I'm introducing a new feature to this blog where I share Mel Kiper Jr.'s NFL picks for the week. Sure, I could share my picks but I have neither the NFL knowledge nor the magnificent head of hair that Kiper has.
For those of you not in the Washington DC media market, Tony Kornheiser has a radio talk show where every Thursday he brings on Kiper to make picks. Kiper has been making picks for the Kornheiser show for years, but in the past he would pick games based on the spread. Then, when Kiper incorrectly picked games, Kornheiser would unmercifully humiliate Kiper, taunting him with his incorrect picks.
Kiper, tired of being humiliated, threatened to no longer appear on the radio show, until Kornheiser promised not to make him pick games based on the spread. Which Kornheiser did, so last week Kiper made his reappearance on the radio show, going 6-0 with his NFL picks (although he went 0-2 in college picks).
The catch is that at the end of each pick, Kornheiser casually mentions the spread for the game. This inevitably leads to Kiper reaffirming how strongly he likes his pick. Later, when Kiper is off the show, Kornheiser reviews Kiper's picks based on the spread. Two weeks in and Kiper has still not figured out what Kornheiser is doing. Anyway, here are Kiper's Picks for the week, with Kornheiser's interpretations against the spread.
Washington at Dallas: Kiper is a big fan of Parcells and picks Dallas to win (interpretation, takes Dallas at -7)
Kansas City at Oakland: One of Kiper's strategies when picking games this early in the season is to go with the 0-1 team to beat the 1-0 team. Despite this strategy Kiper picks Kansas City (interpretation, take Kansas City at -1)
St Louis at Arizona: Kiper sees no rhyme or reason to the St Louis offense, comparing them to a grab bag offense. Kiper picks St Louis but believes they could be out coached by the Cardinals. (interpretation, take St Louis at -1)
New England at Carolina: This is one of those games where Kiper recommends taking the 0-1 team (Panthers) over the 1-0 team (Patriots). (interpretation, take Panthers at +3)
Detroit at Chicago: Kiper was surprised that the Green Bay defense held Detroit to 17 points and still lost. Kiper picked Detroit to win this game. (interpretation, take Detroit at -1.5)
Miami at New York Jets: Kiper thinks this game will be closer than people expected, but still likes the Jets to win out. (interpretation, take Miami at +6)
Buffalo at Tampa Bay: Kiper believes Tampa Bay had the more impressive win of these two teams last week, and because Buffalo had a difficult time scoring points picks Tampa Bay to win. He thinks Bills quarterback J.P. Losman will turn the ball over four times. (interpretation, take Tampa Bay at -2.5, plus according to Kornheiser's interpretation this is Kiper's five star lock of the week)
Atlanta at Seattle: Even though Kiper believes Seattle doesn't have big time receivers he still thinks Seattle will win out this week. (interpretation, take Seattle at -1)
Minnesota at Cincinnati: This is another example of an 0-1 team (Vikings) beating a 1-0 team (Bengals), at least according to Kiper. (interpretation, take Minnesota at +3)