|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|08-30-18||Packers v. Chiefs UNDER 38.5||Top||21-33||Loss||-110||32 h 6 m||Show|
I'm playing on GB/KC UNDER the total (10* TOTAL OF MONTH). Led by a pair of veteran coaches, these teams have nothing to prove. The #1 concern here is going to be avoiding injury. Reid's Chiefs allowed just six points in Week 4 of last preseason while McCarthy's Packers allowed just 10. Both games finished with less than 37 combined points. Expect this one to do the same.
|08-25-18||Texans v. Rams OVER 40||20-21||Win||100||7 h 47 m||Show|
I'm playing on Houston/LA to finish OVER the total (8* BEST BET). This O/U number has come down from its opener, providing us with excellent line value. Expect both offenses to get going, the final combined socre finishing above the low number.
|08-24-18||Packers v. Raiders OVER 40||6-13||Loss||-115||15 h 30 m||Show|
I'm playing on GB/Oakland OVER the tota (8* SHOOTOUT)l. This O/U is generously low. While its true that GB will be resting Rodgers and some other offensive starters, the reason for such a low number, the Packers were still able to score plenty of points without Rodgers behing center in their first two games. Indeed, the Pack have scored 82 points through two preseason games while allowing 51 (Thats an average of 66.6 per game!) and Rodgers was only in for one of those drives. The Raiders are going to be motivated to put some points on the board and win their home (preseason) finale. Look for the final combined score to finish above this low number.
|08-20-18||Ravens v. Colts UNDER 43||20-19||Win||100||6 h 22 m||Show|
I'm playing on Baltimore/Indy UNDER the total (8* O/U SPECIAL). With this number rising since it came out, I was waiting to release this play. I don't think we'll make it all the way to 44 though, so am jumping in now. Harbaugh's Ravens allowed just nine points in their third preason game last season, two of those coming via safety. On the other side of the ball, the Ravens managed a mere 209 total yards, 12 first downs and 13 points. Look for this one to also prove lower-scoring than many will be expecting.
|08-18-18||Raiders v. Rams OVER 38||15-19||Loss||-110||8 h 8 m||Show|
I'm playing on Oakland/LA to finish OVER the total (8* SPECIAL). Everyone knows that these teams will play again early in the regular season. Most expect that to lead to some extra "vanilla" play-calling and that sentiment, in turn, has provided us with an extra low O/U line (lowest on the Week 2 board) to work with. I believe it'll prove to be too low. While he's not thrilled about having to play them twice, Gruden has said that he's treating the game just like any other preseason one. "It’s a preseason game and we have a lot of really tough evaluations to get through before we start thinking about what play we’re going to call. We’re going to really continue to use this as an evaluation period. You’re going to see a lot of players playing a long period of time that are going to get a chance to show us they belong here. That’s how we’re looking at this game." While Grudent wasn't there, keep in mind that the Raiders played the Cowboys in both the preaseason and regular season last year. The preseason game still produced 44 points. Likewise, in 2016, they combined with the Titans for 41, despite the fact that they'd see them again in the regular season. With the Raiders returning to their old stomping grounds, look for this one to also prove higher-scoring than most will be expecting.
|08-09-18||Browns v. Giants UNDER 35||20-10||Win||100||223 h 60 m||Show|
I'm playing on Cleveland and NY to finish UNDER the total (8* BLUE CHIP TOTAL). Sure, everyone will be talking about the offenses with new faces like Mayfield and Barkley around. However, for a Week 1 preseason game with the likes of Odell Beckham on the sidelines, I expect this number to prove to be too high. Under Hue Jackson, the Browns' opening preseason game has finished at less than 35 points each season, those opening games averaging 31 points. More of the same here.
|08-27-17||Bengals v. Redskins UNDER 45||17-23||Win||100||6 h 4 m||Show|
I'm playing on Cincinnati/Washington to finish UNDER the total (8* O/U BEST BET). I believe that getting a line above the key number of 44 is providing us with excellent value here. Nine of the 13 Week 3 games played thus far have finished with 44 or fewer combined points. Last year's Week 3 games saw the Bengals allow just three first half points while the Skins kept the Bills to nine in the first half and 16 overall. Look for this one to also prove lower-scoring than many will be expecting.
|08-25-17||Chiefs v. Seahawks UNDER 43.5||13-26||Win||100||10 h 47 m||Show|
I'm playing on KC/Seattle to finish UNDER the total (8* SUPER TOTAL). Last year, these teams also met in the preseason. That game was quite low-scoring. Seattle scored a TD on the final play to win 17-16. While that was a Week 1 game, both teams were also involved in relatively low-scoring games in Week 3 last season, both defenses playing well. The Seahawks limited Dallas to 17 points. KC was even better. The Chiefs held the Bears scoreless through three quarters, eventually winning 23-7. Both defenses allowed less than 14 points last week. All things considered, this number looks generously high.
|08-18-17||Vikings v. Seahawks UNDER 40.5||Top||13-20||Win||100||39 h 29 m||Show|
I'm playing on Seattle/Minnesota to finish UNDER the total (10* BLUE CHIP). These teams also met in Week 2 of the preseason last year. The game came on the very same day, August 18th. Both teams were coming off a road win in their preseason opener, but that didn't translate to much offense. In fact, the game was scoreless after the first quarter and the Seahawks didn't score a single point until the fourth quarter. The final score was 18-11, zero total points scored by Seattle in three of four quarters, the Vikes going scoreless in two of their own. While we're getting a higher O/U line to work with than we were last season, providing additional line value, I'm expecting another relatively low-scoring affair.
