Sports Picks For Sale - Wayne Root

Hot Streaks and Achievements



Wayne Root launched his career on FNN, and then starred on Proline and The Winning Edge TV shows to build the biggest brand in sports handicapping.

Active since:  1985

Location:  Las Vegas, NV

Wayne Root started his career at age 16 when the media dubbed him "The Betting Whizkid" and "the next Jimmy the Greek."  After graduating from prestigious Ivy League Columbia University, Wayne became the sports gaming expert on NBC Radio New York and NBC Radio Chicago.  Soon he was predicting NFL point spread winners on over 100 NBC Source Radio stations nationwide.  By age 27, Wayne was Jimmy “the Greek's” television partner on Financial News Network (now known as CNBC). ONLY IN AMERICA!  Wayne served as FNN’s Oddsmaker, NFL Analyst and host of its pregame and postgame football shows, including FNN ZoneHuddle Up, Fantasy Zone, and The Fan Speaks Out.  He was also its anchorman for sports scores and updates.

Following FNN, Wayne was the star and rainmaker of the sports handicapping pregame show Proline on USA TV Network for 10 years. Wayne had the most expensive 900 (pay-per-call) numbers in U.S. telemarketing history:  $50 and $100 per call for his sports betting advice.  Millions of sports gamblers called for Wayne’s famous advice. 
Wayne’s national TV football pregame show, The Winning Edge aired from 2000 to 2009 on popular national television networks such as Fox Sports Net, Comcast Sports Net, Superstation WGN, Discovery and Spike TV. 
Wayne has been profiled by the biggest media in the world, including CNBC, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Equities, Worth, Success, Financial Times and Robb Report
Wayne literally “wrote the book" on sports gambling — three books to be exact...
ROOT on Risk: Betting to Win on Sports
The Zen of Gambling
The King of Vegas' Guide to Gambling
Wayne also co-created, co-executive produced and co-hosted a gambling reality TV show on Spike TV (King of Vegas).

In 2006, Wayne became the only Vegas oddsmaker or sports handicapper ever awarded a star on the Las Vegas Walk of Stars.  The Governor of Nevada presented Wayne's star at the ceremony.  It was named "Wayne Root Day" in the state of Nevada and Clark County (the city of Las Vegas).  Wayne's 180-pound granite star sits in the sidewalk on Las Vegas Blvd along with Vegas legends like Elvis Presley, Liberace, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., and Siegfield & Roy. 

Some recent highlights:

2020 January and February college basketball Pinnacles 18-8 (70%)
2019 MLB finished in top 5 in USA 
2019 NBA Playoffs 28-13 (68%)
2018 NFL Root Trust won 12 of 17 weeks (71%)
2018 MLB finished in top 8 in USA
2017 March Madness went 71% 

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NBA - Point Spread - Thu, Mar 30


WAYNE went 2-1 yesterday AND WON his NBA Game of the Month. We hope you bet it big. BET THIS GAME HUGE!! It’s the Pin...


MLB - Moneyline - Thu, Mar 30


WAYNE went 2-1 yesterday AND WON his NBA Game of the Month. We hope you bet it big. TAKE THE UNDERDOG Shocker-Shocker...


NCAAB - Point Spread - Thu, Mar 30


WAYNE went 2-1 yesterday AND WON his NBA Game of the Month. We hope you bet it big. Tonight is the NIT Championship G...


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Why Is March Madness So Different From 10 Years Ago?

Monday, Mar 20, 2023

Where are the -25 point spreads?Ten years and before, there were an abundance of favorites laying 25 to 32 points. We seldom see those numbers. In order to give some order to that, let’s look into it to understand why. It might actually have you betting less favorites.  Playing for Blue Bloods Very few great players from our “Blue Blood” teams stick around. The hit the ranks of the NBA. Duke, Kentucky and North Carolina first come to mind. Because of the NBA rules, they can’t enter until their sophomore year so they leave just as fast as they came.  One and DoneThen there are other “One and done” players that the coach thought he was safe in recruiting and the player departing altered the team chemistry. Players that were unheard of at the start of the season.   Transfer Portal The transfer portal has players arriving or leaving as soon as their season is completed. Because it only takes one or two good players to turn a team around, they get to choose a Power 5 team or in the case for college basketball, a very good Mid-Major. More importantly, they can handpick where to go to be starting. Who wants bench time at a Top 25 school? Better Coaching The coaching has definitely been elevated. The coaching is better with younger and brighter. Additionally, during the interview, I assure you that the AD  wants to know if any players will follow the incoming coach. Mid Majors The Mid Majors are incredible. Its not hard to get two great players which is 40% of the starting five. The players are calling the teams to see what’s offered instead of a coach going to them. NIL is Gold The NIL is paying the players. Let’s face it, cash is king. But as a player that’s not in the top 50, why would that ballplayer give up a few hundred thousand by being a 6th man at Duke or Kentucky and make nothing? That’s an easy recruiting tool for the small school coaches to use.  Team Chemistry The chemistry is so much better when players are performing as a team instead of star athletes selfishly playing their own brand of ball that one season. With everything the small schools have, getting players to stay is a great opportunity for these coaches to go deep in March.  Absolutely!!Any idea where Duke, Kentucky or North Carolina are at this point? OUTI love the scouting reports that indicate: Four Seniors

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The Rest of the NBA Regular Season Offers Profit

Friday, Feb 24, 2023

The most excitement in the next few weeks will be NBA teams juggling for the playoffs and particular seedlings. Pay attention to teams that made recent moves and those that didn’t.  With just over 20-ish games to go before the 2022-23 regular season comes to an end, there's plenty to keep an eye on with so much activity at the trade deadline and some extremely close playoff races. A ton of talent has hit the buyout market following the trade deadline, with names like Reggie Jackson, John Wall, Patrick Beverley, Terrence Ross, Danny Green and others all becoming free agents. Russell Westbrook will join the LA Clippers. I’m certainly not a Westbrick fan. Why did the Clippers even trade Utah for him? And then there’s Kevin Love. While his almost nine years in Cleveland ended poorly, there's a tremendous opportunity for Love to thrive now in Miami. He should really make an impact with his rebounding as he remains one of the best glass-cleaners the league has ever seen. Now almost an exclusive three-point shooter on offense, Love is making 35.4 percent of his threes this season despite playing through a hairline fracture in his right thumb. As for the Lakers, LeBron James said the next 20 or so games are the most important of his career. Thanks to a brilliant performance by Rob Pelinka leading up to the trade deadline, this is the best Lakers roster since the one that spent three months at Disney World. Still below-.500 at 27-32 and sitting at 13th in the West, time is running out to make a late playoff push, however. We’re excited to see if he can back up his statement and will look for opportunities to bet them. Los Angeles is just two games out of the play-in tournament, needing to leapfrog both the Portland Trail Blazers and Utah Jazz and at least one of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Golden State Warriors, Minnesota Timberwolves and New Orleans Pelicans. They open up today playing Golden State. With so much help now surrounding James and Anthony Davis, both superstars can save some energy for the play-in tournament, one where they'd be one of the most talented teams to ever take part. The Lakers will make the play-in tournament, win and eventually reach the playoffs. Portland’s Damian Lillard is forced to watch as those competing for the same eight playoff spots in the West get better. The Phoenix Suns with Kevin Durant. The Dallas Mavericks with Kyrie Irving (LOL). The Los Angeles Lakers with D'Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley,  mJarred Vanderbilt, Mo Bamba and Rui Hachimura. For 11 years and under the eye of multiple general managers, this Blazers roster simply hasn't been good enough to win a title. So many other teams are better built to win now, while franchises like the Oklahoma City Thunder, Utah Jazz, Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs may soon pass Portland up with their collection of young talent, future draft picks or both. As for the Detroit Pistons, they made a big trade but they’re not going anywhere anyway. With the Warriors in championship-or-bust mode with knee surgery limiting James Wiseman to just 60 total games in his first three seasons, the 21-year-old simply needed more time on the court to avoid a bust label. The Detroit Pistons, dead last in the East at 15-44 overall, will provide James Wiseman with the opportunity that he needs. A strong debut in Detroit (11 points and five rebounds on 5-of-9 shooting in 24 minutes) is just the beginning of his career revival. The court time already represented Wiseman's second-highest of the season, time that should only go up as he gets more comfortable in Dwane Casey's system. Wiseman has always tantalized us with his size (7'0", 240 pounds) and skill set. He's got elite defensive potential with an ability to protect the rim. They can upset other team’s playoff dreams.  While the NY Knicks didn't land a superstar at the trade deadline, swapping Cam Reddish and a protected first-round pick for Josh Hart was a smart move, one that's already paying dividends. Besides being a friend and former college teammate of starting point guard Jalen Brunson, Hart is an ideal player to plug into a playoff rotation with everything he brings to the table. Beyond being one of the best rebounding wings in the NBA, Hart is a talented scorer from all three levels and a capable playmaker. While the Knicks may not catch the Cleveland Cavaliers for the fourth seed (currently 4.5 games behind), New York should overtake the Brooklyn Nets to settle at No. 5 overall. I feel sorry for Luka and his playoff hopes for the Dallas Mavericks. The Mavericks added one of the most talented players in the NBA next to Luka Dončić and actually get worse. The Mavs have given up 133 and 124 points in the two losses, showing that the team desperately misses Dorian Finney-Smith. They needed defense desperately. Dallas sits just two games above .500 at 31-29 overall, hanging on to the sixth seed by a half game over the New Orleans Pelicans. (The Pelicans are going anywhere without Zion). No one can fault the Mavs for gambling on a talent like Irving, but their lack of moves to put the right pieces around him and Dončić will ultimately be the team's downfall. The Denver Nuggets have opened up a five-game lead on the No. 2 seed Memphis Grizzlies, with the top star, Jokić leading the way. He’ll continue to lead his team in his attempt to win the NBA MVP award. With that being said, no one should be ruling out Joel Embiid's or Giannis Antetokounmpo's chances just yet as they also will work hard to better their team and seed.  The next five weeks should be fun. Be sure to pay attention to seeding changes. The one game play in will also have the bottom feeders getting involved without so much “tanking”. Good Luck as we head towards the playoffs. The playoff’s picture is considerably much clearer to our staff and myself. 

