Week 5: Thursday Night Football

Indianapolis vs New England, 8:20p, NFLN, (Patriots -10.5, O/U: 50)

It’s the battle of the twelves.  Andrew Luck back at it and revitalizing the Colts/Patriots rivalry that once included former Colts great Peyton Manning.

Both leaders will more than likely be without their top receivers (Hilton, Gronkowski) but Brady still would have Chris Hogan, Eric Ebron and newcomer Josh Gordon.  The running games for both have been coming along with both introducing rookies into thei backfields, leading their rushing attacks with Hines/Wilkins for the Colts and Michel for the Pats.

The Colts defense has looked improved compared to their most recent seasons and actually are near the pace the Patriots have set themselves this season.  The difference maker will be if the Patriots line can stop the defensive front of the Colts since Brady has an obvious lack of mobility.  This will be close early but once Brady gets dialed in, expect him to slowly pull away from the not quite 100% Andrew Luck.

There has been a huge uprising in the league this year where games you thought were a lock were turned upside down in the first few minutes.  Just when you thought, “ok, maybe this one isn’t such a slam dunk given how hard it’s been to nail bets this year”, not so fast my friend, just a friendly reminder, it’s HARD to win in Gillette Stadium.  Take the Patriots to cover in the win and in the under, Patriots 28-17.

#beatyourbookie

Week 4: Thursday Night Football

Minnesota at L.A. Rams, 8:20p, NFLN (Rams -7, O/U: 49.5)

This past Sunday, The Vikes got absolutely embarrassed at home by rookie Josh Allen. I mean, he literally leapt over their best linebacker with ease. The Bills took the opening kickoff and then drove the field 75 yards to a touchdown. Kirk Cousins didn’t help his teams cause or confidence by having 2 sacks fumbles that lead to 10 more points and a Bills 17-0 lead after the first. A good team being embarrassed one week basically means that they get revenge the next however it will be very tough to do so when going on the road against one of the best defenses and one of the best offenses in the league.

The Rams are on fire this year, picking up right where they left off from last year. Granted, they started off with a few softballs with the Raiders and Cardinals but had a bit of a test against a team that’s been a better road team than a home team, in the Chargers. The Rams ultimately beat them and covered the spread. Goff and his numerous weapons have gelled well with McVay’s playbook and they don’t seem to show any signs of slowing down, averaging 34 points/game on offense and only 12/game on defense.

Short week, big spread to cover but the Bills defense isn’t nearly as good as the Vikings and you see how they played in Minnesota last week. Expect the Rams to learn from what they saw Sunday and pressure Cousins all night. Take the Rams to cover in the win, in the over, Rams 31-21.

Week 10: Thursday Night Football

Week 9 wasn’t quite as “coachable” as I thought but we technically still didn’t have a losing week, going 6-6-1.  Shocks of last week were the Bills (embarrassing actually), the Ravens, the Bengals coming out flatter than flat, the Chiefs and Dolphins actually keeping up with an NFL team.  Basically all of my losses and the push were shocks.  Some road favorites were some of those losses which are tougher covers.  Hard week but we have another good one brewing starting with tonight’s game.

Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals, 8:25p (Cardinals +6, O/U: 40)

New addition to the offensive line for the Seahawks, Duane Brown, was adventurous but he improved the line from weeks ago.  It was adventurous due to the fact that he had a few penalties along with the rest of the team, a season high 16.  Those penalties, a ridiculous number mind you, helped keep the Redskins close and in the end, Cousins capitalized and won the game for them being as accurate as ever.  Wilson nearly pulled off a comeback on his own, striking hard and fast down the field but ultimately leaving too much time on the clock.  The Seahawks still have a staunch defense and can eat up the Cardinals given their lack of an arm under center which will be a difference maker.

The Cardinals made a smart move a few weeks back in picking AP up.  In 3 starts, 2 of them have seen him carry the ball 25+ times for 130+ yards in each game.  It looks like the AP of old and he has to be given Stanton, his hapless quarterback.  Stanton showed some accuracy late in the game last week but ultimately was just mediocre.  Fitzgerald was se I effective but with 5 catches for just 70 yards, expect him to continue being the lead receiver but in a dink and dunk offense.

