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Posted by: orioles on Oct 30, 2011 at 07:38:54 PM
[b]Detroit (5-2) at Denver (2-4)[/b] Sky Sports, Sunday October 30th, 8pm It looks as though the Detroit train has eased up to the buffers, but I think some Denver coal may relight the boiler. My primary concern in my season preview of the Lions was always Stafford, and although that focussed on his physical fragility, the pressure he has come under behind a weak line, has meant that his offensive powers have also suffered recently, with poor recognition and inaccurate throws, and that’s a big problem when your main threat is Calvin Johnson. Von Miller will be trying to get to Stafford all day and given the level the rookie LB has been playing at, he’s liable to get there – then Lions’ fans need to pray that he doesn’t knock Stafford out of the game. Megatron and Pettigrew...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 30, 2011 at 02:02:02 PM
[b]Minnesota (1-6) at Carolina (2-5)[/b] Sky Sports, Sunday October 30th, 5pm I like the Panthers in this one. Although Adrian Peterson may go for enough yards to qualify for the London 2012 marathon, Carolina should have enough to see off the Vikings. Cam Newton is an extraordinary player who is progressing nicely, improving his accuracy and reads, protecting possession, while still maintaining his elusiveness and danger when he extends a play. The Vikings have a capable pass rush, so Newton’s O line will need to keep him upright, but they’ve come together well after losing Jeff Otah. Newton should be able to get after the Vikes’ secondary and Steve Smith, reinvigorated by the young QB, could have a big day; his YPC this season stands at an incredible 21 and he’ll doubtless...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 24, 2011 at 10:22:55 PM
[b]Baltimore (4-1) at Jacksonville (1-5)[/b] ESPN, Tuesday October 24th, 1.30am The Jags should struggle here. MJD is a formidable runner, but he’s up against one of the stoutest run defenses in the NFL; that means Blaine Gabbert, who was sacked five times by the Steelers last week, will have to negotiate a Ravens’ D that has eleven sacks in their last three games. Jacksonville’s O line is badly nicked up and apart from getting sacked regularly, Gabbert struggled to find his less than inspiring receivers last week. Haloti Ngata, Terrence Cody, Terrell Suggs, Ed Reed ... it’s a lineup that would make a veteran nervous, never mind a rookie whose options include throwing to a guy cut by the Rams. Joe Flacco is one of those QBs that gives a bettor fits (see late vintage...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 24, 2011 at 12:24:47 AM
[b]Indianapolis (0-6) at New Orleans (4-2)[/b] Ch4, Monday October 24th, 1.30am Another blow-out ATS bear trap. To beat the spread, you need a team that’ll beat its brains in to stay two TDs ahead, when they’re in control – the surest way to lose money. Still, how can the lost boys of Indianapolis possibly stay with the Saints? The consensus seems to be attacking them on the ground, but the Saints have been solid against the run recently, and it’s not as if the Colts’ O line is creating great lanes. As it is, although Addai looks as though he may suit up, he’s carrying a limiting injury. Painter has been ok, and I don’t mean that as a put down, he’s a distance ahead of Kerry Collins, but he’ll need to deal with a Saints’ defense that, although it doesn’t...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 23, 2011 at 07:21:05 PM
[b]Green Bay (6-0) at Minnesota (1-5)[/b] Sky Sports 2, Sunday October 23rd, 9pm A game where I’d love to oppose overwhelming public opinion, because there’s usually good value floating about with a game as one-sided as this; not this time, though. I actually like Ponder; he’s mobile and has a strong arm, but to make your debut against a Dom Capers defense, behind an offensive line like Minnesota’s? Ouch. Peterson has to get going if Minnesota are to stand any chance of keeping it close, but Green Bay will stack the box to try and stifle him, and then force Ponder to beat them with his arm, then the various blitzes will appear and well, it could get ugly, particularly if they get behind early. On the other side of the ball, the Vikings pass rush, which had performed admirably...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 23, 2011 at 04:01:44 PM