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The Surprise College Basketball Conference as of February 2023

Saturday, Feb 18, 2023

We all know about the Big 12 conference with Kansas and Texas in the top 10. Kansas St, Iowa St and TCU can knock off their share of teams rounding out the Big 12 teams that are ranked in the top 25. This is your Number One ranked conference.  The second rated conference is the SEC. Alabama is the number one team in the nation this week. I say this week because teams continue to knock each other off playing any given solid home game against others within their conference. Tennessee is also in the top 15.  The third ranked conference is the Big 10. Purdue and Indiana leads this conference, however, they have proved they can also lose. They’ve lost 12 games between them. Northwestern, Maryland and Iowa are the other notable teams. But not that strong.  Let’s skip the fourth highest rated conference for a second. And go to the 5th, 6th and 7th. These are perennial highly ranked teams. Meanwhile, who is #4? The fifth highest ranked conference is the Big East. They mesmerized the basketball world for so many years. They have Marquette, Providence, Xavier, Creighton, UConn and The Hall. But yet the Big 10 rated just ahead of them. They may have their rating scrambled with these two conferences. It will play out in March.  The sixth ranked conference is the ACC. Duke and North Carolina lost momentum when the transfer portals opened for other teams to get players. Virginia leads the ACC pack. Miami and NC State are also in the top 25. Duke and North Carolina have 13 loses between them. Why Pittsburgh at 12-3 and Clemson coming in at 11-4 are not ranked is baffling.  The seventh ranked college basketball conference is the PAC 12. With games starting at 11:00 est it’s not hard to figure out why there’s a west coast bias. For those that can’t watch games played between 11:00 pm est and 1:30 am est, not much has changed. UCLA is ranked # 4 in the nation. I predict them to be one of two teamed to be playing Monday, April 3rd. Arizona competes with them at 12-4 and USC has some talent.  Now back to the mystery fourth ranked college basketball conference that is the Mountain West. UNLV is in seventh place at 16-10. San Diego St at 21-5 is on top. Boise is in second at 20-6 along with 20-6 Nevada. Utah St is 20-7 as is New Mexico. Even the Air Force team that doesn’t like tall pilots has 14 wins. And a team that almost never wins games at any sport has a 16-11 record as in San Jose St. Did you know they’re the “Spartans”?  As we get closer to the March Madness tournament, today’s lesson to learn is that the changing of the guard is here. You’ll see Duke and North Carolina over-rated while the Mountain West teams under-valued. The Big 10 might get 7-8 teams in and the public will lay the over-priced lines. The Big 12 is solid so the oddsmakers will play it straight making their lines.  Also worth mentioning is the West Coast Conference (WCC) with St Mary’s and Gonzaga the top two teams with Santa Clara at 20-8 in third.  Lastly are two other teams in the top 25. Are they there because they are good or there because they beat up on the “sisters of the poor” teams within their own conference? Houston Cougars are a good team coming in ranked # 3 in the top 25. Florida-Atlantic is 24-3 and needs to be looked into to see how good they are.  We’re a month away from The Madness. We’ll continue to monitor everything and then some. Stay tuned as more articles will get you prepared for the biggest three week party this Country has. 

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The 3-Point Shot in College Hoops

Sunday, Jan 29, 2023

There are stats that one can use to decide if the three point shot will come into play in your college basketball betting. Let’s take a look.  With both elite and awful units, there are four types of games that you can derive analytics from.  1. an elite offense versus an elite defense (at times)2. an elite offense versus an awful defense (definitely)3. an awful offense versus an elite defense (never) 4. an awful offense versus an awful defense. (never) Depending on how the year to date statistics measure, one can find the answers of the possibilities but not the results. But you certainly can logically gauge them if you put in the work.  Don’t extrapolate these results too far. If your team plays a six foot three inch center, he’s probably going to get killed by Paul George. However, based on the four factors, matchups do not necessarily guarantee you make better predictions. Offensive and defensive efficiency by adjusted points per possession does an excellent job. The three point shot is a powerful weapon. It gives the underdog an opportunity to get hot and pull off the upset. It has also propelled a favorite like Villanova or or an underdog like Butler to excel in NCAA tournament championships. I often wondered whether the offense or defense has control over the three point shot. There’s a correlation from early to late season statistics in conference play more so than the preseason where elite teams play low level competition. The later, the more acceptable.  The defense has the ability to control what type of shots an opposing offense takes. They get to choose whether to go into a zone. Defenses can limit the fraction of shots an opponent takes from three. Defenses get to decide if the opponent can shoot from downtown or whether to guard the perimeter.  However, the defense has no control once the offense puts up a three point shot. Randomness plays a big role in determining three point percentage allowed. Even more surprising, randomness also plays a big role in an offense’s three point percentage. While shooting is a clear skill, the data shows regression to the mean in three point percentage. When was the last time you looked at three point attempts in your pregame analysis? It’s how often one attempts a three point shoot. A team going 3 of 4, (75%) means very little compared to a team that jacks up 22 attempts. Three point attempt percentage is one of the most predictable shooting-related stats around. We’ve already established the defense has influence over this, but a major part of an offense’s style is how often they want to shoot threes, so they have influence, too. More influence than the defense, actually. This certainly shows that even tho the defense has their say, the offense can counter.  There are games where good shooters get a bunch of open looks and they make more than a third of their attempts. You wouldn’t call that luck. (Although, from the offense’s perspective the shooters enjoyed some good fortune to be left open.) But in the long run, that kind of stuff evens out a lot more than one would have thought. In the end, coaches have to decide how much they want to play the lottery by putting it up from 35 feet.  Sometimes, it will be advantageous for the defense to let the offense to take a bunch of shots and sometimes it won’t. The offense has to consider the same things. Each philosophy may be correct given the alternatives inside the arc. There are obviously a lot of factors for a coach to consider in making these decisions; many more than just what a team’s 2-point accuracy might be. Nonetheless, it’s an interesting way to think about how defenses (and offenses) work. And what percentage you are backing if three point shots are expected or not. One consideration I would say is mandatory to analyze is the underdog. There’s nothing like a run of three pointers to get an underdog side back into the game and covering your spread. The back door cover is accomplished from outside the arc more than a series of two point shooting.  Good Luck Wayne Root

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How Far Can Marquette Go In College Hoops?

