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CNOTES
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Cnotes August MLB Best Bets + Pod's

August Pitchers Report

August 1, 2013


With the MLB trade deadline at hand and the NFL preseason whetting our pigskin appetite, the month of August sets the table for the stretch run of the baseball season. Which pitchers can we count on to satisfy our tastes, and which ones figure to turn our stomach? Take a look below.

Listed below are hurlers that have enjoyed a two-to-one or better success ratio in team starts the last three seasons during the month of August. On the flip side, we’ve also listed pitchers that struggle in August team starts, winning 33% percent or less of their efforts. To qualify pitchers must have made a minimum of 10 starts, with at least one start each August over the last three years. I’ll be back next month with September’s Good Month Pitchers. Until then, enjoy…

GOOD MONTH PITCHERS

Chen, Bruce - 13-5

Since being placed back in the starting rotation, Chen has been a valuable commodity for Kansas City and continued to throw extremely well in producing a 2.09 ERA. If the Royals are really going to make a run at the wildcard, Chen will have to match his previous August numbers.

Cueto, Johnny - 10-5

Has been on the DL since June 30 with a right shoulder strain and there is no specific timetable for his return.

Gallardo, Yovanni - 12-4

Though just 27-years-old, the radar gun does not lie and the Milwaukee right-hander has lost three to four MPH off his fastball accounting for career-worst ERA (4.91). It does not help playing for one of the worst teams in baseball, but this is his own doing, with opposing right hand hitters ripping a robust .286 against his tosses. Can he turn it around this month like in the past?

Halladay, Roy - 12-5

On July 21, Halladay threw off a mound for the first time since having corrective surgery on his throwing shoulder. Reports have his range of motion much improved, but at this juncture his return this month is questionable.

Hernandez, Felix - 12-5

It is just remarkable. Year after year, King Felix keeps putting up phenomenal numbers, despite pitching for a mediocre Seattle club. This season has been no different and Hernandez has not lost a game since May 25 and history tells us he will not drop many this month either.

Kennedy, Ian - 13-5

After winning 36 games the last two years, it has not been a good year for the former-Arizona right-hander with only three victories. This season he’s giving up over a hit an inning and he’s on pace to surrender a career-high in walks if he generates enough innings. The Diamondbacks traded him to San Diego on July 31 to upgrade their depleted bullpen.

Oswalt, Roy - 9-3

Suffered an injury on July 22 and has been doing rehab work since. He could come back this month, but at 0-4 with 7.64 ERA with the Rockies, no reason to rush Oswalt back, who is a shell of his Astros days.

Sabathia, CC - 11-5

Sabathia turned 33 years old last month and has lost three to four MPH on his fastball. At 95+ you can miss spots and still get out big league hitters. However, with decreased movement and throwing in the low 90’s, CC’s ERA could be headed for the worst of his stellar career. Still thought of as a big-game pitcher, Sabathia has to rebound or the Yankees have no shot at the playoffs.

Santana, Ervin - 13-4

Though his record does not show it, the change of scenery helped Santana and the 30-year old Kansas City pitcher has been hovering around three all year with his ERA. Santana continues to pound the strike zone and he’s conceded only 31 walks in 21 starts. The Royals were playing good baseball at the end of July and if the Dominican dandy stays true to form, K.C. might be playing meaningful games all month long.

Scherzer, Max - 11-5

There have been Scherzer critics, pointing to his gaudy record of 15-1 being a byproduct of run support and very favorable pitching matchups. While there might be a speck of truth in this argument, ask opposing hitters what they think, batting .197 against him. And he’s second in punch-outs in the American League.

Shields, James - 13-4

The Royals righty is beginning to command his pitches better of late and working later into games, as was his custom with Tampa Bay. If Shields can continue to throw well and match his road ERA (2.50), he and Santana form a nice 1-2 combo at the top of the Kansas City rotation.

BAD MONTH PITCHERS

Burnett, A. J. - 4-11

At this time, Burnett only has 25 percent of the total wins he had in 2012, yet his ERA is a half a run lower, suggesting the lack of run support. If Burnett can keep throwing strikes with his cut fastball and sweeping curveball, the runs should come. Missing a few starts in June should help be fresher in the later stages of the season.

Cecil, Brett - 4-8

Has worked exclusively out of the Toronto bullpen in 2013.

Corriea, Kevin - 4-9

The Minnesota right-hander has done his part to be a part of the worst starting pitching staff in baseball and has a 5.27 ERA in his last 10 outings. A combined 80 hits and walks over 54.2 innings will lead to a bloated ERA. No reason to believe soft-tossing Corriea will improve his stock with the Twins.

Hanson, Tommy - 3-7

His record might say 4-2, but Hanson has been another bust for Los Angeles. To this point he’s only made 11 starts after being counted on as the fourth or fifth man in the Angels rotation, with an ERA over five. Hanson’s 11-4 rookie campaign of 2009 seems a long time ago.

Hernandez, Roberto - 4-10 (formerly Fausto Carmona)

Even the normally positive skipper of Tampa Bay Joe Maddon is finding it challenging to say upbeat phrases about this pitcher. The Rays have a plethora of outstanding starting pitchers and more are on the way. Simply speaking, by whatever name, Hernandez and his 4.71 ERA is not getting it done.

Lincecum, Tim - 5-11

Though Lincecum has generally thrown better this year compared to last, chances are this will be the third straight year he will finish with a record below .500. San Francisco will have to make a decision about the undersized state of Washington native, who will likely never again reach 220 or more strikeouts, which he did from 2008 to 2011. Strictly a 50-50 proposition these days.

Maholm, Paul - 5-10

After a quick start with the Braves, Maholm has settled into career pattern of being ordinary ball chucker. His only saving grace is being on Atlanta who can hit home runs in bunches. Right-handed batters are hitting .301 against his deliveries in 2013.

Ohlendorf, Ross - 2-9

Starting the season at Triple-A Syracuse, Ohlendorf was advanced to the Washington roster in June and has pitched mostly in relief except for a couple a good spot starts for the Nationals. The more he starts, the more the righty will be exposed.

Saunders, Joe - 5-11

At this juncture of his career, Saunders is a back of the rotation hurler who can eat up innings. This year his splits are incredible, and probably should be used accordingly. The lefty has a 3.62 Safeco Field ERA, compared to 5.53 in away games. And the time of day Saunders pitches have day and night results, literally. His ERA is 3.80 after dark and an unsettling 6.58 during the day.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-01-13 05:56 AM
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Cnotes August WNBA Best Bets + Pod's

Preview: Fever (8-9) at Sun (4-12)

Date: August 01, 2013 7:00 PM EDT


The Indiana Fever overcame injury woes and produced a stunning turnaround in the first half of this season. They're hoping to keep that momentum going after the All-Star break while getting a little healthier.

The Fever open the second half seeking their eighth victory in 10 games Thursday night against the last-place Connecticut Sun.

After winning its first WNBA title in 2012, Indiana endured the worst start in franchise history at 1-7 and finished the first half below .500 for the first time since 2002. Injuries to Katie Douglas (back), Jessica Davenport (tibia), Erin Phillips (knee) and Jeanette Pohlen (knee) hardly helped.

Tamika Catchings also missed two games in June due to an ailing lower back.

Despite being short-handed, the Fever are just one win away from evening their record after their surge into the break. Indiana (8-9) wrapped up the first half with a third consecutive road win, 71-60 over Tulsa last Thursday, with Catchings providing 23 points and nine rebounds.

"When we were losing games, there was still a focus on getting better," Catchings said. "That is starting to pay off."

Indiana could soon get Phillips back as she's listed as day-to-day, and Pohlen might return sometime in the second half. The two players have shot better than 40.0 percent from 3-point range in each of the last two seasons.

"We're just going to hope that we have Erin Phillips and Jeanette Pohlen healthy. If we can get them healthy then I think we can make a run for a playoff spot," coach Lin Dunn said.

While waiting for those players to return, Dunn's club will try to send the Sun (4-12) to a season high-tying fourth consecutive defeat. However, those past three defeats came on the road, and Connecticut went 2-1 at home in July.

