The Red Shamrock: Thoughts On Game Day Feasting And Week Two NFL Picks
I was trying to settle on a topic for this week’s post, but I kept thinking about the food I was going to cook for Sunday before the NFL games. Sundays were made for the kitchen, especially football games on Sundays. There are a plethora of fine snacks/unhealthy/healthy options to select from for almost 12 hours of television watching that one does on an NFL Sunday (especially if you have fake money on a lot of those games). I think as a child or teenager, you are at the mercy of what your parents want to provide you for nourishment on those weekends, but as you grow into manhood, you are left to discover which route you are going to take.
When you are young and single, it’s quite easy. Find any bar that is serving pizza, wings, and brews. Any place that is cheap and plentiful and establishments are usually running specials on those days to take advantage of. You can roll with your significant other, roommates or “squad” (as the kids call it these days) to hang out for a couple of hours and then head back home and crush cheap beer the rest of the night away. Schmitt’s Gay anyone?
God, I miss when Adam Sandler would kill it at SNL; and Chris Farley too. Eventually you are going to settle down or realize financially, you cannot keep going out or your liver (and body) may eventually have to tap out to constant feeding it cheap booze and subpar food. So you now have to figure out what is quick and easy to make for an NFL Sunday game day meal. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m still down for a good pizza or take out order of the best chicken wings you can find from Bon Chon. Wait a minute. What the hell is this?
Even with updated production values, this commercial screams 1980’s with a dance and theme song. The dance kind of reminds me of Walk the Dinosaur.
Ok. The only thing missing was chicken…and super hot women dancing. I digress. Let’s not forget pizza as a game day meal. I prefer a good local joint if you have one to get your pies, but my go to unfortunately is Papa John’s and their “the works” pizza when I’m in a pinch. You can put pretty much everything your want on it, but unfortunately, this man pitches it:
Nothing against a John Schnatter’s pizza or that 2013 hammered out photo of him. I just don’t like his self-imposed status as BFF to fantastic retired quarterbacks. Plus his commercials with said quarterbacks have pretty much run the course for me. See for yourself:
Where was I? Oh yes, things to cook on game days. My go to if I don’t feel like ordering out or making burgers and dogs or enjoying a good homemade chili. I am a huge fan of chicken drumettes, especially flavored with Old Bay seasoning. They are pretty simple to put together (it only takes about an hour before game time). Bake, broil or fry your chicken, melt some butter, add Old Bay to the butter and coat the wings. Sprinkle some Old Bay on top afterwards and you have yourself a winner.
As far as adult beverages for my Sunday slate of football game viewing, you can’t go wrong with a good mixed drink. I’ve been on a 7 and 7 kick of late with @fatherhoodrules, but I always love a good GnT (gin and tonic) or just some whiskey on the rocks (can be Irish or bourbon; Jim Beam Fire is pretty awesome). Just remember moderation on Sunday night, especially if you have a j-o-b to get to the next morning.
So what is your go to game day food? Hit me up in the comments to let me know.
Now it’s time for this week’s picks. You can go to ESPN for their NFL lines here. Home teams will appear in all caps, my selection in bold, and I’ll note the points given or taken for my pick as well.
Thursday, September 15th
Jets (- 1.5) over BILLS
This is a face Bills fans are eventually going to have to get used to seeing:
Tyrod Taylor had a terrible outing against Baltimore and the Jets were very New York when it came to the second half against the Bengals. Shady McCoy will probably have to carry the load with a questionable start for Sammy Watkins (foot) on a short week.
Sunday, September 18th 1 PM
STEELERS (-3.5) over Bengals
Both teams are top 15 in offense and defense coming out of week one. Steelers looked all world against a Redskins team without a running back and the Bengals took over a second half game against the Jets thanks to AJ Green and their quarterback, Scut Farkus:
I’m pretty sure this comparison has been made a million times, but wouldn’t you love to see Dalton celebrate like this (Redneck hat included) if they win in Pittsburgh? Unfortunately, I don’t think it happens, as it is a division game and they split the series last year (although the Bengals won in Pittsburgh). That was midway through the season though. Steelers get it done.
LIONS (-6) over Titans
Denny Green would be rolling over in his grave God rest his soul (Denny never coached the Titans).
Tennessee was looking like a team on the rise until they forgot how to play offense in the second half against the Vikings. I think the Lions will be a heck of a lot of fun to watch offensively this season, but there I question their defense and I think it might cost them some games. Not this one though.
Ravens (-6.5) over BROWNS
This pretty much sums up RGIII’s NFL career:
In case you missed it, the former Heisman winner, number two overall pick in the 2012 draft and allegedly terrible husband is on IR for the next month or so. Lions should cover against a terrible Browns team. The Ravens won ugly against Buffalo this week, but should cruise easily against Josh McCown and Cleveland.
