Best Bets of the Weekend
The first London game! Nothing like waking up at 9:30 AM to watch some football on the east coast and nothing like losing money on football by noon! But we don’t lose money here so let’s get into Week 4 lines. (23-21 YTD)
NFL Week 4 – Sunday 10/2/16
9:30 AM Indianapolis Colts at Jacksonville Jaguars +2.5
Still believe the Colts are wildly overrated and they should have lost that Chargers game last week. This core of Jags players have already played here and will adjust to it better I believe. Plus we always see crazy results happen over there. I like the Jags to win.
1:00 PM Cleveland Browns at Washington Redskins -7.5
The Browns covered last week but they still might be the worst team in football. Plus the Josh Gordon news was a big blow and the overall mood on the team stinks. The Redskins showed glimpses of the team we saw last year and I think they will get the job done at home by a large number.
1:00 PM Buffalo Bills +7.5 at New England Patriots
The one thing you can say about Rex Ryan teams is that just when you are about the write them off they come back with a performance like last week. The Pats may be the best team in football but with injury surrounding both active QB’s, I think the Bills can keep it within a TD and really make it a game. Even if it happens in garbage time.
1:00 PM Seattle Seahawks at New York Jets +1.5
The Seahawks finally put together a big game last week but let’s see them do it on the road. Still a believer in the Jets, they just do this every season and frustrate their fans. At home, and with the west coast team traveling east for the early games angle, I like theJets to win.
1:00 PM Carolina Panthers -3 at Atlanta Falcons
Something seems off with the Panthers from last year. But the fact remains they lost to what appears to be two very good teams. The Falcons are getting too much respect after demolishing a bad Saints defense. Cam returns home to Atlanta to cover the small number.
1:00 PM Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears +3
My gut call on this game is that the Bears pull out all the stops and all the tricks to get their first win. I can’t completely trust the Lionswith my money as a road favorite. I think this will be the surprise game of the week as the Bears win at home.
1:00 PM Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans -4.5
I was a believer in Tennessee but I’m not sure they are good enough on offense to keep up with some of the better teams in the league. The Texans lost JJ Watt but they still have a very strong defense. At home, I like to cover a small margin.
1:00 PM Oakland Raiders +3.5 at Baltimore Ravens
The Baltimore Ravens might be a deceiving 3-0 team. They beat up on some of the weaker teams in the NFL through their first 3 weeks. I like the Raiders, they can put up points. I think the .5 makes a difference here as it will be at least a 3 point game even if the Raiders lose.
4:05 PM Denver Broncos -3 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Trap game alert! The Broncos only 3 point favorites seems like a gift, so immediately we need to be weary. But upon further review, Jameis seems to struggle against a great defense. He reminds me a lot of a younger Cam when he first came into the league. Stellar against the bad teams, but struggles against a good one. I think the Broncos will make him uncomfortable, come away with a lot of turnovers, and win the game.
4:25 PM Dallas Cowboys at San Francisco 49ers +2
Another deceiving line. The Cowboys seem like an obvious choice on the road as 2 point favorites but the San Francisco 49ers are tough at home. If something seems obvious I always make the contrarian play.
4:25 PM New Orleans Saints at San Diego Chargers -4
The Chargers blew a game they should have won last week, but I’m not fazed. That New Orleans defense is pathetic and I think Rivers and company with be able to score at will. The San Diego defense is sneaky good, the number seems reasonable to cover.
4:25 PM Los Angeles Rams +8 at Arizona Cardinals
Number is just too high. The Cardinals haven’t shown me yet that they are the team from last year, which is what this line would reflect, and Carson Palmer may have regressed. The Rams have been tough since Week 1 and it should be a tough defensive type game. Rams to cover.
8:30 PM Kansas City Chiefs +4.5 at Pittsburgh Steelers
The Kansas City Chiefs were very, very impressive in Week 3, forcing 6 interceptions from Ryan Fitzpatrick. It seems like it took that defense a little while to really get going but if they can build off last week’s effort, they are a dangerous team. Pittsburgh will have a much better effort here but 4.5 is too much respect. The Chiefs will either win or keep it within a score.