|08-10-17||Jaguars v. Patriots UNDER 41||Top||31-24||Loss||-125||167 h 22 m||Show|
I'm playing on NE/JAX to finish UNDER the total (10* BLUE CHIP). These teams, who have been holding joint practices, last officially met on Sept 27, 2015. That regular season game produced 68 combined points. I expect tonight's preseason opener to produce half that many, or less. The Pats have little to prove for a Week 1 preseason game against the Jags. With Brady unlikely to play, note that backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo has been plagued by interception problems in camp and that he was an ugly 14 of 36 (0 TDs) in a recent intrasquad scrimmage. Expect both teams to emphasize avoiding injury, the final combined score staying beneath the generously high number.
|08-14-16||Texans v. 49ers UNDER 36||Top||24-13||Loss||-103||240 h 48 m||Show|
I'm playing on Houston and SF to finish UNDER the total. These teams got a chance to get familiar with each other in Friday's joint-practice. The two coaches, O-Brien and Kelly, have known each other for more than 20 years. Each respects and likes the other. If meeting in the regular season or playoffs, that friendship wouldn't mean too much - other than that they might know each others tendencies a little and that it might potentially add some further intensity to the game. However, for a Week 1 preseason game, when both teams' #1 goal is to avoid injury, I believe we're going to see both teams playing a little more conservatively than we normally might.
While Kelly obviously wasn't around yet, it should be noted that these teams also met in Week 1 of last year's preseason. They combined for 33 points in that one, Houston running the ball 45 times. I look for this one to also prove lower-scoring than most will be expecting.
|08-30-15||Arizona Cardinals v. Oakland Raiders OVER 39.5||Top||30-23||Win||100||22 h 4 m||Show|
I’m playing on the Over in Arizona Cardinals at Oakland Raiders as my 10* NFLX Total of the Month.
|08-22-15||Chicago Bears v. Indianapolis Colts UNDER 41||Top||23-11||Win||100||100 h 8 m||Show|
CHICAGO at INDIANAPOLIS
|08-20-15||Detroit Lions v. Washington Redskins OVER 40||17-21||Loss||-106||52 h 9 m||Show|
I’m playing on the Over in Detroit Lions at Washington Redskins as my 9* Thursday Roast.
|08-16-15||Indianapolis Colts v. Philadelphia Eagles UNDER 41.5||10-36||Loss||-103||15 h 36 m||Show|
I’m playing on the Under in the Indianapolis Colts at Philadelphia Eagles as my 9* Early NFL Main Event.
These two powerful offenses stretch their legs for the first time in exhibition play. The Colts and Eagles were among the highest-scoring teams in the NFL, racking up the yardage and forcing oddsmakers to go higher on this total than is really expected. We like the value with the Under, as both teams work in key cogs on offense and introduce many new faces to the playbook. Indianapolis will give its starters a series or two and many of those first teamers won’t suit up at all, with head coach Chuck Pagano stating the preseason is time for the younger players to shine. On the other side of the field, the Eagles will be without No. 1 QB Sam Bradford and will look to Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow to take snaps Sunday. Those quarterbacks may have some name value but will be lining up with second and third-string talents – and quite honestly they aren’t great QBs to begin with. Both teams will be taking a close look at their running game, with the Colts ironing out just who will run behind Frank Gore and the Eagles figuring out what their new talents in the running game can do. With a run-heavy playbook, the clock should keep ticking and hold this final score Under the inflated number.
I’m playing on the Under in Colts at Eagles as my 9* Early NFL Main Event Sunday.
|08-13-15||NY Jets v. Detroit Lions OVER 36||3-23||Loss||-110||51 h 12 m||Show|
I’m playing on the Over in New York Jets at Detroit Lions as an 8*.
|08-09-15||Pittsburgh Steelers v. Minnesota Vikings UNDER 34.5||3-14||Win||100||29 h 47 m||Show|
I’m playing on the Under in the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Minnesota Vikings as a 8*.
The NFL preseason schedule kicks off with the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio, with the Steelers and Vikings meeting Sunday night. The Under has been the sharp play when betting the Hall of Fame Game in recent years, with the annual exhibition matchup going 1-3 Over/Under since 2010 (2011 was cancelled due to the lockout). Pittsburgh enters the preseason slate with most of its offensive stars on the bench. The Steelers will not play Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown, Le'Veon Bell, Maurkice Pouncey, or Heath Miller and will turn to backup QB Landry Jones for possibly the entire game Sunday. The Vikings haven’t been as up front about which starters will see action in Canton, but you can be confident that Adrian Peterson will likely sit out most – if not all – of the preseason, as he’s done in previous years. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater missed the team’s walk-through on Friday while dealing with a family matter and is planning to meet the team in Canton Sunday. He is expected to start before giving way to backup Shaun Hill, but Zimmer did say that if the first teamers are efficient they would be done a lot quicker than planned.
