All-Purpose Playbook: NFL Week 8 picks, survivor pool analysis and more

Welcome to the All-Purpose Playbook, a Buzzer column that is either (a) a guide to many things NFL related, or (b) a road map to hell. Check back here on Friday afternoons for survivor pool analysis, football picks, a smattering of GIFs and some nonsense. Follow me @brettsmiley and email me with any questions or comments at basmiley [at] gmail [dot] com. (WARNING: Some NSFW material)

It feels like the start of the sixth inning of a no-hitter. The announcer hesitates to say the words. Superstition.

Of course, this is a column about football and wagering, so I’m going to attempt some reverse psychology and just spit it out it: All-Purpose Playbook (APP) has been EN FUEGO the past four weeks (FLAME EMOJIS)!!!

The record is a near-flawless 11-0-2. It’s a ride unlike any other I’ve ever had, dating back to circa 1995 when my brother and I used to mail paper sheets for some quasi-fantasy league to a random dude in Colorado, who would mail back results the next week. Ah, before the Internet!

Four straight weeks of dodging landmines?! This material should be locked behind a paywall!

Okay, point taken, Danny McBride. There’s another specific reason APP used that GIF from the movie "This Is The End," starring Jonah Hill, Seth Rogen, James Franco, Craig Robinson, Jay Baruchel and McBride.

Because This Is The End.

Week 8 is the end. APP is going to whiff on at least one game this week. There will be no no-hitter or perfect game; after all, APP was a lowly 2-5 before this run started.

last week’s selections, which were not exactly sweat-free.

Down 30-20 with 23 seconds left, New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles wisely attempted a 55-yard field goal on first down, knowing that the team needed two scores to bring the game to overtime (many other coaches would foolishly burned the entire clock going for the touchdown first). Nick Folk nailed a 55-yarder bringing the Jets +8 to Cover City.

In Washington, the Buccaneers +3.5 certainly made the cover interesting, blowing a 24-point lead in a crazy 31-30 loss.

Yes, we like that, Kirk. It was a cover, so it’s all good.

We also had the Panthers -3 hosting the Eagles. The Panthers managed to overcome three Cam Newton interceptions by forcing Philly field-goal attempts in the red zone.

On to Week 8. Keep your head on a swivel.’s Rich Hribar.  

Better protection up front would help most (and a running game) but Cooter probably will make it his aim to keep Stafford comfortable and help restore his confidence. When in doubt just throw it deep to Megatron on third down. Sound good, Calvin Johnson fantasy football owners?

about 85 percent), moving the line up from 4.5 to 6. Yet the Cardinals are coming off a short week (they played Monday night), heading East and have failed to cover the number in three of their last four, losing two games outright as a 6- and 7-points favorite.

Have bettors already forgotten that only two weeks ago the Cardinals came to Pittsburgh as 6-point favorites over a Steelers team led by Landry Jones making his first career NFL start . . . and lost 25-13? That wasn’t rhetorical. It seems they have.

Jones attempted a mere 12 passes in that game, completing 8 with two touchdowns. But the Cardinals’ offense just couldn’t get it going and this week will probably be without speedy wideout John Brown, who’s nursing a hamstring injury. Think maybe the Cards are looking ahead to healing up on their Week 9 bye?

APP loves that Cleveland will get back its best defensive player in Pro Bowl cornerback Joe Haden and another key player in the secondary, safety Tashaun Gipson. The defense should be pretty jacked up for this game. TIME FOR THE DAWG POUND TO EAT!!!!

Chicago Bears +1 vs. Minnesota Vikings

APP is trying to figure out why the Vikings are getting so much support (72 percent of wagers) for their road trip to Chicago, and the leading theory is anti-Jay Cutler sentiment combined with a sense that the Bears have quit on the season.

For sure the Bears (2-4) are not a playoff team but did win a pair of games against the Raiders and Chiefs before getting punked in overtime in Detroit. Now fresh off a bye week, Cutler’s best wideout Alshon Jeffery had time to rest up (hamstring) after returning in Week 6, veteran safety Antrel Rolle returns to the defense and they sound pretty darn excited to tackle Vikes’ top offensive weapon, Adrian Peterson.

"I get real excited [to play against Peterson]," linebacker Pernell McPhee said with a wide grin on Thursday, per ESPN. "That’s it. I’m excited. I’m ready. I’m ready."

Wait, there’s more: "He’s the best back in the NFL," McPhee added. "I get to hit the best back in the NFL. That’s why I’m excited. Because I’m coming."

"It’s made Jay step up, be a bigger part, bigger voice," quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains observed on how the situation has compelled Cutler to become more of a leader.

And now a reference to Bears tight end Martellus "The Black Unicorn" Bennett because that seems like the right way to shoehorn in this Seth Rogen moving image:

Go here if you need an explanation on how teaser bets work.)

We hit once last week and needed almost every bit of the Saints-Colts total tease down. Let’s stick with the spreads this week and pair to of the picks in a 7-point tease: Browns (+13) and Broncos (+10).


Four legs and we need ’em all:

Take the ill-advised teaser and let’s add the Broncos/Packers under 45.5 (decent bet straight-up; goes to 52.5) and the Lions which moves to +11.

Happy Week 8, everybody!!!!

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