Saturday, September 30, 2006

Week 4

Washington +3 ( 2.5 units)
Indy -1/ Baltimore +9 ( 2 unit teaser)
leans NE +6, Carolina -7, Oakland +2.5 , detroit +6

Colts -8 @ Jets . Manning and the boys will exploit this Jets D.
Arizona +7.5 @ Atlanta . The Falcons could win this game, but I think the Cards will put up some points on that fast surface. Without John Abraham, Hurt Warner could have time to operate. If Atlanta wins you figure the score to be lower, if Arizona wins it could be higher scoring, or they could cover the spread in a higher scoring game also.
Dallas -9.5@ Tennesse. Tennesse starts the Vince Young era, and it will begin with a loss. That tennesse defense has problems tackeling, and dallas should come off the bye week with a double digit win.
Miami @ Houston +3.5. Both teams have looked terrible thus far. Houston has looked terrible against Indy, philly and washington, while Miami has looked terrible against Charlie Batch Pittsburgh, Buffalo, and Tennesse.
Minnesota -1 @ Buffalo. The Viqueens are 3-0 against the spread so far. Playing on the road is difficult in the NFL, but they do have a vet QB who can handle it. JP Losman is not a very good quarterback.
New Orleans @ Carolina -7. The saints are due for a let down after last weeks feel good story on National TV. Carolina needs to get back on track, and they win this game by MORE than a possession.
San Diego @ Baltimore +2. West coast teams have a tough time traveling east an playing 1pm kickoffs, it might be 1pm in Baltimore but it will still feel like 10am to the Tan Diego players. SD will be coming off a bye, so they could come out fresh or they could come out rusty. San Diego beat up two weaker opponents, but with a week off, and facing a tought baltimore D, it could start off slow. Phillip Rivers also faces his first test on the road. Baltimore pulled off a win last week in a game they deserved to lose. Gimme Baltimore and the points.
SF @ KC -7. I know Trent Green is still out, but I think Larry Johnson can re-introduce himself to fans and fantasy football players this week. Alex Smith has improved this year, but KC and their sea of red is always tough on opponents.
Detroit +6 @ St. Louis. Mike Martz returns to st. louis with a detroit offense that is so close to scoring 40 points that it's silly ( according to them). I see Detroit as a very live dog, so I will certainly take the 6 points.
Cleveland @ Oakland +2.5. They don't call them the faiders for nothing, oakland has been embarassed thus far. I think they had some soul searching to do during that bye week and they should play pissed off. To their defense, they did get beat by two very good defensive teams ( Baltimore/San Diego).
Jacksonville @ Washington +3 ( sucker bet special)I took washington + 3 earlier in the week. Byron Leftwhich is from DC and will try to win the game rather than manage it. I can see Jacksonville making the key mistakes in a defensive stalemate.
New England +6 @ Cincy. New England doesn't like losing 2 games in a row. The Pats have shifted their focus on offense more to the running game. The Bengals could have trouble stopping the Pats run, and keeping Carson Palmer and the offense on the field.
Seattle @ Chicago -3.5. I think Maurice Morris could fill in well for Shaun Alexander, but neither guy would run very well on this Bears D. Seattle isn't as good on the road, and I think the whole Sunday night crew will spend their time telling everybody " the bears are for real", the same way they were hyping up jacksonville. I think fans are reluctant to jump on those defensive teams bandwagons, but ESPN will do their best to sell you these teams.
Green Bay @ Philly -11. I don't think many people are giving the fudge packers much of a chance in this game. The only thing I would worry about as an eagles backer is the moose or backdoor cover late in the game. Both the Giants and San Fran mounted combacks as Andy Reid packed up and started eating donuts on the sidelines.

Last Week 7-7
Total= 21- 25
W1 5-11
W2 9-7
W3 7-7

Suckers bets 3-0

Plays are with a 50 unit bankroll, and I am up 20 units
8-3 ATS
2-0 ML
1-0 ML parlay
1-0 Quarter Lines
3 winning weeks, 0 losing weeks

Week 4 sucker bet

Week 4- Washington Redskins +3

Last week I said I wanted to stop playing the odds, and finding value etc. and just deliver winners. Thats all I did last week, as I was 4-0 ATS and 2-0 on MLs.

Last week the Cleveland Browns were the #1 most unpopular pick at around 76% on Baltimore. Right now, the Washington Redskins are the 2nd most unpopular pick with 73% on Jacksonville right now. ( The Bengals are slightly the most popular pick over New England right now.

