Pocket Doppler Prognosticators – Week 14
Each week last season, the 3 Founding Fathers of Pocket Doppler (Wally, Harland O. Dog & Chris Richards), Senior Angel Colleen and favored stepson Rich would square off in picking the winner of the Packers, Sunday night & MNF games in an attempt to prove their football acumen and entertain. We’re going to make another valiant attempt at it this year. Unfortunately Chris had to bow out for this season (or happily escaped, take your pick) so Angel Kelly has joined the team. Like always, we’ll keep a running tally throughout the season.
Welcome to this week’s edition of the Pocket Doppler Prognosticators. Entering into Week 14 the current standings are:
Harland O. Dog: 26
Wally and Kelly maintain their slim lead in a tie, with Colleen nipping at their heels, something that would be better suited to Harland O. Dog, but sadly he lags a bit with Rich bringing up the rear (which does somehow seem fitting). Let’s see how everyone picks this week:
Harland O. Dog
Dolphins @ 49ers (Make up game) – If this NFL season has taught us anything, it’s that the most important component to winning is a play-making quarterback. No doubt that was the underlying reason for San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh to change from “#1 starter” Alex Smith to “#2 starter” Colin Kaepernick. Never mind that the 49ers were winning games and Smith was playing well before he suffered a concussion. So much for the idea that a player can’t lose his job to injury. And the NFL must be pleased that its concussion reporting policy was essentially undermined by this episode. Harbaugh initially justified the move by saying he would “play the hot hand”, which suggests a commitment to neither. Then he weakly tried to cover his ass by saying that the Niners had two starting quarterbacks. The fact that only one of them plays renders that notion ridiculous. I can’t help but think that Harbaugh’s gamesmanship with his own team is going to cost them down the road. But not for this game, as they’ll roll over Miami.
Lions @ Packers – The latest addition to the Packers season-ending injury report is running back James Starks. And, of course, it occurred just as Starks appeared to be giving the team some traction in the running game. Starks’ injury inspired the return of former Packer RB Ryan Grant, who if nothing else, should have no trouble picking up the offense. It does look like this game may mark the return of safety Charles Woodson, but not linebacker Clay Matthews who remains out with the worst hamstring since Mark D’Onofrio. Fortunately for the Packers, Detroit is like O-for-forever at Lambeau Field so this figures to be the latest “ugly win” for Green Bay.
Texans @ Patriots – Finally, a prime-time game worth watching, right? In the words of Lee Corso, “not so fast my friends”. That’s pretty much what we thought earlier this season when the Packers traveled down to Houston and laid a beatdown on the Texans. I could very easily foresee a similar result at the hands of the Patriots in Foxboro. As solid as Houston appears to be on the surface, much like Atlanta in the other conference there doesn’t seem to be any “there” there. This may be a preview of the AFC Championship game but New England looks like the better team at the moment.
(Special bonus pick: The Wisconsin Badgers go to the Bradley Center and avenge last year’s home loss to Marquette.)
Harland O. Dog’s Picks: 49ers, Packers & Patriots
Dolphins @ 49ers (Make up game) – The 49ers faltered last week in overtime to the Rams, which is something I really can’t figure out but at least it wasn’t a tie, again. There’s something to be said about certain teams just having other teams’ number & this year it would appear the Rams have San Fran’s. Smarting off that loss I’m thinking the 49ers ratchet it up at home and easily dispatch the Dolphins.
Lions @ Packers – Speaking of teams having other teams numbers, the Lions haven’t won in Lambeau since 1991. That’s one hell of a streak in futility. I’m pretty sure that doesn’t mean the Lions are just going to lay down and hand up the win to the Packers but I feel pretty good that the losing streak in Lambeau will continue. This game also marks the return of Ryan Grant to the Packers. Grant will only have been here a handful of days but I’ll be watching to see how he looks & how much he is or isn’t used in tandem with Alex Green.
Texans @ Patriots – Here’s my obligatory AFC Championship preview reference. There, now that that’s out of the way…this will be the second in a row of watchable MNF football games after a string of crappy ones. The Patriots have already locked up their division & the Texans have already locked up a playoff spot so both teams will be playing for home field advantage in the postseason. Even though it’s in New England, I’m going with the Texans to build their lead for the top seed in the AFC.
Wally’s Picks: 49ers, Packers & Texans
Dolphins @ 49ers (make up game) – Dear Joe Phibin, your team sucks dead toads through a straw. Please come back and be our Offensive Coordinator. Yours truly, Kels. In all seriousness, this is going to be an opportunity for the young Master Kaepernick to shine. And in all seriousness, does anyone even know (or care) who is fronting for the ‘Fins?