The Sun have dealt with injuries to Renee Montgomery, Tan White and Kara Lawson this season, but Montgomery and White have played in each game of the team's skid. The most recent loss was 74-65 to Atlanta last Wednesday.

Connecticut has won the past three home matchups with Indiana in the regular season but lost 87-71 to the Fever at Mohegan Sun Arena in the deciding third game of the Eastern Conference finals Oct. 11.

The teams have split their two games this season, both in Indiana. The Sun's Tina Charles scored a season-high 30 points in a 73-61 victory June 12, and Catchings had 22 points and six steals in a 78-66 win July 6.

That victory was only the Fever's second in the past seven regular-season matchups with the Sun.


--------------------------------------------------------

WNB HEAD TO HEAD

Jul 6, 2013 Score ATS Results
CONN 66 Under: 144
IND « 78 Cover: 7.5
Tools: Recaps

Jun 12, 2013 Score ATS Results
CONN « 73 Cover: 15.5
IND 61 Under: 134
Tools: Recaps




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-01-13 06:03 AM
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Preview: Mercury (9-9) at Storm (7-10)

Date: August 01, 2013 10:00 PM EDT


The injury-plagued Phoenix Mercury have labored with star rookie Brittney Griner out, and it's unclear if she will return in their first game back from the All-Star break.

With help from an inspired Tina Thompson, the Seattle Storm are hoping they're finally coming together after struggling for much of the first half without two of their top players.

The Storm will try to secure their second win streak of the season as they host the Mercury on Thursday night.

Griner has missed Phoenix's past five contests due to a sprained left knee and sat out Saturday's All-Star game. After an 81-69 loss in Minnesota last Wednesday, coach Corey Gaines expressed hope that the 6-foot-8 center would return this week.

"I think we will come back with my big healthy and ready to play," Gaines said.

Gaines, though, got some bad news last week on Penny Taylor. The Australian forward might have to sit out the rest of the season after undergoing surgery on her right knee.

Forward Lynetta Kizer has been dealing with a strained left knee, and it's unknown if she can help Phoenix (9-9) earn just its second win in seven games Thursday. A healthier Mercury won five straight and eight of nine before that difficult stretch.

Seattle (7-10) has dealt with two high-profile absences - three-time league MVP Lauren Jackson and Sue Bird - but wrapped up the first half with its second win in four games, 73-66 at Los Angeles last Thursday.

Tina Thompson's 23 points helped put the Storm in position to seek back-to-back victories for the first time since a three-game win streak June 16-21. The WNBA's all-time leading scorer, who appeared in a record ninth All-Star game after replacing Griner, is set to retire at the end of this season.

"She's sort of got a rejuvenated energy now sort of being the leader in a lot of ways on our team," coach Brian Agler said. "She came back in a lot better shape this year than she was a year ago. I was happy. Inside, I think she was looking forward to coming back and playing one last time."

Thompson scored just seven points in Seattle's only matchup with the Mercury this season, but she also grabbed a team-best six rebounds in a 75-72 win June 2. Tanisha Wright led the way with 20 points as Seattle rallied from an early 11-point deficit.

Griner scored 17 but also drew a technical foul for spiking the ball late in the game and a flagrant one in the third quarter. Candice Dupree led the Mercury with 18 points while league scoring leader Diana Taurasi (22.4 ppg) had one of her worst games, fouling out with 10 points.

Taurasi will be back after serving a one-game suspension last Wednesday for picking up her seventh technical foul.

These teams meet again Tuesday in Phoenix.

-------------------------------------------------------

WNB HEAD TO HEAD

Jun 2, 2013 Score ATS Results
PHO 72 Under: 147
SEA « 75 Cover: 13
Tools: Recaps

Sep 23, 2012 Score ATS Results
SEA « 71 Cover: 6.5
PHO 57 Under: 128
Tools: Recaps

Aug 30, 2012 Score ATS Results
PHO « 75 Cover: 21.5
SEA 68 Under: 143
Tools: Recaps

Aug 16, 2012 Score ATS Results
PHO 58 Under: 130
SEA « 72 Cover: 5
Tools: Recaps

Jul 13, 2012 Score ATS Results
SEA « 83 Cover: 12
PHO 64 Under: 147
Tools: Recaps

Jul 8, 2012 Score ATS Results
PHO 68 Over: 151
SEA « 83 Cover: 8
Tools: Recaps




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-01-13 06:05 AM
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Cnotes 2013 CFL Best Bets !

CFL Betting Notes - Week 6

July 31, 2013


The CFL only has two games on the slate for Week 6 with half the teams on a bye. After the first five weeks of action there is a clear separation between the haves and the have nots in the league. Last Thursday night Montreal started Week 5 with a 32-27 victory over Edmonton as a four-point home favorite. On Friday night, Calgary moved to 4-1 straight-up with a 37-24 romp of Winnipeg as a 5 ½-point favorite on the road.

Saskatchewan remained the only undefeated team in the CFL with a 32-20 pasting of Hamilton last Saturday night as a four-point road favorite and in a rare Tuesday night clash, Toronto stunned British Columbia 38-12 as a 6 ½-point underdog at home.

The following is a brief betting preview for Week 6 of the CFL regular season with the opening pointspread and ‘over/under’ lines provided by The Greek.

Friday, Aug. 2

Hamilton Tiger-Cats vs. Edmonton Eskimos
Pointspread: Edmonton -3
Total: 54

Something has to give in this matchup with each team sporting just one win on the year. The Tiger-Cats have lost their last two games after beating Winnipeg 25-20 as a 5 ½-point home favorite in Week 3 for their only win on the year. They are 1-4 SU and a costly 0-5 against the spread. The total has stayed UNDER in their last four games.

The problems with this team are twofold. It has an offense that is ranked last in the league in scoring and a defense that has been torched for an average of 31.6 points a game, which is the most points allowed in the CFL. It is hard to blame quarterback Henry Burris for the slow start given that he leads the league in passing yards with 1,510 while completing 64.2 percent of his throws.

The Eskimos’ current losing streak now stands at three games both SU and ATS and they are also 1-4 SU (1-4 ATS) on the year. The total has gone OVER in their last two games and in three of five overall.

This is another team that has had trouble finding the end zone this season especially at home. Edmonton has averaged 26 points in three road games but it only managed 18 in its home opener against Saskatchewan and three points in a Week 3 loss to BC. Mike Reilly has taken the majority of the snaps at quarterback but he has only completed 56.3 percent of his passes and he has six interceptions verse five touchdown throws.

The home team in this series is 8-2 SU and 7-3 ATS in the last 10 meetings and the total has gone OVER in three of the last four games. Edmonton struck first blood this season with a 30-20 victory in Week 2 as a seven-point road underdog. The total stayed UNDER the 55 ½-point line.

Monday, Aug. 5

Winnipeg Blue Bombers vs. British Columbia Lions
Point-spread: BC -10
Total: 47.5

The Bombers come into this inter-division clash with just one SU victory on the year and they are 2-3 ATS. They are actually 2-0 ATS on the road this season and the total has gone OVER in three of their first five games.

Quarterback Buck Pierce remains ‘questionable’ for this contest with a lingering abdominal injury so look for Justin Goltz to once again get the start if Pierce cannot go. Last week against the Stampeders he completed just 54.3 percent of his attempts for 194 yards and while he did toss two scoring strikes he was also picked-off once.

BC will have to quickly regroup after Tuesday’s ugly loss dropped it to 3-2 SU and ATS on the year. The total went OVER the 49-point line in that game and it has now gone OVER in three of the Lions first five games this year.

The Lions return home where they are 2-0 SU and ATS this season while averaging 27.5 points a game. Their defense has also played well in front of the home-two crowd this season; allowing a total of just 37 points in those two games. Travis Lulay is the third leading passer in the CFL with 1,200 yards while running back Andrew Harris is third in rushing with 403 yards.