I think the Media is really hyping up the Jags. All three of their games so far were Nationally televised. The whole country has seen Jacksonville beat Dallas in week 1, beat Pittsburgh in week 2, and lose on the final drive @ Indy last week. During that same time, everybody saw Washington lose two nationally televised games at home against Minnesota on 9/11 and to Dallas week 2.

The guys on TV (Theisman and Kornheiser) kept making a point to talk about how Jacksonville was 12-4 last year, their defense is for real, and that they are a contender. While I won't agree with all of that, it seems that they are doing everything possible to talk up the Jags. I think last year, people were still wondering if the Jags were for real, but Theisman and Kornheiser TOLD them that the Jags are for real.

I live in Washington and am a big NFC East guy. I probably know more about the Redskins than any other team ( even my own favorite team). I hear the redskins fans every day at work, I hear the talk radio every day before and after work, and I see the ESPN hype machine on gamedays. I even see the redskins around town sometimes.

I like to talk football with everyone. Not everybody is going to be a Herb Herbstreet that knows football, but I like to ask these Joe Public guys what they think about the games as well. All of these causal fans told me that Washington has no chance, the Jags defense is really good, and they have tall receivers that are impossible to cover.

Here are some things to look for...

Brunell the OLD Jags QB, vs Byron the NEW Jags QB.
- Now I am not going to sit here and say so and so is guaranteed to have a good game to show his old teammage up up, because we have seen the OLD and the NEW outperform their counterparts in past matchups. I am not saying who has more to prove, I am just saying to be aware of unusual results which pieces together with my next piece...

Byron Leftwhich has a homecoming in DC
- My hunch tells me that Byron will have a big group of family and friends that will come out to support him this week. My hunch also tells me that if Byron tries a little too hard to impress them, and the results could be disasterous. I haven't been impressed with Byron thus far this season.

I have watched all 3 jags games, and I have seen him run a lot of "set" plays. What I mean by set plays, is that he was dumping off screens, and throwing 2 yard passes, and in the dallas game he was just throwing jump balls up to his tall receivers. Basically, you don't have to THINK to be managing a game like that. I don't call that playing QB in the National football league. Take a look at how Houston runs their offense at the start of games. Gary Kubiak has these set plays, were David Carr might run a bootleg and roll out with a tight end and just dump it off to him ( It's a 1 read play). Jake Plummer had a lot of these set plays where it was pre-determed who he threw the ball to. When teams made Jake play QB last year, he suffered.

My point is that running these screeens, bootlegs, predetermed jump balls is one thing, but playing QB and reading blitzes and defensive coverages is difficult and totally different. Not everybody can run and offense like Peyton, Donovan, Brady, Carson, or Hasselback. Teams draft quarterbacks in the first round to be Quarterbacks, not game managers who dump it off and hand it off and their 3rd and long plays.

Last week Byron ran these high percentage plays. Even on 3rd and goal, his coach called a QB draw for him. On 3rd and long plays, we saw them running these draws, and screens. We didn't see the coaches telling Byron to throw the ball downfield, we saw the coaches telling him to run, handoff, or dump the ball off to the runningbacks in the flats. That tells me the conservative style of Jacksonville, and that they aren't totally confident in letting Byron try and win games. I do NOT think Byron leftwhich is a very good pro quarterback. He has horrible throwing mechanics, horrible footwork, a slow deliberate delivery, and he holds onto the ball forever.( aikman pointed out how he has never seen a QB drop the ball below his waste before he throws). Instead of trying to coach Byron, and correct these horrible mechanics, people say " Just let Byron be Byron... don't try and chance a pro QB... don't try and change the way he plays the game... just let Byron Leftwhich be Byron Leftwhich. I disagree.

I wouldn't be suprised to see Byron take off that game manager hat this week, while facing his old QB, and his family in DC.

Byron on the road...
Let's take a look at how Byron has fared on the road recently.

Loss @ Indy - 16-28, 107 yards, 1TD 2 INT. Not very good numbers at all against a weak Indy Defense. He threw a "walk off" pick to lose the game, and a lot of his completions were these dump offs. I counted 1 or 2 throws that were actually more than 7 yards downfield.
Loss @ New England - 28-3 loss in the playoffs last year. Byron was 18/31 with 179 yards, 0TD 1 INT, 1 fumble and he was replaced by backup David Garrard. He was flustered by the pass rush up the middle, and had a horrible game that was over before it began.
Win @ Tennesse - 258 yards, 3 TDs 0 Int, 1 fumble against a terrible tennesse team
Loss @ St. Louis - 18/31, 213 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Win @ Pittsburgh- 19/35, 177 yards, 1 TD 1 INT 1 fumble. Did Byron win the game, or did Tommy Maddox lose the game?
Win @ NY Jets- 16/23, 177 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT, 1 fumble. Beating a terrible jets team
Loss @ Indy - 16/29, 198 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT, 3 fumbles, his team scored no touchdowns against Indy.

