The Sports Guy's Thursday NFL Pick

Michael Weinstein

Chiefs (+3.5) over EAGLES
Am I crazy or is this our first entertaining Thursday-night game, like, ever? Even if it’s difficult to think of “The Andy Reid Bowl” being anything other than a plastic bowl overfilling with beef brisket and BBQ sauce, let’s figure out how Skunk of the Week can bizarro-improve to 0-3 this season.

The Case for Philly Covering: It’s impossible to prepare for Chip Kelly’s nutty offense in four days … Kansas City’s 2-0 record is actually “we killed the horrific Jags in Week 1, then barely beat the mediocre Cowboys at home in Week 2” … Michael Vick is strangely frightening to wager against in night games, for no real reason whatsoever … far too much of Kansas City’s playbook seems to be “What about a designed rollout for Alex?” … the Chiefs have punted 16 times (tied for third-highest in NFL) and tallied 10 points and nine punts in two second halves … they’ve had three drives all season of more than 50 yards … can they score 30-plus points to keep up with Philly? … and doesn’t Reid’s return to Philly HAVE to produce a sloppy, disjointed game that Reid’s team blows in the final few minutes?

The Case for Kansas City Covering: I know it’s fun to watch Kelly’s run-and-gun offense, but Philly’s time-of-possession stats (last six quarters: 32:02) are unequivocally alarming and seem to play right into Reid’s hands (slow, methodical, boring drive after slow, methodical, boring drive) … Philly’s shaky defense single-handedly rejuvenated Philip Rivers’s career last weekend … we’re approaching the annual point of Vick’s season when he crushes his suddenly optimistic fantasy owners by either (a) stinking up the joint, or (b) getting injured … everyone’s on the “take Philly’s over every week, it always hits!” bandwagon, which means we’re headed for a lower-scoring game this week because the public never wins in gambling (and low-scoring is better for Kansas City) … Kelly can absolutely out-boner Reid in crunch time (as Sumeet in Manhattan Beach writes, “If Chip’s clock management and use of timeouts in the last 2:09 of the Chargers game doesn’t win 2013’s award for ‘worst coaching effort,’ I don’t know what will”) … and doesn’t Reid’s return to Philly HAVE to produce a sloppy, disjointed game that Reid’s team blows in the final few minutes but somehow still covers?

The Skunk Pick: Chiefs 27, Eagles 20. Better defense, better team. (I already hate this pick and regret making it.)

Without further ado, here’s the Half-Assed Power Poll for Week 3!

WEEK 3

THE ROD MARINELLI DIVISION
32. Jacksonville, 0-2

RIGGIN’ FOR WIGGINS
31. Cleveland, 0-2

THE ROMEO CRENNEL DIVISION
30. Washington, 0-2
29. New York Jets, 1-1
28. Oakland, 1-1

SEMISONIC’S ENCORE SONG
27. Pittsburgh, 0-2
26. Minnesota, 0-2

DEAD MAN WALKING
25. Tampa Bay, 0-2
24. Carolina, 0-2

NOBODY BELIEVES IN US
23. New York Giants, 0-2

COMPETITIVELY FORGETTABLE
22. Indianapolis, 1-1
21. Buffalo, 1-1
20. St. Louis, 1-1
19. Arizona, 1-1

THE YEAR AFTER
18. Baltimore, 1-1

AMERICA’S TEAM
17. Philadelphia, 1-1

THE KARDASHIANS
16. Dallas, 1-1

THE ENTERTAINERS
15. San Diego, 1-1
14. The Lions of Detroit, 1-1

THE WILD-CARD SLEEPERS
13. Tennessee, 1-1
12. Kansas City, 2-0

HANGING AROUND
11. New England, 2-0

THE PSEUDO CONTENDERS
10. Atlanta, 1-1
9. Chicago, 2-0
8. Cincinnati, 1-1

THE FANTASY GOD
7. New Orleans, 2-0

THE SLEEPER
6. Miami, 2-0

THE CONTENDERS
5. Houston, 2-0
4. Green Bay, 1-1
3. San Francisco, 1-1

THE FAVORITES
2. Denver, 2-0
1. Seattle, 2-0

Filed Under: Kansas City Chiefs, NFL, Philadelphia Eagles

screen-shot-2014-01-07-at-7-03-08-am

Bill Simmons is the editor-in-chief of Grantland and the author of the New York Times no. 1 best seller The Book of Basketball. For every Simmons column and podcast, click here.

Archive @ BillSimmons