This will be the first meeting this season, but BC holds a 15-6 SU edge in the last 21 games. The Lions are 8-3 SU in their last 11 home games against the Blue Bombers, but just 2-5 ATS in the last seven meetings overall. The total has stayed UNDER in eight of the last nine meetings in BC.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-01-13 06:14 AM
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Thursday, August 1

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Chi. White Sox - 12:05 PM ET Chi. White Sox +124 500 POD # 8
Cleveland - Over 6.5 500

NY Mets - 12:40 PM ET Miami +155 500 POD # 1
Miami - Over 6.5 500

Kansas City - 1:10 PM ET Kansas City -150 500
Minnesota - Over 7.5 500

Houston - 7:05 PM ET Houston +236 500 POD # 4
Baltimore -

San Francisco - 7:05 PM ET San Francisco +103 500 POD # 7
Philadelphia- Under 7.5 500

St. Louis - 7:05 PM ET St. Louis +104 500 POD # 2
Pittsburgh - Over 8 500

Arizona - 7:05 PM ET Arizona +176 500 POD # 3
Texas -

Seattle - 7:10 PM ET Boston -109 500
Boston - Under 8.5 500

Colorado - 7:10 PM ET Colorado +201 500 POD # 6
Atlanta - Under 8 500

LA Dodgers - 8:05 PM ET Chi. Cubs +137 500 POD # 5
Chi. Cubs -

Toronto - 10:05 PM ET Toronto -102 500
LA Angels - Over 8 500




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-01-13 03:12 PM
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Thursday, August 1

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Indiana - 7:00 PM ET Indiana -2 500 POD # 4

Connecticut - Under 141.5 500 POD # 3


Phoenix - 10:00 PM ET Seattle +2 500 POD # 1

Seattle - Over 153 500 POD # 2




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-01-13 03:14 PM
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Date WLT Pct Net Units Record

08/01/13 3-_1-_0 75.00% +_950 Detail

Totals 3-_1-_0 75.00% +950


Friday, August 2

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Los Angeles - 8:00 PM ET Los Angeles -9.5 500 POD # 2

Tulsa - Under 159.5 500 POD # 3

San Antonio - 8:00 PM ET San Antonio +14 500 POD # 6

Minnesota - Under 156.5 500 POD # 5


Washington - 8:30 PM ET Washington +7.5 500 POD # 1
Chicago - Under 158 500 POD # 4




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-02-13 07:50 PM
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Date WLT Pct Net Units Record

07/30/13 0-_1-_1 0.00% -_550 Detail
07/27/13 2-_0-_0 100.00% +_1000 Detail
07/26/13 2-_0-_0 100.00% +_1000 Detail
07/25/13 2-_0-_0 100.00% +_1000 Detail
07/21/13 2-_0-_0 100.00% +_1000 Detail
07/20/13 1-_2-_1 33.33% -_600 Detail
07/19/13 1-_1-_0 50.00% -_50 Detail
07/13/13 1-_2-_1 33.33% -_600 Detail
07/12/13 1-_1-_0 50.00% -_50 Detail
07/11/13 2-_0-_0 100.00% +_1000 Detail
07/07/13 0-_2-_0 0.00% -_1100 Detail
07/05/13 1-_1-_0 50.00% -_50 Detail
07/04/13 2-_2-_0 50.00% -_100 Detail

Totals 17-_12-_3 58.62% +1900


Friday, August 2

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Hamilton - 9:00 PM ET Edmonton -3 500 POD # 1

Edmonton - Over 53.5 500 POD # 2




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-02-13 07:56 PM
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Date WLT Pct Net Units Record

08/01/13 10-_9-_0 52.63% +_650 Detail

Totals 10-_9-_0 52.63% +650


Friday, August 2

Game Score Status Pick Amount

LA Dodgers - 4:05 PM ET LA Dodgers -142 500
Chi. Cubs - Under 9 500

Seattle - 7:05 PM ET Baltimore -179 500
Baltimore - Under 9 500

Atlanta - 7:05 PM ET Atlanta -160 500
Philadelphia - Under 8.5 500

Colorado - 7:05 PM ET Pittsburgh -160 500
Pittsburgh - Under 7 500

Chi. White Sox - 7:08 PM ET Chi. White Sox +203 500 POD # 4
Detroit - Under 8 500

Arizona - 7:10 PM ET Boston -185 500
Boston - Over 9 500

Cleveland - 7:10 PM ET Miami -110 500
Miami - Under 7 500

St. Louis - 7:10 PM ET Cincinnati -114 500
Cincinnati - Under 8 500

Kansas City - 7:10 PM ET Kansas City -106 500
NY Mets - Over 8 500

San Francisco - 7:10 PM ET Tampa Bay -140 500
Tampa Bay - Under 7 500

Houston - 8:10 PM ET Houston +146 500 POD # 3
Minnesota - Under 8 500

Washington - 8:10 PM ET Milwaukee +124 500 POD # 1
Milwaukee - Over 8 500

Toronto - 10:05 PM ET Toronto +114 500 POD # 2
LA Angels - Over 8.5 500

Texas - 10:05 PM ET Oakland -131 500
Oakland - Under 7.5 500

NY Yankees - 10:10 PM ET NY Yankees -108 500
San Diego - Over 7 500




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-02-13 08:05 PM
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Cnotes Preseason Best Bets & Pod's ! + QB Rotations

Preseason Report - Part III

July 26, 2013


In Part I and II of the Preseason Report, we discussed trends for teams and more importantly, their coaches. As mentioned before, coaching is a key factor in the preseason and you should be aware of this year's head coaching changes. This season we have eight coaching changes coming into the 2013 season.

Here is this year's list:

Arizona - Bruce Arians - was the former Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator - Arians filled in for head coach Chuck Pagano while he battled leukemia, and went 9-3 in his absence.

Buffalo - Doug Maronne - Syracuse head coach for the past 4 years - his prior NFL experience was with the New Orleans back in 2008 as the Saints offensive coordinator.

Chicago - Marc Trestman - Former coach of the Montreal Alouettes - NFL experience as an Offensive coordinator for the 49ers and Raiders.

Cleveland - Rob Chudzinski - Offensive coordinator of the Carolina Panthers - however the offense will be turned over to Norv Turner.

Jacksonville - Gus Bradley - Former defensive coordinator the last four seasons of the league-leading Seahawks defense.

Kansas City - Andy Reid - head coach of the Eagles the last 14 years.

Philadelphia - Chip Kelly - head coach of the Oregon Ducks - offensive genius of the Ducks high octane offense - first NFL coaching job.

San Diego - Mike McCoy - is the former Broncos offensive coordinator for the Broncos and helped lead Denver to the playoffs the past two seasons with two totally different quarterbacks' styles.

Here are each teams Quarterback Rotations for this Preseason (R - Rookie):

Arizona - Carson Palmer, Drew Stanton, Ryan Lindley, Caleb TerBush (R - Purdue)

Atlanta - Matt Ryan, Dominique Davis, Sean Renfree (R - Duke), Seth Doege (R - Texas Tech)

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Baltimore - Joe Flacco, Tyrod Taylor, Caleb Hanie

Buffalo - Kevin Kolb, EJ Manuel (R - Florida State), Jeff Tuel (R - Washington State)

Carolina - Cam Newton, Derek Anderson, Jimmy Clausen, Colby Cameron (R - La. Tech)

Chicago - Jay Cutler, Josh McCown, Matt Blanchard

Cincinnati - Andy Dalton, John Skelton, Josh Johnson, Zac Robinson

Cleveland - Brandon Weeden, Jason Campbell, Brian Hoyer

Dallas - Tony Romo, Kyle Orton, Aaron Corp

Denver - Peyton Manning, Brock Osweiler, Zac Dysert (R - Miami, OH), Ryan Katz (R - San Diego State)

Detroit - Matthew Stafford, Shaun Hill, Kellen Moore

Green Bay - Aaron Rodgers, Graham Harrell, B.J. Coleman

Houston - Matt Schaub, T.J. Yates, Stephen McGee, Case Keenum

Indianapolis - Andrew Luck, Matt Hasselbeck, Chandler Harnish

Jacksonville - Blaine Gabbert, Chad Henne, Mike Kafka, Matt Scott (R - Arizona)