I’m playing on the Under in Pittsburgh vs. Minnesota as my 8* Sunday.
|08-28-14||NY Jets v. Philadelphia Eagles UNDER 44||Top||7-37||Push||0||36 h 36 m||Show|
I'm playing the Jets and Eagles to finish UNDER the total. Chip Kelly's Eagles are setting a new standard when it comes to preseason totals as all three of their games have finished with at least 52 total points scored. Philadelphia themselves is averaging slightly above 31 points per game. All three games have gone Over.
But this is the final game of the preseason and as we all know its the one that carries the least importance. I don't expect Kelly to push tempo in this game like he has in the previous three. Oddsmakers have even posted a lower opening total compared to the last two weeks even with those games flying Over.
Even backup quarterback Mark Sanchez won't be seeing gametime Thursday night (not to mention the starters won't be either). That's even though he'd probably like to given that the opponent is his former team, the Jets. This means Matt Barkley will get the vast majority of the snaps. In limited action last year, Barkley demonstrated no ability to run Kelly's offense properly.
As for the Jets, they too have gone Over the last two weeks. But last week's game was the annual clash with the Giants, which always carries meaning. This game will not. So the trading points we saw last week isn't likely to occur.
Philadelphia's defense impressed me last week by holding the Steelers scoreless until the third quarter. However, kicker Alex Henery did not, especially when he missed a 31 yd field goal. Missed field goals are an Under bettor's best friend.
Despite what the Eagles have done so far, the Under is still 30-18 this preseason. 10* blue chip.
|08-21-14||Pittsburgh Steelers v. Philadelphia Eagles UNDER 50.5||Top||21-31||Loss||-110||48 h 60 m||Show|
I'm playing Pittsburgh and Philadelphia to finish UNDER the total. The idea that preseason games will always be low scoring is being proven false by Chip Kelly.
Through two weeks his Eagles have been involved in games that have featured 62 and 77 total points. Last week's game with the Patriots featured one of the higher totals for a preseason game in recent memory at 46.5 and the two sides proceded to obliterate the scoreboard with all 77 points (42-35 New England) coming in the first three quarters.
So with Eagles and Steelers starters expected to see their most extensive time of the preseason this week, it's no surprise that this number has climbed above 50 points.
This is the highest total we've seen so far this year in the preseason and to be quite honest the highest I can remember for any preseason game.
Thus, I see the value here being on the Under. I expect bettors to continue to take the number up as well, so be sure to "shop around" for the best available line.
There comes a point in every run where the oddsmakers eventually "catch up" to a team. Remember last year when Denver was made a four touchdown favorite against Jacksonville? Dress rehearsal week or not, I just see this total being too high for a preseason game. After all, the starters won't be playing the entire game.
We do know that Mike Tomlin seems to take the third week of the preseason pretty seriously. In his seven years as the head coach of Pittsburgh, his teams have won straight up five times. Do not expect him to have his defense simply allow Philadelphia to move up and down the field.
The Steelers have gone Under in both of their preseason games this year and 5 of their last 6 since last year. They have scored a total of just 35 points in two games while allowing 36. The offense has seemed to be focused on running the ball and shortening the game.
Therefore, it's time to fade the public on this one. Take the UNDER. 10* blue chip.
|08-15-14||San Diego Chargers v. Seattle Seahawks OVER 38.5||Top||14-41||Win||100||99 h 32 m||Show|
I'm playing San Diego and Seattle to finish OVER the total. The Seahawks lost their preseason opener, 21-16, in a Super Bowl rematch with Denver. (Something tells me that the win was hardly 'revenge' for the Broncos). The loss snapped a 9-0 SU and ATS run in the preseason under Pete Carroll.
San Diego won its preseason opener 27-7, taking advantage of a Dallas defense that is at the opposite end of the spectrum from the one we will be seeing during the regular season in Seattle. Still though, it was a nice win for a Chargers team that struggled last year in the preseason in Mike McCoy's first season at the helm.
In the first week of preseason games, the Under went 11-5. Both of these teams games went Under, but barely. I find it interesting that in both teams cases, the number is higher this week. It tells me that the oddsmakers are expecting more scoring this week (obviously!), which makes sense as the players have now had a chance to play some "real" football, albeit for a limited time.
Remember that the Seattle defense that carried the team to the Super Bowl won't be on the field for that long Friday. Carroll doesn't dare risk an injury to one of his stars. That being said, with the majority of the starters in there last week, the Seahawks did give up a long TD drive. If you want to write that off as "well that's Peyton Manning and the Broncos," be aware the San Diego's offense ranked right near the top of the league last year as well.
Something else working against this Seattle defense is the point of emphasis on calling illegal contact. The Seahawks were flagged 13 times against Denver. That's an alarming number and can help San Diego, or any opponent for that matter, sustain drives.
On offense, Seattle could have scored more points but backup QB Terrelle Pryor threw an interception in the end zone.
Chargers QB Philip Rivers completed all four pass attempts last week for 61 yards. The backups accounted for all 27 points. 10* blue chip.
|08-03-14||NY Giants v. Buffalo Bills UNDER 34.5||17-13||Win||100||32 h 53 m||Show|
I'm playing the Giants and Buffalo to finish UNDER the total. With this not only being the preseason opener for both teams, but also the first very preseason game this year, I look for things to be kept even more vanilla than usual.