Lions @ Packers – Hello, Ndstompykong, welcome to the Frozen Tundra. I swear, if you kick Rodgers in the beans, I will come down from the second row from the top and show you how to *properly* kick some idiot in the nads. Actually, Stafford sucks right now. Benched him in the DCGB fantasy football league for Russell FailMary Wilson. So the
offense is Megatron and Pettigrew if he’s having a good day while the defense comes down to Stompy and the little goth girl with the blood red contact lenses. Strategy is easy, get Schwartz flustered, and all of his anemic leadership skills seem to evaporate. Think giant snake with its head cut off, only with less direction and perhaps uglier.
Texas @ Patriots – Oh goodie, Tommy Bundcake excreted another spawn. Hang on while I don’t care just like I don’t care about his really ugly choice in boots. So I hear JJ Watt hates QBs. This should make for an interesting game and a preview of the AFC championship game. This game may come down to winner is the one holding the ball last. Without Gronk, the Pats are a little vulnerable against the Texans’ defense
Kelly’s Picks: 49ers, Packers & Texans
Dolphins @ 49ers (make up game) – Coming off his first loss as a starter, Colin Kaepernick is one pissed off, motivated young man. While I love Joe Philbin and think he’s doing as good a job with what he’s got in Miami as he can, the 49ers are pretty darned good this year and Kap wants to keep that starting job because he knows that Alex Smith would secretly like to take that clipboard and deliver him a concussion. 49ers in a rout. (PS – I actually hope the Dolphins win, because then we have the #2 seed.)
Lions @ Packers – Much as Mongo was just a pawn in the game of life, the Detroit Lions are mincemeat for the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. While that fact puts a bit of fear into my heart (because this team is entirely capable of playing down to their opponent and losing), the Kittehs really, really aren’t very good. And it’s supposed to be snowing. Hoping Ryan Grant has a hell of a night to celebrate his return to Green Bay.
Texans @ Patriots – While I suspect that we won’t have any footage of a pouting Gisele at this game, seeing as how she just added another baby Bieber, I mean Brady, to the world, we’ll have plenty of changes to look at Tom Brady modeling his Uggs. Ugh. On paper this should be a good game, but with the game being a home one for the Patriots, I’m assuming Tommy & Co. handle the Texans with little problem, JJ Watt or no, sending them home with another loss.
Colleen’s Picks: 49ers, Packers & Patriots
Dolphins @ 49ers (make up game) – At a recent conference of the American Health Lawyers Association, IRS official Garrett Gluth confirmed that his agency will review the community benefit activities of 3,377 tax-exempt hospital to deter … woah, what just happened? Did I black out? Please forgive me, this happens every time I have to transition from work-writing to sports-writing (which isn’t often enough, sadly). The transition is so momentous, so joyous, that my brain is unable to comprehend the conversion without simply shorting out and knocking me unconscious. Anyways, industry-wide research indicates that Colin Kapernick’s tattoos make up approximately 55% of … NO! Again! In light of a recent transition to rookie quarterback, Ryan Tannehill, the Dolphins have the opportunity to increase future financial viability thereby enhancing market share … AH, BLEEP this! What has happened to me? What have I become? … Ugh, 49ers in a rout.
Lions @ Packers – Okay, I’m back. For anyone that has ever watched The League on FX, you know the repartee between each actor and actress (Katie Aselton is awesome) is fantastic. The writers find ways to connect daily life to fantasy football and somehow fantasy football to habitual, daily life. For example, Taco, Ruxin and friends had a conversation in which they were comparing the attractiveness of women to player rankings. More specifically, “She is an attractive girl. Is she Greg Jennings hot? No. She might be Eric Decker hot…” While not exactly an endearing activity, if I were to compare the current state of Green Bay to the physical ranking of anyone (male of female)—the Packers would be the poorly dressed ugly adopted step child who arrives at school in mid-January without a coat.
They continue to eke out victories (New York didn’t happen) and somehow land dates with the good looking popular kids who have never heard the word “no” from Mom and Dad, but they will never find true love at this injury-riddled pace. They will never land marriage, the ultimate ring. No, they need Matthews, Nelson, Woodson, Lang, a running back with some kind of NFL experience, a QB that doesn’t hit the turf 17 times a half, and a kicker who can be counted on inside the 30-yard line. They may somehow score a dance at prom with someone on court—maybe even cop a behind feel during that last slow dance—but there will always be mirrors, and thus they will always be reminded how putridly ugly they really are. In their current state, they will end up as losers stuff in a locker unless the team’s health returns before January. That said, and despite the worst sports analogy in the history of the Bill Simmons’ era, these sickly kids will still beat the Suh-infested Lions.
Texans @ Patriots –
Rich’s picks: 49ers, Packers & Texans