Look for the Seahawks to take out some aggression this week, rectifying last weeks bad loss at home (which is usually a guarantee in Seattle).  The Cardinals can run all they want but if the Hawks stack the box, I don’t see AP getting much going (even though I would like him too since he’s starting on my fantasy team).  Take the Seahawks to win in the under, Seahawks 24-14.

 

Week 9: Thursday Night Football / Week 8: 69% Winners ATS!

What an exciting time to be alive if you’ve been following this blog all year.  First off, thank you.  I have been aiming to give you at least a professional bettors covering percentage, which hovers around 56%-57%.  Not only has this been a fun experience but also some sort of social experiment in a way.

I’ve always talked about getting betting stats down and seeing the outcomes and trends for myself.  Keeping record of how well I’d do if I were to look at every line, every week and bet on all of them.  Would I make out, break even or lose my ass off?  After the first half of the season, I’m seeing trends in my own picks.  How I favor different matchups and spreads, how I look at teams differently after a bye, on a short or long week and now dealing with London games.  It’s all very fascinating to see it laying out in front of your face.

Last week I went for 69% winners! I totally flubbed on the Buccs, Bengals, Dolphins and Raiders however, not even close oon those guys but nailed the other 9 games.  8 games had a spread of a touchdown or more and I hit on 7 of them.  Those games haven’t been a strong point for me this year, until last week that is.  It seems that as this season rolls on, you can figure out who’s legit and whose not.  I feel like I’m at that point but I don’t want to get cocky about it, we’ll just be like Bill Belichick and say I’m on to next week.

Now I’m only sitting at 54% for the year but I’m also trending up with 3 straight winning weeks.  Those wins almost cover the Bovada juice that they charge you per deposit, not that you would make 13 separate deposits just to bet all of the NFL games each week, but you get the point.  At 54%, using Bovada, you could be in the plus.

I’ll give more breakdowns over the next week of my picks and where my picks are trending so that you have an updated idea where I’ve been strong lately.  Anyways, on to tonight’s game:

Buffalo Bills at New York Jets, 8:25p (Jets +3, O/U: 42.5)

Well Thursday night games have mostly been about the bottom of the barrel teams squaring off but here we have some middle of the road teams who are having better than expected seasons.  The Jets basically look at every win a bonus given almost every “analyst” in the country had them losing every game to winning a max of 2-3!  They’d have to be pretty piss poor and lose their remaining games to stay within those predictions but had a great start against some tough teams.

The Jets traded for Rashard Robinson (cornerback) from the 49ers at the trade deadline.  Robinson was a 4th round pick in 2016 from LSU but has been hit with 10 penalties already this year, leading the league.  The Bills went out and got Kelvin Benjamin from the Panthers, in which I say is a huge win for Buffalo.  I mean the Panthers don’t even have Olsen back for a few more weeks.  You need all of the big/physical bodies you can get when you’re not an accurate middle to deep ball hurler like Newton.

The Bills are flying high this year with a defense that is playing much better and an offense with some new key parts like Jordan Matthews and Kelvin Benjamin.  Tyrod Taylor has been fairly accurate this year and has an 8/2 TD/INT ratio, which is great but McCown for the Jets has over 1800 yards, completed over 70% of his throws but has turned the rock over 7 times to his 12 TD’s.  Matt Forte called out his coordinator after the focused on the passing game in the rain last week more than him in the run game.  It was a close game that they ultimately lost to a Falcons team who seems to be lost after last years Super Bowl run.

The Jets added some offensive talent this past offseason but I’m still going to pick the Bills to cover in this one because the Jets are basically the same team as they were when they lost to the Bills earlier in the season and the Bills have upgraded in a key area of their offense, adding a big target.  After all, the Bills are 5-1-1 ATS.  The Jets are 5-2-1 (4-0 at home) but like I said, Bills improved and covered the spread in the week one matchup against these two and will do it again on the road this week.  Take the Bills to cover in the under, Bills 24-16.