[b]Chicago (3-3) vs. Tampa Bay (4-2)[/b] Sky Sports 2, Sunday October 23rd, 6pm There’s always one team in a season that seems to beat my brains in, and this year it’s the Bears. This is a tough game to pick, as Chicago suddenly decided to protect Cutler and he showed he can get it done. The Vikes’ pass rush, which has been so good this year, was blunted and the rest is expensive history. The Bears used Matt Spaeth (usually a TE) as an extra OT and Cutler had the time he needed; this all needs to be qualified by the fact that Minnesota were awful and didn’t attack Cutler with anything like the dynamism they have on the defensive line. The Bucs’ can bring pressure, but they tend to have problems getting home - if they do though, they can win this game, because Chicago...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 17, 2011 at 08:20:21 PM
[b]Miami (0-4) at NY Jets (2-3)[/b] ESPN, Tuesday October 18th, 1am Picking games with ‘broken’ teams is nigh on impossible – witness last night’s hilarious Vikes/Bears game. If they were functioning, and vaguely capable of analysis, it gives the gambler a fighting chance – so this is another game I’d avoid. However, I go where other cappers fear to tread ... and usually lose my shirt! The Jets’ offensive coach is public enemy number one in New York, and just to really make things cosy, veteran wide receivers are criticising the O line for not giving Sanchez the chance to get the ball deep. Derrick Mason was promptly offloaded to Houston, but Santonio Holmes has picked up the theme, and the linemen have shot back. Not good. Sanchez has been horribly inconsistent,...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 17, 2011 at 12:16:23 AM
[b]Minnesota (1-4) at Chicago (2-3)[/b] Ch4, Monday October 17th, 1.20am I wouldn’t bet this game for all the foot longs in Chicago. (Actually, all three games tonight have been difficult ... honest!) Two horribly misfiring offenses; save for two outstanding backs. Cutler is just getting battered behind that O line (and the Vikings have a terrific pass rush) and McNabb couldn’t play QB in a peewee flag football league. This will effectively be Forte vs Peterson, and given that the Vikes stuff the run and the Bears couldn’t stuff a chicken; it’s the Vikes, I suppose. I tell you what – take the points, go to bed with a mug of cocoa, and watch the baseball. [i]Pick: Vikings +2.5 @ 1.91; -110; 10/11 Pick: 1st TD Adrian Peterson @ 5.00; 400; 4/1[/i]
Posted by: orioles on Oct 16, 2011 at 07:33:54 PM
[b]New Orleans (4-1) at Tampa Bay (3-2)[/b] Sky Sports 2, Sunday October 16th, 9pm Drew Brees may put up big numbers tonight. Tampa have had problems defending the pass all season and they’ve lost some key defensive players for this game on the line and in the secondary. The Saints’ TE Jimmy Graham is having a great year and is catching a ton of passes – he’ll see it a lot again tonight and give the Bucs’ safeties a tough time (and Cody Grimm is out). With the loss of DT Gerald McCoy and with LBs Mason Foster (ankle) and Quincy Black (ankle) listed as questionable, the New Orleans’ offense should roll along nicely with Darren Sproles enjoying those linebacker issues. Freeman was poor last week, and seemed flustered in the pocket, so expect to see the NO defense give him...
Posted by: orioles on Oct 16, 2011 at 03:39:19 PM
*UPDATE RT Jeff Otah (back) is out and that impacts the running game badly for Carolina. Keep stakes small. +4 is available ... take it! [b]Carolina (1-4) at Atlanta (2-3)[/b] Sky Sports 2, Sunday October 16th, 6pm Cam Newton has been something of a revelation and is developing into a fine QB with a strong, accurate arm and a cool head that handles pressure in the pocket. Atlanta has problems rushing the passer and in the secondary, and I expect Newton to have another big game. He has the weapons downfield and can mix it up with short passes over the top to his TEs (look for Olsen and Shockey) and handing it off to DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart – although significantly for the TD markets, Newton is still effectively the redzone back for the Panthers. In contrast,...
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