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NFL Week 3 Early Advanced ‘Look-Ahead’ Betting Lines: Pats 12 point favorites vs Texans

John Morgan
September 16, 2017 at 10:00 pm ET

On Tuesday (when I was still without power in Florida) the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook published their NFL Regular Season Week 2 Advanced Betting Lines. Also known as Look-Ahead or Early Lines, these odds were released prior to any of the previous games – including Thursday night’s crap show between the Texans and Bengals. These Early Advanced Lines can and will differ substantially from odds posted by Vegas and offshore accounts by the time these games kick off next week. It will be interesting to see how the professional handicappers that set these lines react to Houston’s offensive ineptitude when the Week Three odds are initially set next week.

 

The one line that may raise eyebrows (and set pro football back eighty years) involves Cleveland and Indianapolis. Despite the fact that the baseball team in Cleveland has won more games in three weeks than their football team has since early 2011, the Browns are favored by three points – on the road – against the Colts.

 

The Patriots are the only double digit favorites, playing at home against the Texans. The only other game with a line of greater than seven points involves the other team in the TNF snoozefest. Green Bay is a nine point home favorite versus Cincinnati.

 

Week Three does not involve many particularly compelling matchups. The best of the lot is probably Sunday night’s Oakland (-4) at Washington. After that there are a couple of early games that may be worth watching: New Orleans at Carolina (-5½) and Atlanta (-3) at Detroit. To the surprise of nobody that follows the NFL, the Thursday night game will be another one worth avoiding.

 

Thursday Sept 21 at 8:25 pm ET on NFLN
Los Angeles Rams (-2½) at San Francisco 49ers

Sunday Sept 24 at 9:30 am ET on Yahoo.com
Baltimore Ravens (-4½) ‘at’ Jacksonville Jaguars (London)

Sunday Sept 24 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS
Cleveland Browns (-3) at Indianapolis Colts
Pittsburgh Steelers (-6½) at Chicago Bears
Miami Dolphins (-5½) at New York Jets
Denver Broncos at Buffalo Bills (-1½)
Houston Texans at New England Patriots (-12)

Sunday Sept 24 at 1:00 pm ET on Fox
New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers (-5½)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Minnesota Vikings (-3)
Atlanta Falcons (-3) at Detroit Lions
New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles (-3)

Sunday Sept 24 late afternoon games
Seattle Seahawks (-1) at Tennessee Titans (4:05, Fox)
Kansas City Chiefs (-1½) at Los Angeles Chargers (4:25, CBS)
Cincinnati Bengals at Green Bay Packers (-9) (4:25, CBS)

Sunday Sept 24 at 8:30 pm on NBC
Oakland Raiders (-4) at Washington Redskins

Monday Sept 25 at 8:30 pm on espn
Dallas Cowboys (-3) at Arizona Cardinals

 

Best Bets:
Colts (+3) vs Browns
Bucs (+3) at Vikings
Jaguars (+4½) vs Ravens
Dolphins (-5½) at Jete

 

The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publisher of this website. Neither the author nor this website promote or advocate gambling. This is solely for entertainment purposes only.

NFL Week 2 Early Advanced ‘Look-Ahead’ Betting Lines: Pats 6.5 point favorites at Saints

John Morgan
September 8, 2017 at 8:30 pm ET

On Tuesday the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook published their NFL Regular Season Week 2 Advanced Betting Lines. Also known as Look-Ahead or Early Lines, these odds are released prior to any of the previous games – including Thursday night’s game between the Patriots and Chiefs. These Early Advanced Lines can and will differ substantially from odds posted by Vegas and offshore accounts by the time these games kick off next week. It will be interesting to see how the professional handicappers that set these lines react to the Pats loss to KC when the Week Two odds are initially set next week.

 

The Patriots at New Orleans looms to be the most analyzed game in the NFL heading into week two. It features two potent offenses led by a pair of future Hall of Fame quarterbacks, Drew Brees and Tom Brady. The Pats loss to the Chiefs will result in even more scrutiny, as New England strives to avoid an 0-2 start to the 2017 season. Last time these two met it was an incredible game. The Saints were up 27-23 with just over a minute to go, and the Patriots were out of timeouts. Brady led the Patriots on a 70-yard scoring drive, converting on 4th down and then connecting on a 17-yard touchdown pass to undrafted rookie Kenbrell Thompkins with only five seconds remaining.

 

 

The last time these two met in The Big Easy it was a different story. New Orleans dominated both sides of the ball on a Monday night game and crushed New England, 38-17. With that victory the Saints improved to 11-0; they would go on to defeat the Colts in Super Bowl 44 that post-season.

 

Another game well worth watching will be played on Sunday night, with Green Bay at Atlanta. This is a rematch of last season’s NFC championship game, featuring a marketing executive’s dream: Matt Ryan an Aaron Rodgers. The two clubs are among the favorites (along with Seattle) to represent the NFC in next February’s Super Bowl. Clear your calendar; this should be one of, if not the best game of the 2017 season.

Thursday Sept 14 at 8:25 pm ET on NFLN
Houston Texans at Cincinnati Bengals (-3)

Sunday Sept 17 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS
Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens (-7)
Buffalo Bills at Carolina Panthers (-8)
Tennessee Titans (-2½) at Jacksonville Jaguars
New England Patriots (-6½) at New Orleans Saints

Sunday Sept 17 at 1:00 pm ET on Fox
Arizona Cardinals (-3½) at Indianapolis Colts
Philadelphia Eagles at Kansas City Chiefs (-4)
Minnesota Vikings at Pittsburgh Steelers (-7)
Chicago Bears at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-6½)

Sunday Sept 17 at 4:05 pm ET on CBS
Miami Dolphins at Los Angeles Chargers (-4)
New York Jets at Oakland Raiders (-15½)

Sunday Sept 17 at 4:25 pm ET on Fox
Dallas Cowboys (-1½) at Denver Broncos
Washington Redskins at Los Angeles Rams (PK)
San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks (-11½)

Sunday Sept 17 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC
Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons (-3)

Monday Sept 18 at 8:30 pm ET on espn
Detroit Lions at New York Giants (-6)

 

Early Week 2 Best Bets:
Bucs (-6½) vs Bears
Skins (pk) at Rams
Texans (+3) at Bengals
Seahawks (-11½) vs Niners

 

The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publisher of this website. Neither the author nor this website promote or advocate gambling. This is solely for entertainment purposes only.

 

Follow on Twitter @AllThingsPats

 

Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots: Full Team Stats, Odds, More

John Morgan
January 21, 2017 at 5:00 pm ET

Sunday’s American Football Conference Championship Game pits the two teams that have ruled the AFC this millennium. Including next month’s game in Houston, either the Steelers or Patriots will have represented the AFC in the Super Bowl ten times since 2001.

In the 1994 season Bobby Ross and Stan Humphries ended the Buffalo Bills’ reign of four straight AFC championships, with their San Diego Chargers blown out by San Francisco in the 49ers’ last Super Bowl victory. Since then the Pats (7) and Steelers (4) have combined for eleven conference championships, laying waste to the NFL’s vision of parity and every team taking a turn as the best in the league.

The Patriots have had sixteen consecutive winning seasons; Pittsburgh has had only one losing season since 2000, back in 2003. New England has won ten or more games 15 times since 2001, including 14 straight times. The Steelers have eleven double-digit winning years in that time span, including the last three in a row. The Patriots have won four Super Bowls this century to Pittsburgh’s two. Any and every Steeler fan will quickly respond to that fact by pointing out that the Black and Gold still lead the Patriots by the count of six Vince Lombardi Trophies to four overall – even though in most cases they are not old enough to remember four of those victories.

 

The Basics: Who, What, When, Where and Why

Who: 13-5 Pittsburgh Steelers (#3 seed, AFC North champs) at 15-2 New England Patriots (#1 seed, AFC East champs)

What: 2016-17 American Football Conference Championship Game

When: Sunday January 22 at 6:40 pm ET on CBS

Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough MA

Why: Winner represents the AFC in Super Bowl 51 at Houston on February 5

 

Weather, Odds and More

Weather: Cloudy with 30% chance of light rain in the late afternoon. Chance of precipitation increases to 70% later in the evening. Winds from the northeast at about 15 mph. Game time temperature of about 33° F.

Keep in mind that this is New England, so the forecast could very well change between now and kickoff.

Coaches: Mike Tomlin is in his tenth year as head coach of the Steelers, having taken over for Bill Cowher in 2007. He has a 103-57 (.644) regular season record, finishing no worse than 8-8 in 2012 and 2013. Tomlin’s teams have made the playoffs seven out of ten times, compiling an 8-5 (.615) post-season record. Under Tomlin the Steelers lost in the wild card game three times and the division round once. Tomlin is 2-0 in the AFCCG and 1-1 in the Super Bowl.

Bill Belichick has compiled a 261-125 overall record in 22 seasons as an NFL head coach. In 17 years with the Patriots Belichick has amassed a 237-115 (.673) regular season record and 24-10 (.706) post season record. Under his guidance the Patriots have won four Super Bowls, six conference championships and fourteen division titles. This will be a post-merger record sixth consecutive time the Patriots have advanced to the AFCCG, and eleventh time they have done so under the Hoodie’s watch. The Pats are 5-5 in those games but only 1-3 in their last four conference championships.

Odds: This game opened up with the Patriots a six-point favorite, and that line has remained relatively steady thus far. Most outlets publish the over/under at 50½, with a handful of venues still listing the total at the original 51 points. New England has covered better than any other team in league this year, going 14-3 against the spread. The Pats 7-2 home ATS record is also the best in the NFL. After last week’s game at Kansas City Pittsburgh is 10-7 ATS, 6-3 on the road. Both clubs went over six times and under ten times in the 2016 season.

 

 

Head-to-Head Series Record: In franchise history the Patriots are 14-15 versus Pittsburgh, but the Pats have owned the Steelers in the Belichick-Brady era. The Patriots are 9-3 dating back to the AFC Championship Game at Heinz Field fifteen years ago. Brady is 9-2 versus Pittsburgh and 4-0 against the Steelers in games in Foxborough. The Patriots defeated Pittsburgh 41-27 on January 23 2005 en route to their third Super Bowl victory. That came three years after upsetting Pittsburgh’s Super Bowl plans, sandwiched between the Snow Bowl (aka Tuck Rule) game and knocking off the supposed Greatest Show On Turf.

 

There is also this full game for your viewing pleasure. The NFL is very proactive about keeping these gems out of the public’s hands, so be forewarned; I don’t think it will be available for very long.

 

These two clubs met twice prior to Belichick’s arrival in the post-season. On January 3, 1998 the Steelers nipped the Pats 7-6 in the division round; the only touchdown came in the first quarter on a 40-yard scramble by Kordell Stewart. One year earlier Curtis Martin rushed for three touchdowns and 166 yards, as the Patriots cruised to a foggy 28-3 victory. The next week The Pats defeated Jacksonville, more probable than not bringing Mark Brunell to tears. Unfortunately Bill Parcells was too busy making contract plans with Leon Hess to notice that kicking to Desmond Howard was a bad idea.