The fact that this line has already been bet up a few points, up to or above the key number of 34, is also key. The public loves playing Overs, but this early in the year I don't think it's fair to be expecting this many points to be scored. But I won't argue as we're now getting better value than when the line first opened.
After a disastrous 2013 campaign, Giants QB Eli Manning will be working with a new offensive coordinator. Claims of a "70 percent completion rate" have already been made, but working in a new system, we're not likely to see significant strides made until the regular season. We also likely won't be seeing much of Eli either or much of the Giants first-team offense Sunday night.
Backing up Manning is second-year QB Ryan Nassib. This is significant because in college Nassib was coached by Doug Marrone, who of course is now the head coach for Buffalo. We didn't see much of Nassib last year, but if anyone will know how to scheme against him, it would be Marrone. The Giants only other quarterback is Curtis Painter, who is somehow still hanging around the league and has never demonstrated any real ability to me.
For Buffalo, their offense has the potential to be very good, but is still a work in a progress with second year QB EJ Manuel at the helm. Behind him the play under center is not very encouraging.
Again, it's the first preseason game, so we won't see much from either side. This game will also see extra point attempts moved back five yards to the 15. Who knows - one miss could come in handy! 9* best bet.
|08-25-13||New Orleans Saints v. Houston Texans UNDER 43.5||31-23||Loss||-110||8 h 6 m||Show|
I'm playing on New Orleans and Houston to finish UNDER the total. The perception with these teams is that they;re all about offense and not so much about the defense. While that has perhaps remained somewhat true of New Orleans, it hasn't been true of Houston at all. Yet, bettors still seem to remember that team from a few years ago that got into shootouts on a weekly basis. Anyway, my feeling here is that the perception of both teams, combined with the fact that they've both put up points in their first two preseason games, has led to a generously high O/U number here. Both defenses have been stout thus far. Through the first two games, the Texans are giving up an average of 252 yards per game and 15 points. Meanwhile, the Saints are allowing an average of only 200 yards per game, just 3.8 per play. That's translated to 16.5 points permitted per game. While last year's (preseason) meeting at New Orleans was high-scoring, the 2011 meeting (also preseason) here at Houston was not. It had an O/U line of 40.5 and finished with 41 points, only three in the second half. We're getting a few more points to work with here, which in my opinion, makes the Under the way to go. 9* best bet
|08-23-13||Chicago Bears v. Oakland Raiders UNDER 38||Top||34-26||Loss||-110||20 h 3 m||Show|
I'm playing on Chicago and Oakland to finish UNDER the total. Both teams have seen each of their first two games finish above the total. That's one of the reasons that this is the highest O/U line that either team has seen thus far. I believe it will prove too high.
Keep in mind that the Raiders' first team offense has real trouble moving the ball against the Saints' defense - and that the Bears figure to be stronger on that side of the ball than New Orleans was.
Oakland Head Coach Dennis Allen said this of facing the Bears: "Obviously it
|08-04-13||Miami Dolphins v. Dallas Cowboys UNDER 33||Top||20-24||Loss||-110||115 h 36 m||Show|
I'm playing on Dallas and Miami to finish UNDER the total. As per usual, starters will be seeing very limited time or no time at all. Don't expect to see Romo at all. The #1 goal of the teams here is to avoid injuries. That's likely particularly true for the Cowboys' offense, as they're already banged up on the line and can ill afford further injuries.
Looking at the recent H.O.F. game and we find that last year's game finished with 27 points, a 17-10 final. The 2010 game (2011 was canceled) saw 23 points scored, a 16-7 final. I see this one also finishing at 31 or less. 9* NFLX Main Event
|08-25-12||Houston Texans v. New Orleans Saints UNDER 44||Top||27-34||Loss||-110||9 h 3 m||Show|
I'm playing on Houston and New Orleans to finish UNDER the total. Its hard for people to shake the image of these both being really high-scoring teams with really bad defenses. While that's no longer the case, the perception continues to linger. That's among the reasons that this is the highest O/U line on tonight's schedule. While I do respect both offenses, I feel that the high number is providing us with excellent value.
The Texans saw the UNDER go 12-6 last season. Those stats were based largely on the fact that the defense was a lot better than many initially realized. (The Houston defense yielded the second- fewest yards allowed in the NFL while ranking third overall against the pass, fourth vs. the run and fourth in points allowed.)
The Texans have continued to be strong on the defensive side of the ball so far in preseason. Opposing teams are managing just 11 points and 202 yards per game against them. Note that the Texans went on the road and allowed just seven points in their Week 3 preseason game (at SF) last season, setting the tone for their strong defensive year.
I feel that the Texans may have something to prove defensively here, as the Saints were about the only team to really give them trouble last season.
The Saints' defense did have some breakdowns at times last year, most notably when they gave up 36 points in the playoff loss at San Francisco. The goal is to improve on that side of the ball this season though and they've been stout (in two of three games) so far during the preseason. Overall, they're allowing an average of 14.7 points per game.
These teams met in 2010 and 2011 in the preseason. The O/U lines were 41 and 40.5. We're getting a few more points to work with here and I feel that's providing us with very fair value. *10 Blue Chip
|08-20-12||PHILADELPHIA v. New England Patriots UNDER 41||Top||27-17||Loss||-110||21 h 1 m||Show|
I'm playing on New England and Philadelphia to finish UNDER the total. Led by QBs Brady and Vick, these are two of the most "high profile" teams in the league these days. Combine that with the fact that this is a Monday night game and its not surprising that the total has risen from its opening number. This is still Week 2 of the preseason though and I feel that this number is generously high.
