Watching last night’s game initially caused me to react that the Giants are the definition of mediocre. They were doing everything they could not to blow out Washington while still increasing their lead and eventually winning rather comfortably. It certainly helped that Kirk Cousins was gifting the Giants with turnovers. It’s another example of how there are so few quarterbacks that are capable to win at the NFL level compared to every other position on the field. The Amazon reviews of NFL QBs paint such a true picture.
The Cousins’ situation made me think back to earlier in the week when ESPN’s Ryen Russillo went off at the quality of backup QBs in the league. His theory was that it’s really hard to be good at something when you’re not getting the repetition or work in, so there should be some type of QB summer camp. The camp would host whoever wanted to come and would train the guys in all sorts of NFL offenses. There would be intense film study and plenty of practice reps. Wouldn’t every NFL team and player sign up for this? The teams would buy in because they’ve seen backup QBs torpedo seasons. The players would buy in because this would give them an opportunity to get better and not look like an embarrassment when finally seeing live action.
The quarterback is the highest paid position in the league for a reason. There’s obviously something to being a great quarterback. The NFL would just be better if the backups were acceptable. It’s not more evident than this weekend as we have Clausen, two McCowns, and Weeden behind center.
Locks of the Week:
Cincinnati +3 over BALTIMORE
Baltimore just gave up 37 points to Oakland. They really miss Terrell Suggs and their defense just isn’t the same without him. Their cornerbacks clearly can’t cover right now if Michael Crabtree is killing them again. Cincinnati is just going about their business playing without any weaknesses. This might be a different story if Baltimore had a pass rush to go after Dalton, but they don’t.
J.Camm’s pick: Baltimore
ARIZONA -6.5 over San Francisco
I’m loving what the Cardinals are right now. Their record against the spread in games Carson Palmer plays over the last three years is 18-5-1. San Francisco tightened the gap at the end of last week in Pittsburgh, but their defense got absolutely blown out by the Steelers’ passing game. Expect Arizona to do the same.
J.Camm’s pick: Arizona
GREEN BAY -6.5 over Kansas City
The Chiefs are heartbroken after last week’s loss to Denver. What was specifically clear was Kansas City’s inability to handle a sped-up shotgun style offense as Denver finally got things moving late in the second half. Given that Green Bay runs that offense all game, this is easy money.
J.Camm’s pick: Green Bay
Trap Game of the Week:
Jacksonville +14 over NEW ENGLAND
We all know the Patriots are awesome, but look back at the history of double digit favorites. They’re only 68-76 since 2010. Jacksonville has the defense and passing weapons to keep it within reason and take a backdoor if necessary. We just have to be a little careful with New England seeming to run up the score in an “eff Goodell” era. (The “eff Goodell” could become more fun if Brady does end up getting suspended after all.)
J.Camm’s pick: New England
Rest of the Picks:
San Diego +2.5 over MINNESOTA
I’m torn on this game, but I’m going with the better quarterback. San Diego’s loss was to a really good Cincinnati team and Minnesota’s was a bad one to San Francisco.
J.Camm’s pick: San Diego
Oakland +3.5 over CLEVELAND
The Browns are less explosive offensively with Josh McCown behind center. He doesn’t have the arm to find Travis Benjamin deep like Johnny Football did last week. I’m slightly worried about the Raiders’ receivers against the solid Browns’ corners, but this isn’t worth the extra half point on a field goal.
J.Camm’s pick: Cleveland
Atlanta -1 over DALLAS
Brandon Weeden, Joseph Randle, and Terrance Williams – Your 2015 Dallas Cowboys. (Said in Bill Simmons’ voice…) Things are ugly in Dallas right now. Someone had to drug Jerry Jones to get him talking positively about Brandon Weeden. Their offense was great at keeping their defense off the field, but now they don’t have that ability. Matt Ryan gets to play this one indoors, which is always better for his game.
J.Camm’s pick: Atlanta
HOUSTON -6.5 over Tampa Bay
The Texans has disappointed so far this season, but this is their chance to fire back. Tampa Bay is in a letdown spot and this will be the toughest defense Jameis Winston has faced so far. On the flip side, even the Texans should be able to look decent offensively because of what Tampa Bay does defensively.
J.Camm’s pick: Houston
N.Y. JETS -1 over Philadelphia
I went off on Twitter last Sunday during the Eagles’ game because their performance was a complete dumpster fire. I even tried to start it trending as #dumpsterfire and it turned out people were tweeting that out. I love that Demarco Murray was demanding the football, giving his QB death stares, and now he may not play at full strength Sunday because of a hamstring injury. The Jets will miss Chris Ivory and Eric Decker if they don’t play, but they have suitable replacements. Their defense will carry them to victory once again.
J.Camm’s pick: Philly
ST. LOUIS +2 over Pittsburgh
It was a letdown spot for the Rams last week and I completely missed that. Now they’re back at home and should have plenty of motivation against the Steelers. The Steelers will have Le’Veon Bell back, but the Rams should limit his outpout. With the Steelers’ having one of the worst passing defenses in the league, look for the Rams to pull this one out.
J.Camm’s pick: Pitt
CAROLINA -9.5 over New Orleans
This line was at -3.5 when Drew Brees was playing and has completely bottomed out. You take Luke McCown on the road. I dare you! He’s only capable of looking half ridiculous in a Verizon commercial. He is not qualified to start in this league. I also can’t believe we have two McCowns starting this week. It’s like old times. Let’s make sure the Spanish announce team drinks their tea Sunday morning so their voice is ready to go.
J.Camm’s pick: Carolina
Indianapolis -3 over TENNESSEE
Just like the Giants last night, Indianapolis has a kitchen sink game on Sunday. They’re GM needs to be fired for not getting Andrew Luck an offensive line in the offseason. That Phillip Dorsett pick and Andre Johnson signing is really working out for them so far. (NOT!) Luckily Tennessee is garbage and Andrew Luck should be able to do what he can this week.
J.Camm’s pick: Indy
SEATTLE -14.5 over Chicago
Just like with Luke McCown, I dare you to take Jimmy Clausen on the road. It’s not just the road. It’s the hardest road stadium to play in for any quarterback in the league. Seattle has a kitchen sink game of their own this week with their 0-2 record. Chicago will be lucky to score more than 14 points.
J.Camm’s pick: Seattle
Buffalo +3 over MIAMI
This is a real tough one here as I like both teams. I always favor defense, however, and Miami’s lost its edge to Jacksonville last week. Their offense also hasn’t been clicking as well as expected and Lamar Miller is banged up.
J.Camm’s pick: Miami
Denver -3 over DETROIT
The Lions may be one of the worst five teams in the league. Peyton Manning is done, but Detroit isn’t capable of making him look that way this weekend. It also doesn’t help that Detroit has to take on the league’s best defense when they’re having their own offensive woes.
J.Camm’s pick: Denver
This Week: 1-0
Last Week: 7-9