 

Team Stats and Rankings

Here is a look at how the two teams compare statistically; the numbers reflect an average per game (or per play), rather than aggregate totals. Per-game and per-play stats are used rather than gross totals because that makes the rankings more meaningful, and because they provide a better context in regards to what to expect in any given game.

Numbers in green indicate a top-ten ranking while underlined green is top-five; red indicates a bottom-ten ranking and underlined red is bottom-five. Please note that the information below includes post-season games, so it will likely differ from official stats found elsewhere which are only for the regular season.

Pittsburgh is a well balanced team with legitimate championship aspirations. On offense the Steelers have explosive quick-strike weapons as well as the capability of methodically controlling the ball to drive the length of the field.

 

New England Patriot Offense versus Pittsburgh Steeler Defense

Scoring per Game: Patriots 27.9 (4th); Steelers 19.7 (8th)

Points per Play: Patriots .423 (4th); Steelers .320 (9th)

Touchdowns per Game: Patriots 3.2 (4th); Steelers 2.2 (8th)

Red Zone Touchdowns per Game: Patriots 2.4 (4th); Steelers (12th)

Red Zone Touchdown Percentage: Patriots 64.1 (8th); Steelers 47.5 (5th)

Yardage per Game: Patriots 386 (4th); Steelers 334 (9th)

First Downs per Game: Patriots 21.8 (7th); Steelers 19.3 (10th)

Yards per Play: Patriots 5.8 (7th); Steelers 5.4 (13th)

Yards per Drive: Patriots 6.66 (1st); Steelers 32.2 (15th)

Points per Drive: Patriots 2.53 (5th); Steelers 1.87 (11th)

Drive Success Rate: Patriots .742 (5th); Steelers .694 (13th)

Third Down Conversions per Game: Patriots 6.4 (2nd); Steelers 5.3 (24th)

Third Down Conversion Percentage: Patriots 45.2 (4th); Steelers 40.5 (23rd)

Punts per Score: Patriots 0.9 (10th); Steelers 1.1 (12th)

Plays per Game: Patriots 66.1 (7th); Steelers 61.6 (4th)

– – – – – Rushing and Passing Game – – – – –

Rushing Yards: Patriots 116 (9th); Steelers 95 (9th)

Yards per Carry: Patriots 3.9 (25th); Steelers 4.2 (18th)

Passing Yards: Patriots 270 (4th); Steelers 239 (11th)

Yards per Pass Attempt: Patriots 7.8 (3rd); Steelers 6.5 (11th)

Completion Percentage: Patriots 65.7 (8th); Steelers 65.2 (28th)

Passer Rating: Patriots 106.8 (2nd); Steelers 87.1 (14th)

TD Passes-Interception Differential: Patriots +30, 34-4 (3rd); Steelers -7, 22-15 (8th)

Complete Passes per Game: Patriots 22.7 (16th); Steelers 23.9 (26th)

Incomplete Passes per Game: Patriots 11.9 (7th); Steelers 12.8 (20th)

Quarterback Sacks per Game: Patriots 1.5 (5th); Steelers 2.4 (7th)

Sack Yardage Lost per Game: Patriots 9.3 (2nd); Steelers 16.2 (7th)

 

Pittsburgh Steeler Offense versus New England Patriot Defense

Scoring per Game: Steelers 24.8 (11th); Patriots 15.6 (1st)

Points per Play: Steelers .390 (10th); Patriots .250 (1st)

Touchdowns per Game: Steelers 2.8 (12th); Patriots 1.6 (1st)

Red Zone Touchdowns per Game: Steelers 1.7 (17th); Patriots 1.4 (2nd)

Red Zone TD Percentage per Game: Steelers 55.4 (14th); Patriots 51.1 (8th)

Yardage per Game: Steelers 373 (7th); Patriots 325 (8th)

First Downs per Game: Steelers 20.8 (12th); Patriots 18.1 (2nd)

Yards per Play: Steelers 5.9 (6th); Patriots 5.2 (9th)

Yards per Drive: Steelers 33.8 (10th); Patriots 28.8 (8th)

Points per Drive: Steelers 2.26 (8th); Patriots 1.42 (1st)

Drive Success Rate: Steelers .724 (9th); Patriots .662 (5th)

Third Down Conversions per Game: Steelers 5.2 (13th); Patriots 4.6 (2nd)

Third Down Conversion Percentage: Steelers 41.6 (11th); Patriots 35.6 (4th)

Punts per Score: Steelers 0.9 (9th); Patriots 1.7 (1st)

Plays per Game: Steelers 63.7 (15th); Patriots 62.6 (10th)

– – – – – Rushing and Passing Game – – – – –

Rushing Yards: Steelers 117 (6th); Patriots 89 (5th)

Yards per Carry: Steelers 4.4 (9th); Patriots 3.9 (8th)

Passing Yards: Steelers 256 (10th); Patriots 235 (11th)

Yards per Pass Attempt: Steelers 7.1 (10th); Patriots 6.3 (6th)

Completion Percentage: Steelers 64.2 (14th); Patriots 61.5 (10th)

Passer Rating: Steelers 93.0 (12th); Patriots 82.2 (5th)

TD Passes-Interception Differential: Steelers +17, 35-18 (8th); Patriots -6, 22-16 (7th)

Complete Passes per Game: Steelers 23.0 (14th); Patriots 23.0 (18th)

Incomplete Passes per Game: Steelers 12.8 (14th); Patriots 14.4 (6th)

Quarterback Sacks per Game: Steelers 1.3 (2nd); Patriots 2.2 (16th)

Sack Yardage Lost per Game: Steelers 10.9 (7th); Patriots 14.2 (16th)

 

Turnovers

Turnover Differential: Patriots +12 (3rd); Steelers +7 (7th)

Patriot Takeaways: 1.5 per game (14th); 26 total

Steeler Giveaways: 1.2 per game (13th); 21 total

Steeler Takeaways: 1.6 per game (13th); 28 total

Patriot Giveaways: 0.8 per game (2nd); 14 total

 

 

Penalties

Penalties per Game: Patriots 5.8 (5th); Steelers 6.8 (19th)

Penalty Yards per Game: Patriots 51.1 (6th); Steelers 65.6 (27th)

Opponent Penalties per Game: Patriots 6.9 (11th); Steelers 6.7 (15th)

Opponent Penalty Yards per Game: Patriots 59.1 (13th); Steelers 58.0 (17th)

 

Defense-Adjusted Value Over Average

Efficiency: Total Weighted DVOA: Patriots 34.0% (1st); Steelers 20.0% (3rd)

Team Efficiency: Offense DVOA: Patriots 21.1% (2nd); Steelers 11.1% (8th)

Team Efficiency: Defense DVOA: Patriots -1.5% (16th); Steelers -4.7% (11th)

Special Teams DVOA: Patriots 2.7% (7th); Steelers 0.0% (16th)

 

If you are still reading at this point, congratulations. Apologies for the lack of brevity. Pittsburgh has a very good team and deserves to be in this championship game. That being said the Patriots are just a bit better in all phases. Between the better coaches, better quarterback, and home field advantage the Pats should win. Enjoy the game, it should be a classic.

Prediction: Patriots 30, Steelers 20

Houston Texans at New England Patriots: Team Stats, Odds & More

John Morgan
January 8, 2017 at 10:00 pm ET

An injury-ravaged Oakland Raider team lost 27-14 at Houston Saturday in a game that was far more one-sided than the final score indicated. That Texan victory coupled with the expected Steeler annihilation of Miami at Heinz Field Sunday means that the Texans’ reward is an opportunity to travel to Foxborough. Houston now faces the daunting task of facing the 14-2 Patriots. The Pats forced three turnovers and crushed Houston 27-0 in week three with Jacoby Brisset at quarterback. Over their franchise history the Patriots are 7-1 versus the Texans, with the lone loss coming in a meaningless week 17 game seven years ago. In the only playoff game between these two clubs the Patriots prevailed 41-28 four seasons ago. That game followed the infamous decision to have Houston players arrive in high school style varsity letterman jackets.

For the fourth straight season the Patriots will play in prime time in the divisional playoff round. There is a simple reason for this. With the exception of Pittsburgh, no team that played in the first round is remotely close to the Patriots in terms of excitement and entertainment. The Patriots have had sixteen consecutive winning seasons and fourteen straight years with double digit win totals. It is no wonder that fans of the 31 other teams hate the Patriots, witnessing a stretch of success that is unparalleled in the salary cap/free agency era. That type of productivity and success is the perfect recipe to make the Patriots villains for every other NFL owner and their fans.

 

The Basics: Who What, When and Where

Who: 9-7 Houston Texans (#4 seed, AFC South champs) at 14-2 New England Patriots (#1 seed, AFC East champs).

What: 2016-17 AFC Division Round Playoffs

When: Saturday January 14 at 8:15 pm ET on NBC.

Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough MA; FieldTurf surface.

 

Weather, Odds and More

Weather: Cloudy afternoon skies with a high of about 33° F; winds from the north at 10-15 mph. Chance of snow is predicted to zoom from zero during the day to 60% at night, accumulating one to three inches. Low of 23° with light and variable winds of about 5 mph.

Keep in mind that this is New England, so the forecast could very well change between now and kickoff.

Coaches: Dorchester native Bill O’Brien is in his third year as an NFL head coach. His Texan teams have finished 9-7 in each of those three regular seasons, and he is now 1-1 in the playoffs. BoB was with the Patriots from 2007-11, serving as the offensive coordinator in his final year with the Pats. After that O’Brien spent two years as head coach at Penn State, resurrecting the Nittany Lions from sanctions following the aftermath of the Joe Paterno-Jerry Sandusky scandal.

Bill Belichick is now in his 22nd year as an NFL head coach, with a 237-115 (.673) regular season record. BB also has 14 playoff appearances, including the last seven in a row. Belichick is 23-10 in the playoffs (22-9, .710 with the Patriots) with four Lombardi trophies and six conference championships. The Hoodie also has two Super Bowl rings as defensive coordinator for the Giants.

Odds: In the early advanced look-ahead lines published prior to the wild card games the Patriots were listed as 13½ point favorites over Houston. After Sunday’s games the Patriots have initially been listed as 16-point favorites against the Texans. The MGM Mirage is listing the Pats as 17-point favorites, while some other venues are at 15½. For now the over/under is at a total of 45 points.

Head-to-Head Series Record: The Patriots lead the all-time series 7-1. That record includes the lone playoff game between the two teams, a 41-28 victory following the 2012 season. The Patriots have defeated Houston twice since O’Brien became the Houston head coach. Late in 2015 the Pats won at Houston 27-6. The New England defense sacked Brian Hoyer five times, limiting Houston to just seven first downs and 189 yards of offense. Earlier this season the Patriots easily prevailed 27-0 at Gillette Stadium, with LeGarrette Blount rushing for 105 yards and two touchdowns.