 

Week 8: Thursday Night Football

We barely escaped the week with a winning record and on the verge of a really good week or a really bad week with the 2 pushes.  Nevertheless, I had an issue with my bread and butter, the primetime games.  Now I knew that the Falcons were having trouble covering their games but every team that struggles can turn it around with a defense that allows a lot of yards, which the Patriots defense has done a bunch of this year.  WRONG!  Belichick corrected that ship.  Falcons were beyond ineffective until late when they threw Julio Jones’ way more.  Hopefully we can continue this roll with our back to back winning weeks.  On to tonight’s game:

Miami Dolphins at Baltimore Ravens, 8:25p (Ravens -3, O/U: 37.5)

By god, what a barn burner we have tonight.  Sheesh.  Just when you thought the Thursday night games were turning out some good matchups for fans, they hand deliver this turd of a game.  As you just finish your delicious, beautifully constructed meal consisting pan seared steak and baked potato, this pops on your TV to put a bad taste in your mouth.

Cutler did everyone a favor and broke some ribs but the jokes on him, it’s hard to smoke a pack of cigs on the sideline with busted ribs.  Moore stepped in and showed his team why they should’ve had more (no pun intended) faith in him from the beginning.  Moore is a capable fill in until Tannehill takes back over.  Now, Cutler was actually having quite a game before his injury and against a Jets defense that hasn’t looked too bad against some good teams this year.  Cutler exits and Moore comes in to lead them back with 17 points in the 4th to win it.

The Ravens just haven’t been consistent.  Beating a poorly playing Bengals team in week one, the hapless Browns in week 2 and since have been 1-4 with their only win coming against a Raiders team without Derek Carr.  Flacco has looked bad, and they’ve been relying on their running game to pick up the slack which hurts their yards per play and to only average 18 points a game and 35% on third downs just spells out bad football.

I’m shocked that the Ravens are still 3 point favorites given their noticeable offensive struggles.  Take the Dolphins as road dogs to turnout Moore (pun intended) offense this week than under Cutler’s watch and to win this ugly baby of a game on the road in the under, Dolphins 20-14.

Extras:  World Series talk.  Holy S**t, what a series so far.  2 games in, noted at a game a piece, everyone swinging for the god damned fences, hoping for their chance at a memorable World Series moon shot.  The pitching has been great, the power hitting has been unreal and we’ve seen a really quick game one and a longer than normal game 2.  Puig’s stare down after looking a running back to second in the later innings was epic but the Astros comeback was thrilling.  Dodgers showed you how not to blow through your bullpen so quickly with a short lead.  Any-who, looking forward to the game in Houston this weekend, should be great.  Go Dodger dogs, haha!

Week 6: Thursday Night Football

Welp, (that’s what these kids are saying nowadays right?), the Vikings came oh so close to covering for me last week to push me to an even week.  It would’ve been sweet to come back to you today to at least say, “still only one losing week so far this year”, but no.  Mitch-a-palooza had to play half decent for a rookie getting his first start on Monday night.  Kid can throw and move and throw on the move, wow!  He was hitting guys in the hands near the sidelines while running away from 300 pound guys trying to catch him as a late Monday night snack.  He could be the real deal for them.

Shockers of the week were road teams, Panthers, Jags, Seahawks, Ravens, who were all road dogs and won.  I tell ya, I can’t figure out the 1 o’clock and the Sunday night games.  That seems to be my Bermuda Triangle.  Just take a look, everywhere else I’m excellent:

ATS O/U ATS O/U
Thursday Night Sunday 1p
4-1 2-3 17-25-1 24-19
80% 40% 41% 56%
Sunday 4p   Sunday Night  
11-7 3-4 2-3 2-3
61% 43% 40% 40%
Monday Night   Primetime  (Thr/Sun/Mon)
4-1-1 3-2-1 10-5-1 7-8-1
80% 60% 66% 47%
Bookend Nights (Thr/Mon) Overall
8-2-1 5-5-1 38-37-2 42-34-1
80% 50% 51% 55%

Listen, I don’t want to tell you to stay away from my picks but if you look at my Sunday 1pm games and/or my Sunday night games, please be skeptical at best about them.  On to tonight’s game (where by the way, I’m 80% winners for the year):

Philadelphia Eagles at Carolina Panthers, 8:25p (Panthers -3, O/U: 45.5)

This is probably the first matchup of the year on Thursday night that pits 2 hot teams against each other, with both teams being 4-1.

