Football bragging rights

'Pigskin Pundits' tackle 17th week of NFL picks

Brower's reign of domination continues, guests solid, Haskell third, Waltz goes from bad to worse
By Staff | Dec 28, 2017

Rockland — This is the 17th and final week of the 2017-18 National Football League regular season. Courier Publications/VillageSoup's "Pigskin Pundits" will match wits with a guest each week to pick the winners of the games.

The weekly pundits who will participate in the 19th consecutive year of the pro football selections will be Courier Publications/VillageSoup owner Reade Brower, Sports Director Ken Waltz and Associate Sports Director Mark Haskell.

Games are picked for “winners,” not on a points spread, but simply the final score.

Those interested in being a weekly guest picker should email Haskell at

The Week 17 guest is Chris Donlin of Warren.

Thus far, the guests have been Kyle Durkee of Waldoboro in Week 1 (12-3), Laurie Cole of Rockland in Week 2 (11-5), Cameron Watson of Searsport in Week 3 (7-9), Ryan Snell of Waldoboro in Week 4 (10-6), Tom Peaco of Rockland in Week 5 (6-8), Collin Landry of Rockland in Week 6 (7-7), Anthony Raye of Rockland in Week 7 (10-5), Zack Miller of Rockland in Week 8 (13-0), Scott Case of Belfast in Week 9 (8-5), Rachel Coor of Union and New York, N.Y. in Week 10 (10-4), Ryan Verrill of Warren in Week 11 (9-5), Sandy Cameron of Belfast in Week 12 (13-3), Bev Sherwin of Thomaston in Week 13 (10-6), Jeff Hart of Rockport in Week 14 (12-4), Wes Drinkwater of South Thomaston in Week 15 (10-6) and Mark Cooper of Fairfield in Week 16 (13-3).

Miller holds the distinction as the best weekly guest at 13-0 in Week 8, while Cameron and Cooper are second at 13-3 in Week 12 and 16, respectively, and Durkee third at 12-3 in Week 1.

In Week 16, Brower and Haskell finished 13-3 and Waltz 12-4.

Thus, after 16 weeks, Brower, who has had an unbelievably consistent year, leads the pack at 166-74 (.692 winning percentage), while the guests are second at 161-79 (.671), Haskell third at 147-93 (.613) and Waltz fourth at 142-98 (.592).

At this point, with one week to the end of the regular season, Brower holds a five-game advantage over the guests, 19-game lead over Haskell and whopping 24-game cushion over the overmatched and, ultimately, left-for-dead Waltz.

The guests with the best records before the final week results are determined — Miller, Cooper and Cameron — have earned the opportunity to pick against the the Courier Publications/VillageSoup trio in the postseason.

The Week 17 schedule includes:

Sunday, Dec. 31

Green Bay at Detroit

Houston at Indianapolis

Chicago at Minnesota

N.Y. Jets at New England

Washington at N.Y. Giants

Dallas at Philadelphia

Cleveland at Pittsburgh

Carolina at Atlanta

Kansas City at Denver

Jacksonville at Tennessee

San Francisco at Los Angeles Rams

Buffalo at Miami

Oakland at Los Angeles Chargers

Arizona at Seattle

New Orleans at Tampa Bay

Cincinnati at Baltimore

You picked who?

Donlin: Detroit, Houston, Minnesota, New England, Washington, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Carolina, Kansas City, Jacksonville, San Francisco, Buffalo, Oakland, Arizona, New Orleans and Baltimore.

Brower: Detroit, Indianapolis, Minnesota, New England, N.Y. Giants, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Kansas City, Tennessee, San Francisco, Buffalo, Los Angeles Chargers, Seattle, New Orleans and Baltimore.

Haskell: Detroit, Indianapolis, Minnesota, New England, Washington, Dallas, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Kansas City, Jacksonville, San Francisco, Miami, Los Angeles Chargers, Seattle, New Orleans and Baltimore.

Waltz: Detroit, Indianapolis, Minnesota, New England, N.Y. Giants, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Kansas City, Tennessee, Los Angeles Rams, Buffalo, Los Angeles Chargers, Seattle, New Orleans and Baltimore.

Last year's results

Haskell finished 173-92-2 overall (.653 winning percentage), including 8-3 in the playoffs. Waltz finished 171-94-2 (.645), including 7-4 in the postseason. Brower finished 169-96-2 (.638), including a perfect 11-0 in the playoffs. Chris Donlin, at 13-3 in Week 17, was the guest who earned the right to participate in the playoffs, and he finished 8-3 in the postseason and helped guests finish 170-95-2 (.642).

Each prognosticator selected New England to beat Atlanta in the Super Bowl, and the Patriots rallied to prevail 34-28. Waltz predicted 38-28, Haskell 34-24, Brower 34-23 and Donlin 27-17.

During the regular season, Haskell finished with the best individual week at 15-1 in Week 15. In regular-season play, Haskell finished 165-89-2, Waltz 164-90-2 and Brower 158-96-2.

Courier Publications' sports staff can be reached by email at or by phone at 594-4401.

Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.