The Patriots' primary offseason goal was to improve their defense. They looked very good on that side of the ball in Week 1, winning 7-6.
Speaking of 7-6 games, the last time that the Pats played a home game in Week 2, the final score was 7-6. Including that result, three of the Pats' last four Week 2 preseason games have produced 38 or fewer combined points.
Despite giving up 23 points, the Eagles were also pretty solid on the defensive side of the ball in their opener. They held Pittsburgh to a mere 230 total yards.
I looked back as far as the 2005-2006 season and every single one of the Eagles' Week 2 preseason games produced 38 or fewer combined points.
The Eagles have seen the UNDER go 5-1 the last six times that they played a preseason road game with an O/U line in the 38.5 to 42 range. I expect those stats to improve tonight. *10 Main Event
|08-19-12||INDIANAPOLIS v. PITTSBURGH OVER 37.5||Top||24-26||Win||100||9 h 21 m||Show|
I'm playing on Pittsburgh and Indianapolis to finish OVER the total. I successfully played on the Colts to finish above the total in their preseason opener and I feel that this will be another good spot to do so.
As you probably saw or heard, #1 pick Andrew Luck was pretty impressive in the Colts' opener. While its dangerous to read too much into an opening preseason game against one of last year's worst teams, Luck was so highly coveted for good reason. He's one very skilled rookie.
Naturally, the Steelers defense is better than the Rams' defense. Dick Lebeau is considered to be one of the greatest defensive coordinators of all time. Give him time to game plan and he could surely come up with some looks that Luck won't have seen before. This is preseason though - and Lebeau and co. figure to be a little less aggressive as they would normally be.
On the other side of the all, I do expect the Steelers to be motivated to find the end zone. While Mike Wallace remains a holdout the Steelers' offense has a new weapon in receiver Chris Rainey, who scored a 57-yard touchdown last week.
Rothlisberger had this to say of Rainey: "He is explosive. He brings a lot to the table and you never know what you are going to get. You just give him the ball and you sit there and watch because he is explosive and fun."
With Haley calling the shots on offense this year, the Steelers are expected to run more "no-huddle" plays this year. They didn't employ any of this last week, partly because it was their first preseason game and probably partly due to the fact that they'll face the Eagles this regular season. However, we may start to see some of that here.
Wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders noted: "We really didn't open up our playbook. We just went with a small margin of our playbook. There's still a lot more to come, we didn't want to show too much. As the preseason games come along, we'll continue to expand."
While this is obviously a different team, its still worth mentioning that the Colts have seen the OVER go 27-13-1 the last 41 times that they were listed as underdogs in the preseason, including 6-2 the last eight. During that stretch, the Steelers have seen the OVER go 4-2 when listed as favorites in the preseason. I expect those stats to improve Sunday night. *10 Main Event
|08-17-12||BUFFALO v. MINNESOTA OVER 36||Top||14-36||Win||100||10 h 9 m||Show|
I'm playing on Minnesota and Buffalo to finish OVER the total. Neither of these teams were particularly pleased with their offensive performances in Week 1. I expect that to lead to both teams placing a greater emphasis on an improved effort on that side of the ball here.
While the Vikings offense won't have Adrian Peterson quite yet, Minnesota fans should welcome the return of receiver Percy Harven, who was rested in the Week 1 loss at SF.
The Bills came out passing in their opener, throwing the ball on 16 straight plays to start the game. While that didn't lead to an 'over' in Week 1, a high number of passing plays is typically a good thing when trying to cash an Over ticket.
The Bills' top three QBs (Fitzpatrick, Thigpen, Young) all have experience in this league and each should have something to prove. They should enjoy more success against a Minnesota defense which allowed 412 yards of offense in Week 1, allowing opposing QBs to go 20 of 29, good for a 69% completion percentage. This is a Minnesota defense which appears to have depth issues on defense, particularly at the linebacker and safety spots.
The last report I got of Minnesota's Christian Ponder was that he was much sharper in Wednesday's practice. He completed his first four passes to four different receivers and finished 6-for-8 overall. One of the incompletions was a drop.
Ponder had this to say about camp: "The good thing about this training camp is if we had a bad day, we didn't let it affect us the next day. And we had very few bad days. We had maybe two really bad days. And even then, they weren't that bad."
Last year, the Vikings scored only three points in their preseason opener. However, they scored 20 the next week. Meanwhile, their home opener finished with 40 combined points - the only one of their four 2011 preseason games which finished above the total. At or below the important number of 37, I feel the O/U line is generously low and I look for this one to also prove higher-scoring than many will be expecting. *10
|08-13-12||Dallas Cowboys v. OAKLAND UNDER 35.5||Top||3-0||Win||100||11 h 48 m||Show|
I'm playing on Dallas and Oakland to finish UNDER the total. As always, staying healthy is the most important objective for all teams in the preseason. This figures to be particularly true for Dallas; the Cowboys play tonight's game without at least six expected starters. That includes center Phil Costa, Pro Bowl receiver Miles Austin and very possibly also receiver Dez Bryant. Austin reportedly won't even make the trip while Bryant will be a game-time decision.