 

Team Stats and Rankings

Here is a look at how the two teams compare statistically; the numbers reflect an average per game (or per play), rather than aggregate totals. Per-game and per-play stats are used rather than gross totals because that makes the rankings more meaningful, and because they provide a better context in regards to what to expect in any given game. Numbers in green indicate a top-ten ranking while underlined green is top-five; red indicates a bottom-ten ranking and underlined red is bottom-five.

As you can see Houston does possess a formidable defense, but the Texan offense makes this game a mismatch on paper. Fortunately for Houston fans games are won and lost on the field and not on stat sheets. Hat tip to Jim Armstrong of Football Outsiders for many of their advanced statistics, including drive stats and DVOA.

 

New England Patriots Offense versus Houston Texans Defense

Scoring per Game: Patriots 27.1 (3rd); Texans 20.5 (11th)

Yardage per Game: Patriots 386 (4th); Texans 301 (1st)

First Downs per Game: Patriots 21.9 (5th); Texans 17.0 (1st)

Yards per Play: Patriots 5.9 (6th); Texans 4.9 (3rd)

Yards per Drive: Patriots 35.5 (7th); Texans 26.7 (2nd)

Points per Drive: Patriots 2.53 (5th); Texans 1.67 (5th)

Drive Success Rate: Patriots .742 (5th); Texans .645 (2nd)

Points per Play: Patriots .418 (4th); Texans .336 (11th)

Touchdowns per Game: Patriots 3.2 (4th); Texans 2.2 (9th)

Red Zone Touchdowns per Game: Patriots 2.4 (4th); Texans 1.5 (5th)

Red Zone TD Percentage: Patriots 63.3% (8th); Texans 52.3% (8th)

Plays per Game: Patriots 66.0 (7th); Texans 59.4 (1st)

Third Down Conversions per Game: Patriots 6.50 (2nd); Texans 5.13 (11th)

Third Down Conversion Percentage: Patriots 45.8 (4th); Texans 38.5 (11th)

Punts per Score: Patriots 0.9 (9th); Texans 1.5 (4th)

Punts per Game: Patriots 4.50 (14th); Texans 5.25 (5th)

– – – – – Rushing and Passing Game – – – – –

Rushing Yards: Patriots 117.0 (7th); Texans 99.7 (12th)

Yards per Carry: Patriots 3.88 (25th); Texans 4.02 (13th)

Passing Yards: Patriots 269 (4th); Texans 202 (2nd)

Gross Yards per Pass Attempt: Patriots 8.1 (3rd); Texans 6.6 (2nd)

Net Yards per Pass Attempt: Patriots 7.83 (3rd); Texans 6.18 (2nd)

Completion Percentage: Patriots 66.9 (6th); Texans 61.1 (9th)

Passer Rating: Patriots 109.5 (2nd); Texans 84.3 (7th)

TD Passes-Picks: Patriots +30 (2nd, 32-2); Texans -9 (13th, 20-11)

Complete Passes per Game: Patriots 23.0 (15th); Texans 19.9 (3rd)

Incomplete Passes per Game: Patriots 11.40 (6th); Texans 12.7 (24th)

Quarterback Sacks per Game: Patriots 1.50 (5th); Texans 1.94 (24th)

Sack Yardage Lost per Game: Patriots 9.25 (2nd); Texans 12.4 (23rd)

 

Houston Texans Offense versus New England Patriots Defense

Scoring per Game: Texans 17.4 (28th); Patriots 15.6 (1st)

Yardage per Game: Texans 315 (29th); Patriots 326 (8th)

First Downs per Game: Texans 19.1 (23rd); Patriots 18.4 (3rd)

Yards per Play: Texans 4.7 (31st); Patriots 5.2 (10th)

Yards per Drive: Texans 28.8 (26th); Patriots 28.8 (8th)

Points per Drive: Texans 1.50 (29th); Patriots 1.42 (1st)

Drive Success Rate: Texans .664 (25th); Patriots .662 (5th)

Points per Play: Texans .261 (31st); Patriots .251 (1st)

Touchdowns per Game: Texans 1.6 (31st); Patriots 1.7 (2nd)

Red Zone Touchdowns per Game: Texans 1.1 (31st); Patriots 1.4 (3rd)

Red Zone TD Percentage: Texans 40.9 (31st); Patriots 52.3 (8th)

Plays per Game: Texans 66.9 (5th); Patriots 62.4 (9th)

Third Down Conversions per Game: Texans 5.44 (7th); Patriots 4.75 (3rd)

Third Down Conversion Percentage: Texans 37.3 (22nd); Patriots 36.9 (7th)

Punts per Score: Texans 1.2 (22nd); Patriots 1.7 (1st)

Punts per Game: Texans 4.50 (14th); Patriots 5.00 (7th)

– – – – – Rushing and Passing Game – – – – –

Rushing Yards: Texans 116.2 (25th); Patriots 88.6 (3rd)

Yards per Carry: Texans 4.08 (19th); Patriots 3.85 (8th)

Passing Yards: Texans 199 (29th); Patriots 238 (12th)

Gross Yards per Pass Attempt: Texans 5.9 (32nd); Patriots 6.8 (8th)

Net Yards per Pass Attempt: Texans 5.45 (32nd); Patriots 6.39 (7th)

Completion Percentage: Texans 59.5 (25th); Patriots 61.7 (11th)

Passer Rating: Texans 73.3 (30th); Patriots 84.4 (8th)

TD Passes-Picks: Texans -1 (30th, 15-16); Patriots -8 (11th, 21-13)

Complete Passes per Game: Texans 16.5 (21st); Patriots 21.6 (17th)

Incomplete Passes per Game: Texans 14.8 (27th); Patriots 14.2 (6th)

Quarterback Sacks per Game: Texans 2.0 (11th); Patriots 2.1 (16th)

Sack Yardage Lost per Game: Texans 15.1 (12th); Patriots 14.2 (16th)

 

Interceptions, Fumbles and Recoveries, Oh My!

Other than points on the scoreboard, is there a more important NFL game stat than turnovers? The Pillsbury Doughboy waited long and patiently for this critical section.

Turnover Differential: Patriots +12 (3rd); Texans -7 (26th)

Patriot Takeaways: 23, 14th

Texan Giveaways: 24, 19th

Texan Takeaways: 17, 26th

Patriot Giveaways: 11, 1st

 

Penalties

Penalties per Game: Patriots 5.8 (5th); Texans 5.4 (1st)

Penalty Yards per Game: Patriots 51.2 (4th); Texans 54.2 (13th)

Opponent Penalties per Game: Patriots 7.1 (8th); Texans 7.1 (8th)

Opponent Penalty Yards per Game: Patriots 58.1 (15th); Texans 59.3 (13th)

 

Defense-Adjusted Value Over Average

Efficiency: Total Weighted DVOA: Patriots 34.1% (1st); Texans -17.7% (29th)

Team Efficiency: Offense DVOA: Patriots 21.1% (2nd); Texans -21.4% (30th)

Team Efficiency: Defense DVOA: Patriots -1.5% (16th); Texans -6.9% (7th)

Special Teams DVOA: Patriots 2.7% (7th); Texans -7.0% (32nd)

 

If you are still reading at this point, congratulations. Apologies for the lack of brevity, but pick and choose what stats are meaningful to you for this game. It will not be a surprise if Houston gives the New England offense fits early on. Keep in mind some of that is due to the Patriots seeing how the Texans react to different formations and play calls before you hit the panic button. The Patriots will methodically do what they need to do to win, while also minimizing opportunities for Houston to come away with an upset victory. Houston has had issues this season with their special teams coverage. That could set the Patriots up with a short field and a quick score. Once the Pats take a lead this Texan team is in trouble. Their offense does not have the talent to keep up with the Patriots.

Initial Prediction: Patriots 31, Texans 10

 

NFL Week 16 Early Advanced ‘Look-Ahead’ Betting Lines: Pats 13.5 point favorites

John Morgan
December 15, 2016 at 4:20 pm ET

The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook has published their Advanced Lines for NFL Week 16. These early odds look ahead to the following week’s games for those willing to roll the dice. When visiting Sin City you can wager up to 3,000 clams on one of the games – prior to Sunday’s week 15 action occurring. While subsequent injuries can dramatically change the prognosis of future games, over reaction from the most recent result can also be minimized.

Once again the New England Patriots are listed as the heaviest favorite in Week 16. Two weeks ago the Pats defeated the Jets by only five points, but that result apparently did not sway the professional handicappers. The Patriots are at home this time, and the Jets already had their annual Super Bowl in that November 27 loss. New England has (with Dallas) the best record in the NFL, and is 10-3 against the spread. By Christmas Eve Gang Green could be in even more disarray than they already are now. The seven-game delta in season wins between the Patriots and Jets is the largest of the sixteen games on schedule for Week 16.

Only two games will be played on Sunday since that is Christmas, but they are both good ones. At 4:30 pm eastern time Baltimore is at Pittsburgh. These contests are always very physical and the last three games between these two have been decided by an average of just four points. To add further intrigue the winner will likely win the NFC North while the loser will be left scrambling for a playoff spot.

The Sunday night game is just as compelling. Denver travels to Kansas City in a battle of AFC West rivals. The Broncos are in a difficult situation, finishing the season with games against the Patriots, KC and Oakland. Arrowhead Stadium will be rocking and the Chiefs would love to be able to hammer a nail in the coffin on Denver’s season.

In the early time slot on Saturday the best game is Minnesota at Green Bay. Both teams are on the playoff bubble, currently two games behind the Lions in the NFC North. This week the Vikings are home against Indianapolis while the Packers travel to Chicago.

Tampa Bay plays the Saints for the second time in three weeks, this time in New Orleans. This game was flexed to the late afternoon time slot and will surely be the primary game for the doubleheader on Fox.

Week 16 wraps up with an unusual occurrence: a quality game on Monday Night Football. Detroit is at Dallas for what could possibly be a game for the number one seed, and a preview of the NFC conference finals. We will soon have a better idea of just how strong Detroit is. The 9-4 Lions finish the season at the Giants, at Dallas and home versus Green Bay.

The week kicks off on Thursday night with the Giants at Philadelphia. New York is one of five road teams to be favored in Week 16. That says more about the poor play of those home teams than anything else. The home dogs are Philly, the Bears, Panthers, Jaguars and Browns.

