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Staff Picks: Backing the Broncos - (Mostly)

Chris Liss

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

A solid Wild Card showing for the staff which went 5-0 on best bets and 1-0 on consensus picks. DDD is off to a big lead at 4-0.

This week, DDD and Erickson both made the Packers their best bets, while I did the opposite and took the 49ers. Both Pianow and Stopa like the Broncos.

Erickson Pianowski Liss Stopa Del Don
Ravens +9.5 at Broncos Ravens Broncos Broncos Broncos Broncos
Packers +3 at 49ers Packers Packers 49ers 49ers Packers
Seahawks +2.5 at Falcons Falcons Seahawks Seahawks Seahawks Seahawks
Texans +9.5 at Patriots Texans Patriots Texans Texans Patriots
Best Bet Packers Broncos 49ers Broncos Packers
Last Week's Record 1-3 2-2 2-2 2-2 4-0
Playoff Best Best Record 1-0 1-0 1-0 1-0 1-0
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

This week we have no consensus picks. Last week we went 1-0 to put us at 23-30-1 on the season. Last year we were 30-24-2 on consensus picks.


EricksonI feel as if the Packers are this year's version of the Giants, peaking at the right time, with all of their key personnel coming back. Remember, this is an outfit that was without Greg Jennings and Charles Woodson for most of the year, and without Clay Matthews for a significant portion. Colin Kaepernick is the x-factor in this game - there's such a wide variance in the potential results. But at the end of the day, I don't trust him yet, and I don't know what Justin Smith will be able to give the Niners. And without a full Justin Smith, I think Aldon Smith will find his hands full too. Give me the points there... I feel more confident about the NFC games than the AFC games.
PianowskiNo dancing for Ray Lewis this week. Fraudulent Ravens sent home for good.
LissI don't love any of these games, but the Niners are the better team, at home and laying only three. I also think the Texans are getting too many points. I narrowly picked Seattle earlier in the week, but am starting to think that was a mistake - the Seahawks are the better team and getting points, but the set-up favors the Falcons.
StopaIt's easy to assume a Pats blowout, and I had been leaning that way, but: (1) NE is just 1-5 in its last 6 playoff games ATS, going back to the first Super Bowl loss to the Giants, with the only victory over Tim Tebow, and in the five losses, their point totals were 14, 14, 17, 21, and 23; and (2) the Texans have enough talent - J.J. Watt, Andre Johnson, and Arian Foster in particular - that I wouldn't be shocked to see them play one of those "we aren't going to lose today" games and win outright. I have to take 9 points. Pats 24-20. The Ravens, on the other hand, I'd be shocked to see win. Denver will score in the 30s, but Joe Flacco's road splits (74.9 QB rating and just 7 TDs in 8 road games) make 34-17 seem inevitable... I think SF is better than the team that beat GB 30-22 in Week 1, but the Packers aren't any better. Justin Smith's injury worries me a little, but Aaron Rodgers will have to vastly outplay Colin Kaepernick to make up for the 49ers superior talent throughout the rest of the roster. Possible, but if Kaepernick posts even an average game for him (98.3 QB rating), Rodgers will have to be virtually perfect for GB to win. 49ers 27-23... I actually think the Falcons are a bit of a buy-low, getting no respect at home where their record is terrific with Matt Ryan. But it's an awful matchup for ATL, as Seattle's strong running game matches up with the Falcons biggest weakness (4.8 YPC, 16 rushing TDs), and the Falcons biggest strength, their wideouts, go against two of the NFL's best corners. I just don't see where ATL has an advantage. Seahawks 27-17.
Del DonWhile I don't expect either AFC game to be particularly competitive, I could easily see both NFC games going either way. The health of Justin Smith will be paramount for San Francisco, and I just don't think he'll be anywhere near 100 percent. The Seahawks are the better team, but Atlanta gets to play at home coming off a bye, whereas Seattle is playing essentially a 10 am game for them and will be without Chris Clemons. This game was the hardest for me to pick this week.

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 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, 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.