Thursday, Jan 26, 2023

Is it time to get behind the storied program of Marquette basketball? We know that Marquette is really, really good. Based on total second half season bust in the past, I’ve been the holding back on that statement the last 2 weeks. A very difficult stretch saw this team come out even stronger than when it went in so maybe that poor play towards the end of conference play is in the past.  As for Coach Smart’s motivation, they walk along the hallway leading up to the men’s basketball office each day. The Marquette’s players can stare at the walls and see photographs celebrating the greatest teams in program history as a reminder. Now they’re intent on making themselves one of those teams. The last team featured is the squad that won a share of the Big East title and reached a regional final in 2013. Marquette hasn’t won an NCAA Tournament game since, which helps explain why this series of photos ends with a white space including nothing but a Marquette logo. They got even more motivation last week when Marquette honored the school’s 2003 Final Four team during halftime of a victory over Providence. Marquette, who was picked 9th in the Big East in the preseason, has cracked the top twenty after winning in dominant fashion at Seton Hall. In their most recent game, the Golden Eagles beat Seton Hall on Saturday, 74-53. Their top scorer was Kam Jones with 22 points. It isn’t just one outlier site that I’m currently cherry-picking from either that projected that Marquette finishes at 15-5, while Xavier, Providence, UConn and Creighton all have their projections capped at either 14 or 13 wins. Only Xavier is ahead of them in conference play. However, Marquette has an 11-1 record in games it was listed as favorites, while finishing 3-3 when listed as the underdog. That’s where Coach Smart is delivering his message. They can win the big games but are not focused on the bottom feeders. As a consolation, the NCAA tournament won’t have those bottom feeders there. But the biggest reason why it’s time to take Marquette’s Big East title odds seriously is that it has the most favorable schedule remaining of all the possible competitors. Consider this a free prop bet suggestion for winning the conference title.  The Golden Eagles have been carried by their offense, as they rank 16th-best in college basketball by tallying 82.3 points per game. Coach Smart built his reputation on the “Havoc” defense that enabled VCU to press its way to a Final Four appearance in 2011. His Marquette squad is winning with a ruthlessly effective offense.Marquette leads the nation in adjusted offensive efficiency, a metric measured by college basketball stats guru Ken Pomeroy that essentially translates to points scored per 100 possessions when adjusted for the level of competition. The Golden Eagles are making a remarkable 60.6% of their two-point shot attempts. The Golden Eagles share the ball so well that five of them are scoring at least 9.7 points per game: Kam Jones (16.4), Olivier-Maxence Prosper (12.2), Tyler Kolek (10.1) and David Joplin (9.7). The rant in the past was to take Marquette only in home games. With this team, they will get favorable point spreads on the road and at the Big East conference tournament. I wish them well as they are a huge part of what has made college basketball to be where it is today.  Good Luck,Wayne Allyn Root

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Betting College Bowl Games

Thursday, Dec 15, 2022

The bowl game season is among us. It’s like three weeks of Christmas opening up a different present everyday. The thing I like the most is all the time there is from now until the bowl games are played. That can create great opportunities if you disagree with the public, but can be frustrating and costly if you like the same team. In these games the public action is far less significant. They are looking ahead to the championship game and focusing on the wild card games in the NFL, so they really don’t care about these small bowl games. We amass tremendous betting information during this time. The counter bets, the huge bets from amateurs, the sharp guys and the parlay players. Many gamblers come to Vegas during December to bet their favorite teams. That means that there is a much better chance of getting a fair price when betting. It also means that as a college football handicapper you can attach more significance to any line moves that happen because they are more affected by smart money. That extra time is power for us. Use it to find out about key players that are passing on their bowl game from not wanting injury or bad exposure.  Look for value Overlooked strong matchup pop up all the time. A game doesn’t have to be played for the playoffs or New Years Day to have value. Some years the matchup is almost of BCS quality, but it draws a small fraction of the attention and betting action that the BCS games draw. That means you have the opportunity to bet on a big time game without the big time attention surrounding it. That’s a rare and pleasing opportunity for football bettors. The long layoff  Long layoffs affect teams differently. The gap between the last game of the regular season and the bowl game is always a factor in bowl handicapping.Football teams can have as many as six weeks between games. For bettors who are paying attention and who can get a good sense of the motivating psychology of teams this is a very good thing. There is so much that can affect how a college team plays after a long layoff – how healthy they are, how good their coaching staff is at preparation, the focus and discipline of the team, the excitement a team feels about playing in the game, any changes to the coaching staff since the last game, and so on. One of the biggest factors is the passing game of teams. Long layoffs really affects the timing of many quarterbacks to wide receivers.  Players that opt out The betting public doesn’t typically interpret the affect of these on a team very well, so the better you are at it the more opportunity these games can present. Additionally, in today’s age, many players opt out to protect their career from injuries if they have NFL talent.  Go with what’s working  By the time the championship playoff games roll around you have seen more than 25 bowl games, and you have bet on a good number of them. The best way to learn about how to handicap effectively is to look at what has been working for you with college football games. When you handicap these games you have three weeks of valuable first hand experience to draw from. Most players problems are that they don’t apply what they’ve watched or learned. However, if you learn from what has been working and what hasn’t then this should be the best part of your bowl season.

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NFL Week 12 NFC Top 5 Teams

Tuesday, Nov 22, 2022

For this week of Power Ratings, I have separated the NFC and AFC team into their own conference heading forward.  1. San Francisco 49ers The San Francisco 49ers are shaping up to be a dangerous playoff team in the NFC. Both the Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles struggle to stop the run and they do have some issues against opponents who can get home without blitzing. These happen to be two of the things San Francisco is best at. Of course, that is if Jimmy Garoppolo can avoid mistakes in critical situations. The way they looked and played last night against Arizona in Mexico City looks like the best team on both sides of the ball.  2. Philadelphia Eagles  Jalen Hurts saved the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, just days after he might have done it if not for some gaffes by teammates and the officials. As Hurts ascends into the conversation of elite NFL quarterbacks, he and the Eagles’ defense are carrying this club to the top of the NFC. The last two weeks have given other teams in the NFC lots of confidence after seeing the Eagles performances.  3. Dallas Cowboys  If the Dallas Cowboys took their previous matchup against Green Bay lightly, it was quickly made apparent they wouldn’t make the same mistake in Minnesota. Dallas overwhelmed the Vikings on both sides of the ball, delivering one of the best NFL performances in 2022. There are still a few questions that prevent the Cowboys from being viewed as the best team in the NFL, but they are in the running. Winning like that keeps GM and Owner Jerry Jones from making comments and the players play and the coaches coach.  4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers  There’s a feeling of optimism coming out of the bye week for Tampa Bay. Tom Brady and Byron Leftwich had the time they needed to make adjustments for the second half and we’ve seen more than enough to believe in this defense. Considering the NFC South is a cakewalk and Tom Brady is divorced, Tampa Bay can coast into a playoff spot. It wouldn’t surprise me if Brady doesn’t get that chip on his shoulder and another ring on his finger now that he’s in 100%.  5. Minnesota Vikings  Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water and when fans started thinking about the Minnesota Vikings as a Super Bowl contender, the team delivers one of its worst performances in years. Everything that could go wrong did on Sunday. But was the game an anomaly or a Dallas team that exposed them? The fact is, the Vikings might literally burn the tape from this game. Unfortunately, things won’t get any easier as the Patriots’ pass rush is a nightmare matchup for Minnesota on a short week and consecutive losses would spell trouble in the NFC.