 

NFL Week 16 Early Advanced Look-Ahead Betting Lines

9-4 New York Giants (-3) at 5-8 Philadelphia Eagles
Thursday December 22 at 8:25 pm ET on NBC

7-5-1 Washington Redskins (-3½) at 3-10 Chicago Bears
Saturday December 24 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

8-5 Miami Dolphins at 6-7 Buffalo Bills (-3½)
Saturday December 24 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

8-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers at 5-8 New Orleans Saints (-3)
Saturday December 24 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

8-5 Atlanta Falcons (-2½) at 5-8 Carolina Panthers
Saturday December 24 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

7-6 Minnesota Vikings at 7-6 Green Bay Packers (-5)
Saturday December 24 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

4-9 New York Jets at 11-2 New England Patriots (-13½)
Saturday December 24 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

7-6 Tennessee Titans (-3½) at 2-11 Jacksonville Jaguars
Saturday December 24 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

5-8 San Diego Chargers (-4½) at 0-13 Cleveland Browns
Saturday December 24 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

6-7 Indianapolis Colts at 10-3 Oakland Raiders (-6)
Saturday December 24 at 4:05 pm ET on CBS

1-12 San Francisco 49ers at 4-9 Los Angeles Rams (-2½)
Saturday December 24 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

5-7-1 Arizona Cardinals at 8-4-1 Seattle Seahawks (-7½)
Saturday December 24 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

5-7-1 Cincinnati Bengals at 7-5 Houston Texans (-2½)
Saturday December 24 at 8:25 pm ET on NFLN

7-6 Baltimore Ravens at 8-5 Pittsburgh Steelers (-6½)
Sunday December 25 at 4:30 pm ET on NFLN

8-5 Denver Broncos at 10-3 Kansas City Chiefs (-4)
Sunday December 25 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC

9-4 Detroit Lions at 11-2 Dallas Cowboys (-7)
Monday December 26 at 8:30 pm ET on BSPN

 

 

NFL Week 15 Thursday Night Football

Back to this week’s games for a moment. Week fifteen kicks off tonight with a typical Thursday night game: a bad team being featured in prime time in a game that won’t be competitive. Yes Seattle lost last week to Green Bay. However the Seahawks have responded to their three losses this season with victories by an average of 19 points. And yes Seattle lost to the Rams in Week 2, but their offense – in particular their offensive line – is performing far better than they did in early September.

This is the leagues best offense facing the league’s worst offense. In a rebound situation. Back home in a stadium providing one of, if not the most favorable home field advantages in all pro sports. Against a rookie quarterback who did not play in a pro style offense in college, making just the fifth start of his career. Against a team that has given up after losing eight of their last nine games. A team averaging a mere 12 points per game since late October.

Take the Seahawks, despite the huge spread.

Prediction: Seahawks 34, Rams 9
Seahawks -15 (two units) . . . . . over 39½ . . . . . Seattle -1600

Final Score: Seahawks 24, Rams 3 ✓
Seahawks -15 ✓✓ . . . . . over 39½ x . . . . . Seahawks -1600 ✓

NFL Week 14 Odds, Television Coverage and Broadcast Distribution

John Morgan
December 5, 2016 at 11:00 pm ET

NFL Week 14 is shaping up to be very simple in terms of television coverage and broadcast distribution.

NFL Week 14 Early Games on FOX

Shockingly FOX will broadcast an NFC East game to most of the country. Since the Cowboys were not available most of the U.S. will receive Washington at Philadelphia in their early time slot.

Jacksonville ans northern states from Michigan to Montana will get the Vikings at Jaguars instead.

Chargers at Panthers will be available in the Carolinas and San Diego.

Cardinals at Dolphins will be the alternative in Arizona and Fkorida, with the exception of Jacksonville.

 

NFL Week 14 Late Games on FOX

Falcons at Rams will air in Georgia, Alabama and southern California.

Saints at Bucs will be shown in the rest of the southeast.

The remainder of the country gets Seattle at Green Bay.

 

NFL Week 14 Games on CBS

The eastern seaboard from Maine to Florida and then west To Louisiana will receive the Pittsburgh-Buffalo game.

New York City, Philadelphia, Charlotte and Jacksonville are at home at the same time, so they get the late game instead. Those markets along with Minneapolis, Reno, Arizona and North Carolina will instead get the Jets at 49ers dumpster fire in the late time slot.

Back to the early kickoff, the Great Lakes region will receive Chicago at Detroit.

Ohio and Kentucky has to deal with the Browns-Bengals game.

Indiana, Texas and Shreveport will be shown the Texans-Colts AFC North showdown.

Everyone else gets Denver at Tennessee.

 

NFL Week 14 Prime Time Games

Thursday Night: Raiders at Chiefs

Sunday Night: Cowboys at Giants

Monday Night: Ravens at Patriots

 

In other broadcast news the Week 15 Bucs-Cowboys game has, as was expected, been flexed to Sunday night. Tampa Bay has won four in a row and Dallas is a network and media darling right now. The Bengals have under achieved this year, ever since their playoff loss to the Steelers in January. Their game against Pittsburgh now lacks the luster it held when the NFL schedule was announced last spring thanks to Cincy’s 4-7-1 record. That game has now shifted all the way back to a 1:00 pm eastern time kickoff.

 

NFL Week 14 Schedule and Odds

10-2 Oakland Raiders at 9-3 Kansas City Chiefs
Chiefs -3 . . . . . over/under 47

8-4 Denver Broncos at 6-6 Tennessee Titans
Titans -1 . . . . . over/under 43½

5-7 San Diego Chargers at 4-8 Carolina Panthers
Panthers -1 . . . . . over/under 48½

6-6 Houston Texans at 6-6 Indianapolis Colts
Colts -4½ . . . . . over/under 46½

4-7-1 Cincinnati Bengals at 0-12 Cleveland Browns
Bengals -6 . . . . . over/under 43½

7-5 Pittsburgh Steelers at 6-6 Buffalo Bills
Steelers -1½ . . . . . over/under 47

5-6-1 Arizona Cardinals at 7-5 Miami Dolphins
Dolphins -2 . . . . . over/under 43½

3-9 Chicago Bears at 8-4 Detroit Lions
Lions -8 . . . . . over/under 43½

6-6 Minnesota Vikings at 2-10 Jacksonville Jaguars
Vikings -3½ . . . . . over/under 39½

6-5-1 Washington Redskins at 5-7 Philadelphia Eagles
Redskins -1 . . . . . over/under 46½

3-9 New York Jets at 1-11 San Francisco 49ers
Niners -1 . . . . . over/under 46½

5-7 New Orleans Saints at 7-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Buccaneers -2½ . . . . . over/under 51½

8-3-1 Seattle Seahawks at 6-6 Green Bay Packers
Seahawks -2½ . . . . . over/under 46½

7-5 Atlanta Falcons at 4-8 Los Angeles Rams
Falcons -6 . . . . . over/under 45

10-1 Dallas Cowboys at 8-4 New York Giants
Cowboys -3 . . . . . over/under 47½

7-5 Baltimore Ravens at 10-2 New England Patriots
Patriots -7 . . . . . over/under 45½

 

 

NFL Week 13 Odds, Predictions and Picks Against the Spread

John Morgan
December 4, 2016 at 7:00 am ET

Despite the supposedly foolproof plan to avoid controversy in determining a champion, college football is in the midst of doing just that once again.

When it comes to football the reality is that our nations universities sold their souls in a quest for the almighty dollar long ago. The idea that it is all about kids getting an education is an insult to our intelligence. And that is before the absurd topic of player safety.

Colleges wanted to get away from six and eight team leagues, and form 12 and 14 team mega conferences. One of the benefits to doing so was a huge influx of cash for a championship game. This was made possible by having enough teams in a conference to create two divisions. The two division winners meet after the season is over and voilà, another big pay day for everyone except for those actually playing the game.

If that is the way you want to set this sport up, then fine. Have your mega-conference championship games, and then the winners of those games can meet in a mini-playoff series to determine the nation’s number one team. But thanks to our everyone-gets-a-trophy mentality, that’s not good enough. Gee whiz, what if a good team gets excluded?

Colleges and their boosters want it both ways. They want to financially benefit from conference championship games. But then they want to be able to send whatever team is actually the best one from their group to a national championship game – even if they did not win, or even play in their league’s title game.

Sorry it doesn’t – or at least should not work that way. How can anyone justify a team winning their conference and then tell them sorry, but another team that did not win your league is going to the playoffs for the national title? If you are going to do that then you need to eliminate conference championship games, because you just made them meaningless.

Want more happy thoughts? Consider this with Black Friday and Cyber Monday are now thankfully in the rear view mirror. More people in the United States shopped during that short time period than voted in the presidential election.

 

NFL Week 13 Early Games on CBS

★★ 7-4 Denver Broncos at 2-9 Jacksonville Jaguars
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Spero Dedes, Solomon Wilcots.
Broncos -3½ . . . . over/under 39½ . . . . DEN -180, JAC +160
Broadcast in Tucson AZ, San Diego CA, Colorado, Jacksonville FL, Idaho (except Boise), New Mexico, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming.

Denver has cooled off after beginning the season 4-0. Since then the Broncos are 3-4 with only one quality win, back in week seven against Houston. NFL teams have fared poorly the week after an overtime game, and Denver lost in OT last week. Now the Donkeys have to travel 1800 miles and leave the best home field advantage in the league behind – with a backup QB under center.

Normally that would be a recipe for disaster, but the Broncos are playing a moribund Jacksonville squad. The Jaguars own the league’s worst worst turnover differential at minus-15, which helps explain their record. Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware pose a huge mismatch for Jag tackles Kelvin Beachum and Jermy Parnell. Denver has had trouble stopping the run (4.3 yards per carry; 120 yards per game) but the Jacksonville line can’t open up lanes, and their running backs are pedestrian. The dropoff from Siemian to Paxton Lynch is at quarterback is minimal for Denver and a non-issue.

Prediction: Broncos 24, Jaguars 17
Broncos -3½ (two units) . . . . . under 39½ . . . . . Denver -180

Final Score: Broncos 20, Jaguars 10 ✓
Broncos -3½ ✓✓ . . . . . under 39½ ✓ . . . . . Broncos -180 ✓

 

★★★★★ 8-3 Kansas City Chiefs at 7-4 Atlanta Falcons
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Greg Gumbel, Trent Green, Jamie Erdahl.
Falcons -5½ . . . . over/under 49 . . . . ATL -240, KAN +200
Broadcast in Alabama (except Mobile), Arkansas, Tallahassee FL, Tampa FL, Georgia, western Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana (except Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Shreveport), Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina and western Virginia.

Similar to Denver, the Chiefs face the challenge of going on the road after playing five full quarters of football last week. Unlike the Broncos, KC has the polar opposite in strength of opposition. While Denver and now Oakland receive far more publicity, the Chiefs have quietly won 18 of their last 21 regular season games. An already good KC defense received a boost with the return of OLB Justin Houston from a knee injury.

The media has focused on Derek Carr’s injured finger, but Kansas City is another AFC West club with injury problems. NT Dontari Poe was unable to practice all week, so it is unlikely he’ll play. CB Marcus Peters will play, but even with a fully healthy hip he will have his hands full covering Julio Jones.

