Sunday, September 07, 2008

Week 1 card

Season Plays
Indy O 11 wins ( 2 units ) ( +140)
Balt U 6 wins ( 2 units ( +100 )
Cle U 8 wins ( 2 units ) ( + 100 )
Indy to win SB 43 ( 2.5 units) ( +900)

Week 1 Card
Giants -4 ( 1 unit ) .............Win
5 unit Teaser: Indy -3 + Philly -1.5 ( 5 units )
Seattle: Pickem ( 1 unit )
Miami + 3 ( 1 unit ) ( waiting until right before kickoff to try and get 3.5)
Lean Dallas ( no play yet, but possible 2nd half play )

Always nice to start the year off a winner with the Giants -4. Please notice I have placed a wager on the Colts to win it all, and have posted my week 1 card. Questions and comments are always welcome at my email.

Indy -3/Philly -1.5 Teaser
I have picked Indy in the SB and I believe they will be the best team in the NFL this season. Last year the Colts were 13-3 with the leagues 3rd highest scoring offense (28.13 ppg), and # 1 scoring defense (16.38). If there was ever a stat for efficiency, the Colts would get 1st or 2nd on that stat for their offense. Last year I predicted the Pats offense to break out. I knew that Tom Brady “could” throw for a lot of yards, but why should he when his team is up by 2 scores and they can just run down the clock with the power run game? Peyton Manning had a reversal of that. Why should he be chucking the ball down field and scoring fast, when his defense will get right back on the field ( and tire down so they are weak in the 4th Q). The Colts offense went to extreme efficiency, and it helped the defense a lot. The Colts also had key injuries to M. Harrison ( played 1/3 of the year), Freeney and others. They break in new Lucas Oil Stadium with a big win here.

The Bears on the other hand could have the worst offense in the league. Last year they were dead last in Yards per rush (3.14) and the last thing you want to do is have Orton ( or Grossman) in a lot of 3rd and long pass plays. The offense overall finished 5th worst in the league in yards. I think the defense will improve this year, but they won’t be able to stop Manning. Usually when people think of blow outs, they think of a good offense whopping up on a bad defense, however there are defense induced blowouts too. This isn’t so much about Manning shredding the Bears D ( because they will probably try and run the clock down after they get a 10+ point lead), but it is about the weakness of the Bears on O and facing an improved Colts D.

Philly is also a team that I like more than most people. They finished 8-8 and last place in the NFC, but they were probably the best last place team I have ever seen. They had 3 playoff teams in the division, lost their starting QB part of the year, and lost a number of close games they shouldn’t have. Philly easily could have been 10-6 last year and people would like them a lot more coming into this year.

The Eagles are a hurt at WR, but in the WCO they run, Mcnabb is a bigger function of the output as opposed to the receivers. Baskett, Lewis, and Avant will be fine against the Rams weak secondary that was 5th worst per pass last year. The Rams also gave up 115 per game on the ground last year, and Westbrook should tear them up. I like the Eagles to win this game and cover.

Marc Bulger looked weak in preseason, and this passing team is historically terrible playing outside on grass. The Eagles quietly had a top 10 defense last year, and I think that will largely negate the offense of the Rams. Philly is at Dallas next week, so look for them to clean this one up early. In my opinion, both teams win and cover their spreads, but I have them teased.

Seattle +1:
Seattle is clearly the better team here. People are down on them because two of their receivers are hurt, but they do run the WCO where you don’t have to have stud WRs. They also have 3 RBs that they can rotate in and out to move the chains. Seattle is better than Buffalo on offense, and Defense, but Buffalo has better special teams. If you had to bet 100 times, and you pick the team with a better QB, Coach, Offense and Defense, you will win more times than not.

Seattle is going to the NFC championship this year and they have a much better defense than people think. Lawrence Jackson and Patrick Kerney will get after people, they have the best LB core in the NFC and they were fine against the pass. Buffalo’s biggest threat is M. Lynch and Seattle is above average against the run with their LB core. The defense was 6th in points against last year, and I feel people are underrating the defense. Defense travels.

The best arguments against Seattle are that they are a 1 PM team traveling east for a 1 pm start, and that they can’t play on the road. These arguments are very valid, but if you are ever going to down play them, it is in week 1 when everybody is juiced for a new season. Seattle is the better team, and I expect them to kick off the season with a win over a weaker team. I think their WR injuries are over played, not the road factor.

Lean Dallas:
I want to see how the early games play out, but I do like Dallas to beat Cleveland. I am kicking myself for not getting in a 3.5, but oh well. The public is pounding the cowboys and that line is moving up. Cleveland is a home dog, and my plan is to hope for a close 1st half, and bet Dallas for the 2nd half. If I don’t have a post in time, you can email me to see my final decision.

Ideally the game is close at halftime or Dallas is losing. The odds makers think there will be points in this game, so maybe Cle is winning at half time. What if Cleveland is winning by say 3-7 points and the 2nd half line comes out with Dallas -3 to -7 ( just to win). Then I would like to play Dallas. It would allow me to sniff out a trap in the first half, and Dallas is fantastic at making adjustments on offense and they should be a good 2nd half team this year. My goal is to get Dallas in the 2nd half of this game at a good line.

I do the stock market as well, and it isn't always about picking winners, but it is also about avoiding losers. I wouldn't bet my whole life on this game, it could be easy, it could be a trap, but I will wait and see.

Indy to win it all 9/1 odds
If you are ever going to take SB futures, you should bet them before the year, and ideally right when free agency is kicking in before people are even thinking NFL. Indy should rip out wins up until their Nov. 2 match up with New England. They should actually be 7-0, maybe 6-1 with a slip up vs Jax at home, or Tenn on the road, but I think they will be favored and win all 7 games before the Patriots. I also expect them to beat NE in new Lucas Oil stadium. After that they still are @ Pitt, and Jax, but they will be the best team in a strong AFC this year and win the SB against Dallas.

Miami +3 ( or 3.5) - See sucker bet below.

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