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NFL week 13 betting lines and thoughts:
Chicago favored by 3.5 at home to the Seahawks. I'll buy it down to 2.5 and take the Bears all day. Bears should take care of this one as a VERY legit D beats a good rookie QB with mediocre weapons around him. Plus no one runs on Chicago. I like watching the Seahawks when they play at home, but sadly they aren't at home...
Green Bay favored at home by 8 over the Vikings. This is a weird game and I'm not terribly confident but give me the Vikings to cover and make this a 1 score game late. Green Bay needs a statement win of some sort and while I don't see them making a deep playoff run, maybe they get up 14 points late (huge in a divisional game, which always have a tendency to be closer) and give up a garbage time TD with a suspect defense. 24-17 Packers but never terribly close.
San Fran favored on the road at the Rams by 8.5 - see above. In this crazy NFL season, it just makes sense that this will be semi close. They also played to a tie last time and both teams will get up for the rematch. 10-14 point lead late by SF with the Rams getting a garbage score and missing the onside kick to seal the game for SF in an awesome coaching chess match like last time. Interested to see how San Fran's QB situation progresses after this week.
Upset of the week: Indy at Detroit, with the Lions favored by 5. I'll take Indy to win this outright. If I have to pick an upset this week, I feel safest with this. This line is extremely confusing as (with, as a general rule, the home team automatically getting 3 points) the 5 point spread means the Lions are favored by 2 on a neutral field/Super Bowl setting? Over a well coached, semi legit AFC playoff team in waiting? If the Lions do win this, it will be close (thus take the Colts to cover a very large spread if you don't trust the outright upset) with the Colts shooting themselves in the foot, which I have faith won't happen. Andrew Luck has a big game in the dome.
Buffalo favored by 6 at home to the Jags. Buffalo, who cares.
New England favored by 7.5 on the road to Miami. I'll take the Patriots to cover, just because they always seem to. They are one of the safer bets you can make in this crazy NFL season. And they've scored like 110 points in the last two weeks. And Miami has looked terrible of late. And they are still Miami. And the Patriots head coach, he-who-must-not-be-named, will figure out some defensive scheme that will kill Tannehill. I'm actually surprised the line isn't closer to 10 on this.
Houston favored by 6 on the road to the Titans. I'll take Houston to cover this and win by a TD or more. This looks like one of the safer picks of the day; I just think Houston is a much better team. No disrespect to the Titans who show some potential moving forward.
Denver favored by a TD over the Bucs in Denver. This is easily the most intriguing game of the week to me and features the greatness of both Peyton Manning and Doug Brown. I'll take Tampa to cover this 24-20 or something along those lines with the Broncos winning a competitive, defensive game with the Broncos D and Von Miller being the difference maker against Josh Freeman. This does have trap game feel to it with Denver rolling into the playoffs - it's possible Tampa just has more to play for at this point and gets up on a Denver team that has looked sluggish at times in the 1st half against decent to good competition.
Ravens favored by 8 to the Steelers. I'd buy this down to 6.5 and take the Ravens to cover by a TD. This isn't the same Ravens defense but Charlie fuckin Batch is starting and he sucks and has historically not played well against the Ravens. Ravens at home over 3rd string QB in a divisional game by 7 or more all day. And the Ravens are still pretty damn good and have a pretty great coach by the way. The over/under on total points scored is 34.5 which is ugly. I do see small potential for a blowout though if it gets ugly early and Pittsburgh's D gets tired.
Carolina favored by 3 on the road at Kansas City. The interesting thing here is the point spread, which is 40.5 - so 21-20 or something like that is the over. This is my 2 for 1 can't miss sports lock extreme play of the day. First of all, Kansas City absolutely sucks. On offense. There defense isn't quite as bad and should at least be able to keep this semi manageable. Plus it's in KC which can be difficult. And Cam Newton is a wildcard who may or may not do something really cool. All that said, I'd buy this down to 2.5 (just to be safe, so a FG wins it) and take Carolina all day PLUS the under on points. I mean 27-13 and you are fine. 20-17 you are fine. No way KC breaks 20 (or even 14) points and while Cam Newton should play well, the KC D will keep this closer than it probably should be. Call it 24-10 Carolina (the under) or something like that with KC just looking horrible on offense.
Cleveland favored by 2.5 over Oakland in Oakland. Ugh. I would not bet on this under any circumstances. In theory Cleveland should win this. But it's a rookie QB playing in Oakland, who has absolutely nothing to lose. And it's Oakland, weird shit always seems to happen out there. I will buy up to 3.5 points and take Oakland to cover with Cleveland winning 23-20. Nate and I have an unofficial bet where I'm actually taking Oakland to win this outright somehow. This will be a field goal fest full of turnovers and poor play. I hope there's an Oakland vs. KC game coming up by the way.....
Cincinnati favored by 2 on the road at San Diego. In a game I REALLY don't care about, give me Cincinnati to cover here. This point spread implies on a neutral field that the Bengals would be favored by 5, which I would take them to cover with ease. San Diego basically sucks way worse than most people thought, which is saying something, and can't beat anyone worth a shit in this league. The players have given up on Turner, it's done, see you in LA. Plus, AJ Green is a total nightmare and the Bengals have more to play for. This game also features my failed fantasy running back Ryan Matthews, who I wish ill will upon. Seriously they play the Raiders and Chiefs twice a year and Ryan Matthews can't score more than like 7 fantasy points? Anyway...
Jets are favored at home by 4.5 over Arizona. Good..... God..... Uh.....? Give me..... Jets.....? Jets to cover.... in a game where..... stuff happens....? I'll just take the home team here; NY should theoretically have something to offer their fans after New England scored like 85 points against them on Thanksgiving at home in NY. And I know nothing about Arizona despite watching like 4 of their games this year. They are like the It's Pat of the NFL, no clue what to make of them. Jets in a close defensive struggle that no one cares about with Sanchez looking suspect.
Dallas is favored by 10.5 at "home" over Phili in the meaningless night game of failed coaches and insanely injured teams. I wonder if they consider Cowboys Stadium a neutral site when they make these lines. So here's the logic: Dallas has more to play for, they've already beaten Phili, Phili is in complete shambles and has NOTHING to play for, Dallas is at home, Dallas REALLY needs a win of any kind, Rob Ryan has had time since Thanksgiving to put together a game plan against a rookie QB who hasn't done anything, no Desean Jackson, horrible offensive line play with a BRAND NEW STARTING CENTER for Phili.....
So naturally Phili will probably be up 10-0 at some point early. This is an absolutely HUGE line that I want no part of. If it was in the 7 range I'd feel comfortable with the Cowboys covering, but I have zero faith in their ability to win by more than 10 points (especially division games) until further notice, even at home with the circumstances laid out above. Phili will hang around in an ugly, penalty-filled game on what is essentially a neutral field. This is a tough one to call but I'll take Phili to keep it semi-interesting because Dallas will be Dallas....
Monday Night - Giants favored by 2.5 on the road to the Redskins. Let's buy it up to 3.5 and watch the Giants win by a field goal in a good game - Redskins cover. The over/under is 51 and I'm tempted to take the Over here. I think anyone who watches NFC East football knows what to expect here - lots of passing TDs.