Prediction: Falcons 27, Chiefs 24
Chiefs +5½ . . . . . over 49 . . . . . Atlanta -240

Final Score: Chiefs 29, Falcons 28 x
Chiefs +5½ ✓ . . . . . over 49 ✓ . . . . . Falcons -240 x

 

★★★★ 6-5 Houston Texans at 5-6 Green Bay Packers
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, Tracy Wolfson.
Green Bay -6½ . . . . over/under 44½ . . . . GNB -270, HOU +230
Broadcast in Alaska, Arizona (except Tucson), Connecticut, Hawaii, Boise ID, Illinois (except Chicago), Indiana, Kentucky, Shreveport LA, Michigan (except Detroit and Flint), Minnesota, Las Vegas NV, New York City, North Dakota, Tennessee, Texas (except El Paso), Washington and Wisconsin.

Houston turned the ball over six times in the last two weeks, dropping to 6-5. Aaron Rodgers at home or Brock Osweiler on the road? Green Bay’s pass defense is poor, but they are very efficient against the run (3.8 yards per carry). Houston wants to run the ball behind Lamar Miller. If the Texans are unable to do so, Osweiler cannot keep pace with Rodgers in a shootout. There is a chance of snow, which would definitely benefit the Packers as well.

Prediction: Packers 24, Texans 13
Packers -6½ (two units) . . . . . under 44½ (one unit) . . . . . Green Bay -270

Final Score: Packers 21, Texans 13 ✓
Packers -6½ ✓✓ . . . . . under 44½ . . . . . Packers -270 ✓

 

★★★★ 7-4 Miami Dolphins at 6-5 Baltimore Ravens
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon, Chris Fischer.
Ravens -3½ . . . . over/under 41 . . . . BAL -180, MIA +160
Broadcast in Mobile AL, DC, Florida (except Jacksonville, Panama City and Tampa), Maryland, Ohio (except Cincinnati), Pennsylvania (except Philadelphia), eastern Virginia and West Virginia.

Branden Albert and Laremy Tunsil return to the Miami offensive line this week, though Mike Pouncey is still out. Baltimore also gets some good news on the injury front with the return of guard Marshal Yanda. The Ravens have rebounded from a four game losing streak punctuated with a loss to the Jets, winning three of their last four. Miami is even hotter, winning six straight after a 1-4 start to the season. Ryan Tannehill and Jay Ajayi have played very well during that streak. Tannehill has thrown nine touchdown passes versus just one pick and Ajayi is averaging 122 rushing yards per game while finding the end zone five times in that winning span.

Prediction: Dolphins 23, Ravens 20
Dolphins +3½ . . . . . over 41 . . . . . Miami +160

Final Score: Ravens 38, Dolphins 6 x
Dolphins +3½ x . . . . . over 41 ✓ . . . . . Dolphins +160 x

 

NFL Week 13 Early Games on FOX

★★★ 5-6 Philadelphia Eagles at 3-7-1 Cincinnati Bengals
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Thom Brennaman, Charles Davis, Peter Schrager.
Bengals -1½ . . . . over/under 41½ . . . . CIN -125, PHI +105
Broadcast in DC, Salisbury MD, eastern Kentucky, Ohio (except Toledo), North Dakota, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

After starting the season 3-0 Philly’s season has gone down the toilet with six losses in their last eight games. The Eagles cannot win the division and would need to leap frog five teams to make the playoffs as a six seed. Cincinnati is headed in the same direction. The Bengals have lost three in a row and are showing no signs of interest in the post-season. Philly has lost five straight road games, with their only victory away coming against the Bears. Even without AJ Green I’ll give a very slight edge to Cincinnati here.

Prediction: Bengals 17, Eagles 16
Eagles +1½ . . . . . under 41½ . . . . . Cincinnati -125

Final Score: Bengals 32, Eagles 14 ✓
Eagles +1½ x . . . . . under 41½ x . . . . . Bengals -125 ✓

 

★★★★ 7-4 Detroit Lions at 5-6 New Orleans Saints
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Chris Myers, Ronde Barber, Jennifer Hale.
Saints -6 . . . . over/under 52½ . . . . NOR -260, DET +220
Broadcast in Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida (except Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Miami and West Palm Beach), Georgia (except Atlanta), Wichita KS, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina, Toledo OH, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin (except Green Bay).

Matthew Stafford should have a field day against a New Orleans defense that is allowing 28 points per game. Other than last week’s blowout over the Rams, the Saints have not been rather average at home. Even if New Orleans wins it is more likely going to be by three or four points than by more than a touchdown.

Prediction: Lions 34, Saints 31
Lions +6 (two units) . . . . . over 52½ (two units) . . . . . Detroit +220

Final Score: Lions 28, Saints 13 ✓
Lions +6 ✓✓ . . . . . over 52½ xx . . . . . Lions +220 ✓

 

1-10 San Francisco 49ers at 2-9 Chicago Bears
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, Laura Okmin.
Niners -2 . . . . over/under 43 . . . . SFO -130, CHI +110
Broadcast in northern California, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Reno NV and Medford OR.

Who did Kenny Albert piss off to be assigned to cover this dumpster fire? The weather could play a factor in this game. With rain and/or snow in the forecast sloppy playing conditions could lead to turnovers and a low scoring game.

Prediction: Niners 20, Bears 14
Niners -2 . . . . . under 43 (one unit) . . . . . San Francisco -130

Final Score: Bears 26, Forty Niners 6 x
Niners -2 x . . . . . under 43 . . . . . Niners -130 x

 

★★★★ 4-7 Los Angeles Rams at 9-2 New England Patriots
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Kevin Burkhardt, John Lynch, Pam Oliver.
Patriots -13½ . . . . over/under 44½ . . . . NWE -900, LAR +600
Broadcast in New England, Arizona, southern California, Colorado, south Florida (Fort Myers, Miami, West Palm Beach), Hawaii, Idaho, southern Illinois, Kansas (except Wichita), Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New York, Las Vegas NV, Oregon (except Medford), Tennessee (except Memphis), Utah, Washington and Wyoming.

Bill Belichick game plans to limit the opposition’s primary threat. That means stopping running back Todd Gurley. Opponents have been successful with that same tactic all season, resulting in the Rams averaging an NFL-worst 15.5 points per game.

Robert Quinn did not practice all week due to a concussion. He is listed as questionable, but I don’t see how he can play in this game. Center Tim Barnes and LG Rodger Saffold are also questionable for the Rams; the Patriots are not the only team here with an injury concern. Despite the most recent Belichick-Jeff Fisher games (45-7 and 59-0 Pats victories), I’m inclined to believe that the LA defense bounces back from last week’s debacle in New Orleans. The Patriots will win but this is not going to be an easy cakewalk.

Prediction: Patriots 27, Rams 17
Rams +13½ . . . . . under 44½ . . . . . New England -900

Final Score: Patriots 26, Rams 10 ✓
Rams +13½ x . . . . . under 44½ ✓ . . . . . Patriots -900 ✓

 

NFL Week 13 Late Games

★★★★ 6-5 Buffalo Bills at 9-2 Oakland Raiders
Sunday December 4 at 4:05 pm ET on CBS; Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts, Evan Washburn.
Raiders -3 . . . . over/under 48½ . . . . OAK -165, BUF +145
Broadcast in New England (except Hartford), Yuma AZ, California (except San Diego), Chicago IL, Baton Rouge LA, New Orleans LA, Detroit MI, Flint MI, Reno NV, New York (except New York City), Cincinnati OH, Oregon, Philadelphia PA and El Paso TX.

Buffalo enters the game with the NFL’s best rushing attack. The Bills are averaging 5.3 yards per carry, 157 rushing yards per game and 20 rushing touchdowns – all best in the league. That is bad news for an Oakland defense allowing a 30th-ranked 4.6 yards per carry. With Derek Carr dealing with two dislocated fingers the Raiders could be in trouble here.

Prediction: Bills 27, Raiders 24
Bills +3 . . . . . over 48½ . . . . . Buffalo +145

Final Score: Raiders 38, Bills 24 x
Bills +3 x . . . . . over 48½ ✓ . . . . . Bills +145 x

 

★★★ 6-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers at 5-6 San Diego Chargers
Sunday December 4 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX; Sam Rosen, David Diehl, Holly Sonders.
Chargers -3½ . . . . over/under 48½ . . . . SDG -185, TAM +165
Broadcast in San Diego CA and Florida (except Jacksonville, Miami and West Palm Beach).

The Bucs have somehow worked their way into the playoff race. However their secondary is still bad, and Philip Rivers should be able to exploit that deficiency. Tampa Bay won’t be able to cover Travis Benjamin and Tyrell Williams. Melvin Gordon will be able to gain big chunks of yardage on the ground with the focus on the passing game, but Tampa will keep it close. The Chargers have no answer for WR Mike Evans, and Jameis Winston has been making good decisions with the ball.

Prediction: Chargers 28, Buccaneers 24
Chargers -3½ . . . . . over 48½ . . . . . San Diego -185

Final Score: Buccaneers 28, Chargers 21 x
Chargers -3½ x . . . . . over 48½ ✓ . . . . . Chargers -185 x

 

★★★ 6-4-1 Washington Redskins at 4-6-1 Arizona Cardinals
Sunday December 4 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX; Dick Stockton, Chris Spielman, Kristina Pink.
Cardinals -2½ . . . . over/under 48½ . . . . ARI -135, WAS +115
Broadcast in Arizona, DC, North Carolina and Virginia.

Running back David Johnson has not been utilized enough by Arizona. If Bruce Arians gets his head out of his butt and figures that out then the Cardinals should win. Washington is surrendering 4.7 yards per carry and doesn’t have the personnel to handle him on screen passes out of the backfield.

Prediction: Cardinals 24, Redskins 23
Redskins +2½ . . . . . under 48½ . . . . . Arizona -135

Final Score: Cardinals 31, Redskins 23 ✓
Redskins +2½ x . . . . . under 48½ x . . . . . Cardinals -135 ✓

 

★★★★ 8-3 New York Giants at 6-5 Pittsburgh Steelers
Sunday December 4 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX; Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews.
Steelers -6 . . . . over/under 48½ . . . . PIT -260, NYG +220
Broadcast in all markets except for those airing the Bucs-Chargers or Skins-Cardinals games above. Also not televised in San Francisco due to NFL broadcast rules, as the Raiders are playing at home at the same time.

The New York defense has received plenty of platitudes during their winning streak. However much of that can be attributed to facing inferior offenses led by mediocre quarterbacks. I like Pittsburgh here but a line of six points leaves me hesitant to place a wager on this game.

Prediction: Steelers 31, Giants 24
Steelers -6 . . . . . over 48½ . . . . . Pittsburgh -260

Final Score: Steelers 24, Giants 14 ✓
Steelers -6 ✓ . . . . . over 48½ x . . . . . Steelers -260 ✓

 

NFL Week 13 Prime Time Games

★★★★ 4-7 Carolina Panthers at 7-3-1 Seattle Seahawks
Sunday December 4 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC; Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya.
Seahawks -7 . . . . over/under 44 . . . . SEA -350, CAR +290

Seattle was in a difficult spot last week, making a long road trip with injuries to key players. The Seahawks are back home and are also healthy again.