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NFL Week 12 AFC Top 5 Teams

Tuesday, Nov 22, 2022

For this week of Power Ratings, I have separated the NFC and AFC team into their own conference heading forward.  1. Kansas City Chiefs Patrick Mahomes does it again. Then again, everyone expected that when he got the football trailing by four with less than 120 seconds left in the game. Fittingly, Mahomes didn’t even need all that time to win it. The Chiefs are the best NFL team right now and they’re the Super Bowl favorite because Mahomes is like no player we’ve ever seen. He’s 14-0 lifetime on the road in the AFC West and has destroyed what many thought would have a competitive race this season.   2. Buffalo Bills  Sunday represents a nice step forward for the Buffalo Bills, but it’s becoming increasingly apparent just how many key absences are hurting the defense. When Tre’Davious White, Tremaine Edmonds and Greg Rousseau return, the Bills are the best team in the NFL. They have a few more issues than 80” of snow. Allen has been throwing interceptions while in the red zone and his overall accuracy is like it was at Wyoming or in year one. It’s everywhere.  3. Miami Dolphins The AFC East is shaping out to a possible 3 way race. Who would have thought. The Miami Dolphins boast the offense to challenge the Chiefs and Bills. Tua Tagovailoa is executing this offense perfectly and there is far too much speed and explosiveness for opponents to match. But if Patrick Mahomes or Josh Allen gets the football, no one would trust Miami’s defense to record a stop right now. That’s what they need to sort out. A defense to match their offense.  4. Baltimore Ravens  Surviving is all that ultimately matters for the Baltimore Ravens, but there are red flags coming out of this matchup. They are one dimensional in their offense and Carolina’s defense had some relative ease in containing things. Another thing to keep in mind, the top of the NFL is very fluid right now but the Ravens’ schedule (@ JAX, vs DEN, @ PIT, @ CLE, vs ATL) sets this team up well for a confidence-building run before January. They have an easy path going forward to the playoffs.   5. Tennessee Titans  Everything the Tennessee Titans are doing right now is impressive, especially considering where this team was viewed following an 0-2 start. At the same time, all of it feels so eerily similar to what happened in previous seasons. Look at the Titans’ playoff history, and the current team then determine if you really trust them to avoid the same postseason heartbreak. They may have the best coach for this run for the playoffs. And Derik Henry is a beast. All that’s needed is for him to finish the season in beast mode fashion. 

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NFL Over/Under Betting

Tuesday, Oct 25, 2022

Betting on NFL over/under action is not only simple and exciting, but it also happens to be one of the most reliable ways to pad your bankroll. Remember the stats of previous games don’t lie. The problem is that the average Joe doesn’t understand what applies and what is useless. Placing the data correctly into that particular matchup is paramount in success.  Handicapping NFL over/under bets is a reliable way to become a successful sports bettor. Whether you’re a rookie or a seasoned sharp, finding opportunities to hit NFL totals is a profitable and exciting method to wager throughout the season. Making over/under wagers is one of the most polarizing subjects in NFL sports betting. While most sports bettors prefer to take the over (who doesn’t love high-scoring games?), there are times where a defensive battle between two stalwart teams calls for an under wager. Looking at NFL betting trends is another effective method when deciding whether to wager on the over or the under. This includes analysis of turnovers. By the middle of the season, most turnovers begin to digress to the mean.  While the public has a habit of blindly wagering on the over, there are other variables that can cause a noticeable change in the betting trends. Factors like indoor/outdoor & home/away splits, weather conditions, and power rankings/standings can influence many sports bettors into wagering one way or the other. One of the most important aspects of over/under betting is line shopping for the best NFL odds. Sports bettors love to take the over, and as such, the public typically causes a lot of line movement. As more fans start betting the over, bookmakers adjust the line to increase the total number of points on an over/under wager. If you’re looking to bet the over, it’s better to get your wagers set earlier in the week before the public starts forcing significant line movement. On the other hand, if you’re favoring the under in a game, you might want to wait closer to kickoff to fill out your bet slip. Choose a top seasoned professional to help.  As far as weather, totals are certainly affected by the weather. Each case is different. Is the rain just gently coming down or coming down sideways? Is the snow coming as flurries or an inch an hour. Wind is the most important weather impediment in the outcome so if the announcer says welcome to bright and sunny Chicago, listen to what he says about any wind. 

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NFL Top 10 (Thru Week 6)

Friday, Oct 21, 2022

1. BUFFALO BILLS The highest of expectations were set for the Buffalo Bills, and they have shown why many thought this team could be the best in the league. While Josh Allen was doing his MVP act on one side of the ball, Von Miller was again making Buffalo's brass look like a genius collective by delivering a two-sack day and the QB pressure against Kansas City. With the win, the Bills gain a tiebreaker advantage that could have major ramifications come January. The team is getting healthier, but backups have largely been up to the task, showing just how well-rounded of a roster GM Brandon Beane has built. 2. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES  This will give those halftime pep talks a new meaning for opposing teams. The Eagles have scored 112 second-quarter points in 2022, the most points in any quarter in NFL history through a team's first six games. Many thought quarterback Jalen Hurts would improve in his second full season as the starter, but I weren’t expecting him to be in the early MVP conversation. Hurts is a primary reason the Eagles are undefeated. As football's lone undefeated team, Philly will come out of its Week 7 bye facing a favorable schedule, with three straight games against teams owning two or fewer wins through Week 6.  3. MINNESOTA VIKINGS   With the Packers out of their way for now, the pressure has lessened for a short few weeks moment. Minnesota isn't anybody's idea of a juggernaut, but five wins in six games -- picked off only by the undefeated Eagles -- tells the story of a team that knows how to close. . "It's very much the inverse of 2021," said Kirk Cousins as he’s finally not the inverse hot topic on Sunday night TV crushing his confidence. The Vikings lack of injuries is incredible thru six weeks of banging. Not only were the Vikings ready to open 5-1, but 21 of their 22 starters have made every start that led to this turnaround.  4. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS The Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes play as they just can’t wait to get the regular season over and get to the playoffs. They need to figure out Von Miller by January if they’re going after another piece of the Lombardi hardware. Their only improvement needed is the need to improve their pass rush with their front four other than Chris Jones when they don't blitz. The Chiefs have eight sacks with their down linemen, including three from Jones. They need more quarterback sacks. They were 29th last year and barely show an improvement this season. 5. DALLAS COWBOYS “I’m back” said Dak. It's time for Dak Prescott to rejoin the gang. Cooper Rush's run as an undefeated starting QB came to an unceremonious end on Sunday Night Football, as the Eagles picked off the Dallas passer three times in a 26-17 loss at the Linc. Early reports point to a Prescott return this Sunday against the Lions. If the Cowboys get as jacked on their high horse as their fans, we can see the Cowboys extend their Wild Card run or if real lucky, overtaking the Eagles in the NFC East. Here’s some good news for Jerry’s radio show. The Cowboys play Detroit and Chicago before heading into the bye week. If Prescott plays as expected, the Cowboys will be in the thick of the playoff chase. 6. CINCINNATI BENGALS The big question here they’re asking are the Bengals waiting for someone or something to get them looking like the runner up of last years Super Bowl. His play was definitely inspired by where he was playing last Sunday. The third-year quarterback tallied 300 yards through the air and improvised brilliantly on the scramble in a successful Superdome homecoming for the LSU legend. Tigers teammate Ja'Marr Chase (7/132/2), put the Bengals ahead for good via a 60-yard catch-and-run score with two minutes to play. Chase had been bottled up for much of the season until the second half on Sunday. Burrow and Chase are fixin' to go on a rampage. Cincinnati is still in the middle of the pack in expected yards per play, and a 30-26 win over the New Orleans Saints hinted that the unit could be trending upward. 7. NY GIANTS It’s been quite some time since I last had the Giants rated with a single digit. They hadn't topped six wins in any of the previous five seasons. They’ve certainly had their share of luck and big blue come backs. Much credit is in order for Don "Wink" Martindale, who cooked up another fine defensive game plan that neutralized Baltimore’s QB Jackson and allowed the offense to wipe away a 10-point deficit in the second half. This is old hat by now: The Giants are 3-1 in games in which they trailed by double digits. Buyer Beware: If you let the Giants hang around in a game, there's a good chance they'll find a way to beat you. It doesn't matter that the Giants are 23rd in total offense and 15th in defense. Coach Brian Daboll has this team believing and finishing. They've outscored opponents 87-49 in the second half of games. 8. BALTIMORE RAVENS Try explaining this every Monday at the water-cooler. The Ravens are up to three losses in which they led by at least 10 points in a game -- matching a team record for most such losses in a season. Coming in, it was thought that the Ravens would have the NFL's best secondary. But Baltimore ranks 28th against the pass, giving up an average of 267.7 yards through the air. Through Week 6! Lamar Jackson is a former MVP who has had stretches this season when he’s looked better than ever. But the quarterback also bears his share of the responsibility for three confounding late-game meltdowns that have defined a .500 start. It’s unknown which way the Ravens are headed.  9. SAN FRANCISCO   The 49ers should begin their climb to the upper tier of the NFC West as they get half their team off the injured list. The 49ers are watching another season get turned upside down by injuries. At 3-3 and tied with the Seahawks and Rams, it should be like shooting fish in a barrel for them to win their division when players return. Their defense was the limping wounded. By the end of Sunday’s 28-14 loss to the Falcons, the Niners were down to four of 11 projected starters on their defense. San Francisco still struggles on kickoff returns, has given up 23.2 yards per kick return (ninth worst in the NFL) and had two field goals blocked. The result is a unit with an expected points added of minus-3.5, which is 21st in the NFL.  10. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS  What the heck has happened to the L.A. offense? Justin Herbert looked positively pedestrian, averaging 4.2 yards per attempt while leading Los Angeles on a single touchdown drive. At his best, Herbert attacks defenses downfield like no other quarterback, but a prime-time showcase put the gunslinger in constant checkdown mode to Austin Ekeler (10 catches on 16 targets) against a Broncos defense. And after ranking among the worst units in the NFL (No. 29 overall) allowing an average of 27 points per game in 2021, it was widely thought that the Bolts defense would catapult up the rankings after significant offseason upgrades in personnel. However, despite the additions of All Pro edge rusher Khalil Mack, Pro Bowl cornerback J.C. Jackson and defensive lineman Sebastian Joseph-Day, the Chargers remain ranked among the league's worst defenses (No. 26 overall), allowing an average of 25.3 points per game. Joey Boza can’t return fast enough. The Bolts can be better. They had so much potential to start the season. There’s two questions: Where did it go and can they find it?  