Byron hasn't played very well on the road recently. He looked real rattled to me in that dome last week. This week, the 94,000 will be real loud at the NFL's largest stadium.

I think Jacksonville watched film of the Giants against Indy in week 1. The Indy run defense is terrible. Dwight Freeny just spins himself right out of plays and they made Maurice Jones Drew look like Barry Sanders. It looked like Fred Taylor and Jones- Drew were running the same way Tike Barber and Brandon Jacobs were. I think on that fast turf, opposing runningbacks are going to have huge running lanes on those offtackle plays. The announcer pointed out how Fred Talor would take the handoff, move up 1 step, and then pick a lane and GO.

Byron won't have the Luxary of that run game this week. Washingtons run defense is for real. I think if washington can't get a pass rush going, it might actually hurt leftwhich into having time, and trying to read those confusing greg williams defensive schemes.

I think both teams have good defenses, but Washington is at home, and I think Brunell is more inclined to letting the game come to him, while Byron could play a riskier game and make the key mistakes. If the game turns into a defensive stalemate, I give the nod to Washington.

I also think we haven't really seen Washingtons offense kick it into gear. I don't think they will have an outburst against a tough jags D, but I think Al Saunders could have that offense playing better.

Last but not least, Jacksonville has a ton of injuries, while Washington has not many at all.

I don't see Washington starting out 0-2 at home. I think if the redskins win a close one, they will be 3.5 point dogs at New York next week, and if they win by a touchdown or more they could be 3 point dogs at New York next week. I think the Giants beat them in New York Next week.

I see nearly 75% of the people on Jacksonville, but I don't see them happy sunday afternoon. I think this game should be a pickem at worst. I can't believe 75% of people are on jax. I think a lot of people are paying the juice to take Jax -2.5, while washington betters will pay the juice to take redskins +3.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Week 3 Picks

Week 3 plays

Eagles ML ( 5 units)
Eagles -6 ( 2.5 units)
Eagles 1st Quarter -.5 ( 2 units)
Redskins ML ( 5 units)
Redskins -4 ( 1 unit)
Browns +7
Ravens/Browns Under ( 1 unit)
Colts -6.5 ( 1 unit)

Haven't bought my browns line yet,

Here are the rest of the games
Jets/Bills = Jets +5.5
- The Bills won as straight up dogs last week, and are favored this week ( bad trend). I am not a big fan of JP Losman either.
Bengals/Steelers = Steelers -1.5
- I wouldn't bet on this game. I wrote about how hard it would be to beat Pittsburgh IN pittsburgh, but if anybody can do it, Carson Palmer can.
Jags/ Colts = Colts -7
- I think the whole world is in love with Byron Leftwhich and the Jags defense. How come when Byron wins with those horrible mechanics it's " just Byron being Byron", but when he losses it's not a good thing?
Titans/Dolphins = Dolphins -10.5
The Dolphins haven't looked very good this season, but neither have the Titans. I think the Dolphins get their first win of the year vs a titans defense routinly misses tackles.
Redskins/Houston = Redskins -4
After the Redskins beat last years worst team, I will have to listen to the front runner redskins fans all week.
Bears/Vikings= Bears -3.5
I think this game HAD potential to be a sucker bet, but the bears should win. I am not sold at all on the bears offense and I think their passing game is highly overrated right now.
Panthers/Tampa = Panthers -3.5
Steve Smith plays and the Panthers win. Somebody will be in a big hole after this game.
Packers/Detroit = Packers +6.5
Brett Favre had a decent game last week. I don't think the Lions should be laying a touchdown to anybody right now.
Ravens/Browns = Browns +7
- This weeks sucker bet
Rams/Cardinals = Cards -4.5
I think the Cards win this game, and teams that win cover. Warner outduels Bulger.
New York Giants/Seattle = Giants +3.5
- This could be the game of the week, I think the NY Giants go into Seattle and end their home win streak.
Eagles/San Fran= Eagles -6
- Eagles avenge last weeks heart breaking loss.
Denver @ New England = Denver +6.5
For some reason I think Denver plays better than they have this season. I wouldn't touch this game, but since this could be a rare case of the winning team not covering.
Atlanta/ NO = Falcons -3.5
- The Atlanta rushing attack will be too much for the saints to handle.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Week 3 sucker bet

The sucker bet is an underdog that nobody likes. It's a fools gold pick, a tradtional "trap", or game that looks too good to be true.

