Oddsmaker Greatness of the Gridiron Challenge: NFL Week 15 Picks

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I am the Gridiron Great, and I have been handicapping the NFL for a number of years. I've learned the ins and outs of what it takes to beat the bookies at this game, and I know just how difficult it can be. Do you think you can beat me at my own game? Every week that you do, you'll be entered into a grand prize drawing at the end of the season for a $1,000 Oddsmaker Sportsbook account. You can also collect a $100 account from Oddsmaker just by having the most picks correct amongst Cappers Info readers, so long as you beat me!

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There is no greater time to try to get into this competition than right now, as every week you beat me gives you another opportunity at that big cash prize at the end of the year. Let's get started right now with my Week 15 picks…

Kansas City Chiefs (-2) @ St. Louis Rams – Call me a sucker. Call me a contrarian. Call me whatever you want. The Chiefs are just a better team in this game, and I tend to think that the oddsmakers are trying to trap you by giving you a sexy looking line on a St. Louis team that, on paper, feels like it should be favored in this one. QB Matt Cassel will hopefully suit up, but whether he does or not, I tend to think that RB Jamaal Charles and RB Thomas Jones are going to be in for big time days. I'm just not a believer that the Rams are actually getting into the playoffs. Thus, give me Kansas City -2.

Houston Texans (+1) @ Tennessee Titans – Haven't we seen this script for the Texans before? Like, every single season? The team gets down to the point that it basically can't make the playoffs, and then it flips the season, finishes with a .500 record, and saves Head Coach Gary Kubiak's job. Good news for Houston fans, though. Even if he does finish 8-8, unless he happens to win the AFC South with that record (good luck), Kubiak is toast regardless. Still, the rest of the script is probably going to remain exactly the same. Houston +1

Jacksonville Jaguars (+5) @ Indianapolis Colts – Will it be 100% of you mere mortals that are backing the Colts, or just the mass majority of you? Think for just one second, if you would, if the quarterback in this game were Drew Brees, not Peyton Manning. Same guy in terms of on field talent, right? We'd look at this game and say, "Wow, Jacksonville is just so much of a better team than Indy is," and love jumping all over this five point spread. However, we don't say that. We say, "Wow, there's no way that Peyton Freaking Manning isn't making the playoffs!" I beg to differ. Manning is past the point in his career and doesn't have the pieces to the puzzle around him to really make that much of a difference. Jacksonville is winning this game and winning it outright. Gimme the Jags +5.

Arizona Cardinals @ Carolina Panthers (-2.5) – Skelton! Clausen! It's the NFL on Fox!!! Really, if the oddsmakers have the balls to make a 1-12 team a favorite in any situation, I just have to roll with the punches. Either I look like a genius, or I come back to myself next week, laugh at why I laid 2.5 points with a 1-12 team, and move on. It's too funny not to do, so I'll take Carolina -2.5.

Cleveland Browns @ Cincinnati Bengals (-1.5) – Haha. Same situation. Same exact situation. Just replace 1-12 with 2-11 and 2.5 points to 1.5 points. Why the hell not? Cincinnati -1.5

Buffalo Bills (+5.5) @ Miami Dolphins – Miami's going to find a way to blow this, right? I mean really, can I lay 5.5 points with a team that has exactly two offensive touchdowns in its last two games combined? Really? The Bills have only been beaten once by more than three points in the last two months, and I tend to think that that's going to continue. However, if I had my guess, I won't be needing the 5.5 points. Something tells me that the Dolphins are hitting the self-destruct button just as they did last year against the Houston Texans in a very similar spot. Buffalo +5.5

Philadelphia Eagles (+2.5) @ New York Giants – Is it just me, or should this game have been played in primetime this week? The Eagles are good enough to come on the road and win a game like this one, and I could really see it happening. If QB Michael Vick thinks that he is an MVP this year, he can come on the road and take out a New York team that has been known to struggle at times when faced with stiff challenges. Without WR Steve Smith in the lineup, we could be due for another one of these games for QB Eli Manning in which he throws for 340 yards and three scores, but gets picked off three times as well. In what should be the de facto NFC East title game, gimme Philadelphia +2.5.

Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys (-6) – Remember when this series used to mean something every single year? Not this year. Dallas remembers the beginning of the season when the Redskins smacked it around thanks to that holding penalty at the end of the game. Memories like that just don't go away, and when you've got two teams that have already been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, you look for any motivation you can find. Dallas is 5-0 ATS under Head Coach Jason Garrett. Make it 6-0 and take Dallas -6 on Sunday.

Detroit Lions @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-5.5) – The Bucs are limping towards staying in the race in the NFC playoffs, but they keep finding teams like this one to put on the schedule. They had no business beating a very similar Washington Redskins crew last week, and now they must be very, very careful. I know that the Lions played well last week against the Green Bay Packers, but in the end, this is still a team that has lost 25 consecutive games on the road. Though it would be poetic justice if the team that streak ended with was the team with the longest losing streak all time in this league (Tampa Bay once had 26 straight losses), it just isn't happening. I'll take Tampa Bay -5.5.

New Orleans Saints (+1) @ Baltimore Ravens – Toughest call on the entire board. If you're a fan of super teasers, I've got the streak for you! The Ravens haven't been beaten by more than eight points at home in a game since 2007… or basically, since they've been good in the post-Trent Dilfer era. That being said, I just can't do it. There's something screaming to me about this New Orleans team, as the Saints have won six in a row. They know that they are going to have to play on the road in the playoffs, and they know that they have the biggest game of the year next week against the Atlanta Falcons in the Georgia Dome. Even if 13-3 doesn't turn out to be good enough to win the No. 1 seed in the playoffs, that would send a huge message to everyone else in the league. The defending champs are back to try to regain the Lombardi Trophy again. Take New Orleans +1.

Atlanta Falcons @ Seattle Seahawks (+7) – One of these days, I'm going to learn that betting against the Falcons and betting on the Seahawks (or any team from the NFC West for that matter) are both very, very bad ideas. But for whatever reason, I chose not to learn for this one. Going with Seattle +7.

New York Jets @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-6) – Aren't the Jets due to make us really think that they're done? I mean really, that's what happened last year when Head Coach Rex Ryan thought that his team was eliminated from the playoffs, and then when they got in, he promptly said that his team should be favored to win the Super Bowl. Damn if he wasn't nearly right about it, too! Still, Pittsburgh is just too tough of a town to play ball in, especially when you're a playoff contending team. The Steelers just live for games like this, and they'll find a way to win by two scores. Pittsburgh -6

Denver Broncos (+6.5) @ Oakland Raiders – Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you, Mr. Tim Tebow. It sure sounds like the legendary Florida Gator is going to try his best to make winners out of a miserable team on Sunday, but if there is one man that has the inspirational tools to do just that, this is the guy. Oh yeah, it's not going to help Oakland that it ran up the score and dropped 59 on the Broncos in Mile High. Gotta take the points in this one and go with Denver +6.5 even though the Broncos don't have any pulse whatsoever right now.

Green Bay Packers (OTB) @ New England PatriotsRemember to make your tiebreaker picks in this game!!! No picks on this game, as we don't know whether QB Aaron Rodgers is going to be healthy enough to give it a whirl or not after suffering his second concussion of the year. Do remember to make your tiebreaker total picks, but there's no action on this game.

Official Week 15 NFL Lines Courtesy of Oddsmaker Sportsbook
Kansas City Chiefs (-2) @ St. Louis Rams
Houston Texans @ Tennessee Titans (-1)
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Indianapolis Colts (-5)
Arizona Cardinals @ Carolina Panthers (-2.5)
Cleveland Browns @ Cincinnati Bengals (-1.5)
Buffalo Bills @ Miami Dolphins (-5.5)
Philadelphia Eagles @ New York Giants (-2.5)
Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys (-6)
Detroit Lions @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-5.5)
New Orleans Saints @ Baltimore Ravens (-1)
Atlanta Falcons (-7) @ Seattle Seahawks
New York Jets @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-6)
Denver Broncos @ Oakland Raiders (-6.5)

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