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NFL Top 10 (Thru Week 1)

Tuesday, Sep 13, 2022

There really weren’t any surprises in the top two or the top six. This early in the season after one game, it just shows to expect the unexpected and that anything can happen on any given Sunday. Don’t worry if you don’t see your team as this Top 10 will play out with the real talent coming to the top in time for the playoffs. 1. BUFFALO BILLS After their showing against the Rams, there is no doubt they should be in this top spot. They sent a message to the rest of the league with that victory. Josh Allen played like an MVP favorite, and the Bills' front seven dominated the trenches, making life miserable for Matthew Stafford. On paper entering this season, it looked like Buffalo had the most complete team in football. One game in, the on-field product supports that notion 2. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS Who misses whom first? Will it be Patrick Mahomes missing Tyreek Hill first or Tyreek missing Patrick first?Mahomes showed against the Cardinals that he can still play at a high level without Tyreek Hill. That offense will be just fine. Mahomes completed passes to nine different receivers and threw five touchdown passes, connecting with four different targets for scores. The heart of the attack remained Travis Kelce (8/121/1 on nine targets), but an eye-opening 2022 debut from Clyde Edwards-Helaire makes you wonder if Andy Reid’s new-look attack will turn the running back into the impact chess piece. 3. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS The Chargers had to play one of the most hyped and widely bet games of the week. The Chargers received impact performances from a host of newcomers in a promising 24-19 win over the Raiders. It was OLB Khalil Mack that had three of L.A.'s six sacks of a rattled Derek Carr at SoFi Stadium and was instrumental in defeating his former team. Justin Herbert was predictably great, finding ways to move the offense even after Keenan Allen left the game. With that passer in Justin Herbert and those pass rushers in Khalil Mack and Joey Bosa, they have the two main things needed to win it all. Now they have a chance to show the Chiefs this week in a big early game. On their wish list for Thursday night vs Kansas City, will J.C. Jackson, the team's prized free-agent addition at cornerback, make his debut? The Bolts sure could use him with that Mahomes guy taking aim.  4. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS An elderly Tom Brady has to get recognized for going into Jerry’s Place and coming away with a win. Dallas injuries or not. The defense really impressed against the Cowboys. But the banged-up offense looked off at times. The offensive line has injuries, which isn't a good thing going to New Orleans. Todd Bowles built his reputation as a defensive wizard and a 19- 3 final should ring out to other teams that the defense is there to match their offense. Did you notice Julio Jones in his Bucs debut? They’re hoping for a sudden impact from him The Bucs did suffer two injuries.  5. MINNESOTA VIKINGS The Vikings got off to an impressive start in beating the Packers in dominant fashion. The defense really impressed and Justin Jefferson was unstoppable. Jefferson, the third-year superstar was untouchable on Sunday against the Packers, piling up nine catches for 184 yards and two touchdowns in a 23-7 win over the three-time defending division champs.Give some credit to new coach and play caller Kevin O'Connell, who moved Jefferson around the field and appears ready to use his top receiver in more imaginative ways than previously seen in Minnesota. Kirk Cousins cupboard is filled and he’s one game up on the three-time defending division champs.6. BALTIMORE RAVENSBaltimore's defense dominated, routinely collapsing the pocket on old friend Joe Flacco. When the Jets did move the ball, the Ravens bowed up near midfield and forced timely turnovers. It wasn't always pretty against the Jets, but Lamar Jackson got it going in the second half. It will get a lot tougher for this offense going forward. Jackson was on target as a passer, connecting on three scores -- two to Devin Duvernay, who delivered an intriguing performance for a team in need of playmakers. It remains to be seen if the bitter frustrations of 2021 are over. Let’s not get overly excited tho as they played the NY Jets.  7. PHILADELPHIA EAGLESNew No. 1 wide receiver A.J. Brown was an immediate-impact playmaker, piling up 10 catches for 155 yards on 13 targets. Meanwhile, the tandem of Jalen Hurts and Miles Sanders rushing behind a stout offensive line has the potential to turn Philly into a matchup nightmare for any opponent. If Jalen Hurts can play like he did against the Lions, this could be a deep playoff team. The defense was not good, though, which has to be a concern.This offense is going to be a problem for teams. The Eagles rolled up 455 yards on 10 possessions against the Lions in a 38-35 win. Hopefully their fourth quarter was an anomaly.  8. NEW ORLEANS SAINTSThe type of Jameis Winston performance against the Atlanta Falcons will make believers out of doubters. The polarizing quarterback was shut down along with the rest of the Saints’ offense for the better part of three quarters against the Falcons, but Winston went off on back-to-back drives that changed the game in the fourth quarter. Winston was 11 of 12 for 156 yards with two touchdown passes to Michael Thomas during that stretch, capping his day with a final march that set up Wil Lutz’s game-winning field goal. They fortunately found a way against the Falcons, but it wasn't pretty. What happened to a defense that was supposed to be so dominant? They better get it going against Tampa Bay. 9. MIAMI DOLPHINS Want a sign of the times in the shifting AFC East? Is this a meaningful stat? Tua Tagovailoa is now 4-0 in his career against Bill Belichick. Miami has surpassed New England -- Buffalo is the new target. The Dolphins beat the Patriots and never were really threatened, thanks to the defense. Tua Tagovailoa was good, but the offense still only scored one touchdown. Tyreek Hill and Tua Tagovailoa displayed the chemistry teased during the summer, connecting eight times for 94 yards on 12 targets which might not be enough moving forward. Melvin Ingram and Co. held New England’s undercooked attack to just 271 yards and a single scoring drive.  10. PITTSBURGH STEELERS Coach Mike Tomlin has to be in the lead for Coach of the Year after his offense and defense were tested on the road against the Cincinnati Bengals. The Steelers forced Joe Burrow into five turnovers, the front seven piled up six sacks and Chris Boswell’s long field goal secured an overtime win over the defending AFC champion Bengals. The defense came up big in the overtime victory over the Bengals. The loss of T.J. Watt is a damning blow to the defense, which will put more pressure on the offense.The offense under Mitch Trubisky was pedestrian, Najee Harris exited the game with a foot injury but will return this week and reigning Defensive Player of the Year T.J. Watt appears likely to miss at least several weeks which would be a blow to any team. That only leaves coaching to give the game ball to for this win. __________________Other teams that won and if they win back to back would possibly move up.  In no particular order: A. Seattle B. Cleveland C. NY GiantsD. Chicago BearsE. Washington Commanders 