Week 1 - Seattle @ Detriot
This is what fools gold is all about. Everybody and their mom picked seattle ( the superbowl loser, to go destroy the Lions... Not only did the lions cover, but they almost won.

Week 2- Carolina @ Minnesota
I liked the 49ers to beat the rams, but that was more of a regular home dog winning. Nobody thought the line was right on the panthers/vikings game. Not only did Minnesota cover, but they won a shocker in overtime.

This weeks pick: Cleveland Browns

Baltimore @ Cleveland +6.5. Cleveland is already at +7 at bodog, and should hit +7 at the other books. Right now 86% of the bets are on the Ravens making Baltimore the publics favorite play.

The public has seen the Ravens win impressivly on the road in tampa, and beat up the raiders at home. The Brownies Lost a close one in week 1 at home to the Saints, and they lost to the Bengals.

I'll be the first to admit that I am not high on the Browns this year. In fact, I have the Browns season win total UNDER 7 wins. However I did count on the Browns to go 2-4 in the division, and I think they have a chance at winning this game outright...

I do think the Ravens are a quality team ( even a super bowl contender), but this will be a hard fought game. There has been a lot of bad blood in this rivalry ever seen Art Modell packed up from "the mistake by the lake" and took his franchise to Baltimore. It is a battle of the "old cleveland browns, against the cleveland browns". The city is still pissed off, and the game is at the dog pound in Cleveland.

- The last time these teams met, the Browns actually beat the Ravens 20-16 and Charlie Frye was the QB. I like the Fact that the Browns are at home where Romeo and C-Frye have already beaten this ravens squad.

I would also like to point out is the Injuries for Baltimore...
S. Rolle Prob
A. Franklin Ques
P.Daniels Ques
J. Ogden Ques ***
A. Thomas Ques *
M. Smith Ques
J. Lewis Ques *
R. Lewis Ques *

- That's 5 potential probowlers who are at the very least banged up. S. Rolle will play, and probably 2 or 3 of the other five hurt guys. I am not the kind of capper that just says ( Player A is hurt so this team is done), but I feel these are some key injuries. The biggest Injury for me is Ogden. In the first 2004 meeting, Johnathan Ogden was hurt and the Browns Kenard Lang dominated the backup Left tackle with 3 sacks. The Browns were 3.5 pt dogs and they won 20-3.

- Jamal Lewis is banged up, but the guy rushed for 89, 59, 81, 57 yards in their last 4 meetings. I'd have to bet that Lewis ( or mike anderson) will rush for UNDER 100 yards in an ugly sloppy game.

- Another small fact is the fact that Charlie Frye is used to seeing a 3-4 defense in practice. Not only has Frye already beat this Ravens D before, but he might not be a little better prepared against them since he is used to seeing that lineup.

- We all know that Winslow as calling out the offense in the media this week. This could either mean positive reaction, or negative reaction. I am not about the predict the Browns offense will go banannas against the ravens, but we could see them a little more aggressive on offense.

- The Ravens beat up the Raiders and went into tampa and won, but I think this will be a harder game than people think in this heated rivalry. I think personally think Romeo will try and turn this into an ugly, defensive battle. I think that even if the Ravens get a lead, they will take away some of that aggressiveness which can lead to a backdoor cover or just a low scoring game. With all the money on the Ravens, I also wouldn't be suprised to see the ball bounce the Browns way, and the Zebras to help out the Brownies as well. I think the public jumped on the ravens bandwagon a little too hard, and this is one of the 2 divisonal games the Browns will win

Ravens 9 Browns 13

Week 3 plays tab
Eagles ML 5 units
Eagles -6 ( 2.5 units)
Redskins ML 5 units

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Week 2

Last week + 4 units

New England -6 ( 2 units)
Cincy -10 ( 2 units)
Green Bay +2 ( 1 unit)
ML play, NE and Cincy ( 3 units to win 2)

New England @ Jets = Pats -6
Cleveland @ Cincy = Cincy -10
New Orleans @ Green Bay +2
Carolina @ Minnesota = Vikings +1
St Louis @ San Fran = San Fran +3
Buffalo @ Miami = Miami -6.5
Detroit @ Chicago = Chicago -9.5
Houston @ Indy = Indy -13.5
New York @ Philly = Philly -3
Oakland @ Baltimore = Baltimore -12
Tampa Bay @ Atlanta = Tampa +6
Arizona @ Seattle = Arizona +6.5
KC @ Denver = Denver -10.5
Tennesse @ San Diego = San Diego -11.5
Washington @ Dallas = Dallas -6
Pitt @ Jax = Pitt -1.5

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Weel 1 Recap

Week 1 recap
50 units
New England ML ( won 5 units)
Eagles -3.5 ( won 5 units)
Dallas +3 ( lost 5 units)
Washington -4 ( lost 1 unit)
Total = won 4 units

ATS picks
5-11 ( beyond terrible)

Although the picks were terrible, I felt confident in the games I liked. I wish I acted upon the "sucker bet" in Seattle, and considered going with the colts and ravens as well. My record was terrible, however I was wrong with the games that I didn't know or didn't care about as much.

