Diane Remington said it's her fault.
Her significant other, Bill Russo, was a big-time sports nut of all Boston pro sports. But he had never played the "I Beat Burt" Contest.
"Bill said he didn't know anything about it. I was surprised," said Remington, a Saugus native who resides in Methuen. "I'd been playing for a few years. So it was something he said he'd start doing it. We started picking our games — separately, of course — and then we compare. We're always different."
Then, the worst thing occurred, according to Remington. Her boyfriend, a native of Somerville who also lives in Methuen, won a T-shirt before she did.
"He made fun of me for winning first before I did," she said. "He really did brag a lot."
But then tide turned and Remington won ... twice, including this past week.
"I told Bill to get his shirt (from last year) and let's go get a photo of us together," she said.
Remington says they both have different methods of picking games. "He's loves the stats," she said. "I go with the teams I think are better."
Remington said she became a big football fan while attending Saugus High. A field hockey player, she would always go to Sachems' football games with her schoolmates. Since then, she's been hooked.
"Football is my favorite sport. I've never been crazy about the other sports," she said. "I can't follow the puck in hockey; it moves too quick.
"Every Sunday and Monday night is dedicated to football. Bill did introduce me to the (NFL) RedZone, so now I can watch all of the games at once. It's incredible."
Remington has two sisters, both of whom have husbands that love football, too.
"They both say they married the wrong sister," she joked.
Remington has two grown children — Tanya Pelligrino and Joe Pelligrino (Remington's first husband's last name) — that both live in Connecticut. She recently retired as a registered nurse, spending 43 years at Holy Family in Methuen in labor and delivery. She also worked for 14 years doing double duty as a nurse in Methuen schools.
"I can't wait for Sundays watching football and the Patriots," she said. "The channel doesn't change when we're watching the Patriots. We both agree on that."
Good teams keep winning
If you picked all 11 favorites in Week 11, would've picked more winners than your humble predictor did.
But I can understand why that didn't happen — because it hasn't happened that way the entire season, not with upsets and road teams becoming a common occurrence in 2016.
I had 10 winners out of the 13 games, again losing with the Green Bay Packers. If I went with my gut and chose the Washington Redskins, only three entries would've beaten me.
Each week a maximum of 10 T-shirts are awarded. In Week 11 T-shirt winners were within four points of the Patriots point total (30), which is always the first tiebreaker.
Week 12 is already online. Good luck.
Week 11 winners:
Billy Duratti of Beverly
Bill Barnes of Danvers
Unree Poellnitz of Peabody
Ruth Sawyer of Peabody
Ralph Faiola of Gloucester
Mary Kelleher of Newburyport
Joe Gajewski of Haverhill
Tom Lattof of Gloucester
Dan Crean of North Andover
Steve Lake of Gloucester