REDSKINS (-3) over Cowboys
Washington looked absolutely terrible against Pittsburgh. Everyone is praising Dak Prescott for his play against the Giants, but I don’t think he hit a single pass longer than 10 yards the whole game. Washington should be able to stifle the Dallas offensive line enough to limit Ezekiel Elliott (crazy talk considering what the Steelers did to them), but I’m not taking Prescott on the road.
Saints (+4.5) over GIANTS
These two teams combined for a 101 points last November. The Saints defense gave the game away to Oakland last week and the Giants beat a bad divisional opponent on the road. Throw all of that out the window this week. I think it’s another high scoring affair and I like the Saints getting points on the road.
PANTHERS (+14) over 49ers
This is one of the helmet-to-helmet hits that were not called last week in Carolina’s loss to Denver:
Now, we are supposed to be up in arms that this hit and a few more like it were never called. I say tough shite. Hits like this were common no less than five or six years ago. It is an inherent risk to the game and quarterbacks are so coddled now they are basically two year olds if a defensive end simply touches them wrong.
The 49ers destroyed a not ready for primetime Rams team (F YOU JEFF FISCHER). No way they travel east and stay competitive. It’s a lot of points to give, but I think Carolina makes an example at Chip Kelly.
Dolphins (+6.5) over PATRIOTS
No reverse jinx bet here. Belichick’s Patriot’s will do just enough to go 3-4 in the first four games to welcome their blessed Brady back for week five. Miami lost a game they should have easily won in Seattle (thanks Kenny Stills) but the defense was very impressive. I’m still undecided on Ryan Tannehill, but I think this game stays close into the 4th quarter. BTW, shame NESN. Shame. Shame. Shame:
If you watched the game, clearly not a stomp as Wilson had fallen to the ground and Suh was running at him. Yeah, I get it. Suh has played dirty in the past, but in my opinion, nothing wrong with the play at Seattle. Now if I was a Seahawks fan on the other hand…
TEXANS (-2) over Chiefs
The Chiefs were getting murdered by Philip Rivers and until Keenan Allen suffered another season ending ACL injury. The Chiefs rolled Houston in the playoffs last year, but that was before Brock Osweiler and Lamar Miller came to town. It took “Twilight” a few quarters to get warmed up, but I think the Texans are good enough to win at home.
Sunday, September 18th 4:05 PM
Seahawks (-3.5) over RAMS
There’s nothing like rebounding over a defensive and ugly game with a pick me up whore of an opponent that will be passed around the league all year to make every fantasy owner who has offensive players from the NFC West, NFC South and AFC East say to themselves, “Oh, (insert name of quarterback, running back, wide receiver and kicker here) will have a huge game against the Rams!” F YOU JEFF FISCHER!
Buccaneers (+7) over CARDINALS
Can I be talked into taking Jameis Winston on the road and getting points? Yes I can.
Sunday, September 18th 4:25 PM
Jaguars (+3) over CHARGERS
Is Jacksonville on the rise or does Green Bay play down to the level of their competition? Maybe the heat and humidity had something to do with the Packers “eh” performance last week. The Allen’s (Robinson and Hurns) can give that Charger secondary real issues here and the loss of Keenan Allen is going to put a lot on the shoulders of Rivers and the passing game.
RAIDERS (+4.5) over Falcons
No way I’m picking against my fantasy QB.
And Atlanta let Tampa Bay drop 31 on them last week while Oakland showed some stones (they should have covered) in the comeback against the Saints.
Colts (+6) over BRONCOS
Trevor Siemian was good, not great in the win over Charlotte. Good is all he really has to be. I am totally buying into the theory (with evidence starting to back it up) that Andrew Luck is the king of garbage time. Which is good enough for me to take the Colts and the points and convince me the Colts will cover.
Sunday, September 11th 8:30 PM
Packers (2.5) over VIKINGS
Much like the Giants/Cowboys game last week (which was basically a pick’em), You can bet the favored road team and give less than a field goal. Against Shaun Hill (maybe) and a team that you can keep off the field by stopping their run game (like Tennessee did for before crapping the bed). Free money by laying the 2.5 and taking Green Bay, and who doesn’t love free money?
Monday, September 12th 7:10 PM
BEARS (-3) over Eagles
Yes, Carson Wentz made fools of many (who help beat a terrible Cleveland team last week) and it certainly won’t be the first time. Jeff George 2.0 (Jay Cutler) and Chicago hung tough against Houston. It’s a shame that this prediction never came true:
Still, I think Wentz will have a tough go in Chicago. I like the Bears here and will give the field goal.
Last week: 6-8-2
Season record: 6-8-2
Pat Himes aka The Red Shamrock is a huge fan of sports, movies, poker, and fake sports betting. He is also cohost of The 80/20 Movie Show podcast with Gary Smith, which you can listen to for guy humor, movie reviews, and additional fake sports betting picks at www.fatherhoodrules.com. You can chat with Pat on Chaostrophic by interacting with him on the threads under his handle, Dalux247.