When I did my write up for the Patriots game, I said in the worse case scenerio Buffalo scores 17 and the Pats score 20. New England wins 19-17 ( worst case scenerio). I predicted the Eagles would win 34-10, they won 24-10 and I think my forecast was fair. I had Dallas winning 20-10, and they jumped out to a 10-0 lead but lost 24-10. I don't know what happened in the Dallas game, but I almost started the year off up a crisp 15 units.

I had the "less is more" mentality because week 1 is unpredictable. We saw the underdogs bark real loud this week, and we saw some considerable upsets. I like a lot of the public got hammered in week 1, with all those underdog upsets. You can't really be unhappy winning 4 units, but I just feel like I could have won about 20 if some things fell into place. When I tried to pick every game, I went a horrible 5-11, but I knew the games that I liked. I knew that the Seattle game was a sucker bet, I had a feeling about Atlanta, the Colts, and Ravens as well. I guess the only other hunch game I was considering was Denver but they lost. If I would have acted upon more of those hunches I could have won more. I bet a Unit on Washington because I can't stand them, and I was actually happy to watch them melt down. It was a small price to pay for happiness.

I think the key thing to remember, is to NOT trust your eyes too much. People will over react after seeing 1 week. It is impossible for people to erase some of these things out of their minds.

Early week 2 picks
Cincy -10 ( 2 units)
New England -6 ( 2 units)

Monday, September 11, 2006

Monday Night 9/11

Week 1 Recap
New England ML +5 units
Philly +5 units
Dallas -5 units

Monday Night, 9/11 Added

Washington -4 ( 1 unit)

Next week early jump on
Cincy -10 ( 2 units)

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Week 1

Bankroll 50 units

This weeks plays
New England ML -355 ( 17 units)
Philly -3.5 ( 5 units)
Dallas +3 ( bought hook) (5 units)____________________________________________________________________________Thursday Pick ( no play)Miami +1 @ PittsburghLeans Loss

for the rest of the week... I can't do full writeups, but I will try and put a few notes. I only played three games, but I decided to pick the rest for fun.

( picks highlighted )
Denver -3.5 @ Stl ---- The Broncos are clearly better team. Denver should be able to run the ball on that fast carpet, and I am not sold on the new coach and change in philosophy in Stl.

New York Jets @ Tennesse -2.5 --- Tennesse is traditionally a tough place to play. Fischer is still a solid coach, and I think the tennesse will run the ball. Titans have trouble tackling on D, but face a rookie RB.

Baltimore +3 @ Tampa Bay --- A game dominated by defense. Steve Mcnair and his Ravens make a statement over Chris Simms and the Bucs.

Cincy @ Kansas City -2 --- KC is a very tough place to play. Cincy has trouble stopping the run, and they face the Cheifs and LJ. I don't like to bet against Carson Palmer, but winning in KC is no easy task. This pick is more agains the Bengals rush D, than against Carson Palmer.

Seattle @ Detroit +6 --- The sucker bet of the week. Everybody and their mom is on Seattle, but any given sunday there are upsets. Seattle lost the superbowl here in Detroit 8 months ago. Detroit's defense isn't bet, Mike Martz has some weapons on offense, and he used to own seattle when he coached the rams. Seattle isn't as good on the road, and they are a west coast team traveling east.

Atlanta +5 @ Carolina ---- I like the prospects on Carolina this year, but this is a tough divisonal battle. Everybody loves Carolina for how they played in the playoffs last year, but this team sometimes plays poorly as a favorite. Sometimes you ask yourself, " Which Carolina will show up"?

New Orleans @ Cleveland -3 --- Reggie Bush and that Saints offense is getting a lot of love by the media, but Romeo should be able to slow them down some. I think Cleveland grinds out a run the ball and play defense kind of game. New Orleans defense is bad.

Chicago @ Green Bay +3.5 --- Green Bay is traditionally a hard place to play. Last year Chicago won a lot of close games, and Green Bay lost a lot of close ones. Grossman might actually have to make some plays and GB is a home dog.