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If You're Getting Your Handicapping From TV or Radio Hosts, Get Ready to Go Broke!

Tuesday, Sep 06, 2022

If caught my attention yesterday when a radio hosts sports wannabe handicapper was talking about how strong LSU’s late drinking fest in Baton Rouge was and the affect it would have on their game. He said the venue was an incredibly solid strong home venue.  NOTE: They we’re playing in New Orleans at the Superdome and Florida St won outright. So much for that information. Lol  An ESPN Handicapper was attempting to explain that if Buffalo went from -2 to -2.5 and -3 against the Rams that it indicated “sharp money”. Yes, that could be true. But he didn’t know. He had no idea. What if 80% of the tickets written on Buffalo were all from public money? That would have had the point spread going from -2 to -2.5 to -3. The exact same outcome as his “sharp money”  example. He wanted to be right but he had no clue.  There are counter tickets (public bets). There are betting apps (could be anyone). There’s the back room numbers where the actual dollars are added then sided and the numbers are adjusted. There’s a sector of huge offshore sports books where some of the biggest bets are made and are monitored by us. This is real informative. It follows the money. Not an ESPN opinion.  Another factor is the straight bets vs money line bets. The sports books don’t want to get sided so sometimes the lines move and other times they won’t change them if they’re in a favorable position.  Towards the end of the season, the point spread for that specific game must be calculated and measured against all the future bets the sports books have exposure.  In reality, the ESPN hosts that looks like he walked out of GQ is there for his look and speaking ability. Even if he’s played the game his opinions are slanted, taunted and not really his. The teleprompter queues the information entered and and loves to put in a “false narrative” that the Buffalo point spread is really moving. “Stay tuned after this word from Coors Beer, we’ll be right back.” And off to a commercial.  PS: You were part of their commercial; not for Vegas Inside Sharp Betting Information; but for SportsCenter much needed content.  If the information you demand is critical for your own pockets, come back to me all week long. 

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Tuesday, Aug 09, 2022

AFC NORTH QUARTERBACKS BALTIMORE RAVENS Who starts in 2022? The Ravens picked up the fifth-year option on Jackson, and the offseason talk will concern whether there is an extension before the season starts. Jackson will return, but 2023 could be interesting if the Ravens struggle to make the postseason and an extension has not been reached. The Ravens’ offense runs through and with Lamar Jackson. Tyler Huntley did a nice job when Jackson was out last year and is a solid backup. Brett Hundley just continues to find spots on rosters without menacing anyone for a starting job. It would be surprising if Anthony Brown, who played at Boston College and Oregon, manages to stick. Grade: B+ CINCINNATI BENGALS Who starts in 2022? Burrow proved he is a franchise quarterback, and the Bengals have the most cap space among playoff teams. Burrow has two years left on his rookie contract and a fifth-year option, so it's about maintaining what could be a Super Bowl contender for years to come. You have Joe Burrow, so what else do you need? All one has to do is remember the former LSU star’s rookie year to remember it takes one play for everything to go awry. Best hope and pray the Heisman winner stays healthy because Jake Browning and Brandon Allen wouldn’t lead teams to the postseason in the USFL. Grade: B CLEVELAND BROWNS Who starts in 2022? Cleveland traded for Deshaun Watson and picked up a hefty, five-year, $230 million contract. Watson still could be subject to a six game minimum multi-game suspension to start 2022, but he gives the Browns a proven playmaker at the most-important position. Baker Mayfield has been traded to Carolina. It doesn’t matter what happens with Deshaun Watson. The Browns lose all sorts of credibility for the acquisition amid scandal and then the contract to try and skirt the quarterback losing too much salary during a possible suspension. Jacoby Brissett and Joshua Dobbs are the backups. Brissett is serviceable, and had better be for Kevin Stefanski with what could be looming for Watson. Grade: D- PITTSBURGH STEELERS Who starts in 2022? As it stands, Wilson and Rodgers are out as the home-run swings. The Steelers signed Mitchell Trubisky on March 17, and he will compete with Mason Rudolph for the starting job. Pittsburgh also could draft a long-term option in the first round, but right now Trubisky could win that starting job in Week 1. It doesn’t matter what happens with Deshaun Watson. The Browns lose all sorts of credibility for the acquisition amid scandal and then the contract to try and skirt the quarterback losing too much salary during a possible suspension. Jacoby Brissett and Joshua Dobbs are the backups. Brissett is serviceable, and had better be for Kevin Stefanski with what could be looming for Watson. Grade: D- AFC SOUTH QUARTERBACKS  HOUSTON TEXANSWho starts in 2022? Houston hired Love Smith and traded Watson to Cleveland. Davis Mills is the starting quarterback as of now, but the Texans could be in the mix to draft a quarterback in the first round. It's a true rebuild with Watson finally gone. Given the chance to play as a rookie Davis Mills showed some talent. He delivered where many others could have crumbled. Kyle Allen, Jeff Driskel, and Kevin Hogan are also in the room. Lovie Smith must hope Mills continues to show growth or this team will go deeper in reverse, something that doesn’t seem plausible. Grade: D- INDIANAPOLIS COLTSWho starts in 2022? The Colts traded Wentz to Washington and filled the quarterback void with Matt Ryan, who has 107 TDs and 45 interceptions the last four seasons despite playing on losing teams. He solidifies the QB position on a loaded roster. The Colts’ decision to continue to hope and pray for aged quarterbacks to find one more season of magic turns to Matt Ryan. There seems to be more hope with the former Falcon than Carson Wentz or Philip Rivers. Jack Coan had his moments at Notre Dame but not sold on him as an NFL QB. Same with Sam Ehlinger. Then there is Nick Foles, who is always good to have around and can deliver wins … and big wins … if needed. He’s a solid backup to Ryan. Grade: C+ JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS Who starts in 2022? The Jaguars are still looking for an effective new coach. Lawrence has three years left on his rookie deal. Lawrence has franchise-QB talent. The right coach needs to cultivate that. Trevor Lawrence suffered through an unfair rookie season on a bad team and a worse coach in Urban Meyer. Doug Pederson should bring far more out of the former Clemson star. E.J. Perry, Jake Luton, and C.J. Beathard behind Lawrence are enough to give Pederson nightmares. This isn’t having Foles behind Wentz. Grade: C- TENNESSEE TITANS Who starts in 2022? Tannehill is going to be their starting quarterback in 2022. He has two years left on his contract. Perhaps Tennessee brings in a veteran backup for some competition just in case. The fuse is burning — and so probably is his temper — on Ryan Tannehill. He needs to deliver a deep, deep playoff run in 2022. Malik Willis is the future in waiting. Logan Woodside is just waiting for direct-deposit checks to continue landing in his bank account. Grade: C+  AFC EAST QUARTERBACKS  BUFFALO BILLSWho starts in 2022? Allen is locked up with a long-term contract in Buffalo that runs through 2028, and now the key for the Bills is to continue building a team around him that can win a Super Bowl. All Josh Allen has to do is stay healthy and he will be in the running for one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Matt Barkley is another backup who eats up years and dollars. And Case Keenum also has found his way to the Bills. This is definitely a room with experience and knowledge. Grade: A MIAMI DOLPHINS Who starts in 2022? The Dolphins hired Mike McDaniel, and despite almost two years of Watson rumors the Dolphins are sticking with Tagovailoa, who has two years left on his rookie contract. Miami also brought in veteran Teddy Bridgewater, who adds competition in training camp. Tua Tagovailoa does nothing to generate headlines but winds up in them over and over. That’s what happens when you are chosen as a franchise QB and it feels as if no one is sold on you … yet or maybe ever. He gets Tyreek Hill, which should help this year. Behind Tagovailoa are Teddy Bridgewater and Skylar Thompson. No one will be surprised if Bridgewater is asked to keep his arm warm early and often for the Fish. Grade: C NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS Who starts in 2022? Bill Belichick made the right call with Jones, who will be the starting quarterback in 2022. There’s no doubt about him starting but he is struggling with the new offensive coordinator. Bill Belichick appears to have found a solid quarterback in Mac Jones, who delivered as a rookie in one of the hottest spots in the NFL. The former Alabama star must continue to blossom. There will always be that huge shadow in Foxboro. Behind Jones are Brian Hoyer, who it seems will play forever and ever, and Baily Zappe, who put up enormous numbers in college at Western Kentucky. Would Belichick ever trade for Jimmy G and bring him back? The NFL isn’t Bowling Green, Ky. Grade: C+ NEW YORK JETS Who starts in 2022? Wilson will be the Week 1 starter, but last season proved it does not hurt to have a seasoned veteran backup in place. Mike White and Joe Flacco combined for four starts in 2021. The Jets signed Flacco to a one-year deal as on March 17. Way too early to say terrible things about Zach Wilson. Have to wait until the first quarter of 2022, at least, are over before getting nasty. Joe Flacco and Mike White were around in 2021 and still have a spot with Gang Green. Wilson is in the spotlight and this is a big-time season. Grade: C- AFC WEST QUARTERBACKS  DENVER BRONCOSWho starts in 2022? The Broncos hired Nathaniel Hackett and traded for Seattle's Russell Wilson, a major shakeup in the AFC West. Wilson enters his ninth season with a fresh start, and Denver gets a proven starting quarterback who has played in two Super Bowls. Talk about a gigantic improvement, the Broncos go from a merry-go-round of mediocrity to Russell Wilson. Behind the great Wilson are Brett Rypien and Josh Johnson, who remarkably keeps on finding homes anywhere and everywhere. Wilson is the key and Nathaniel Hackett knows he can not miss any time. Grade: B+ LAS VEGAS RAIDERSWho starts in 2022? This is a case where Raiders owner Mark Davis is going to stay loyal to the quarterback who got Las Vegas to the playoffs. Carr has one year remaining on his contract, and the Raiders pulled off a blockbuster trade that brings in his college teammate Davante Adams. This is a no-excuse year for Carr. Derek Carr gets much better with the addition of his college teammate Davante Adams. That’s is a nice pair of hands to add to a quarterback who can find players all over the field. No more Marcus Mariota as the backup so that leaves the other seats in the room to Chase Garbers, Nick Mullens and Jarrett Stidham, who once was going to replace Tom Brady in New England. Grade: B- LOS ANGELES CHARGERS Who starts in 2022? Herbert will start, and the pressure to make the playoffs is there after the Week 18 miss against the Raiders. Herbert is 15-17 as a starter. Justin Herbert is one of the stars of the present and future in the NFL. Now if he can get the rest of the Bolts to light things up in 2022 there is reason to dream. Chase Daniel deserves a 30-for-30 on how to succeed financially in the NFL without really playing. Brandon Peters and Easton Stick won’t make defensive coordinators lose sleep. Grade: B- KANSAS CITY CHIEFSWho starts in 2022? Mahomes' contract runs through 2031. How much of that will be paired with Andy Reid? The rest of the NFL can't like the answer. Patrick Mahomes is generational. It is nice to have Chad Henne behind the great Mahomes in case something goes wrong. It doesn’t guarantee wins but it gives you somewhat of a chance. Shane Buechele and Dustin Crum feel like camp arms no matter how young they are. Grade: A