Kansas City - Alex Smith, Chase Daniel, Tyler Bray (R - Tennessee), Ricky Stanzi

Miami - Ryan Tannehill, Matt Moore, Pat Devlin

Minnesota - Christian Ponder, Matt Cassel, McLeod Bethel-Thompson, James Vandenberg (R - Iowa)

New England - Tom Brady, Ryan Mallett, Tim Tebow

New Orleans - Drew Brees, Seneca Wallace, Luke McCown, Ryan Griffin (R - Tulane)

New York Giants - Eli Manning, David Carr, Ryan Nassib (R - Syracuse), Curtis Painter

New York Jets - Mark Sanchez, Geno Smith (R - West Virginia), Greg McElroy, Matt Simms

Oakland - Matt Flynn, Terrelle Pryor, Tyler Wilson (R - Arkansas)

Philadelphia - Michael Vick, Nick Foles, Matt Barkley (Rookie - USC)

Pittsburgh - Ben Roethlisberger, Bruce Gradkowski, John Parker Wilson, Landry Jones (R - Oklahoma)

San Diego - Philip Rivers, Charlie Whitehurst, Brad Sorensen (R - Southern Utah), Mike Hermann (R - RPI)

San Francisco - Colin Kaepernick, Colt McCoy, Scott Tolzien, B.J. Daniels (R - South Florida)

Seattle - Russell Wilson, Brady Quinn, Tarvaris Jackson

St. Louis - Sam Bradford, Kellen Clemens, Austin Davis

Tampa Bay - Josh Freeman, Mike Glennon (R - N.C. State), Dan Orlovsky, Adam Weber

Tennessee - Jake Locker, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Rusty Smith, Nathan Enderle

Washington - Robert Griffin III (Will not play in preseason), Kirk Cousins, Rex Grossman, Pat White




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-03-13 07:14 AM
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2013 NFL Win Total Best Bets

August 1, 2013


Last year, I was able to produce a 4-1 (80%) record in my NFL Win Total predictions but I’ll admit that I was fortunate to catch a few breaks at the end of the season.

2012 Selections

WIN - Pittsburgh Steelers - Under 10 (-120)

Notes – The Steelers finished 8-8, which included a dreadful 2-5 close to the season. Also, Pittsburgh lost five of its games by three points and no loss was worse than 12 points, which occurred in Week 1 at Denver (remember the pick six?)

WIN - Chicago Bears – Over 9 (-130)

Notes – This ticket was a roller coaster as Chicago started the season 7-1. The Bears followed that run with a 1-5 slump and fortunately won their last two games of the season on the road to finish 10-6.

WIN - Atlanta Falcons – Over 9 (-140)

Notes – I guess there was a reason the books made you lay 5/7 (Bet $140 to win $100) on this selection last year because it was popular and an easy winner too. The Falcons started the season 8-0 and eclipsed 10 wins by Thanksgiving.

WIN - St. Louis Rams – Over 6 (-120)

Notes – Definitely an ugly win here as the Rams finished 7-8-1. Even though the 49ers and Seahawks get all the attention in the NFC West, St. Louis went 4-1-1 in the division last season.

LOSS - San Diego Chargers – Over 9 (+100)

Notes – My lone loser was San Diego, and despite a 3-1 start to the season, this club folded after it suffered three straight losses to the Saints, Broncos and Browns, which all featured collapses by the Bolts.

If you played one-unit ($100) on the above selections, you would’ve profited $300.

Despite my lean to ‘over’ tickets last season, I normally tend to take ‘under’ selections and that’s my focus in 2013.

Here are my top three Win Total selections for 2013 season.

Jacksonville Jaguars - Under 5 (+110)

The Jaguars have a combined seven wins the previous two seasons, which includes a 2-14 record in 2012, and I just don’t see this team improving by more than three wins in 2013. The Jaguars may not be favored in any game this season, plus they have a new rookie head coach in Gus Bradley.

Looking at the Jacksonville schedule, I believe they have eight automatic losses – at Seattle, at Denver, at Houston, at Indianapolis, at St Louis and at home vs. Colts, Texans, and the 49ers.

I only see three winnable games at most, which are road games at Oakland and Arizona and Buffalo at home.
When you factor in the eight losses, the Jaguars would have to go 6-2 in their other eight games to beat me and I don’t see that happening. It will be another tough year for the young Jaguars.

Buffalo Bills - Under 6.5 (-130)

Buffalo has not had a winning season since 2004, when it went 9-7. Since then, the team hasn’t been better than 7-9 and the last four years have seen three 6-10 records and a 4-12 ledger. Similar to the Jaguars, they have a new head coach in Doug Marrone from Syracuse. Also similar to Jacksonville, they will continue having problems at quarterback. Kevin Kolb is coming over from Arizona and they have a rookie behind him in E.J. Manual who they drafted out of Florida State.

The Bills have just six wins versus the AFC East over the last five seasons. Buffalo has tough games outside of their division in Carolina, Baltimore, Cincinnati, at New Orleans, at Pittsburgh, Atlanta and at Tampa Bay.

When you add in four tough games vs. division rivals New England and Miami, I believe the Bills are in for a long season and I can’t see them winning seven or more games in 2013.

New York Jets – Under 6.5 (-135)

The infamous duo of head coach Rex Ryan and quarterback Mark Sanchez will begin the fifth season together and most pundits, including myself, believe it will be the last. The New York Jets franchise had their problems the last two seasons, going 8-8 and 6-10 after reaching the AFC Championship the two prior seasons (2009, 2010).

It will not be long before the Jets fans are calling for Sanchez, if he’s the starting quarterback, and coach Ryan’s heads. Waiting in the wings at quarterback is rookie Geno Smith from West Virginia, who has a lot of work to do to become an average signal caller at this level.

The Jets schedule plays out with difficult non-division road contests at Atlanta, Cincinnati, Baltimore and Carolina which I don’t see them winning any one of those. Plus I don’t see them winning division road games against the Dolphins or Patriots either, which brings their loss tally to six.

There are a few games that look like possible wins – home contests against Buffalo, Oakland and Cleveland. On the road, they might have chances at Tennessee and Buffalo. However, backing a team that’s gone 5-11 as a visitor the last two seasons isn’t a sound investment.

The Jets won six games last season and the best case I see for this dysfunctional team is five wins come 2013.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-03-13 07:17 AM
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Four NFL coaches who need to win this preseason


Handicapping NFL coaches has become a popular practice for preseason bettors, picking out guys like Mike Shanahan (44-34-2 ATS in the preseason) and Andy Reid (25-28-3 ATS), who are notorious for their interest – or lack thereof – during the summer schedule.

However, Shanahan finished the preseason 2-2 against the spread last summer – improving to 7-5 ATS during the preseason in his tenure with the Redskins – and Reid led the Philadelphia Eagles to a 3-1 ATS mark and is actually 6-2 ATS the past two preseasons.

While weighing a head coach’s preseason success is fine, perhaps a more valuable way to look at NFL coaches is just how bad they need to win in 2013 – preseason or not. Putting together a winning record in the warm-ups can cool a coach’s seat and appease a nervous fanbase, easing the pressure heading into Week 1.

Here are four coaches who need to win during the preseason:

Jim Schwartz, Detroit Lions

Schwartz just so happens to be one of the better preseason plays, posting a 12-4 SU and 11-4 ATS mark since 2009, so turning up the intensity during the exhibition slate shouldn’t be too much of a stretch. Schwartz is under the microscope in the Motor City after Detroit suffered a serious regression in 2012, going 4-12 SU and 6-10 ATS, after posting 10 wins in 2011. A poor start – preseason or regular season – could spark the fire under Schwartz’s seat.

Jason Garrett, Dallas Cowboys

Jerry Jones has done just about everything but ax his head coach, taking the offensive playbook from Garrett and handing it to new coordinator Bill Callahan. Dallas hasn’t been a great preseason bet in recent years, boasting a 5-3 SU and 3-5 ATS record during Garrett’s time as head coach. Cowboys fans shouldn’t expect wins this preseason. Dallas is working in two new coordinators, switching from the 3-4 to the 4-3 Cover 2 and has even introduced a Pistol look to the offense.