San Fran @ Arizona -9 --- Look for Arizona to run up the score on a bad San Fran road team. Edge will make the whole team better, and the Cards will put up some points to break in their new stadium.

Indy -3 @ New York --- In the battle of the Mannings, Peyton will show why he is the better quarterback.

Minnesota @ Washington -4.5 --- Washington has lost some of that hype after a terrible pre season that saw the starters get outscored 52-0. It might not be pretty, but I see the redskins winning and the hype machine being turned on again.

San Diego @ Oakland +3 --- I have to go with the dog at home here. The Phillip Rivers era opens on the road at the black hole. I could see Aaron Brooks playing better than you think and the RAIDAZ pulling off the upset.

I do NOT recommend betting. If it were that easy to win money, they wouldn't be building new casinos in Las Vegas each year. If a pick ever looks too good to be true, then it probably is. People that win money get a false sense of security and end up losing in the long run. Winnings lead to bigger bets and then bigger losses. If you are going to cross my advice, then make small picks "for fun".

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

2006 Manifesto

This year I am trying to pick and document every NFL game. I’ve seen too many writers for newspapers that can’t even pick winners 50% of the time. Some of the clowns in the papers can’t even pick winners half the time, never mind attaching a point spread to the games. Instead of complaining, I have taken the liberty to create this blog to voice my opinion. My goal is to hit 60% against the spread picking every game, and to “make money” with selected picks. I will probably stick to more detailed write ups only for selected picks. Welcome aboard and enjoy the ride.

Bankroll 50 units

This weeks picks
New England ML -355 ( 17 units)
Philly -3.5 ( 5 units)
Dallas +3 ( bought hook) (5 units)


Thursday Pick ( no play)
Miami +1 @ Pittsburgh

Leans for the rest of the week... ( picks highlighted but not finalized)
Denver -3.5 @ Stl
New York Jets @ Tennesse -2.5
Buffalo @ New England -9
Baltimore +3 @ Tampa Bay
Cincy @ Kansas City -2
Seattle @ Detroit +6
Atlanta +5 @ Carolina
New Orleans @ Cleveland -3
Chicago @ Green Bay +3.5
San Fran @ Arizona -9
Indy -3 @ New York
Minnesota @ Washington -4.5
San Diego @ Oakland +3

O/U leans for more fun
San Fran/ Arizona Over 42.5
Seattle / Detroit Over 45.5

I do NOT recommend betting. If it were that easy to win money, they wouldn't be building new casinos in Las Vegas each year. If a pick ever looks too good to be true, then it probably is. People that win money get a false sense of security and end up losing in the long run. Winnings lead to bigger bets and then bigger losses. If you are going to cross my advice, then make small picks "for fun".

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Eagles @ Texans Pick

Philly @ Houston

I think Gary Kubiak can actually be a decent Head Coach in the NFL. Out of the new crop of head coaches, I think Kubiak could end up the best. Houston could improve their offense this year, but remember their HC last year Dom Capers was supposed to be a defensive genius and his defense was terrible. If a defensive "genius" had the 3rd worst defense in the NFL, then how will the defense be without a genius coach? I think a lot of it has to do with not enough talent.

Last year Houston’s defense ranked...
2nd to last in yards given up (364) per game
LAST in points given up ( 26.9)
LAST in yards per play given up (5.8)
LAST in first downs given up ( 21.8) per game
LAST in rushing yards given up (143.9) per game

How many 3rd and longs does an offense get into when your defense gives up 5.8 yards on each play?

People will cry about the Texans not selecting Running back Reggie Bush, but that team fared last in almost every defensive category and I don't think they would suite Mr. Bush up to play defense.

Their offense didn't fare much better, but they did show some signs of life. While their passing game was still one of the worst in the league (30th), they were actually 15th in rushing. The team was known for poor offensive line play, as they gave up 68 Quarterback sacks. I honestly didn't watch much of Houston last year, but I saw a few plays where the line blocked OK, but the middle linebacker ran right through the A Gap and Dom Davis didn't pick him up (resulting in a sack). Not everything is always the lines fault, but it can be the Tight ends, the backs, and yes also the Quarterbacks fault. The first thing Kubiak said when he got to Houston was that the O-Line had to improve, and that it wasn't all their fault. Kubiak told Carr that he had to get rid of the ball quicker as well.