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Tuesday, Aug 09, 2022

Last year's NFL quarterback carousel turned out some wild moves, including the unexpected trade that sent Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams.  The 2022 offseason has produced a fair share of drama, too. Ben Roethlisberger and Tom Brady retired. Brady then un-retired. Aaron Rodgers stayed in Green Bay, which was a mild surprise given last year's drama-filled offseason. Russell Wilson, Deshaun Watson, Carson Wentz and Matt Ryan were all traded.  Free agency and the 2022 NFL Draft will dictate a few more switches. NFL EAST QUARTERBACKS DALLAS COWBOYS Who starts in 2022? Prescott signed an extension that runs through 2026. More pressure will be on third-year coach Mike McCarthy in 2022. Prescott is now 1-3 in postseason starts. The Cowboys’ offense starts and ends with Dak Prescott. We’ve seen what can happen when the talented quarterback is injured. Behind him are Ben DiNucci, Will Grier, and Cooper Rush. Like so many other teams, Dallas has to keep Prescott upright and healthy. Grade: B NEW YORK GIANTSWho starts in 2022? New general manager Joe Schoen and co-owner John Mara have backed Jones, who enters the final year of his rookie contract with a new head coach. Jones will start barring an unforeseen blockbuster trade. Daniel Jones’ leash is short and tight heading into 2022. Will Brian Daboll work Josh Allen magic with the former Duke star? A long shot. Tyrod Taylor is a veteran backup. Davis Webb has done nothing but linger and linger. Wonder if a USFL QB could find his way onto Big Blue’s roster as a backup… That’s how weak Webb is. Grade: D+ PHILADELPHIA EAGLESWho starts in 2022? Hurts will be the starter, and it would be wise to keep Gardner Minshew on as a reliable backup. Minshew played well in two starts while Hurts was dealing with an ankle injury. Jalen Hurts is one of the quarterbacks people are looking to thrive in Fantasy Football. The reality is Philly has done a lot to help the former Alabama/Oklahoma star and he needs to put up the numbers. Gardner Minshew probably deserves a spot to start somewhere else. Reid Sinnett and Carson Strong are also on the roster in Philadelphia. Grade: B WASHINGTON COMMANDERSWho starts in 2022? The Commanders will open the 2022 season with Carson Wentz under center after a bold offseason trade with the Colts. Washington sent a second- and third-round pick in 2022 and a third-round pick in 2023 in exchange for Wentz, who enters his seventh season. Carson Wentz has arrived and this is his third team without leading a team anywhere memorable. That Super Bowl in Philly was Nick Foles. Taylor Heinicke provided some thrills but is a nice backup, to be honest. Sam Howell comes off a lackluster last season at North Carolina and Cole Kelley is a 6-foot-7, 250-pound QB from Southeastern Louisiana who feels like he is heading toward tight end in D.C. Grade: D+ NFC WEST QUARTERBACKS ARIZONA CARDINALS Who starts in 2022? Murray will start and it is the final year of his rookie contract. Given the NFC wild card  flop against the Rams, it's a prove-it year for Murray and coach Kliff Kingsbury to see if they can take the next step together. Murray wants a long-term contract with the Cardinals. Kyler Murray is the quarterback—if he is happy and Arizona finds a way to make him satisfied with his contract. Easier said than done. Other names on the roster are Jarrett Guarantino, Colt McCoy, and Trace McSorley. Would seem Kliff Kingsbury would need to have Murray to have playoff hopes. Grade: C+ LOS ANGELES RAMSWho starts in 2022? Stafford, entering his 14th season, has one year left on his contract but he is a candidate for an extension. He will be the Rams' starter in 2022. The trade of the decade or this century as the Rams landed Matthew Stafford and earned Super Bowl rings. Behind Stafford are Bryce Perkins and John Wolford, which means hold your breath if the star gets injured. Grade: A- SAN FRANCISCO 49ersWho starts in 2022? The 49ers continue to gauge which teams are interested in Garoppolo, but that trade market has stalled a bit. If the 49ers roll with Lance, then Garoppolo could be stuck as a backup. Raise your passing hand if you are tired of the Jimmy Garoppolo or Trey Lance debate? Someone please step up and earn the job. Brock Purdy and Nate Sudfeld feel like players who will be around camps for many years. Grade: C- SEATTLE SEAHAWKS Who starts in 2022? The Seahawks traded Wilson after eight seasons, and they got Drew Lock from Denver in return. Lock might be the Week 1 starter, but this feels like a good opportunity to get Ole Miss' Matt Corral in the first round. You go from Russell Wilson to Geno Smith, Drew Lock, and Jason Eason and wonder what the grade will be? Grade: F NFC SOUTH QUARTERBACKS ATLANTA FALCONSWho starts in 2022? The Falcons traded Ryan to the Colts for a 2022 third-round pick on Monday, and that created the largest dead cap hit in NFL history. Atlanta signed veteran Marcus Mariota, who spent the last two seasons as a backup in Las Vegas. The Falcons also have the No. 8 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. Arthur Smith will be expected to move the Falcons forward in his second year as coach. Not sure that is possible with Marcus Mariota. Desmond Ridder could be a future answer but not in 2022 unless Mariota is shelved due to injury, which has happened frequently in his career. Then there is Feleipe Franks, who played QB in college and has seen some time learning to play tight end. Grade: D CAROLINA PANTHERSWho starts in 2022? It's going to be Darnold unless the Panthers can find a willing trade partner. That won't be easy either. Darnold is due $18.8 million in 2022, and that is a huge cap hit. The Panthers missed out on Deshaun Watson, and they do have the No. 6 pick. Will Rhule use that to draft either Liberty's Malik Willis or Pitt's Kenny Pickett? Arthur Smith will be expected to move the Falcons forward in his second year as coach. Not sure that is possible with Marcus Mariota. Desmond Ridder could be a future answer but not in 2022 unless Mariota is shelved due to injury, which has happened frequently in his career. Then there is Feleipe Franks, who played QB in