Thursday, September 04, 2008

Opening night madness! The Season is back !

NYG -4 ( 1 unit)
The NFL is back! Normally the first game doesn't need any extra excitement but I do believe the Giants will win and cover. Remember 4 is a key number and I believe the Giants will exploit Jason Campbell and Jim Zorn as they adjust.
- Last Year the Redskins were 9-7 and a playoff team, but you could divide their season into two separate parts.

1) The Skins were 5-7 under Jason Campbell ( 3-7-2 ATS)
2) The Skins were 4-0 under Todd Collins (4-0A ATS)

Todd Collins in 3 starts and relief duty against Chicago had more completions per game, a higher completion percentage, less sacks, less fumbles, 5 TDs 0 interceptions, and his team scored more points per game.Collins had a 106.4 rating, while Campbell had a 77.7 rating. 8.5 yards per pass attempt vs 6.5 yards per pass attempt. The offense was obviously better under Collins and he had much better timing. He would throw BEFORE receivers made their breaks. He had a synergy with his teammates.

Jason Campbell was healthy enough to play late in the year, but Joe Gibbs went with the hot hand. Campbell has been criticized a lot by the local media and it seems like it is already getting to his head. Campbell said he was in his car listening to a talk radio show where the announcer asked if he should be benched if the Redskins start out slow. Campbell said he laughed (unfair criticism) and that the QB gets too much credit in victory, and too much credit in defeat.

However if you watch the Redskins ( I do), you will remember they lost at the Goal line vs the Giants in week 3 last year, he threw key interceptions in the Tampa, Dallas and Philly games. You could easily have called him a choak artist and at worst he ran a slow and sloppy 2 minute drill.

On the other hand, Collins comes off the perennial bench, and leads a comeback vs Chicago, beats the SB champs, Minnesota on a prime time MNF game, and the 13-3 #1 team in the NFC.

Venue: I do believe the venue favors the Giants. Jason Campbell won 1 game last year not on grass, and it was a sloppy 23-20 win over the 4-12 Jets. The faster the game, the faster the Giants pass rush gets to Campbell, and the more likely he is to get sacked/turn the ball over. The faster game also helps out the Giants who throw the ball more ( while Laundry, Taylor and Springs are banged up). LY the 2nd matchup had horrible wind and cold weather, and the Giants and the more downfield passing attack suffered.

Eli Manning was 14-6 last year as a starter, and 14-6 ATS. He played in one of the top 5 most difficult offenses to run, and started to turn the corner last year. I was pounding the table saying the G-Men were underrated last year, and they didn’t disappoint.

Predictions: We will see a pretty conservative game plan from the Redskins, with Jim Zorn running 1-2 razzle dazzle plays. Maybe a Portis pass, Randel Ell pass, double reverse… I don’t know, maybe a Play Action deep ball. I do think he will try and add a signature play.- I also predict at least 1 fumble from Campbell.

My biggest worries:
- Betting against a dog on National TV
- Usually fading the SB champs is a good idea- The Giant’s aren’t very good at defending TE’s. Antoino Pierce and K. Mitchell were not very good in space and in coverage. Good run stoppers, but not athletic enough to cover Cooley. I am hoping we see more Gerris Wilkinson on Cooley, or Sammy Knight.

Redskins 17 Giants 24

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