Kibbles & Picks – Week 7 10.19.23

Kibbles and Picks 2023 – Week 7


Apologies again to everyone for missing last week’s writeup. It was a bit of a week, but we’re back in the saddle here in Week 7 and ready to let ‘er rip.


Well … Stella is, at any rate.


We did get the picks in and it turns out that Week 6 was more of the same. I had a fair performance, turning in a respectable 9-6. Stella once again beat me, however, going 11-4 and expanding her lead by another two games. All told, she’s six games ahead.


But for how long?


See, what we have here in Week 7 is an opportunity. Despite there being just 13 games on the schedule, Stella and I have managed to land on opposite sides of eight of those matchups. Eight games! That’s enough for me to totally erase Stella’s lead. And yes, it’s also enough for Stella to bury me in a hole out of which I will almost certainly not be able to dig myself. Either way, there’s potential for some big movement.


(Note: With eight games, we’ll try and keep the capsules short if we can. Your reading time is valuable and we’d hate to waste it.)


First up, in the Thursday night pairing, I have Jacksonville winning on the road against New Orleans. I’ve liked what I’ve seen from the Jags thus far, though it remains to be seen just how dinged up QB Trevor Lawrence is. If he’s 100% or close to it, I think he – along with guys like Travis Etienne and Calvin Ridley and Christian Kirk – will run wild on the Saints. Stella’s a bit more pessimistic about Lawrence’s health and thinks that we’re on the verge of a significant Alvin Kamara resurgence. She’s counting on a big game from him and the NoLa pass rush to give the Saints the W.


This week’s “Please Don’t Watch” special is Las Vegas and Chicago. I’ve got the Raiders winning on the road. While I don’t love what Jimmy G has done under center, Josh Jacobs keeps running the ball and – when Jimmy gets it to them – Davante Adams and Jakobi Meyers have done good work catching it. The defense is no great shakes, but Chicago’s offense is reeling. Stella acknowledges that the Bears are bad and likely to lose, but can’t shake a feeling that something strange will happen and hand Chicago a victory … and she’s learned to trust her hunches, even if they are connected to a beaten-up squad that wasn’t great when everyone was healthy.


From there, we’re looking at Cleveland versus Indianapolis. I’ve got the Colts, even though they said goodbye to rookie QB Anthony Richardson for the season. Gardner Minshew has shown himself to be perfectly adequate and Jonathan Taylor is back to run the ball; I’m counting on a heavy dose of Taylor and Zach Moss to let the Colts control the tempo and grind out the win. Stella thinks the Browns defense will have a field day against Indy; she’s anticipating constant harassment of Minshew and at least a couple of turnovers. She doesn’t love the offense, regardless of who’s under center (we still loathe Deshaun Watson, by the way), but she’s fairly certain that they’ll be able to score just enough, thanks to a top-shelf defensive performance.


Sigh. Look, I know it’s ridiculous and I’ll probably have to give up sooner rather than later, but I’m still going to pick the Patriots to win at home against the Bills. Do I actually BELIEVE that they will win? Reader, I do not. But I also don’t think this team will go 1-16, so another win or two has to come from somewhere. Stella, as usual, scoffs at my nonsense and points to the fact that the Bills are arguably better at literally every single position on the field. Beyond that, she chooses not to dignify this with any deeper analysis.


After that, it’s Atlanta versus Tampa Bay in a battle to stay on top of the very mediocre NFC South. I’ve got the Falcons winning on the road, because why not? Stella has the Buccaneers winning for much the same reasons. Neither one of us feels like we have a firm grasp on these teams or this division, so why push it? Flip a coin or throw a dart.


In the matchup between Detroit and Baltimore, I’ve got the Lions winning on the road. Jared Goff has looked real deal and the Lions defense has been getting the job done. This team seems to be getting better and keeps doing enough to win. I like that momentum going into a game against a somewhat inconsistent Ravens squad. Stella thinks that Lamar Jackson is going to do a number on the Lions in this game, putting on a show reminiscent of his vintage performances. She thinks Baltimore will move the ball well and that the D will contain Goff and company enough to ensure their triumph.


From there, we’re off to Denver, where I have the admittedly-not-good Broncos pulling out a home win over the visiting Packers. I do think that the Packers, when healthy, are a far superior team. And they are coming off a bye. I still think they’re too dinged up, and the Broncos are going to want to avoid embarrassment at home. Stella’s no Green Bay believer, but she thinks that Jordan Love and company will have little trouble handing this bad Denver squad. It won’t be an attractive game, or an exciting one, but she’s got her money on the Packers to win fairly handily.


And last, we’re looking at Miami/Philadelphia in what could be one of the highlight games of the season thus far. I’ve picked Miami, simply because that offense – led by Tua Tagovailoa and some elite skill position players putting up HUGE numbers – looks nigh-impossible to stop. Philly’s defense will likely do a better job than most, but I still think it won’t be enough. Stella’s in agreement with everything I’ve said up until that last bit. She thinks the Eagles will be able to cause the Dolphins to sputter just enough. Plus, Philly’s got a pretty good QB of their own in Jalen Hurts, throwing to A.J. Brown and the like, so they can score some points too. Basically, we think this is going to be a great game, regardless of who wins.


There we go. Eight games. Eight chances for me to redeem myself or sink further into ridicule. It’s enough to make me wonder why I even do this. But hey – maybe this is my week. And my season.


Stella remains unconcerned.


(winners in caps)





Thursday, October 19


Sunday, October 22


LAS VEGAS at Chicago


Buffalo at NEW ENGLAND


ATLANTA at Tampa Bay

DETROIT at Baltimore

Pittsburgh at LA RAMS

Arizona at SEATTLE

Green Bay at DENVER

LA Chargers at KANSAS CITY

MIAMI at Philadelphia


Monday, October 23


SAN FRANCISCO at Minnesota


Week 6 record: 9-6

Season record: 51-42





Thursday, October 19

Jacksonville at NEW ORLEANS

Sunday, October 22


Las Vegas at CHICAGO

CLEVELAND at Indianapolis

BUFFALO at New England


Atlanta at TAMPA BAY

Detroit at BALTIMORE

Pittsburgh at LA RAMS

Arizona at SEATTLE

GREEN BAY at Denver

LA Chargers at KANSAS CITY



Monday, October 23


SAN FRANCISCO at Minnesota


Week 6 record: 11-4

Season record: 57-36