college and has seen some time learning to play tight end. Grade:  NEW ORLEANS SAINTSWho starts in 2022? Sean Payton dropped the first bombshell when he announced he will be taking a break from coaching. New Orleans is bringing back Winston on a two-year deal, and Hill is under contract for the next four seasons. Which quarterback will win the starting job? Jameis Winston will be the quarterback, apparently. Andy Dalton looks to be the backup along with Ian Book, who heads into his second year after a college career at Notre Dame. Taysom Hill is still listed as a QB but it feels as if the ship has sailed — sunk? — on him being the heir apparent to Drew Brees. Grade: C- TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS Who starts in 2022? Brady retired on Feb. 1, but then he reversed course and announced he is returning on March 13. That 40-day retirement didn't last long. Brady, who turns 45 in August, is back for at least one more season. Tom Brady returns after retiring for 40 days. The Bucs and Todd Bowles have to be thrilled. Blaine Gabbert, Ryan Griffin, and Kyle Trask are the players hoping age and injury don’t catch up to the GOAT in 2022. Grade: B+ NFC NORTH QUARTERBACKS CHICAGO BEARSWho starts in 2022? Fields is going to be the starter, and new coach Matt Eberflus needs to be creative in maximizing that talent. Foles is under contract for one more year. Dalton remains a free agent. Everyone was gushing over Justin Fields and then reality hit. The rookie year was less than mediocre but not all of it fell on the former Ohio State QB. Nathan Peterman falls smack in the journeyman category. Speaking of that, Trevor Siemian is another who is wandering around the NFL. Grade: D- DETROIT LIONSWho starts in 2022? SN's latest mock draft has the Lions taking Sam Howell with the No. 31 pick, which was acquired in that trade with the Rams. Goff's contract runs through 2024, however, and it's a massive cap hit. He will be the starter for second-year coach Dan Campbell. Jared Goff took the Rams to a Super Bowl, which they lost. He’s just OK and isn’t going to be the guy to lead the Lions for years and years to playoff success. David Blough and Tim Boyle just linger in Detroit, it seems. Dan Campbell got the team moving forward in his rookie season as coach. Trying to do it again and take huge steps with Goff will be a challenge. Grade: C- GREEN BAY PACKERSWho starts in 2022? Rodgers is back after signing an extension, but he lost his favorite target in Davante Adams. Jordan Love, the first-round pick in 2020, likely will be a trade chip ahead of the 2022 NFL Draft. Aaron Rodgers continues to be a one-team QB no matter the drama, controversy, or issues. He also is one of the best in the game. The key will be for Green Bay to find a way to succeed deep into the playoffs and get No. 12 another ring. Jordan Love remains behind him and that’s not comforting. Danny Etling is in Green Bay after multiple stops around the league. If Rodgers is out for any length of time, Matt LaFleur will not have another 13-win season. Grade: B+ MINNESOTA VIKINGSWho starts in 2022? Mike Zimmer is out, so the Vikings will have a new coach in 2022. There won't be a large market on Cousins via trade unless a franchise is desperate, so expect to see him in Week 1 for Minnesota. Kirk Cousins just gets large contract after large contract no matter the results. He has a new coach this year in Kevin O’Connell. Does anyone think it will make a huge difference? Didn’t think so. Sean Mannion, Kellen Mond, and Nate Stanley are behind the veteran. Grade: C-

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Thinking “Out of the Box” to Make MAXIMUM MONEY Betting the NFL

Monday, Aug 08, 2022

I bring up this subject starting with an example going back to the Peyton Manning led Super Bowl Championship. I thought that if the Broncos won, it most likely would have nothing to do with Manning. He was old, worn down and could barely throw 15 yards accurately. Additionally, there was no profit outside of betting a normal wager on Denver. So after considerable analysis, I determined that if Denver were to win, it would come down to defense. So I bet Von Miller to win the MVP award at 16-1. BINGO! HUGE PAYDAY.  Today I have a similar thought process. Whether you believe in betting NFL futures or not is a personal choice. But this still shows THE THINKING of a 37 year professional handicapper that’s still out-smarting the Vegas oddsmakers each year. Whether it’s my top weekly play or my “must win” prime time games, the brain and thinking keeps churning.  Let’s move our future bet discussion to the Las Vegas Raiders. I think Josh McDaniels will be in a position to win the NFL Coach of the Year at 16/1odds. Throw $200 to win $3200.  This is one of the few wagers that “close” to winning the Super Bowl pays off…(16/1). Here’s his competition and reasons this is a quality wager.  Tampa Bay is expected to win and if they do, Tom Brady gets most of that credit; not the coach.  Kansas City is the top draw in terms of winning it all so a team that actually does, the coach is not a lock for the title.  Note: Many teams that have to fight every week as underdogs( like the Raiders) end up with their coach accumulating the votes.  Buffalo’s coach is probably the Raiders biggest threat having not won in years. But the 16/1 reward overcomes the risk.  Green Bay and Dallas winning probably would not produce a Coach of the Year candidate.  The LA Rams are the defending Super Bowl Champions. If, and that’s a huge “if”, the Rams repeat as World Champions, that would be a huge accomplishment, and clearly open the door for Coach of the Year honors. It doesn’t hurt that the Rams also play in the very difficult NFC West.  The Las Vegas Raiders have a strong fan base at home…AND on the road. They’re able to beat Kansas City, LA Chargers and Denver Broncos. I’ll wager that at least one of those teams are defeated on the road this year opening up the season series sweep. Josh McDaniels should have enough “Belichick” experience in him to have a formidable season. At 16/1and NOT having to win the Super Bowl is worth a look and comes with that potential BIG PAYDAY.

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