Regardless of who plays and who doesn't - don't expect the Cowboys to take any unnecessary chances on offense. They can't afford any more injuries on an offensive line which is already quickly becoming a problem.
The Raiders have made big changes on both sides of the ball. They're learning new schemes and have new coordinators on both offense and defense. There may be some trouble getting the offense clicking. With running back Darren McFadden expected to be playing for the first time since October, we should expect to see a fairly healthy dose of the run.
I primarily look at every game on an individual basis but also like to pay attention to scoring patterns. So far in this preseason, eight of the first 16 games have finished with 34 or fewer points. Eight have finished with more than 35. The average score has been 34.75. Not much to go on there. However, it is worth mentioning that two games have finished with exactly 34 points. That's noteworthy as tonight's O/U line has climbed above that important number. I feel that's providing us with solid value, as I've got this one finishing with 34 or less. *9 Blue Chip
|08-12-12||St Louis Rams v. INDIANAPOLIS OVER 34||Top||3-38||Win||100||52 h 31 m||Show|
I'm playing on St. Louis and Indianapolis to finish OVER the total. These were the two worst teams in the league last year. Each finished with a dismal 2-14 record. Obviously, both teams had plenty of issues - on both sides of the ball. However, a lack of scoring was definitely among the primary problems for both. The Rams scored the fewest points (193) in the league, the only team to finish with fewer than 200. The Colts were a little better - but not much. They finished with 243, tied for the the third fewest in the AFC. Only Cleveland and KC finished with less.
The fact that both teams and offenses were bad last season has worked in our favor in a couple of important ways here. First, we've got a very low O/U line to work with, even for preseason standards. Second, both teams should be motivated to score points.
You may recall that these teams met in Week 1 of the preseason last year. That game featured more than 650 yards (342 + 316) of total offense and 43 combined points, a 33-10 victory for the Rams. (Manning didn't play.) Those 43 points were scored in just three quarters too, as none were scored in the fourth. I expect another relatively high-scoring affair, the final combined score finishing above the low number. *10 Blue Chip
|09-02-11||Oakland Raiders v. Seattle Seahawks UNDER 37.5||Top||3-20||Win||100||12 h 6 m||Show|
I'm playing on Oakland and Seattle to finish UNDER the total. These former AFC West rivals have seen each of their last two preseason meetings finish above the total. I expect a lower-scoring affair this evening though.
While the Seahawks would surely like to see their offense play well, they've currently got some major issues on their offensive line.
The Seahawks have not done a good job of protecting new quarterback Tarvaris Jackson, as he's taken considerably more hits than Carroll would like to see during the exhibition season.
Rookie first-round pick James Carpenter has not played well at right tackle and the Seahawks are without left tackle Russell Okung, who is out with a sprained ankle - they hope he'll be back for Week 1.
That said, I believe Carroll and co. will emphasize protecting the QB here and running the ball.
I also feel that the fact that Tom Cable is Seattle's new offensive line coach may prove beneficial in helping us achieve a healthy dose of running plays. As you probably know, Cable was let go by the Raiders, despite seemingly having the team headed in the right direction. Now acting as an offensive coordinator, he'd surely love his unit to run the ball down the throats of his old team, even if it is just preseason.
After giving up 40 points to the Saints last time out, in addition to avoiding injury, I expect the Raiders' primary focus to be on an improved defensive effort.
With this being the last (and only Friday) preseason game, towards the end of the game, there may well be a little more of the "let's get this over with" mentality. After all, these teams both open the regular season with important divisional games.
The Raiders have seen each of their home preseason games finish above the total but their lone road game produced only 20 combined points, a 17-3 loss at San Francisco. I played against the Raiders in that one and happily watched them manage only 214 total yards of combined offense. I expect another relatively low-scoring affair and feel that a line at 37 or better is more than fair. *10
|08-29-11||New York Jets v. New York Giants UNDER 35.5||Top||17-3||Win||100||8 h 23 m||Show|
I'm playing on the Jets and Giants to finish UNDER the total. The Jets have seen each of their preseason games finish above the total. I expect their third game to be lower-scoring though.
For starters, note that although the Jets' games have finished above the total, they've still only had combined scores of 34 and 36 points. So, they haven't exactly been "shootouts."
The Jets' defense has given up just 221 and 203 total yards including only 50 and 42 on the ground.
On offense, the Jets will be looking to run the ball, according to Rex Ryan. He was quoted as saying: "I'd like to see us be able to establish our run game a little more."
Ryan went on to say: "Obviously, this will be a huge test for us going against the Giants defense."
While the secondary gave up some yards, note that the Giants' rush defense held the Bears to 81 yards on the ground last game, on an average of just 3.1 per carry. Overall, Chicago would manage only 13 points.
Because this game has been re-scheduled, both teams know that they will play again very soon. Indeed, they'll both be in action again on Thursday. Perhaps more importantly, they also know that they face each other again on Saturday, December 24th - when it really matters. As a result, I expect both teams to take a fairly conservative ("vanilla") approach and for that to lead to a low-scoring affair. *10
|08-27-11||New England Patriots v. Detroit Lions UNDER 44.5||10-34||Win||100||9 h 22 m||Show|
I'm playing on New England and Detroit to finish UNDER the total. These teams have both been putting up a lot of points and have both seen the 'over' go 2-0 in their first two games. That's led to this being the highest total on the board. I believe that it will prove to be too high.