On Sunday’s game the Texans will start 5 rookies. On offense they will have 3rd round pick Charles Spencer defending Carrs blind side at Left Tackle. Spencer was originally drafted as a guard, but now he will be moved over to the Island at LT and he will be matched up against Darren Howard. On offense they are also starting 4th round Tight end Owen Daniel, and 6th round running back Wali Lundy. The Left tackle is probably the most important pass blocking position for a right handed Quarterback, and the Tight end and running back are very important as far as picking up the blitz. The Texans will be starting rookie’s at all three positions.

The Eagles and their defensive coordinator Jim Johnson are known for the blitz and getting after a quarterback. I am sure JJ is licking his chops knowing the Texans have 3 rookies in key pass blocking positions. Last year David Carr was sacked 68 times, and in his first game he could be similar to last year. I would expect a smart offensive coach like Kubiak to work in some screens, draws to take some aggressiveness away from the defense, and waggles, and QB Roll outs to move the pocket, but you can only game plan so much.

I have Donovan Mcnabb as the 3rd or 4th best Quarterback in the NFL right behind Brady and Peyton. I think Carson Palmer and Mcnabb are the 1AA Quarterbacks right behind them. Mcnabb with a balanced west coast offense has to be licking his chops. People in sports have a tendency to put more of an emphasis on what they just saw last. A lot of people think that since the Eagles finished in last place last year, that their run is done. I can assure you that Donovan is a Veteran Quarterback who has been running this offense for 7 years and will be ready to play. Philly has two speedy receivers on the outside with threats at the tight end and running back positions in the middle. Bryan Westbrook is still lasted as day to day, but if he plays they are in position to attack the whole field on offense.

Houston is also starting two rookies on defense. I am not worried about #1 overall pick Mario Williams, but 2nd round pick Demarco Ryans is starting at Middle linebacker. Middle Linebacker is the signal caller on defense, and they have yet another inexperienced player in a key position. I don't like their secondary at all. Dunata Robinson should be legit at corner, but former 4th round pick Lewis Sanders is starting next to him. At Safety they are starting Glenn Earl and CC Brown. Don't forget that linebackers are part of the secondary and they are starting a rookie MLB, Undrafted Shantee Orr and Morlon Greenwood. I think Houston has one of the worst back 7 defenses in the league.

I think Philly’s O-Line will play better this year, and running the ball will be a plus. I could see Mcnabb spreading out the Texans and teaching a passing clinic with 300+ yards and 3 touchdowns.

Last but not least here is some more interesting data suggesting Philly wins and covers the point spread.

Houston at home last year
Pittsburgh Lost by 20
Tennessee Lost by 14
Indy Lost by 18
Cleveland ( won by 3)
Kansas City Lost by 28
St Louis Lost by 6
Arizona ( won by 11)
Jacksonville Lost by 18

The Spread should not matter. Last year Houston went 2-6 at home, and all 6 games they lost were by more than 3.5. In fact, only one of their losses was within a touchdown. I am very confident that Philly wins by 10 or more.

Philly 34
Houston 13


Bankroll 50 units

Buffalo @ New England Money Line -355 (17 Units)
Philly -3.5 @ Houston ( 5 Units)
Dallas +3 @ Jacksonville ( 5 units)

The Lines are already moving the other direction. I am lucky I locked them in because the New England Moneyline is now at -425. Philly is favored by 4.5, and Dallas is only a 2 point underdog now.

Monday, September 04, 2006

NFC Season Preview

Predicted finishes ( playoff teams highlighted)

New York


Green Bay

Tampa Bay
New Orleans

St Louis
San Fran

North: The NFC North teams have the luxury of drawing the AFC East and the NFC West. Everybody loves Chicago’s D, but I thought Thomas Jones played like a top 10 draft pick. I liked Jones and their running game, but I am not impressed at all with their Quarterback play. I think their QB play is bad enough for them to lose a division that is theirs to lose.

I would like to "call" Minnesota or Detroit taking the Division but I don't see it happening. Minnesota has very good players on defense and had a nice little win streak to close last year but I can't see it happening with a new head coach. For some reason their D, doesn’t play up to it’s potential.

Detroit looked like a sleeper candidate with a fiery young head coach to whip them into shape but I can't see it happening. I think Jon Kitna is underrated; he came off the bench last year against Pittsburgh in the playoffs and almost led the team to victory. I think Kitna could flourish under Martz, but the team has other problems. The team has been a joke ever since Matt Millen took over as team president as Detroit has the worst record in the NFL in the past 3 years. I used to listen to Matt Millen do games and he was a horrible announcer. The guy was about as Joe Public as somebody can be, and I don't know how anybody that actually knows football would give him the executive power.