Mike Smith, Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta should be more concerned about winning games at the end of the year – after numerous postseason flops – but the Falcons’ fan base is pissed after last season and has had a bad taste in its mouth since blowing a 17-0 lead in the NFC Championship. Smith can provide a bit of mouthwash with a solid preseason. Atlanta has been horrid in tuneup tilts the past two years, with a 1-7 SU and 2-6 ATS count, while Smith is 7-13 SU and 8-10-2 ATS during his preseason career.

Bill Belichick, New England Patriots

Belichick is in no danger of being fired and spends about as much time worrying about the preseason scoreboard as he does picking out his sideline outfit every Sunday. However, after the summer the Patriots had – losing Welker and Woodhead, Gronkowski’s surgeries, Hernandez’s murder arrest – New England football fans need something to cheer for. Belichick was 1-3 SU and 0-4 ATS last summer and boasts an 8-12 SU and 6-13-1 ATS record over the past five preseasons.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-03-13 07:22 AM
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Report: Tony Romo won't play for Cowboys on Sunday

The Dallas Cowboys are preparing to open the preseason minus the services of quarterback Tony Romo.

Multiple sources told Calvin Watkins of ESPNDallas.com on Friday that Romo won't play in Sunday's Hall of Fame Game against the Miami Dolphins.

Romo hasn't missed a practice during training camp after surgery in April to remove a cyst from his back. The Cowboys starter expressed hope Monday in suiting up against the Dolphins, but said he'd go along with whatever coach Jason Garrett decided.

It's no surprise the Cowboys would take its time dipping Romo into action. The Cowboys have five preseason games this summer, so there's plenty of chances for snaps. The Cowboys plays the Oakland Raiders in their second preseason game Aug. 9. It's a good bet we'll get our first taste of Tony next Friday.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-03-13 07:24 AM
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Top 5 NFL Trends


MIA
DAL Under is 17-4 in Dolphins last 21 games on fieldturf.


MIA
DAL Over is 4-1 in Cowboys last 5 games on fieldturf.


MIA
DAL Under is 22-8-1 in Dolphins last 31 games overall.


MIA
DAL Dolphins are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games on fieldturf.


MIA
DAL Cowboys are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games overall.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-03-13 07:25 AM
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MLB

Sunday, August 11

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sunday Night Baseball: Rays at Dodgers
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A potential World Series preview as the Los Angeles Dodgers host the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday Night Baseball.

Tampa Bay Rays at Los Angeles Dodgers (-185, 6.5)

CLAYTON CAN'T PITCH MUCH BETTER

The Dodgers’ ace is much better than his 10-7 W/L record indicates as he possesses a dominating 1.91 ERA and 0.88 WHIP this season. Kershaw has allowed just 11 total runs in his last eight starts, however he has won just five of those games. The southpaw has been able to limit his walks, allowing just six in his last nine starts. Kershaw’s interleague experience this season is limited; he picked up a no-decision at home against the Yankees back on July 31st. In that game, he gave up just five hits in eight innings while striking out five and walking none. Kershaw has been able to throw a reasonable amount of pitches in each of his outings, excluding two games when he threw 118 and 120 pitches.

STREAKY STARTER ON THE MOUND FOR THE RAYS

Jeremy Hellickson is 10-5 with a 4.77 ERA and 1.25 WHIP. He has allowed 9 runs in his last two starts; both outings came against the Diamondbacks. Hellickson’s recent rough stretch has come after he allowed just 10 earned runs over his seven previous starts. Hellickson has struck out just 10 batters in his last four games. He has also seen a rise in his walks, allowing 10 free passes over his last 20 innings of work. The righty has received a ton of run support as Tampa Bay has put up 4 runs or more in 9 of his last 13 outings.

INJURY REPORT

The Dodgers and Rays have a decent laundry list of walking wounded. Los Angeles’ Hanley Ramirez is dealing with a jammed shoulder, while Matt Kemp has a left ankle sprain that may keep him out until September. Josh Beckett and Chad Billingsley are done for the season. Billingsley underwent Tommy John surgery while Beckett has a neck issue.

Tampa Bay’s starting staff would be even better with Chris Archer, Matt Moore, and Alex Cobb fully healthy. Archer left his last start with forearm tightness, while Moore has soreness in his elbow. Jeff Niemann underwent shoulder surgery. The team even acquired injured righty Jesse Crain who recently had a setback in his recovery.

TRENDS

Rays are 39-14 in their last 53 Sunday games
Rays are 15-5-2 Under in Hellickson’s last 22 road starts

Dodgers are 23-8 in Kershaw’s last 31 Sunday starts
Dodgers are 7-1 Under in Kershaw’s last 8 starts

HITTERS TO WATCH

Kelly Johnson 3-for-15 vs. Kershaw
Ryan Roberts 2-for-14 vs. Kershaw

Carl Crawford 3-for-11 vs. Hellickson
Adrian Gonzalez 3-for-17 vs. Hellickson




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-12-13 01:36 AM
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Hot & Not - AL Edition

August 12, 2013


There are still eight teams in the thick of the playoff fight in the American League with just a month and a half of the season to play. This week, check out the teams in MLB betting action that are as hot as could be, or ice cold as we head towards the middle of August.

$$$-Makers

Detroit Tigers (17-3, +$1,290 in L/20) - Just as the Indians and the Royals started to make a charge in the AL Central, Detroit finally put its foot on the gas pedal and probably put the division title away. The big question? Will Jhonny Peralta get his job back when his suspension is over? The way Jose Iglesias is playing right now, the answer is no.

On Deck: After taking on the White Sox on the South Side of Chicago for three games, a crucial four-day stretch against the Royals is up. There are five games in four days against one of the hottest teams in the league.

Kansas City Royals (16-3, +$1,281 in L/19) - Kansas City has really been a tremendous story over the course of the last few weeks. The pitching staff has been awesome, and historically, that was the problem with this team. Everything is clicking right now, and there is no doubt that this is a team that has made a huge charge towards the postseason.

On Deck: There is a good chance to be 19-3 in the last 22 games after taking on Miami at home to start the week, but as we already mentioned, all eyes are on the five games in four days in Detroit this weekend. Even if that series doesn't go well though, 16 of the next 17 are against teams that are out of it.

Texas Rangers (7-0, +$710 in L/7) - Acquiring OF Alex Rios came at the perfect time right after the suspension of OF Nelson Cruz for the Biogenesis scandal. The team has won seven in a row and is storming back in the AL West. Getting some losses from Oakland has helped, but this team is picking up its own slack for sure.

On Deck: Eight home games on deck this week, and the next time the Rangers have to play a team above .500 is September 2nd with a trip to Oakland. If this keeps up, Texas might have put away the AL West by the time that series rolls around.

$$$-Burners

Houston Astros (7-30, -$1,507 in L/37) - Ugh. The Astros are building towards the future, but they aren't doing anything now to help themselves. They are on a pace to barely win 50 games this season, and with the way that things have been going both offensively and defensively, Houston might not get there.

On Deck: It's not getting any easier. The Astros have nine straight road games against AL West teams coming up, and there is a real good chance that they are going to be on pace for around 45 wins for the season by the time this run is over with.

Seattle Mariners (5-10, -$754 in L/15) - The truth of the matter is that RHP Felix Hernandez has been the killer of the Mariners. Though he won on Sunday, He dropped his previous three, and two of those outings came as enormous favorites the size of which Seattle shouldn't be favored by under any circumstance.

On Deck: Tampa Bay, Texas, Oakland, LA, and Texas. That's the next five series for the Mariners. As is the case with Houston, matters are only going to get worse before they get better.

Tampa Bay Rays (0-5, -$589 in L/5) - Tampa Bay was the hottest team in the American League before dropping anchor on the West Coast. The team lost all five games, one of which was a devastating defeat at the hands of the Dodgers after going up 6-0 with LHP David Price on the mound.

On Deck: At least Tampa Bay is headed back home, where it can lick its wounds and have a chance to get back towards the top of the AL East. These six home games against Seattle and Toronto are crucial, and anything less than 4-2 in those outings is going to be a huge disappointment for Manager Joe Maddon and the gang.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-13-13 06:06 AM
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AFC Outlook

August 22, 2013


In an ominous survey of NFL players arrested since the Super Bowl, as we head into the 2013 season, the good news for the AFC is they lead the NFC - by a thumbprint.