Prediction: Seahawks 24, Panthers 13
Seahawks -7 (two units) . . . . . under 44 . . . . . Seattle -350

Final Score: Seahawks 40, Panthers 7 ✓
Seahawks -7 ✓✓ . . . . . under 44 x . . . . . Seahawks -350 ✓

 

★★ 5-6 Indianapolis Colts at 3-8 New York Jets
Monday December 5 at 8:30 pm ET on BSPN; Sean McDonough, Jon Gruden, Lisa Salters.
Colts -1½ . . . . over/under 48½ . . . . IND -125, NYJ +105

The Jets had their Super Bowl last week. Expect that to be followed by the inevitable letdown, if that is possible for a three-win team.

Prediction: Colts 20, Jets 17
Colts -1½ (one unit) . . . . . under 48½ (two units) . . . . . Indianapolis -125

Final Score: Colts 41, Jets 10 ✓
Colts -1½ . . . . . under 48½ xx . . . . . Colts -125 ✓

 

★★★★ 10-1 Dallas Cowboys at 6-5 Minnesota Vikings
Thursday December 1 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC; Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya.
Cowboys -3 . . . . over/under 43½ . . . . DAL -160, MIN +130

Along with most of the nation I did not expect this to be as close as it was. On one hand Dallas keeps finding ways to win, but on the other I can’t help but wonder if Ezekiel Elliott is hitting the rookie wall. Is it possible that the Cowboys peaked too soon and are running out of gas?

Prediction: Cowboys 24, Vikings 13
Cowboys -3 (two units) . . . . . under 43½ . . . . . Dallas -160

Final Score: Cowboys 17, Vikings 15 ✓
Cowboys -3 xx . . . . . under 43½ ✓ . . . . . Cowboys -160 ✓

 

NFL Week 13 Parlays and Teasers

3-Game Parlay (one unit): x
Lions at Saints over 52½ x
Panthers at Seahawks -7 ✓
Jets vs Colts -1½ ✓

5-Team 6-Point Teaser (two units): xx
Lions at Saints over 46½ x
Panthers at Seahawks -1 ✓
Jets vs Colts +4½ ✓
Ravens vs Dolphins +9½ x
Saints vs Lions +12 ✓

 

Tale of the Tape

Last week the total of the Packers at Eagles game killed me. The final score was 27-13 and I took over 47½ based primarily on Green Bay’s defense in recent weeks. I lost two units on the over, and also two units on a parlay and another two units on a teaser. That was a 5-game teaser that would have paid out 410 x 2. On paper the outcome cost me six units but in reality it was much more. Had the game gone over the delta between what I would have been up versus what I was down was a net 2450 (1790-660)! That one game wiped out the positive of hitting on my second largest play of the season, a four unit wager on Atlanta-Arizona.

Week 12 Results:
11-5 Straight Up
7-8-1 Against the Spread
8-8 Over/Under
4-unit plays: 1-0, +400
2-unit plays: 3-3-1, -80
1-unit plays: 2-4, -240
3-Game Parlay: 2u, -220
5-Game Teaser: 2u, -220
28 units invested
6-9-1, -360 on $3080 risk.
-11.7% ROI

Year to Date Results:
104-71-2 Straight Up
94-77-5 Against the Spread
96-80 Over/Under
5-unit plays: 1-0, +500
4-unit plays: 1-0, +400
3-unit plays: 6-5-1, +120
2-unit plays: 32-16-1, +2910
1-unit plays: 36-26-1, +730
Parlays: 3-7, +1520
Teasers: 6-4, +2830
85-58-3, +9010 on original $2310 risk.
390.0% ROI on original $2310 bankroll.
34.4% ROI on $26,180 (238 units) of total weekly investments.

6-9-1, -360 on 28 units (-11.7%) in Week 11.
4-9, -510 on 18 units (-25.8%) in Week 10.
7-4, +850 on 17 units (+45.5%) in Week 9.
11-2, +3470 on 27 units (+116.8%) in Week 8.
3-6, -480 on 12 units (-36.4%) in Week 7.
9-3-1, +1300 on 17 units (+69.5%) in Week 6.
7-7, +50 on 22 units (+2.1%) in Week 5.
9-2, +1910 on 18 units (+96.5%) in Week 4.
3-9-1, -1280 on 22 units (-58.2%) in Week 3.
9-3, +950 on 20 units (+43.2%) in Week 2.
9-2, +840 on 21 units (+36.4%) in Week 1.

 

The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publisher of this website. Neither the author nor this website promote or advocate gambling. This is solely for entertainment purposes only. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, please call 1-888-ADMIT-IT or 1-888-GA-HELPS.

 

Follow on Twitter @AllThingsPats

 

NFL Week 14 Early Advanced ‘Look-Ahead’ Betting Lines: Patriots favored by 10 vs Ravens

John Morgan
December 1, 2016 at 4:00 pm ET

NFL Week 14 offers another great slate of games. The schedule starts with Oakland at Kansas City on Thursday night, and finishes with Baltimore at New England on Monday night. In between there are plenty of other quality matchups such as Pittsburgh at Buffalo, Arizona at Miami, San Diego at Carolina, Seattle at Green Bay, and then a Cowboys-Giants rematch on Sunday night.

While the biggest buzz around NFL circles right now is Rob Gronkowski’s injury and how it may detour the Patriots’ revenge tour, there is plenty of other league news. Ram head coach Jeff Fisher apparently does not watch much film of his team’s upcoming opponent in preparation for his next game. Jay Cutler is done for the season, which will lead to speculation on his future with the Bears. Denver has their own crisis at quarterback, and Viking fans looking forward to the return of Adrian Peterson may have to wait a while. Raven head coach John Harbaugh would love to see a rule change that would benefit his team, and former Jet running back Joe McKnight was shot dead in suburban New Orleans.

Back to Week 14, there are some interesting spreads for those who like to live life on the edge. How about the New Orleans at Tampa Bay pick’em? Or Washington getting a point at floundering Philadelphia? Houston getting four points at Indy is tempting. And then there is 10-1 Dallas, who only needs to win by a field goal for you to cash in.

Keep in mind that these odds were set not only prior to Sunday’s games, but before Thursday’s Cowboys-Vikings contest as well. If you happen to be in Vegas, you can drop up to 3K on any of these games at the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook right now if you are feeling particularly clairvoyant. Nearly half (seven out of sixteen) home teams are listed as underdogs.

 

NFL Week 14 Early Advanced ‘Look-Ahead’ Betting Lines

9-2 Oakland Raiders at 8-3 Kansas City Chiefs (-3½)
Thursday December 8 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC

7-4 Denver Broncos (-1) at 6-6 Tennessee Titans
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

5-6 San Diego Chargers at 4-7 Carolina Panthers (-2½)
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

6-5 Houston Texans at 5-6 Indianapolis Colts (-4)
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

3-7-1 Cincinnati Bengals (-3½) at 0-12 Cleveland Browns
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

6-5 Pittsburgh Steelers (-1½) at 6-5 Buffalo Bills
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

4-6-1 Arizona Cardinals at 7-4 Miami Dolphins (-3)
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

2-9 Chicago Bears at 7-4 Detroit Lions (-7)
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

6-5 Minnesota Vikings (-3) at 2-9 Jacksonville Jaguars
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

5-6 New Orleans Saints at 6-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Pick’em)
Sunday December 11 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

6-4-1 Washington Redskins at 5-6 Philadelphia Eagles (-1)
Sunday December 11 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

3-8 New York Jets at 1-10 San Francisco 49ers (-1)
Sunday December 11 at 4:05 pm ET on CBS

7-3-1 Seattle Seahawks (-2½) at 5-6 Green Bay Packers
Sunday December 11 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

7-4 Atlanta Falcons (-4½) at 4-7 Los Angeles Rams
Sunday December 11 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

10-1 Dallas Cowboys (-2) at 8-3 New York Giants
Sunday December 11 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC

6-5 Baltimore Ravens at 9-2 New England Patriots (-10)
Monday December 12 at 8:30 pm ET on BSPN

 

Back to Week 13 for a moment. In early October this matchup looked like it might be a preview of the NFC championship game. Since then the Cowboys have continued to win, while Minnesota keeps finding ways to lose. At some point relatively early on the Dallas offensive line will pave the way for a score or two. The Vikings don’t have anywhere near enough of an offense (19.8 points per game, 24th; 295 yards per game, 32nd) to come back against a Cowboy team that is averaging 28.7 points per game (3rd) and 408 yards per game (4th).

Prediction: Cowboys 24, Vikings 13
Cowboys -3 (two units) . . . . . under 43½ . . . . . Dallas -160

 

NFL Week 12 Predictions and Picks Against the Spread

John Morgan
November 27, 2016 at 7:30 am ET

NFL Week 12 kicked off with three good games on Thanksgiving Day. Home teams are underdogs in five of the twelve games being played Sunday, which could lead to some interesting results. The best matchup this week takes place on Sunday Night. The Chiefs are at Denver in a battle of 7-3 AFC West clubs. The other prime time game isn’t bad at all either, with the Eagles hosting the Packers on Monday night.

Two days after the fourth anniversary of the Butt Fumble, the Patriots and Jets meet again. Gang Green has already lost more games this season than they did in all of 2015, and are listed as 7½-point underdogs even though they are at home in New Jersey. That spread is tied as the highest of all games being played Sunday; the other is Buffalo at home over the stumbling Jacksonville Jaguars.

And of course, some mediot had to ask Bill Belichick about that play – and receive a classic response.

In terms of television coverage the Pats-Jets game will be televised by CBS in the northeast, from New England as far west as Indiana and Kentucky, and along the Atlantic seaboard to DC and Norfolk, Virginia. It will also air in Florida with the exception of Tampa (blacked out because the Bucs are at home at the same time) and the panhandle. In that late afternoon slot the rest of the country will receive Carolina at Oakland; admittedly a more compelling game for neutral fans.

For the early time slot on CBS most of the nation, including New England will get the Cincinnati at Baltimore game. FOX has the single game in Week 12. Giants-Browns will air in the northeast, Arizona at Atlanta in most of the southeast, and Seattle at Tampa Bay in the late time slot will be broadcast on most stations west of the Mississippi.

 

NFL Week 12 Early Games on CBS

★★★★ 4-6 San Diego Chargers at 6-4 Houston Texans
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon
Chargers -2½ . . . . over/under 46½ . . . . SDG -135, HOU +115
Broadcast in Yuma AZ, California, Colorado, Wichita KS, Shreveport LA, Reno NV, Oklahoma, Portland OR, Texas and Spokane WA.

Granted there was questionable officiating, but Houston blew two seven-point second half leads to lose to the Raiders. The Texans have now been outscored 41-9 in the fourth quarter over the last four weeks, and are in a battle for the division lead while playing on a short week. Houston’s defense is not bad: 5th in yards, 13th in points, 8th on third down, 10th in yards per play. The offense stinks though, especially the passing game. The Texans rank last in yards per play and are 28th in both yardage and scoring. Brock Osweiler is completing less than 60 percent of his passes and ranks 31st with a 74.9 passer rating. Osweiler has thrown 12 touchdowns and 10 picks; the only starters with a worse TD:INT differential are Blaine Gabbert, Case Keenum and Ryan Fitzpatrick.

