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Sunday, January 17, 2021
After a split yesterday, looking to finish strong today...
Cleveland Browns @ Kansas City Chiefs (-10) TOTAL 57 - The obvious, this can reveal that the Browns have finally gotten the coaching they need and played to their talent level this season, or the Chiefs are just that much better than everyone else and cover a spead for the first time since Nov. 1, against the Jets (-19.5)! In eight games this year, the Chiefs were favored by nine points or more and went 3-5 ATS, so you get the point! To the eye, what Cleveland did last week was impresive because of the Covid-19 issue with the coaches. Sans the Jets game (another Covid-19 game where they had no top WRs for the most part), since returning from the bye in mid-November, Cleveland has done what it was supposed to do, albeit against many bottom feeders. I think the Cheifs win, but a late score covers the spread - taking the points.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New Orleans Saints (-3) TOTAL 52 - Round 3 between these NFC South rivals after the Saints won the previous two meetings. It is hard to beat a team three times in sports, but not buying that here. The Saints biggest issue has been the failure over the last couple of seasons (true there where some bad calls), to win in these situations. They came out against Chicago last week and handled their business, no question, which was exactly what they needed to do. The Bucs on the other hand have appeared to figure things out with a new cast, having won five straight and six of their last eight (losses to Rams and Chiefs) , with the offense really clicking well. They have soooo many weapons for Tom Brady, but can the defense stop New Orleans offense enough to win? I think this one will be a back and forth affair, with the Saints getting by this time - giving the field goal.
Saturday, January 16, 2021
Trying to shake off a horrible WIld-Card Weekend ... nothing comes easy!
Los Angeles Rams @ Green Bay Packers (-6.5) TOTAL 45.5 - Classic battle of a top offense, Packers, against a top defense, Rams. Looking for the location, despite it not being brutaly cold, but cold enough to have an effect on the Rams offense. On the other side, I think Rodgers is on a silence-his-critics roll and wants back in the NFC CHampionship Game. Green Bay gets the late touchdown to win it - laying the points.
Baltimore Ravens @ Buffalo Bills (-3) TOTAL 49.5 - This one features the Ravens, an organization which has been a tough competitor when in the playoffs in their history, against a Bills team that finally appears to have rounded into a formidable club. Like the line suggests, this should be a very close game with the Ravens defense the one area I think will change the game. In the end taking the Ravens and the field goal.
Sunday, January 10, 2021
Yesterday was a rough one, so back to the grind to get some back today
Baltimore Ravens (-3.5) @ Tennessee Titans TOTAL 54 - These teams are very close in overall strength, both want to run the ball first and foremost, play tough defense, and are usually disciplined and well coached. Both went 4-4 versus teams that made the playoffs and in the meeting between the two earlier this season, Tennessee came away with a 6-point win at Baltimore. I think we will be looking at a knock-down battle that comes down to the wire and the hook makes me go with the home team - taking the points.
Chicago Bears @ New Orleans Saints (-10.5) TOTAL 48.5 - This is another game where these teams meet for the second time this season after the Saints scored a 3-point overtime win on the road on Nov. 1. This time, the scene shifts to New Orleans, where the Saints went 6-2 this season. As far as competitive edges, Bears went 1-6 versus playoff teams, while New Orleans was 3-2 against postseason clubs, but both those setbacks were to the #1 seeds in each conference and were one-score setbacks. The biggest issue is the 10.5 points the Saints must cover in the playoffs. If the Saints are at full strenght, which they are expected to be, they can win big - it's a give.
Cleveland Browns @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-5.5) TOTAL 47.5 - The Browns were hit by Covid-19 heading into this one and won't have what can be considered their most important asset - head coach Kevin Stefanski, who also calls the plays. Coaching is so important in any sport, and while technology does help a bit, on game day a good head coach is worth points and Stefanski was just that in turning this team around this season! The Steelers limp into the playoffs, losing four of their last five, but they did split with this division rival this season, with the loss in the last week of the season, when they sat Ben Roethlisberger. I think the Steelers can get the job done, mostly because the coaching situation muddles things - laying the points.