That’s because, as of August 10th, of the 35 players booked by the police in that span, the scorecard read: NFC 18, AFC 17. This compliments of the San Diego Union-Tribune’s NFL Arrests database.

Flash: this just in ... Denver LB Von Miller’s arrest on August 11 evened the score at 18-18.

The most famous of all, unfortunately, was Aaron Hernandez, the 29th player to be arrested for his role in a murder in Connecticut. As a result, Tom Brady and the Patriots find themselves short-handed of receivers, a dilemma of which leaves New England head coach Bill Belichick working overtime as he prepares to defend the AFC East division title.

Meanwhile, the Baltimore Ravens not only find themselves with a Super Bowl Bull’s-eye on their back but must also overcome a roster which find’s many of their heroes missing from last year’s squad.

The Houston Texans will look to take advantage with Vegas posting a season win total of 10.5, two wins more than the defending Super Bowl champion Ravens.

The AFC West finds the Denver Broncos with the highest season win-total, 11.5, in the NFL this season. The question begs whether coaching changes in Kansas City and San Diego will thwart Peyton Manning’s return to the postseason.

In closing on a good note it’s positive that, according to Jay Leno, crime in the city of Los Angeles is actually down. "We are proud to say that Los Angeles has one of the lowest crime rates of any major city. You know why? We don't have an NFL team."

Ouch.

Note: Numbers following team name represent the amount of returning starters on offense and defense, with an asterisk (*) designating a returning quarterback. Potential designated ‘Play On’ and ‘Play Against’ Best Bets follow each team’s preview.

AFC East Division

BUFFALO
Team Theme: HEADLINES IN THE MAKING

The last time Buffalo enjoyed a winning season, a typhoon ripped through a cemetery, leaving hundreds dead, while a ring of debris was found around Uranus. All three factoids were actual headlines in 2004. It’s 10 years later and the playoff desert looks larger than ever to a team with a rebuilding season ahead in a tough division. The revamp starts at the top where the Bills followed in Tampa Bay’s shoes by raiding the Big East and bringing in Syracuse’s Doug Marrone (25-25 in four seasons) and his 33-year old offensive coordinator, Nathaniel Hackett. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick was immediately dispatched replaced with Kevin Kolb and first round draft choice EJ Manuel. Second and 3rd round WRs Robert Woods and Marquise Goodwin join Stevie Johnson at the wide out positions while RBs C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson supply grunt out of the backfield. Meanwhile, new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine comes over from the Jets. He’ll take over a stop-unit that, after surrendering more than 400 yards in eight games during the 2011 season, chopped that number in half last year. For a team that hasn’t made it to the playoffs in 13 years – the NFL’s longest active drought – it’s no wonder there’s a chill in the air in Buffalo.

Stat You Will Like: The Bills own six division wins the last five seasons.

PLAY AGAINST: as a favorite vs. NY Jets (11/17)

IN THE STATS: The Bills allowed more than 400 yards in one of their final 10 games of the season last year.

MIAMI
Team Theme: A MIAMI MAKEOVER

With a cache full of money to spend and five of the first 82 selections heading into the draft, GM Jeff Ireland was like a kid under the tree on Christmas Day this offseason. After some wheeling and dealing, he came away with pass rusher Dion Jordan with the No. 3 pick in the draft after acquiring the services of free agent WR Mike Wallace, LB Dannell Ellerbe and TE Dustin Keller (lost for the season with preseason knee injury). He unwrapped his final gift when he secured the services of Pro Bowl OT Tyson Clabo from Atlanta to fill the hole left by the loss of Jake Long. And if you feel QB Ryan Tannehill is due for a case of the Sophomore Blues that figures to be running rampant this season by the five rookie starting quarterbacks in 2011, you’re not on the same page with Mike Sherman, the Dolphins’ offensive coordinator. “He will be the most improved quarterback in the NFL from year one to year two… I promise you that.” Further validating the claim is the fact his teammates raved about how Tannehill ran offseason voluntary workouts. “He works like he hasn’t made it yet,” said WR Brian Tyms. However, unless a wide receiving corps that failed to score more than one touchdown pass last season steps up, the gap that includes: 13 years since a playoff win, 21 years since reaching the AFC championship game, 29 years since making the Super Bowl and 40 years since a most recent NFL title, could continue in 2013.

Stat You Will Like: The Dolphins are 4-15 SU versus AFC North opponents, including 0-6 ATS as favorites.

PLAY AGAINST: vs. Cincinnati (10/31) - *KEY as a favorite

IN THE STATS: The Dolphins are 5-11 ‘ITS’ at home the last two years.

NEW ENGLAND
Team Theme: NOSTRADAMUS OR NOSTRADUMBASS?

The coaching genius that he is, Bill Belichick dipped under .500 last year for the first time since 2003. In fact, when his Patriots were sitting at just 3-3 to start the season, Belichick’s critics were so gay they began coming out of the closet. It’s been eight years since the Pats last won a Super Bowl they argued. And they are just 8-7 in their last 15 playoff games said others. A lot of the luster has worn off of late and is certainly due to the fact New England’s defense has ranked 25th, 31st and 25th the past three seasons. Making matters worse, four of last year’s top five receivers — Wes Welker, Brandon Lloyd, Aaron Hernandez and RB Danny Woodhead — are gone. Complicating matters, Pro Bowl TE Gronkowski could miss start of season after surgeries on his forearm and back. As a result it forced the Pats’ hand when they signed Danny Amendola and LeGarrette Blount as the new replacements. Compounding matters, the Patriots will go up against the toughest non-division slate of all teams in the league this season with non-AFC East foes owning a 98-72 (.576) mark last season. Yes, the mastermind has his work cut out for him in 2013.

Stat You Will Like: Bill Belichick was 67-0 straight up at home with Tom Brady with a lead at halftime until they lost to Baltimore in the AFC championship game last season.

PLAY ON: at Baltimore (12/22) - *KEY if a dog

IN THE STATS: The Patriots have allowed season-high, or 2nd-high, yards in 12 games the L2Y.

NY JETS
Team Theme: LEAVING ON A JET PLANE

The Gang Green circus returns for another performance this fall and if this year’s troupe resembles last year’s tumultuous act, it will leave fans calling for heads. It was said the best offensive play by the Jets last season was calling a timeout. And that was without the NFL’s most famous backup quarterback, Tim Tebow, taking any snaps. Saint Tim was released in the offseason, paving the way for Mark Sanchez to make one last stand. However, don’t look for him to be released this season. If they were to hand Sanchez his walking papers this year, they would take a $12.8M salary cap hit. If they release him next year, it would become a $4.8M hit. Regardless, Sanchez is guaranteed $8.25 this campaign whether he plays or not. Hence, it would be no surprise to find much ballyhooed QB Geno Smith performing before the act folds up its tent by season’s end. Yes, new offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg has work cut out, with new RBs and a mostly inexperienced WR corps, especially with Santonio Holmes still recovering from foot injury and uncertain to be ready for regular season. Despite taking on only one foe with a winning record last year over the second-half of the season, it’s looking like all-world CB Darrelle Revis got out of town just in the nick of time.

Stat You Will Like: QB Mark Sanchez is 14-17 the last two years with a league-high 52 turnovers.

IN THE STATS: The Jets have gained more than 400 yards only three times in the last 41 games.

AFC North Division

BALTIMORE
Team Theme: THE WIZARD OF OZ

Say what you will about the retirement of future Hall of Fame LB Ray Lewis and the loss of three free agent defections in LB Dannell Ellerbe, DE Paul Kruger and S Ed Reed – GM Ozzie Newsome did not panic. Instead, he made the signing of QB Joe Flacco priority-one, then went out and signed Pro Bowl DE Elvis Dumervil before attacking the draft with a defensive makeover plan that infused the unit with playmakers and speed. Remember, this team actually allowed more yards than it gained last year, no thanks to a declining defense that slipped 73 YPG from the previous season. They will be forced to pay the price for winning last year’s Super Bowl, however, as the Ravens’ 2013 non-division opponents were 94-74 (.560) last season, 2nd most difficult schedule in the league… all while wearing a major Bull’s-eye on their back. Say what you want, this isn’t same team that won Super Bowl, but the Ravens are confident additions they made will compensate for loss of several key players and enable them to contend for division title. In closing, while lauding Lewis’ career, our favorite sports columnist, Greg Cote of the Miami Herald, insists “He was so good his statue will lead the Ravens in tackles in 2013.”