True, the offenses have been impressive. However, the defenses have also been better than many may realize. The Patriots have held each opponent to 14 or fewer points. They allowed just 193 and 244 total yards.
After giving up 28 points vs. Cleveland last week, the Lions' focus should be on improved defense. In Detroit's defense, it did allow only 271 total yards after giving up just 205 in Week 1. Note the Lions have seen the UNDER go 7-4 when coming off back to back victories.
The Pats haven't seen many preseason games with O/U lines this high but have been a profitable 'under' team when they have. Dating back several years and we find the UNDER is 2-0 in their preseason games when the O/U line ranged from 42 to 49. Look for this one to also prove lower-scoring than most will be expecting. *9
|08-26-11||Green Bay Packers v. Indianapolis Colts UNDER 38.5||24-21||Loss||-110||57 h 24 m||Show|
I'm playing on Green Bay and Indianapolis to finish UNDER the total. The Packers combined with the Steelers to finish above the total in the Superbowl. Both Green Bay's preseason games have also finished above the number. Those results have helped provide us with a fairly high O/U number to work with, as the betting public views this team as an "offensive machine."
Throw in the fact that the Colts have been a profitable 'over' team in recent preseasons AND that these teams played a high-scoring game against each other last year and most will likely be expecting a "shootout." I'm not one of them.
For starters, note that the Colts are averaging only 6.5 points per game, thus far. While they'd surely like to improve on those offensive stats, they'd also really like to improve on the 59 points they allowed the Packers to score last preseason.
After scoring 28 last week, the Packers know their offense is in good shape. They've allowed an average of 23.5 per game though and I look for them to emphasize improvement in this area.
The Colts have seen the UNDER go 9-5 their last 14 preseason home games where the O/U line ranged from 38.5 to 42. I expect those stats to improve here. *9
|08-22-11||Chicago Bears v. New York Giants OVER 35.5||Top||13-41||Win||100||10 h 41 m||Show|
I'm playing on Chicago and New York to finish OVER the total. While I didn't play the Giants' preseason opener, I did win with the "under" in the Bears' first game. Chicago ended up beating Buffalo by a score of 10-3, a game which stayed below the total by more than three touchdowns. As for the Giants, they also managed only 10 points. However, unlike Chicago, they lost - a 20-10 setback at Carolina. Those Week 1 results have helped us here, as the O/U line remains below the important 37 mark. I feel this provides us with excellent value.
These teams faced each other last October, during the regular season. I had a big (*10 "Personal Favorite) play on the Giants in that one, so was pleased to see the Giants dominate defensively. New York won by a score of 17-3 and sacked Cutler repeatedly. Thankfully, for Cutler and co, Giants' sack specialist Osi Umenyiora is out.
That regular season game had an O/U line of 44. Yet, now we get a "meaningless" game, one where both teams should be focused on improved offensive production, with a total which is much lower.
Naturally, as is the case in Week 2 games, the starters will get considerably more playing time than they did in Week 1. While we'll still be seeing some rookies by the end of the game, keep in mind that this is a big deal to them. After all, its their first appearance on the Monday night stage. While neither coach is known for being aggressive, I won't be surprised to see both teams keep trying to score the entire way here.
Last week, the Bears were at home while the Giants were on the road. Roles are reversed here though as we've got Chicago on the road and New York playing at home. That's significant as we find the OVER at 3-1 in the Giants' last four preseason home games and also 3-1 in the Bears' last four preseason road games. Look for this one to also prove higher-scoring than many will be expecting. *10
|08-20-11||Buffalo Bills v. Denver Broncos UNDER 37.5||Top||10-24||Win||100||10 h 18 m||Show|
I'm playing on Buffalo and Denver to finish UNDER the total. I won with the "under" in the Bills' preseason opener. Buffalo managed only three points, while allowing only 10. With that result, the Bills have seen the UNDER go a profitable 15-9-1 their last 25 preseason road games with an O/U line in the 35.5 to 38 range.
Not surprisingly, the UNDER has also been very lucrative when the Bills have been listed as preseason road underdogs. The Bills are in that role here with the O/U line again falling in the 35.5 to 38 range. Currently, the line has climbed from 36.5 to 37.5, crossing over the important 37 number. I believe that provides us with excellent value.
Quotes from coaches can often provide valuable insight in the preseason and I believe both these coaches would be more than happy if this game stays low-scoring and "simple," featuring a heavy dose of the run from each.
Buffalo's Chan Gailey was quoted as saying: "We've tried to stay a little simpler, because we want the young guys to be able to have some success. We could probably move a little faster with our veteran players, but we are trying to keep it simple so the young guys can figure out if they can play or not. If it's all mental mistakes, you don't know if they can play or not. That's the theory."
Meanwhile, Denver's John Fox really wants his Broncos to run the ball more this season. He said this of the run: "It's the essence of football, I think, being able to run the ball and the mindset it takes to run the ball and stopping a run defensively."
