I decided to take Wednesday off of work to celebrate my birthday with my wife. I also decided on Tuesday night to begin the celebration a little early.
It was a blast, but it's left me woefully behind, and armed with not as much time as I'd like to do this week's football guesses as elaborately as I'd like.
So pardon the brevity.
BENGALS v. DOLPHINS
This has sneaky-good potential, with one team coming off of an emotional, almost monumental, comeback road win and the other coming off a pasting at the hands of the Patriots.
I'm excited for Vontaze Burfict's return, but as great as he can be, I'm skeptical that he can fix the Bengals' defensive issues, particularly on third down, by himself.
I'm marginally optimistic that with Andy Dalton playing the way he is, this team can work through injuries.
The term "trap game" is beyond cliche, but it applies here. Can the Bengals carry over last week's emotion into a charged-up performance this week, with the Steelers lurking a week from Sunday?
If the pass rush makes an appearance, the Bengals could win handily, but I don't trust anything about their defense enough right now to pick them to win big with confidence.
I do believe they will be 4-1 after Sunday. I don't think their fourth win will be attained easily.
Bengals 27 Dolphins 24 (Miami +5)
THERE ARE OTHER GAMES
In order of confidence. Again, my apologies for being brief.
New England (-10.5) over Indianapolis
Dallas (+3) over Houston
Green Bay (-1) over Detroit
Chargers (-5.5) over Oakland
Jacksonville (+3) over Kansas City
Baltimore (-3) over Cleveland
Washington (+6.5) over New Orleans
Buffalo (+3.5) over Tennessee
Carolina (-7) over Giants
Jets (-1) over Denver
Arizona (+4.5) over San Francisco
Minnesota (+3) Philadelphia
Pittsburgh (-3) over Atlanta
Seattle (+7.5) over Rams
Last week 7-8
This season: 33-29-2
CINCINNATI v. TULANE
Read this piece on Desmond Ridder. Then throw some money on the Bearcats. Cincinnati (-7) over Tulane.
KEEP YOUR SHIRT ON
Ohio State (-25.5) over Indiana
Texas A&M (-6) over Kentucky
Miami (+5) over Akron
DON'T SPEND IT ALL IN ONE PLACE
Florida (+2.5) over LSU
South Florida (-13.5) over UMass
Miami (-12.5) over Florida State
Notre Dame (-7) over Virginia Tech.
Houston over Milwaukee in six. The Brewers are built for a postseason run. The Astros are a dynasty.
Thanks for bearing with me. Enjoy your weekend.