Stat You Will Like: The Ravens are the only NFL team to make the playoffs each of the last five years.

PLAY ON: vs. Green Bay (10/13) - *KEY as a dog

IN THE STATS: The Super Bowl champs held zero foes to season-low yardage last year.

CINCINNATI
Team Theme: CATS ON THE PROWL

You knew it was coming. It was just a matter of how long it would last. As expected last year, like a bad case of the flu, a dreaded case of Sophomore Blues attacked Bengals QB Andy Dalton. To his credit, he shook it off in time to lead his charges back to the postseason for a 2nd-straight year when Cincinnati turned a 3-5 start into a 7-1 finish in 2012. A superlative draft that landed TE Tyler Eifert and RB Giovani Bernard figures to compliment Jay Gruden’s hybrid West Coast offense while taking double-teams away from star WR A.J. Green. The second-half improvement last year was keyed by a defense that allowed 12.8 PPG while totaling 31 sacks, en route to a team record 51 sacks overall. The addition of Pro Bowl LB James Harrison is like the icing on the cake. Making back-to-back playoff appearances for the first time since 1982 – and first back-to-back winning seasons in a non-strike year since 1976 – has these Cats licking their paws. Now they want to break a streak of futility in the postseason, with the last win coming in the 1990 season, tied for seventh-longest such streak in NFL history. Considering they have never reached the playoffs three years in a row, the pressure is on.

Stat You Will Like: Andy Dalton is the only quarterback in NFL history to make the playoffs in his first two seasons while throwing for at least 20 touchdowns each year.

PLAY AGAINST: as a favorite vs. Green Bay (9/22)

IN THE STATS: The Bengals were 3-1 ‘ITS’ in non-conference games last season.

CLEVELAND
Team Theme: CH-CH-CHANGES

Under new ownership, Toledo native Rob Chudzinski becomes the 6th head coach in 10 years for Cleveland this season. After scoring more than 20 points in only six games over two seasons, the Browns saw all they wanted to see from Pat Shurmur. Chudzinski served as Browns offensive coordinator in 2007, the last time they enjoyed a winning season. After inking Chudzinski, Cleveland immediately signed former San Diego head coach Norv Turner as its new offensive coordinator. He will implement an up-tempo attack that should benefit QB Brandon Weeden, a strong-armed shotgun passer. The addition of WR Davone Best and added production from a healthy RB Trent Richardson should provide an added boost to the offense. Meanwhile, Arizona’s fiery former DC Ray Horton will reconstruct the defense, transitioning to 3-4 with multiple attacking fronts. The best news is the Browns will take on the easiest non-division strength-of-schedule this campaign, with foes going 72-93 (.436) in 2012. For a team that has averaged more than 11 losses per season the last five years, those changes are welcome.

Stat You Will Like: The Browns held the Steelers to season-low yardage in each of the two meetings last year.

PLAY ON: vs. Baltimore (9/15)

IN THE STATS: The Browns are 19-61 ‘ITS’ in all games the last five seasons.

PITTSBURGH
Team Theme: SOUND THE BELL

If there is one thing you can count on year after year, it’s Santa Claus working overtime on Christmas eve – and an impregnable Steelers ‘D’. And like clockwork, Saint Nick once again delivered as promised while, behind DC Dick LeBeau, the league’s No. 1 ranked injury-marred defense held seven opponents to season-low, or 2nd-low, yards last year. And speaking of injuries, Ben Roethlisberger was enjoying a career year last season before he injured his ribs and the Steelers staggered to a 2-5 finish thereafter. One can only imagine what happens when or if Big Ben and Troy Polamalu return to health. Help starts with more options on offense and that’s where the selection of RB Le’Veon Bell in this year’s draft kick starts the new plan. OC Todd Haley insists Bell has ‘Eddie George physical traits,’ so he should become the workhorse back they’ve missed since the retirement of Jerome Bettis. LeBeau knows finding a replacement for Pro Bowl – and major head case – LB James Harrison will become a main priority but believes Jason Worilds can be the man. Remember this: Pittsburgh hasn’t endured consecutive non-winning seasons since Bill Clinton was president (1998-99). Get the Terrible Towels out...the Steel Curtain is back.

Stat You Will Like: Teams are 37-55 SU and 32-57-3 ATS facing Mike Tomlin’s Steelers, including 12-33-2 ATS when favored.

PLAY ON: vs. Tennessee (9/8)

IN THE STATS: The Steelers are 53-15 ‘ITS’ in all games since 2009, including 12-4 LY.




Believe in the 3 G's
GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

Old Post 08-23-13 02:49 AM
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AFC South Division

HOUSTON
Team Theme: TALL TALL TEXANS

Riding high in the saddle following back-to-back AFC South titles, the Texans are once again the class of their division and arguably the entire AFC. After ascending to new heights last year, Houston did not stand still during the offseason when they acquired Hall of Fame FS Ed Reed and P Shane Lechler. They will combine with reigning NFL defensive player of the year J.J. Watt (81 tackles and 20.5 sacks) to form one of the best stop-units in the league, all under the lead of DC Wade Phillips. Its no coincidence the Texans’ defense has improved an average 73.5 YPG the last two years since it flamed out in a 6-win season in 2010. On the offensive front, coordinator Rick Dennison gobbled up dynamic WR DeAndre Hopkins from Clemson in the first round of the draft. He’ll work in tandem with star WR Andre Johnson. Along with thoroughbred RB Arian Foster, a tantalizing trio of skill players surrounds QB Matt Schaub. It’s like we mentioned on these pages last year: between Gary Kubiak’s playbook, Dennison’s offensive mind and Phillips’ stingy defensive schemes, the Texans are standing extra tall with sights on the Super Bowl these days.

Stat You Will Like: The Texans are 0-4 ATS away versus NFC West opponents in their franchise history.

PLAY AGAINST: vs. Tennessee (9/15)

IN THE STATS: The Texans are 24-12 ‘In The Stats’ the last two seasons.

INDIANAPOLIS
Team Theme: WHAT GOES UP...

When the Colts jumped from 2-14 to 11-6 after selecting QB Andrew Luck with the first pick of the draft last year they recorded the 2nd biggest turnaround in NFL history. Only the 2008 Dolphins, who went from 1-15 to 11-5, made a larger leap. It should be noted that the other two teams in NFL annals making this much of an improvement regressed four and three games respectively the following year. The feeling here is regression is likely this season: despite their improvement, last year’s 11-win Colts actually allowed 12 YPG more than they gained. That and a case of Sophomore Blues appear to be lurking in the offing for Luck. Helping matters, Indy will face the 3rd softest strength-of-schedule opponents in 2013 (last year’s foes .461 overall), including four games with the NFC West (Colts are 7-1 SU against the division since 2005). Then again, Peyton Manning put up those numbers. The return of head coach Chuck Pagano, back from a bout with cancer, could offset a ton of history. Don’t forget: the Colts have made the playoffs 11 times the last 13 seasons. Stay tuned.

Stat You Will Like: The Colts own the weakest rushing attack in the AFC the last four years, averaging just over 95 RYPG.

PLAY AGAINST: at Kansas City (12/22)

IN THE STATS: The Colts were 0-5 ‘ITS’ during the final five games of the season last year.

