Bettin’ or Braggin’: Picking the pros

Not sure about yours, but my “Inspirational Quotes” desk calendar tells me we’re now in September.

That, coupled with a wafting stench of burnt barbecue, beer burps and Flexall 454 can mean only one thing: It’s football season.

To quench our unending thirst for degenerate behavior, the SFBay sports crew is developing an expensive, life-eroding gambling habit. Like any halfway-decent descent into addiction, you’ve got a chance to play along.

Chelena Goldman, Ali Thanawalla and myself will pick the winners against the point spread for six pro football games each week. We’ll each pick the same games, but the amount we can bet on each game will be wide open.

Since SFBay is still a pre-funded startup without a Series A to splash around, we’ve fired up our steam-powered, Emperor Norton-inspired currency printing engine to mint up fresh stacks of SFBay Bucks.

Each of us will begin the season with 10,000 SFBay Bucks. The goal — other than not going broke — is to finish the season with the most money.

There’s plenty of SFBay bucks to go around, too! We’re making it rain, SFBay style. (So it’s more of a heavy mist.) Feel free to join us and play along in the comments to win fabulous prizes! (See below.)

Or, just deride our highly-speculative picks.

Now excuse us please while we go count our stacks.

Fair warning: We’re not touts, sharks or bookies. We don’t splash action around the web or line up bets in back alleys. We’re just a few local writers picking games without much of a clue. So using these picks for your own gambling is probably a very bad idea.

Leaderboard

Name Bankroll Last week
Ali 10,000 +0
Chelena 10,000 +0
Jesse 10,000 +0

Week One

Game Ali Chelena Jesse
San Francisco at
Green Bay (-5 1/2)
GB
100
SF
100
SF
200
Pittsburgh at
Denver (-1 1/2)
PIT
100
PIT
100
DEN
100
San Diego (-1 1/2) at
Oakland
SD
200
SD
100
SD
100
Indianapolis at
Chicago (-9 1/2)
IND
100
CHI
100
IND
200
Washington at
New Orleans (-11)
NO
200
NO
100
WAS
100
Buffalo at
New York (A) (-3 1/2)
BUF
200
BUF
100
BUF
100

To refresh anyone’s memory on how point spreads function, the team with the “minus points” is the favored team, and has the “point spread” deducted from their score at the end of the game. The final score adjusted by the point spread determines the winner of the bet.

If a team is favored by three points, they must win by more than three points to win a point spread bet.

You Can Win!

Of course you can play along with Bettin’ or Braggin! What kind of pro football picking game would Bettin’ or Braggin’ be if you couldn’t play?

You can win prizes! (We can’t. All SFBay staff can win are bragging rights over each other. In other words, priceless.)

But first, some rules:

  • You’ll need to to pick at least 6 of the 17 weeks of the pro football season to be eligible to win a prize. (Because you can bet unlimited amounts at your discretion, you can’t just “quit while you’re ahead” after a big month.)
  • We will pick all San Francisco and Oakland games in the regular season. All other games selected are at the sole discretion of SFBay.
  • You play the game by posting your picks to the pre-selected pro football games in the comment thread of the SFBay Bettin’ or Braggin’ post each week. Your pick should consist of a city and a dollar amount for all six games. All your picks must be posted in a single comment.
  • The deadline for submitting your picks is 10 a.m. Sunday (Pacific Time) each week. We won’t be picking Thursday games because Thursday pro football is bullshit.*
  • The winner is the player who ends up with the most SFBay Bucks at the end of the pro football regular season. Sorry, SFBay Bucks have absolutely no cash value or equivalent.

* – Actually, we will be picking two Thursday games, the Seattle-San Francisco game Oct. 26 and the Denver-Oakland game Dec. 6. On those weeks, the deadline for weekly picks will be Thursday at 5 p.m. See why we don’t like Thursday games? Too complicated.

Fabulous Prizes

Third-place: SFBay black fleece hoodie, high quality. Nice stuff. $50 value.

Second-place: Limited-edition, authentic SFBay Golden Gate FC soccer shirt, customized with your name. $120 value.

First place: A green Joe Montana Notre Dame Adidas jersey, “True School Authentics,” Size 56. Very high quality retro-authentic heavy mesh. Brand-new, never-worn condition. All tags attached. Very collectible. $250 value.