That being said, Houston is 5-0 at home this year and will likely have a bit of extra adrenaline after those bad calls in Mexico City. Although I would take Philip Rivers over Osweiler, I would also take Bill O’Brien over Mike McCoy as head coach seven days a week.

Prediction: Texans 27, Chargers 21
Texans +2½ (one unit) . . . . . over 46½ . . . . . Houston +115

Final Score: Chargers 21, Texans 13 x
Texans +2½ x . . . . . over 46½ x . . . . . Texans +115 x

 

★★ 5-6 Tennessee Titans at 2-8 Chicago Bears
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Spero Dedes, Solomon Wilcots
Titans -5½ . . . . over/under 42 . . . . TEN -240, CHI +200
Broadcast in Huntsville AL, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, western Kentucky, southwestern and upper peninsula Michigan, northern Mississippi, eastern Missouri, Omaha NE, Fargo ND, Eugene OR, Tennessee and Wisconsin.

Jay Cutler is doubtful with a shoulder injury after taking a big hit from Olivier Vernon on the second snap of last week’s game against the Giants. Matt Barkley will get his first NFL start and first meaningful playing time since relieving first Nick Foles and then Michael Vick with the Eagles mid-season in 2013. The Bears have 14 players on injured reserve and don’t have the quality depth to overcome that setback. All Tennessee has to do is avoid complacency and dumb mistakes to win this game easily.

Prediction: Titans 23, Bears 13
Titans -5½ (two units) . . . . . under 42 . . . . . Tennessee -240

Final Score: Titans 27, Bears 21 ✓
Titans -5½ ✓✓ . . . . . under 42 x . . . . . Titans -240 ✓

 

★★ 2-8 Jacksonville Jaguars at 5-5 Buffalo Bills
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Andrew Catalon, Steve Beuerlein, Steve Tasker
Bills -7½ . . . . over/under 45 . . . . BUF -330, JAC +270
Broadcast in northern Florida, southern Georgia and New York (except for New York City).

Rex Ryan has stated that WR Sammy Watkins and RB LeSean McCoy will play Sunday. That would mark the first time those two are on the field together since week two. That is bad news for a Jacksonville defense that is giving up 26.5 points per game (25th) and doesn’t force turnovers (last in the NFL with seven). Even worse news for the Jags is that their D is performing better than their offense.

Prediction: Bills 27, Jaguars 13
Bills -7½ (one unit) . . . . . under 45 . . . . . Buffalo -330

Final Score: Bills 28, Jaguars 21 ✓
Bills -7½ x . . . . . under 45 x . . . . . Bills -330 ✓

 

★★★ 3-6-1 Cincinnati Bengals at 5-5 Baltimore Ravens
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS; Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts, Evan Washburn
Ravens -4 . . . . . over/under 40½ . . . . BAL -200, CIN +175
Broadcast in New England and all markets not listed in the three other early CBS games above. Also not broadcast in Atlanta, Cleveland, Miami and New Orleans due to NFL broadcast rules that prohibit a game being televised on another network when the local team is playing at home and being broadcast.

The Bengals have won only one game since September and are now without AJ Green and Gio Bernard, so they have no chance here, right? However, looking closer you see Cincy started that streak with losses at Dallas and New England; no shame there. After a 14-point win the Bengals tied Washington, lost to the Giants by one, and lost to Buffalo by four without their star WR and third down back. Cincy might pack it in at some point, but I would not expect for that to happen against a bitter division rival.

Prediction: Ravens 20, Bengals 16
Bengals +4½ . . . . . under 40½ . . . . . Baltimore -200

Final Score: Ravens 19, Bengals 14 ✓
Bengals +4½ ✓ . . . . . under 40½ ✓ . . . . . Ravens -200 ✓

 

NFL Week 12 Early Games on FOX

★★★★ 4-5-1 Arizona Cardinals at 6-4 Atlanta Falcons
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Kevin Burkhardt, John Lynch, Pam Oliver
Falcons -6 . . . . . over/under 51 . . . . ATL -240, ARI +200
Broadcast in Alabama, Arizona, Grand Junction CO, Springfield IL, Indiana (except South Bend), Iowa, Louisville KY, Flint MI, Grand Rapids MI, Minnesota, southern Missouri, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota and eastern Tennessee.

Expect a high scoring game. The Falcons are averaging 34 points at home, but opponents have scored at least 31 points in each of those games. Arizona needed two returns of 100+ yards to beat the Vikings a week ago; that won’t happen again. But after watching Ryan Mathews and Wendell Smallwood of all people rush for 200+ yards against Atlanta in their last game, I wonder how badly David Johnson will torch the Falcon defense.

Prediction: Falcons 34, Cardinals 31
Cardinals +6 . . . . . over 51 (four units) . . . . . Atlanta -240

Final Score: Falcons 38, Cardinals 19 ✓
Cardinals +6 x . . . . . over 51 ✓✓✓✓ . . . . . Falcons -240 ✓

 

★★ 1-9 San Francisco 49ers at 6-4 Miami Dolphins
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Thom Brennaman, Charles Davis, Chris Spielman, Holly Sonders
Dolphins -7½ . . . . . over/under 44½ . . . . MIA -330, SFO +270
Broadcast in northern California, Miami FL, West Palm Beach FL and Reno NV.

San Francisco is allowing an astounding 180 yards rushing per game, at 5.2 yards per carry. Now they travel cross country for an early start to face the Dolphins. Miami RB Jay Ajayi has rushed for 685 yards and four touchdowns in the last five games, and leads the league with 5.6 yards per rush. The Dolphins are without three starters on their offensive line, but it still won’t matter.

Prediction: Dolphins 27, Niners 20
Niners +7½ . . . . . over 44½ . . . . . Miami -330

Final Score: Dolphins 31, Niners 24 ✓
Niners +7½ ✓ . . . . . over 44½ ✓ . . . . . Dolphins -330 ✓

 

★★★ 4-6 Los Angeles Rams at 4-6 New Orleans Saints
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Chris Myers, Ronde Barber, Jennifer Hale
Saints -7 . . . . . over/under 45½ . . . . NOR -335, LAR +275
Broadcast in Mobile AL, Arkansas, Los Angeles CA, Palm Springs CA, Louisiana and Mississippi.

New Orleans possesses a potent offense, scoring 28.5 points per game (4th) and averaging 422 yards of offense (2nd). Conversely the Saints have shot themselves in the foot recently, turning the ball over an alarming six times in the last two games. As a result the Saints dropped two close games and now stand at 4-6 rather than 6-4 and sharing the division lead. The Saints have run the ball well over their last five games, and need to continue to do so. If New Orleans becomes one-dimensional then Robert Quinn, Aaron Donald and Michael Brockers will be able to generate enough of a pass rush to neutralize Drew Brees. The challenge for the Rams will be for their excellent defense to overcome Jeff Fisher’s coaching decisions and game plan, and rookie quarterback Jared Goff in the raucous Superdome.

Prediction: Saints 27, Rams 17
Saints -7 (two units) . . . . . under 45½ . . . . . New Orleans -335

Final Score: Saints 49, Rams 21 ✓
Saints -7 ✓✓ . . . . . under 45½ x . . . . . Saints -335 ✓

 

★★ 7-3 New York Giants at 0-11 Cleveland Browns
Sunday November 27 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX; Dick Stockton, Matt Millen, Peter Schrager
Giants -7½ . . . . over/under 44½ . . . . NYG -320, CLE +260
Broadcast in New England, DC, Salisbury MD, New York (except Buffalo), Ohio, Pennsylvania, Memphis TN, Brownsville TX, Virginia (except Richmond) and West Virginia.

Josh McCown hasn’t played badly in his time with the Browns, but Cleveland’s offensive line makes any quarterback an injury waiting to happen. New York’s defense has vastly improved from a year ago, resulting in close wins rather than narrow losses. I think the spread may be a bit too high, but I have no faith in placing any of my hard earned money on this train wreck of a team.

Prediction: Giants 24, Browns 20
Browns +7½ . . . . . under 44½ . . . . . New York -320

Final Score: Giants 27, Browns 13 ✓
Browns +7½ x . . . . . under 44½ ✓ . . . . . Giants -320 ✓

 

NFL Week 12 Late Game on FOX

★★★★ 7-2-1 Seattle Seahawks at 5-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Sunday November 27 at 4:05 pm ET on FOX;
Seahawks -6 . . . . over/under 45 . . . . SEA -260, TAM +220
Broadcast in Alaska, San Diego CA, Colorado, Florida (except Miami and West Palm Beach), Hawaii, Idaho, northern Illinois, South Bend IN, Kansas, Kentucky (except Louisville), Baltimore MD, Michigan (except Flint and Grand Rapids), northern Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Las Vegas NV, New Mexico, Buffalo NY, Cincinnati OH, Oklahoma, Oregon, Nashville TN, Texas (except Brownsville), Utah, Richmond VA, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

With Doug Martin back on the field, Tampa Bay has improved in both running the ball as well as in pass protection. That is good news for Mike Evans, who has 65 receptions for 916 yards and eight touchdowns. However, the Tampa Bay defense is no more than average and their secondary is one of the league’s worst. Raymond James Stadium does not offer much of a home field advantage, with many transplants buying up tickets at less than face value to see their favorite out of town team visit. As a result this road game should not be a problem, even though Seattle is traveling as far as a team can and stay within the United States.

Prediction: Seahawks 31, Buccaneers 20
Seahawks -6 (two units) . . . . . over 45 (one unit) . . . . . Seattle -260

Final Score: Buccaneers 14, Seahawks 5 x
Seahawks -6 xx . . . . . over 45 x . . . . . Seahawks -260 x

 

NFL Week 12 Late Games on CBS

★★★★ 4-6 Carolina Panthers at 8-2 Oakland Raiders
Sunday November 27 at 4:25 pm ET on CBS; Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, Tracy Wolfson
Raiders -3 . . . . over/under 49½ . . . . OAK -170, CAR +150
Broadcast in all markets not airing the Pats-Jets game (below); also not broadcast in Tampa due to NFL rules that forbid another game being televised when the local team is at home.

Josh Norman may not have helped Washington as much as the Redskins hoped he would, but his departure sure has impacted the Panthers. Carolina’s pass defense ranks 29th in completion percentage (67.1%), 26th in passing yards per game (272) and 23rd in yards per pass (7.2). Derek Carr has thrown 20 touchdown passes with only four interceptions this season, and the Raiders rank fourth in passing yards per game (276). In other words this is going to be a long day for the Carolina defense, who will be without their best defensive player, LB Luke Kuechly (concussion), and leading pass rusher, DE Mario Addison (foot).