JACKSONVILLE
Team Theme: SIGN, SIGN, EVERYWHERE A SIGN

Despite a fall from 5 wins to 2 last year, the worst in franchise history, signs of improvement abound. Consider: after being outgained in 11 of their first 12 games of the 2012 season, the Jaguars refused to raise the white flag when they won the stats in three of their final four games. In addition, after failing to gain more than 325 yards in any game in 2011, Jacksonville bettered that mark on seven different occasions last year. Toss in the fact that of the 17 teams who won 2 or fewer games the previous season, 16 of them have improved on their win total this millennium (witness the Colts and Rams last year) the following season. New head coach Gus Bradley brings a defensive pedigree to Jacksonville, a team that ranked 30th in total ‘D’ last season while allowing 444 points, a franchise-record. He was Seattle’s defensive coordinator the last four years and his unit allowed a league-low 15.3 PPG last season. New offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch returns to the NFL after two years at the University of Miami, banking on first-round pick OT Luke Joeckel’s ability to plow open running lanes for a healthy Maurice Jones-Drew.

Stat You Will Like: The Jaguars are 10-6 SU all-time versus the NFC West with only three losses by more than 4 points.

PLAY ON: at Seattle (9/22)

IN THE STATS: The Jaguars are 15-33 ‘ITS’ the L3Y, but 3-1 ‘ITS’ the L4 games of 2012.

TENNESSEE
Team Theme: BLUE COLLAR NETWORK

It was no surprise whatsoever to witness the blue-collar moves made by Mike Munchak and the Titans this offseason. After all, Munchak is a Hall of Fame offensive lineman and he did what he knows best – rebuild the offensive line – in order to keep his job a while longer in Tennessee. A three-game slippage with falling numbers on both sides of the ball sent Munchak into desperation mode when he signed G Andy Levitre (Bills) and selected G Chance Warmack (Alabama) in the first round of this year’s draft. The moves should benefit QB Jake Locker and RB Chris Johnson who, despite rushing for 1,000-plus yards in each of his five seasons in the league, has seen his numbers fall appreciably since his 2,006-yard performance in 2006. As a result, Johnson expects the Titans to become a ground-and-pound ‘run-first’ offense. It’s safe to assume that if Munchak is gone at the end of the year, so too will be Locker - a top-10 pick two years ago who, after witnessing last year’s successful rookie crop of quarterbacks, suddenly finds the clock ticking. After having last made the playoffs in 2008 and spending $100 million dollars on free agents, owner Bud Adams is expecting results...now.

Stat You Will Like: The Titans have allowed season-high, or 2nd-high, yards in 7 of their first 14 games under Munchak.

PLAY ON: as a dog vs. Houston (12/29)

IN THE STATS: The Titans won the stats in 4 of their final 6 games last season.

AFC West Division

DENVER
Team Theme: PEYTON’S RACE

Realizing star QB Peyton Manning is not getter any younger (who is?), the Broncos were busy in the offseason making moves to bolster a run to the Super Bowl now. WR Wes Welker moves over from New England while G Louis Vasquez leaves San Diego’s starting lineup for Denver’s. In addition, VP of Football Operations John Elway slapped the franchise tag on OT Ryan Clady. Meanwhile, former Broncos QB coach Adam Gase assumes the new offensive coordinator role with Mike McCoy taking over the reins in San Diego. Jack Del Rio returns as the defensive coordinator, the first time Denver has had the same DC in consecutive seasons since 2005-06. The selection of Wisconsin’s Montee Ball in the 2nd round of the draft could be a coup as the workhorse running back also blocks and has excellent hands, prerequisites for working in a Manning backfield. It all works provided Denver’s offensive line stays healthy. So does the schedule with the Broncos facing, by far, the softest strength-of-schedule opponents in 2013 (last year’s foes .430 overall). It’s Super Bowl or bust for the Broncos.

Stat You Will Like: Peyton Manning’s 37 TD passes and his 105.8 QB rating at the end of the season were the 2nd best numbers of his career.

PLAY ON: as a dog at New England (11/24)

IN THE STATS: The SU stat winner was 15-2 SU in Broncos games last season.

KANSAS CITY
Team Theme: ON THE CORNER OF 12TH ST AND VINE

Much like the two-win Jacksonville Jaguars, the Chiefs are resigned to the fact that there is no place to go but up in 2013. After turning over half the roster, the pieces are in place with Andy Reid, the lone new coach in the league this year with previous NFL head coaching experience. His team sports a downy-soft non-division strength-of-schedule in 2013, with Chiefs’ opponents going 74-90 (.451) last season. In addition, Reid is 140-102-1 overall in his NFL career with five NFC Championship Games and one Super Bowl appearance. An upgrade at the quarterback position (Alex Smith in; Matt Cassel out, and pistol-guru Chris Ault on board as a consultant), along with the top pick in this year’s draft (OL Eric Fisher) and offensive weapons Jamaal Charles and Dwayne Bowe indicate certain signs of improvement on that side of the ball. The defense was bolstered by the free agent signings of CBs Sean Smith and Dunta Robinson, plus DE Mike DeVito. Along with talented pass rusher Tamba Hali, LB Derrick Johnson and DB Eric Berry, Andy is feeling just dandy about his move from Philadelphia to Kansas City. Look out Kansas City, here he comes.

Stat You Will Like: The Chiefs had six Pro Bowlers last season.

PLAY ON: at Buffalo (11/3)

IN THE STATS: After going 5-0 ‘ITS’ to start 2012, the Chiefs went 2-9 ‘ITS’ the final 11 games.

OAKLAND
Team Theme: BUY A PROGRAM

In a season of makeovers, the Raiders are laying down a new foundation. QB Carson Palmer and his favorite target, TE Brandon Myers, are gone along with WR Darrius Heyward-Bey. On the defensive front, DT Tommy Kelly and S Michael Huff have departed. In fact, only ONE player from the front seven returns. (That’s what happens after tying a franchise low with 25 sacks last season.) It’s likely nine of 11 positions on defense will find players with new names on the back of their jerseys. Meanwhile, free agent QB Matt Flynn replaces Palmer but it should be noted Flynn, after inking a big free agent contract last year, failed to beat out 3rd-round QB Russell Wilson at Seattle. However, don’t be surprised if Flynn isn’t pushed for the starting job by Tyler Wilson (Arkansas) who highly respected QB coach-guru Terry Shea insists, “makes all the throws and will be a good player in this league for a long while.” And if all this isn’t enough, the Raiders signed free agent WR-KR Joshua Cribbs, a three-time Pro Bowler. Finally, in an effort to avoid blackouts, Oakland removed 9,882 seats from the O.co Coliseum, reducing the seating capacity to 53,250 (the lowest in the league).

Stat You Will Like: The Raiders are 15-3 ATS as division road dogs the last six seasons.

PLAY AGAINST: vs. Pittsburgh (10/27)

IN THE STATS: The Raiders have allowed over 400 yards in 10 of 16 home games the L2Y.

SAN DIEGO
Team Theme: JUST IMAGINE

When new head coach Mike McCoy, Denver’s former offensive coordinator, interviewed for the San Diego job, he brought along binders full of detailed plans and visualization and won over the Chargers’ top brass. It wasn’t hard, considering San Diego has missed out on the playoffs each of the last three years. Make no mistake: this is as close to a major overhaul as the Chargers have seen in quite a while. Included was a plan to build a fortress around Philip Rivers to better protect the franchise quarterback. Rivers was sacked 49 times last season, trailing only Aaron Rodgers (51) for most takedowns. The Chargers immediately signed two free agent guards and used their first pick in the draft on OT D.J. Fluker of Alabama. Just as important, they named former Arizona coach Ken Whisenhunt as the new offensive coordinator to call the plays, a marked difference from former coach Norv Turner who handled both duties. Whisenhunt has coached QBs Ben Roethlisberger and Kurt Warner and figures to revive Rivers’ career. Newest additions to the Chargers defense, which improved 20 YPG in 2012, are Pro Bowl DE Dwight Freeney and Notre Dame LB Manti Te’o, who fills a need at ILB. We can only imagine he will.

Stat You Will Like: The Chargers were 6-13 SU and 7-12 ATS in Eastern Time Zone cities with Norv Turner.

PLAY AGAINST: at Oakland (10/6)

IN THE STATS: The Chargers were outgained in each of their last seven games in 2012.




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GIRLS, GOLF,GAMBLING not in any particular order.

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