Saturday, January 9, 2021
Indianapolis Colts @ Buffalo Bills (-6.5) TOTAL 51.5 - The Bills have really checked off a lot of boxes this season and have to be considered one of the favorites to reach the Super Bowl on the AFC side. The Colts are also an improved group this season, but while QB Philip Rivers has certainly paid dividens, a big key has been the ground game behind RB Jonathan Taylor. Still, if anyone can hamper this offense it's the Buffalo defense and that will be the difference. Going with the hometown Bills, who will have a small, but loud crowd behind them - laying the points.
Los Angeles Rams @ Seattle Seahawks (-3) TOTAL 42.5 - Probably the biggest question mark in this one is will Rams QB Jared Goff not just play, but can he be effective two weeks removed from thumb surgery? Just don't think so!. Meanwhile, the Seahawks come in riding a 4-game winning streak, including a win over these Rams. I just think Seattle can do enough and get the job done by a little more than a field goal - it's a give.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-8) @ Washington Football Team TOTAL 44.5 - The Bucs offense has really continued tto gel as the season progressed, dropping 26 points or more during their last four games, all wins, including 47 amd 44 the last two weeks. They have so many weapons and as long as the defense does it's job and they avoid stupid turnovers, they should be in good shape. Washington got into this one with a 7-9 record, mostly because the NFC East just wasn't that strong this year, While the feel-good story of Washington QB Alex Smith is something to root for, can't see that being enough. The only chance for Washington is to get a pass rush on QB Tom Brady with four, something he hates, but still don't think that is going to happen often to make a difference. Looking for Tampa Bay, which actually won more games away than home to simply outscore this foe - laying the points.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
The regular season wraps up today, one last shot before the postseason...
Baltimore Ravens (-13) @ Cincinnati Bengals TOTAL 45 - The Ravens need a win or some other clubs to lose, to make the playoffs, and my feeling is they are going to handle their own business, not leaving it to any other teams to help. They will run early and often, play tough defense and go right at the Bengals, who have played well the last few outings, but this is a different scenario. Ravens win by a couple of touchdowns - it's a give.
Atlanta Falcons @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-7) TOTAL 50.5 - Look, the Bucs still have something to play for as far as playoff seeding, so they have motivation, always important at this time of year. The Falcons, they are playing out the schedule and looking to the draft. One thing we know, the Tampa Bay offense can put up points and look for them to do it again today, but the key will be to keep the Atlanta offense under attack. I think the Bucs can outscore this foe and cover - laying the touchdown.
Seattle Seahawks (-7) @ San Francisco 49ers TOTAL 46 - Seahawks still have something to play for and will look to continue their winning ways, having taken 5 of their last 6 (three straight)! The Niners have had a rough season, but they have played hard, which is a testament to their organization. Still, not sure it will be enough in this spot. Looking for Seattle to turn up the defense and the offense does the rest - giving the points.
Indiamapolis Colts @ Pittsburgh Steelers (PK) TOTAL 42.5 - Steelers have lost three-straight outright and four ATS. Meanwhile, the Colts have won three-straight, two of those on the road. Like the way Indy is playing on both sides of the ball and while I expect a better effort from Pittsb urgh, not going to be enough - road team sneaks by with the win.
Atlanta Falcons @ Kansas City Chiefs (-10.5) TOTAL 53 - The Chiefs have been winning, nine straight to be exact, but they haven't been covering of late, going 0-5-1 ATS. That stops here, as they score early and often and the Falcons won't be able to keep up, KC actualy still is playing for home-field advantage throughout the AFC Playoffs, so there is incentive to get this done in a big way - laying the points.
Cleveland Browns (-6.5) @ New York Jets TOTAL 44.5 - Jets enter off their first win of the seasan, while the Browns continue their march to the postseason. Look, the Jets didn't mail it in and continue to compete, but Cleveland is in a grrove and as long as they stick to their business, they can win this by more than a touchdown - it's a give.
Miami Dolphins (-2.5) @ Las Vegas Raiders TOTAL 49.5 - Dolphins are doing it with defense and at this time of year its critical, especially as they currently hold the final playoff spot in the AFC. The Raiders have lost 4-of-5, with the lone win the Jets defensive debacle game! Not saying this will be easy, Raiders can always come up with a big effort, but if form holds, Miami wins by a field goal - laying the points.
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