Prediction: Raiders 31, Panthers 23
Raiders -3 (two units) . . . . . over 49½ (one unit) . . . . . Oakland -170

Final Score: Raiders 35, Panthers 32 ✓
Raiders -3 -push- . . . . . over 49½ . . . . . Raiders -170 ✓

 

★★★★ 8-2 New England Patriots at 3-7 New York Jets
Sunday November 27 at 4:25 pm ET on CBS; Greg Gumbel, Trent Green, Jamie Erdahl
Patriots -7½ . . . . over/under 46 . . . . NWE -360, NYJ +300
Broadcast in New England, DC, Florida (except Tampa, Gainesville and Panama City), Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Norfolk VA and West Virginia.

A year ago the Jets when 10-6 thanks to a productive defense. Early this season that unit took a step back when it became obvious that their secondary was no longer elite in pass coverage. The Jet D has further regressed recently with the pass rush no longer being a force. At this point the only positive on the entire team is their run defense; that alone is not going to win many games. The players feel that Ryan Fitzpatrick gives the Jets the best chance at winning, but with seven losses their season is over. Head Coach Todd Bowles succumbed, fearing he would lose the locker room. That short-sighted view is a great example of why the Jets have not been a championship team since before Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon.

Prediction: Patriots 31, Jets 17
Patriots -7½ (two units) . . . . . over 46 . . . . . New England -360

Final Score: Patriots 22, Jets 17 ✓
Patriots -7½ xx . . . . . over 46 x . . . . . Patriots -360 ✓

 

NFL Week 12 Sunday Night Football

★★★★★ 7-3 Kansas City Chiefs at 7-3 Denver Broncos
Sunday November 27 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC; Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya
Broncos -3½ . . . . over/under 39 . . . . DEN -185, KAN +165
Broadcast in all markets.

The Broncos are healthy and playing at home. Kansas City’s injuries are becoming a problem. Without CB Marcus Peters KC had nobody to cover Tampa Bay’s Mike Evans last week. Peters and DT Dontari Poe are questionable, but LB Dee Ford, DE Jaye Howard and WR Jeremy Maclin are all out. Early on this year KC feasted on victories against the Jets, Saints, Colts, Jaguars and Panthers. This game opens up a brutal schedule to finish the season: at Denver, at Atlanta, Oakland, Tennessee, Denver again and then at San Diego.

Prediction: Broncos 23, Chiefs 20
Chiefs +3½ . . . . . over 39 (one unit) . . . . . Kansas City +165

Final Score: Chiefs 30, Broncos 27 (OT) x
Chiefs +3½ ✓ . . . . . over 39 . . . . . Chiefs +165 ✓

 

NFL Week 12 Monday Night Football

★★★★ 4-6 Green Bay Packers at 5-5 Philadelphia Eagles
Monday November 28 at 8:30 pm ET on BSPN; Sean McDonough, Jon Gruden, Lisa Salters
Eagles -4 . . . . over/under 47½ . . . . PHI -200, GNB +170
Broadcast in all markets.

Green Bay’s defense has been absolutely ravaged by injuries and has struggled mightily. On the other hand the Packers know their season is on the line, would like to make up for last week’s embarrassment on national television, and Philadelphia’s offensive line and passing game do not compare to Washington’s. The Packers desperately need a win, and still have a solid shot at the division title in the mediocre NFC North. That being said, is it possible to have faith in a team on a four-game losing streak? With a defense that has allowed 38 points per game in that stretch, including 89 points in the last two?

Prediction: Eagles 34, Packers 31
Packers +4 . . . . . over 47½ (two units) . . . . . Green Bay +170

Final Score: Packers 27, Eagles 13 x
Packers +4 ✓ . . . . . over 47½ xx . . . . . Packers +170 ✓

 

NFL Week 12 Thursday Games

Prediction: Vikings 20, Lions 17
Vikings +2 . . . . under 42 . . . . . Minnesota +115
Final Score: Lions 16, Vikings 13 x
Vikings +2 x . . . . under 42 ✓ . . . . . Vikings +115 x

Prediction: Cowboys 34, Redskins 24
Cowboys -6 . . . . over 52½ . . . . . Dallas -260
Final Score: Cowboys 31, Redskins 26 ✓
Cowboys -6 x . . . . over 52½ ✓ . . . . . Cowboys -260 ✓

Prediction: Steelers 27, Colts 13
Steelers -8 (two units) . . . . under 49½ (one unit) . . . . . Pittsburgh -360
Final Score: Steelers 28, Colts 7 ✓
Steelers -8 ✓✓ . . . . over 49½ x . . . . . Steelers -360 ✓

 

NFL Week 12 Parlays and Teasers

3-Team Parlay (two units): xx
Cardinals at Falcons over 51 ✓
Packers at Eagles over 47½ x
Panthers at Raiders (-3) [-push-]

5-Team 6-Point Teaser (two units): xx
Cardinals at Falcons over 45 ✓
Packers at Eagles over 41½ x
Chiefs at Broncos over 33 ✓
Jets vs Patriots -1½ ✓
Jaguars at Bills -1½ ✓

 

Tale of the Tape

Last week I hit on both a parlay (Lions -6 vs Jaguars, Patriots -11½ at 49ers and Raiders -6 vs Texans) as well as a 5-team teaser (Lions, Pats, Bills at Cincy, Bucs at KC and Ravens at Dallas). Those two multi-game payoffs led to one of the better weeks of the season.

Week 11 Results:
11-3 Straight Up
9-4 Against the Spread
6-7 Over/Under
2-unit plays: 5-0, +1000
1-unit plays: 1-2, -120
3-Game Parlay: 1u, +600
5-Game Teaser: 2u, +900
16 units invested
9-2, +2380 on $1760 risk.
135.2% ROI

Year to Date Results:
93-66-2 Straight Up
87-69-4 Against the Spread
88-72 Over/Under
5-unit plays: 1-0, +500
3-unit plays: 6-5-1, +120
2-unit plays: 29-13, +2990
1-unit plays: 34-22-1, +970
Parlays: 3-6, +1740
Teasers: 6-3, +3050
80-49-2, +9480 on original $2310 risk.
410.4% ROI on original $2310 bankroll.
41.0% ROI on $23,100 (210 units) of total weekly investments.

9-2, +2380 on 16 units (+135.2%) in Week 11.
4-9, -510 on 18 units (-25.8%) in Week 10.
7-4, +850 on 17 units (+45.5%) in Week 9.
11-2, +3470 on 27 units (+116.8%) in Week 8.
3-6, -480 on 12 units (-36.4%) in Week 7.
9-3-1, +1300 on 17 units (+69.5%) in Week 6.
7-7, +50 on 22 units (+2.1%) in Week 5.
9-2, +1910 on 18 units (+96.5%) in Week 4.
3-9-1, -1280 on 22 units (-58.2%) in Week 3.
9-3, +950 on 20 units (+43.2%) in Week 2.
9-2, +840 on 21 units (+36.4%) in Week 1.

 

The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publisher of this website. Neither the author nor this website promote or advocate gambling. This is solely for entertainment purposes only. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, please call 1-888-ADMIT-IT or 1-888-GA-HELPS.

 

Follow on Twitter @AllThingsPats

 

NFL Week 13 Early Advanced ‘Look-Ahead’ Betting Lines: Patriots favored by 14

John Morgan
November 25, 2016 at 6:00 am ET

Earlier this week the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook released their ‘look ahead’ betting lines for NFL Week 13. These odds are published in advance of any of the prior week’s games being played, including the three Week 12 Thanksgiving Day games. Early lines give some clairvoyant risk takers an opportunity to roll the dice on games that will not take place for another week and a half. There are times when public reaction to the most recent game clouds reality, and for a moment one can exploit the betting lines on a team that may be overrated or underrated due to the most recent result – or be done in by an unforeseen injury.

For the third consecutive week the New England Patriots were listed as the heaviest favorite in these early odds. After two weeks on the road the Pats return to Gillette Stadium. The Westgate lists the Patriots as 14 point home favorites against Los Angeles. The Rams have plenty of talent on defense. Jeff Fisher’s defense ranks fifth in scoring (18.7 points per game), sixth in yards (318 per game), seventh in yards per play (5.0) and seventh on third down (36.7%).

So why is there such a large spread for this game? Fisher has never been known for his offensive acumen, and this season is no different. The Rams have the worst offense in the league, which is quite an achievement when you consider how inept certain other offenses such as the Browns, Jets and Bears have been this season. LA ranks dead last in scoring (14.9 points per game), 31st in yardage (a hair under 300 yards per game) and is 30th at 4.8 yards per play.

Mr. Mean Mustache needs just four more losses to become the biggest loser in NFL history. Fisher has not had a winning season since 2008, and in each of his five seasons as head coach of the Rams his team has had six losses ten games into the season. I suppose that means we have to give him credit for consistency.

Enough of Fisher, back to the Week 13 games. The slimmest early odds belong to Cincinnati as a one-point home favorite over Philadelphia, and Dallas a two-point favorite at Minnesota. With the Cowboys winning and Vikings losing Thursday I would expect that spread to increase when odds are published Monday. Dallas is one of three road favorites for Week 13. Denver is favored by 4½ at Jacksonville; considering how bad the Jaguars have been I am ready to jump on the Broncos in that game. The other road fave is Indy, by 2½ points at the Jets.

 

NFL Week 13 Early Advanced ‘Look-Ahead’ Betting Lines

9-1 10-1 Dallas Cowboys (-2) at 6-4 6-5 Minnesota Vikings
Thursday December 1 at 8:30 pm ET on CBS

7-3 Denver Broncos (-4½) at 2-8 Jacksonville Jaguars
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

7-3 Kansas City Chiefs at 6-4 Atlanta Falcons (-3½)
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

6-4 Houston Texans at 4-6 Green Bay Packers (-3½)
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

5-5 Philadelphia Eagles at 3-6-1 Cincinnati Bengals (-1)
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

6-4 7-4 Detroit Lions at 4-6 New Orleans Saints (-3½)
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

1-9 San Francisco 49ers at 2-8 Chicago Bears (-4)
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

4-6 Los Angeles Rams at 8-2 New England Patriots (-14)
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on FOX

6-4 Miami Dolphins at 5-5 Baltimore Ravens (-3½)
Sunday December 4 at 1:00 pm ET on CBS

5-5 Buffalo Bills at 8-2 Oakland Raiders (-3½)
Sunday December 4 at 4:05 pm ET on CBS

5-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers at 4-6 San Diego Chargers (-5½)
Sunday December 4 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

6-3-1 6-4-1 Washington Redskins at 4-5-1 Arizona Cardinals (-3½)
Sunday December 4 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

7-3 New York Giants at 5-5 6-5 Pittsburgh Steelers (-6)
Sunday December 4 at 4:25 pm ET on FOX

4-6 Carolina Panthers at 7-2-1 Seattle Seahawks (-6½)
Sunday December 4 at 8:30 pm ET on NBC

5-5 5-6 Indianapolis Colts (-2½) at 3-7 New York Jets
Monday December 5 at 8:30 pm ET on BSPN

The Browns are guaranteed to not lose in Week 13. Cleveland and Tennessee will not play, which will complete all of the byes for the 2016 season.