Football.

As to what direction said movement takes, well … we’ll just have to wait and see.

Published in Sports
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