I expect a relatively low-scoring affair. *10
|08-18-11||Philadelphia Eagles v. Pittsburgh Steelers OVER 34||Top||14-24||Win||100||10 h 39 m||Show|
I'm playing on Pittsburgh and Philly to finish OVER the total. These teams both saw their Week 1 game finish below the total and that's been one of the factors that's led to this being such a low O/U number. I feel that the low number provides us with excellent value though. With starters seeing more playing time and this game being televised nationally, there should be more incentive for both teams to generate offense than their was last week.
Speaking of the low O/U number, note that Reid's Eagles have seen the OVER go 3-1 their last four preseason games with an O/U line of 35 or less. During that stretch, the OVER is 6-3 in the Eagles' preseason games against teams from the AFC.
Four of the Eagles' last six visits to Pittsburgh, during the preseason, have finished above the total. I expect this one to do the same. *10
|08-15-11||New York Jets v. Houston Texans UNDER 34.5||Top||16-20||Loss||-110||10 h 36 m||Show|
I'm playing on New York and Houston to finish UNDER the total. As is generally the case in a preseason opener, we won't be seeing much of the starters. While it is a Monday Night game, neither team has much to prove here. Staying healthy should be the primary goal. That should be particularly true here, as both teams are already dealing with some key injuries.
The Jets won't have Plaxico Burress in the lineup, as he's dealing with a sprained ankle. He would have likely been anxious to make some catches, while on the field, too. So, not having him in the lineup should help our "under." Additionally, the Jets are expected to be without their starting center, Pro Bowler Nick Mangold. Also, guard Brandon Moore will likely sit, which will probably also be the case for veteran backup QB, Mark Brunell.
Houston is expected to play without Arian Foster, as he's nursing a hamstring injury. Ben Tate and Steve Slaton will also likely miss. While its possible he'll see some time, note that star reciever Andre Johnson is also currently listed as questionable.
On defense, Houston has a new defensive coordinator (Wade Phillips) and that often translates into the defensive players playing hard for their new boss. (Phillips may also have something to prove, after getting run out of Dallas last November.)
With rookie Greg McElroy and Matt Leinart both expected to get a fairly large number of snaps, I look for this one to prove lower-scoring than most will be expecting. *10
|08-13-11||Buffalo Bills v. Chicago Bears UNDER 36||3-10||Win||100||10 h 33 m||Show|
I'm playing on Buffalo and Chicago to finish UNDER the total. Neither of these teams should be too concerned with winning this game. Chicago was winless in last year's preseason and the Bears are just 14-15 SU (12-16-1 ATS) in the preseason, under Lovie Smith. Meanwhile, Chan Gailey's teams have also generally fared poorly in NFLX play. I do feel that the total, which is now the highest on the Saturday board, provides us with excellent value though.
With Matt Cassel seeing limited time, we'll likely be seeing plenty of Caleb Hanie with fifth-round pick Nathan Enderle mopping up. On the other side, the Bills are expected to go with Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tyler Thigpen, Levi Brown and Josh Nesbitt. While a couple of those QBs have had a small amount of success in the pros, none are exactly going to keep opposing defensive coordinators up at night.
The Bears have seen the UNDER go 22-14 their last 36 NFLX home games. That includes a 12-6 UNDER mark when playing a home game with an O/U line in the 35.5 to 38 range.
During the same stretch, the Bills have seen the UNDER go 14-9-1 in preseason road games with an O/U line in the 35.5 to 38 range. Note that the UNDER is also 7-2 the last nine times that they were listed as preseason road underdogs of three or fewer points. I expect those stats to improve here. *9
|08-12-11||San Francisco 49ers v. New Orleans Saints UNDER 35.5||3-24||Win||100||33 h 52 m||Show|
I'm playing on SF and New Orleans to finish UNDER the total. With Drew Brees and Sean Payton calling the shots, everyone knows that the Saints have a potent offense. With Jim Harbaugh, a "quarterback guru," now in San Francisco, the hope is that will also become the case for the 49ers. That may all prove to be true. However, lets not forget that this is still Week 1 of the preseason.
Keep in mind that Drew Brees and the Saints first team offense will see limited time. This team has little to prove on offense, arguably more so on defense. Naturally, Daniel and Canfield are a significant dropoff from Brees. In addition to the fact that Reggie Bush has moved on, note that the offense will be without receiver Marques Colston.
As for Harbaugh's 49ers, I don't expect any overnight miracles. Smith should benefit from having Harbaugh around but he likely won't be around all that long in this game. Also, due to the lockout, he's had very little time on the field with his offense. Last week, after finally getting some snaps, he was quoted as saying: "I'd like to say I wasn't rusty, but of course. It's been, what, seven or eight months since the last time I practiced with 22 guys on the field..."
Colin Kaepernick is an exciting newcomer and people in San Francisco are anxious to get a look at him. However, keep in mind that he's still a rookie and this will still be his debut.
The 49ers have a new staff in place, so we can't really gain much by looking at their past preseason stats. However, more can be learned by looking at Payton's tendencies. Over the past couple of seasons, Payton's Saints have seen the "over" go a perfect 4-0 on the road. However, the "under" has gone 2-2 here at New Orleans, including a 2-0 UNDER mark when they've played a home game with an O/U line in the 35.5 to 38 range. All things considered, I feel the number is generously high for a Week 1 game where the players had limited practice time. *9