The Panthers have seen a resurgence from Cam Newton in the last 2 weeks.  300 yard games, well over 70% completions, 6 TD’s/1 INT.  I must admit, I sold on Cam early and didn’t do my research.  In the last 5 seasons, of Cam’s 6 plus in the NFL, Cam has had a losing record and then followed it with a winning record.  He’s gone from touchdowns in the teens to the 20’s and 30’s in the following year.  There’s something about Cam that must feed off of the doubters because he’s having a career year throwing the ball and I couldn’t have been more wrong about him.

I sold a bit early because I saw the super bowl slump follow him into this year’s first 3 games and couldn’t take any more.  18 games of poor quarterback play with big weapons and he only managed about a TD per game, that’s not winning you jack in fantasy.

Cut to the Panther’s defense who is 3rd in the league going against the Eagles 3rd ranked offense.  It’ll be a showdown to see who will prevail.  Wentz, who has an astounding 3/1 TD/INT ratio, is having a breakout year and has the league buzzing.  He’s big, can move, strong arm, basically everything you look for in a franchise QB, he’s got IT.  The Panthers have one of the leagues worst turnover differentials at -4 (28th) while the Eagles have the leagues 10th best at +2.

This should be a close one and the big selling point for me is the Eagles play on the road.  They’ve gone into Washington against a good team with a top 10 defense and won, into the NFL’s best team and top 2 hardest stadiums to play in on the road (Chiefs) and lost by 7, and went to LA against the Chargers and came away with a 2 point victory.

Carolina’s success recently has been on the road and when home, they were hard to watch.  Yes, Cam has looked great in his last 2 starts and he may do well this week but dink and dunk passes aren’t going to win you games against the Eagles who can really push the ball down the field in chunks.  I consider the Eagles to be either the 2nd or 3rd best team in the NFL right now but have Carolina lingering between 8-10 only because of their play the last 2 weeks.

Don’t get too high on Cam just yet (yes, I’m still a bit skeptical with no Olsen and Benjamin 3rd on the team in catches), the Eagles have been a team of consistency this year and that speaks more to the composure of a team rather than hot and cold weeks that Cam has given the last year and a half.  Take the Eagles as road dogs to cover and I’m going to go out on a limb and say they’ll win in the over, 27-24.

 

Week 5: Thursday Night Football

We are back!  What a week (phew)!  We ended up 56% against the spread and 63% with the over/unders, not too bad, especially with the previous week I had.  The Chiefs stayed undefeated in a hard fought game against the Redskins on Monday night, a game that was wildly entertaining.  Alright, back on track.  Lets keep the ship straightened out now.  On to tonight’s game.

New England Patriots at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 8:25p (Patriots -5.5, O/U: 55.5)

This game is going to be a tough one because the wildcard for the Buccs will be if Doug Martin will explode out of the block right away or if they’ll slowly ramp up his carries over the next few weeks.  The Patriots wildcard will be their defense.  The Patriots have one of, if not, the worst defense in the league.

Tom Brady is the one consistent factor of this team.  As long as he’s in the lineup, you basically know what you’re getting on offense and he can take a game away from you in the last 4 minutes of the game.  Their defensive secondary has some real issues, and Bill Belichick takes pride in turning out the best effort from those guys but Winston can throw and has weapons.  I fear they might be too thin and lack too much skill there to stop him.

Jameis Winston has his moments but his poor decision making (at times) could make the Patriots defense look half decent tonight.  He likes to try and force balls into tight coverages and when scrambling for his life, can just throw one up to avoid a sack and loss of major yards.  With Martin back, I can imagine that he a Jacquizz Rodgers will share touches, at least until one shows they’re having a breakout game.  Watch out for Gerald McCoy pushing up the middle on defense.

This is going to be an exciting Thursday Night game with a half decent matchup.  Listen, that was an embarrassing loss last week at home against a struggling Cam Newton and the Patriots have started 2-2 before but they also didn’t have the bad defense then like they do now.  Expect the Buccs to keep it close.  Yes I know, the Patriots don’t lose 2 in a row, that’s why I’m not saying the Pats are going to lose on the road.  I am going to tell you to take the Buccs to cover the +5.5 spread with the Patriots winning in the over, 31-27.