NFL Week 4 – Monday 10/3/16
8:30 PM New York Giants at Minnesota Vikings -4
This Vikings defense is elite and they are going to be tough each week at home. Eli is still prone to bad turnovers when under siege…I could see that happening here in prime-time. I could see a low scoring game which would favor a very close game and the Giants have yet to play a game that wasn’t decided by 3 points or less, but there’s no way I can trust Eli in this spot.
Santa Anita Park Race 7: Grade I Awesome Again Stakes – Saturday 10/1/16
The Awesome Again Stakes, a $300,000 Grade 1 race at 1 1/8 mile, features the best horses the west coast has to over and a Breeder’s Cup tune-up for most horses in the field. The standout is California Chrome, the best horse in the world, who is making his final race before the Classic. He is joined by Dortmound who is quickly becoming his biggest rival. Also features a few familiar faces on the circuit and foes of Chrome. It’s only a field of 5 so let’s take a look:
PP 1 California Chrome 2/5 ML
PP 2 Dortmund 5/2 ML
PP 4 Win the Space 20/1 ML
PP 5 Soi Phet 20/1 ML
PP 7 Hard Aces 15/1 ML
Pick: # 1 California Chrome 2/5 ML
California Chrome is the best horse in the world and coming off one of the most dominating performances against a strong field you will ever see. He was in the 1 post in that race as well, raced out to the lead and set the pace, and then pulled away in dominating fashion in a wire-to-wire performance. I don’t expect them to really expend too much energy in this one leading up to the Breeder’s Cup, which would be the one worry. Maybe they want this to act as a workout just so he doesn’t have the long layoff. But I think if he’s ridden confidently and with no trouble, he could wrap this thing up in hand again. Dortmund is the lone throat, so include him underneath in any ticket you play. Soi Phet has been in very good form as of late so I like him to round out the trifecta.
Oakland Athletics at Seattle Mariners – Saturday 10/1/16 9:10 PM
My favorite time of the year to bet on the MLB. With only a few days left and playoff spots on the line, you have a combination of teams that NEED to win and teams who’s season is already over. We’ve identified one here so let’s get into it. The Oakland Athletics (67-93) travel to Seattle to take on the Mariners (86-74). Oakland trots out a rookie, Jharel Cotton (2-0 1.44 ERA and 0.68 WHIP). The Mariners will rely on Hisashki Iwakuma (16-12 3.96 ERA). Seattle has won 3 straight games is only one back of the wild card. They need to win tonight, as a loss and a Toronto win would eliminate them completely. Cotton is a rookie so we don’t have many relevant splits for him yet. Iwakuma is 4-0 against Oakland this season with a 3.12 ERA. I think that one is the important stat.
Pick: Seattle Mariners -160
Anything can happen in these situations, because we have to factor in the pressure of needing to win out. Oakland has nothing to lose and Seattle has their entire season on the line. But it would be crazy to go with a rookie for one of the league’s worse teams. The stats for Iwakuma against this Oakland team is telling. I just don’t think the A’s can score enough on him to pull the upset. Always back the team who has something to play for in these situations.
ATP Beijing: Adrian Mannarino vs. Mischa Zverev – Sunday 10/2/16 2:05 AM
Interesting matchup here in Beijing between two players who have a better history. Adrian Mannarino, the world 62 from France, takes on Mischa Zverev, the world 120 from Germany. This is the 7th meeting between them and Zverev owns the head-to-head 4-2. This is one of my favorite types of tennis bets as a player who is the better ranked player and the one who really has had the better year is somehow the underdog. Many times in tennis betting you can look at things like that and make the right bet. Rarely will you see a better ranked player as an underdog, so immediately you need to figure there is a reason for it. Zverev owns the head-to-head but it doesn’t tell the whole story. So I’ll give my pick and then explain why:
Pick: Mischa Zverev -140
Adrian Mannarino has just been in very poor form for a good part of the year now. He is just 6-9 over his last 9 tournaments and is only 10-12 on the year on hard surface. Mischa Zverev is currently in strong form. He is 11-3 over just his last 3 tournaments. Though he’s just 5-7 on the year on hard court, I trust him game overall better on a faster court. We need to factor in current form and the strange odds and all things point to the German.