Most people have the Packers finishing last, but if the defense can be average, I think the offense can be real good again. I think their O-Line will improve and give Ahman Green good rushing lanes which should open up the West Coast offense. Their quarterback was known for his turnovers last year, but that was with a poor supporting cast on offense, and while trying to make things happen to comeback in games. Green Bay has the luxury of a last place schedule, but I don't believe in their coaching staff. I expect them to win a few more of the closer games, defend Lambeu field, and pick up some cheap wins, but I am not sending them to the playoffs with42 year old Mike McCarthy coaching the team.

Carolina is a favorite of mine to make some noise in the playoffs. Their defense should has a solid nucleus led by their amazing front four. There are not many people considered “playmakers” at the Defensive end position, but Julius Peppers is just that. The Panthers have a huge natural advantage by not having to send blitzers on passing downs, which allows them to have extra men in coverage. Their offense is led by a proven veteran Quarterback in Jake Delhomme, and a fiery receiver in Steve Smith. One of the things that limited Carolina last year was the reliance on giving the ball to Smith. Now the Panthers have the reliable Vet Keyshaun Johnson to play with Smith. The NFC South has maybe the hardest schedule because they have to play the NFC East and the AFC South.

Tampa had a pretty successful season last year breaking in new Quarterback Chris Simms. I think Tampa had success despite one of the worst Offensive Lines in pro football. If they could improve that O-Line, it will make their whole team better. They brought in some new guys, and a good coach like Gruden should improve the line. We already know they have a solid defense, and if the line improves it makes the whole team better. I was never a big Chris Simms fan, but he did show me something last year. Don't get carried away though, Carolina is still the class of the division.

I can see the Falcons as being a solid team, but I am not a fan of Michael Vick. The guy is essentially the same player he was 5 years ago when he got drafted. Vick needs to learn how to stand in the pocket and make quality reads and throws. He is still plays like that 21 year old Quarterback that will make one read and then run. I know the fans have come to love mobile quarterbacks, but it is much harder to defend 5 skilled position players, than a quarterback who locks in on one receiver and then takes off. The defense looks to have a solid addition in John Abraham, but they will have to learn how to play the run better. I think Atlanta was the most undisciplined team in the league last year. Their defense, led by their secondary in particular play like a bunch of thugs, which hurts the team. I am not a big fan of Mora Jr. coaching the team and can't see him getting it done.

I am also not a fan of Sean Payton landing a head coaching job in New Orleans. I am not sure he has what it takes to be a winner at the head coaching level as there were plenty of other young offensive "geniuses" who failed before him. The Saints have diverted a lot of attention to their offense, but their defense is one of the reasons they could be one of the worst teams this year. Not only do they have a poor run defense, led by poor linebackers, but they have a very difficult schedule.

I would like to pick Seattle to not make the playoffs but I can't. They have 4 easy wins against St. Louis and San Fran, and the rest of their schedule matched up against the NFC Central and AFC West isn't bad either. If they are going to fall off the map, like many super bowl losers do, it will be because of injuries and the offensive line. They lost standout Left Guard Steve Hutchinson, and 2 of their other lineman are injury prone at 36 years old. If that line breaks down, their run game could suffer as well. We all know that Shaun Alexander has the "madden curse", and he also has a big brand new contract. I think some injuries in those areas could knock them down in the division, but Seattle has the best record in the NFL in the past 3 years. They can play down a little on the road, but they defend their home field very well. Seattle very well can lose this division, I was high on them two years ago and sometimes things just don’t go your way.

If Seattle were to have those injuries, I think Arizona is the team that overtakes them. The Cards have all the makings for a potent offense. They have a former MVP at QB, and the playmakers at receiver. Their offensive line was terrible at run blocking, and rookie JJ. Arrington was also a terrible rusher. I think the O-Line improves, and a better running back in Edge James will make this whole football team better. The offense should be a machine, and the defense is underrated. They have playmakers at every level on defense, ( B. Berry, C. Dansby, and stud Adrian Wilson). Throw in the fact that the Cards have a new stadium and I like them to win the division if Seattle has some injuries. I really think Edge is the free agent signing of the year, but I still gave 2 playoff spots to the NFC Beast.

St. Louis is going through a transition. Their new head coach wants to run the ball more than mad scientist Mike Martz did. Fantasy football players should take a long look at the stud Stephen Jackson. I think St. Louis takes a step back this year and I can't see them finishing first or second in this division.

San Fran is another team to fade. They have a young QB, and a terrible secondary. I am not a big Mike Nolan fan either. Kevin Barlow had some harsh words for the coach after he was traded to New York. I think the 49ers will be terrible on the road again, and will have to suffer through more of Alex Smith's growing pains.

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