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Staff Picks: Backing the Ravens

Chris Liss

Chris Liss

Chris Liss is RotoWire's Managing Editor and Host of RotoWIre Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM radio.

Nearly everyone went 2-2 last week, which puts DDD at 6-2, two games up and in sight of the playoff crown as only Stopa differs with him on both games this week. Stopa also happens to be the only writer taking the Patriots.

Erickson Pianowski Liss Stopa Del Don
49ers -4 at Falcons 49ers Falcons 49ers 49ers Falcons
Ravens +9 at Patriots Ravens Ravens Ravens Patriots Ravens
Best Bet Ravens Ravens 49ers 49ers Falcons
Last Week's Record 1-3 2-2 2-2 2-2 2-2
2012 Playoff Record 2-6 4-4 4-4 4-4 6-2
Playoff Best Best Record 1-1 1-1 2-0 1-1 1-1
2012 Record 110-140-6 125-125-6 121-129-6 143-107-6 123-127-6
Best Bet Record 3-12-2 12-5 7-10 8-9 10-7
Consensus Pick Record 23-30-1
2011 Playoff Record 8-3 5-6 9-2 6-5 7-4
2010 Playoff Record 6-5 5-6 5-6 7-4 8-3
2009 Playoff Record 5-6 4-7 1-10 6-5 5-6
2008 Playoff Record 6-5 5-6 5-6 8-3 4-7
2007 Playoff Record 8-3 3-8 6-5 N/A 2-9
2006 Playoff Record 7-4 N/A 4-7 N/A N/A
2005 Playoff Record 5-6 N/A 3-8 N/A N/A
2004 Playoff Record 6-5 N/A 4-7 N/A N/A
2003 Playoff Record 6-5 N/A 4-7 N/A N/A
2002 Playoff Record 6-5 7-4 5-6 N/A N/A
2001 Playoff Record 6-4-1 7-3-1 4-6-1 N/A N/A
2000 Playoff Record 6-5 7-4 6-5 N/A N/A
2011 Record 121-128-7 134-115-7 124-125-7 123-126-7 127-122-7
2010 Record 129-122-5 134-117-5 126-125-5 136-115-5 134-117-5
2009 Record 123-130-3 132-121-3 131-122-3 130-123-3 126-127-3
2008 Record 132-114-10 128-118-10 124-122-10 125-121-10 130-116-10
2007 Record 127-120 118-129 127-120 N/A 130-117
2006 Record 118-129 N/A 139-108 N/A N/A
2005 Record 121-126 N/A 127-120 N/A N/A
2004 Record 124-124 N/A 130-118 N/A N/A
2003 Record 121-126 118-129 124-123 N/A N/A
2002 Record 113-136 123-126 141-108 N/A N/A
2001 Record 124-113 117-120 118-119 N/A N/A
2000 Record 123-117 134-106 141-99 N/A N/A

Consensus Picks

Like last week, we have no consensus picks this week. We're 23-30-1 on the season. Last year we were 30-24-2 on consensus picks.

Comments:

WriterComment
EricksonI hate betting on the side in which the line has already moved from where it's opened, especially in the Niners game, where there had to be a ton of money to get a road No. 2 seed off the 3-point spread. It's really remarkable, to see a No. 1 seed being a home dog in the playoffs like this.
PianowskiHate, hate, hate picking the Falcons, but the number seems a little too high to me. The number is certainly too high in the second game, where I think Baltimore's winning chances are in the 35-40 percent range.
LissIf DDD's best bet isn't a hedge, there's no such thing as a hedge.
StopaI've been on the 49ers and Patriots all year, while repeatedly calling out the Ravens and Falcons as frauds, so I suppose it's ironic these are the teams to square off. I'm 100% comfortable sticking to my guns with the 49ers, who are vastly superior to the Falcons in every aspect, particularly in the trenches, and should win handily. Don't give me the "home dog" angle, either, as nobody's afraid of going into ATL. 49ers 38-17. The other game, however, gives me pause. My instinct/gut says the Patriots, as every metric says they're much better than the Ravens. My brain, though, tells me the Ravens usually play the Pats tough, and the Patriots offense, while still top-shelf, isn't the same without Gronk. I struggled with this all week - gut vs. brain - and ultimately went with my gut. I felt good about my picks this year, so I can't see changing the thought process now. Pats 34-20. Falcons and Ravens are frauds, so Pats vs. 49ers for the title.
Del Don The NFC Championship game spread has to be one of the craziest ever, with the No. 1 seed being as much as 5-point dogs in some places. Neither a Pats blowout nor a Ravens win outright would surprise me in the AFC game.

The players:

Jeff Erickson: RotoWire Senior editor, 2001, 2008 Staff Picks Champ. Writes the Value Meter. Covers and roots for the Bengals.

Scott Pianowski: Fantasy expert for Yahoo! Sports, and also contributes to Rotowire.com. 2009 and 2011 Staff Picks Champ. Roots for the Patriots.

Chris Liss: RotoWire Managing Editor, 2000, 2002, 2006 Staff Picks Champ, 2003, 2004 co-champ. Writes East Coast Offense, Beating the Book and Surviving the Week in addition to Staff Picks. Covers and roots for the Giants.

Mark Stopa: Staff Writer, 2010 and 2012 Staff Picks Champ, Writes Working the Wire. Roots for the Bills.

Dalton Del Don: Fantasy Expert for Yahoo! Sports, 2007 Staff Picks Champ. Roots for the 49ers.