Sunday Service Plays

Sunday Service Plays

Masterbets

Bet on the CHIEFS to cover the spread

Both of these teams are coming off their bye week. Historically bye weeks tend to favor teams that have no momentum, which makes sense. We saw that already on the Monday night game with the Browns, and we're likely to see something similar in Kansas City.

The Titans are undefeated, and having a great season, but this is a tough spot for them to lay 8 points. The Chiefs can be tough at home, they won their last game here very impressively, and the Titans are not set up a "blow out" team.

The value is certainly to take the points, but as with last week with the Lions please exercise caution with your bankroll as the Chiefs are an awful team that could simply not show up on the day. Small bet on the CHIEFS + the big points.

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LT Profits

Baltimore Ravens +3.0

The Miami Dolphins are obviously greatly improved this season, but the Baltimore Ravens have not forgotten that they were the only victims during the 1-15 season the Dolphins had a year ago, so some payback is in order here.

Besides, do not lose sight of the fact that the Dolphins were able to beat the New England Patriots and San Diego Chargers and almost beat the Houston Texans because their running game was very successful. The problem is that all three of those defenses are in the bottom half of the NFL vs. the run, while these Ravens have the best run defense in the league.

Thus, look for both Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams to struggle here, and Chad Pennington does not scare any defense if called upon to win games on his own. It also does not help that Baltimore will be in an ornery mood after getting shredded by Payton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts last week.

Also, do not forget that the offensive coordinator of the Ravens is Cam Cameron, who will be looking for a different sort of revenge after getting fired as the head coach of the Dolphins after just one year once Bill Parcells took over as general manager this past off-season.

Granted, Baltimore has struggled in recent weeks while quarterback Joey Flacco has regressed, but we expect some improvement this week as Cameron should have a good idea of what the Miami defense wants to do.
Besides, the Ravens would have scored more points vs. the Colts if not for turnovers, and that is a problem that should be fixable. Look for a minor upset.

Pick: Ravens +3


Oakland Raiders +3.0

Now at first glance, it may seem like a no-brainer to back the New York Jets laying just a field goal vs. the lowly Oakland Raiders right?

Well, aside from the fact that it seems almost to good to be true, there are legitimate reasons to actually support the Raiders here, not the least of which is that the Jets are simply not good enough to be road favorites.

After all, they are 3-2 with the wins coming vs. the Miami Dolphins, who finished 10 yards from pulling the upset at the end of the game, the Arizona Cardinals travelling across the country for an early kick-off and the Cincinnati Bengals with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback. Furthermore, the Jets did not have that Bengals game covered last week until a touchdown in the final minutes.

Meanwhile, as bad as the Raiders are perceived to be, they did have double-digit leads vs. the Buffalo Bills on the road and vs. the San Diego Chargers here at home, and the Jets are not as good as either of those squads. Besides, when you consider that Oakland closed as just a seven-point underdog on the road at New Orleans last week, this line seems much closer to where it should be than most people think.

Finally, do not forget that the Jets have always had trouble travelling west, as demonstrated by their blowout loss at San Diego, so they simply cannot be trusted as road chalk here.

Pick: Raiders +3

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Stephen Nover

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals
PICK: Pittsburgh Steelers -9.5

Underdogs of nine or more points are a magnificent 13-2 against the spread this season with seven straight-up winners.

So on the surface it might be tempting to fire away on the winless Cincinnati Bengals hosting hated division rival Pittsburgh.

Don't do it. The Bengals have no chance here with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback and no running attack matching up against the Steelers' second-rated defense.

The Steelers have owned the Bengals in Cincinnati beating them seven straight times. Ben Roethlisberger is 10-0 in his NFL career when playing in his home-town state of Ohio. This includes a 5-0 mark against Cincinnati.

Rudi Johnson may have been on the downside of his career, but for the Bengals to attempt to rush the ball with Chris Perry and Cedric Benson is an absolute joke. Cincinnati's ground attack may pick up when Marvin Lewis figures out Kenny Watson is his best running back.

The Bengals have to be ultra-conservative with Fitzpatrick, considering his severe limitations and the Steelers' blitzing pass rush, which has 18 sacks second-most in the NFL. In addition, the Bengals may have to go a second straight week without kicker Shayne Graham. He's one of the better kickers in the NFL. His replacement, Dave Rayner, is very inconsistent which is why he's a journeyman.

The artist formerly known as Chad Johnson has vanished. So has his stats - 19 catches, 36 yard average per game and one touchdown. Ocho Cinco has been rendered insignificant by being less than 100 percent and Carson Palmer being out.

The Steelers were banged-up going into their bye last week. Now they should almost be fully healthy although Willie Parker may not play. That won't matter because Mewelde Moore is a solid north/south runner, who can catch extremely well and pass block. Cincinnati gives up 158.8 yards on the ground. Only four teams are worse.

Roethlisberger should have ample time to pick out his many targets. The Bengals only have five sacks in six games.

One sharp professional football bettor told me he loves to play on winless teams this late in the season. It worked last week with St. Louis and Detroit, both of whom easily covered with the Rams winning straight-up.

But that logic won't apply here. The big news in Cincinnati isn't this matchup with the Steelers. It's the future of Palmer. Will he be shut down this season? This week it's the Bengals who will be shut down.

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Matt Fargo

Baltimore Ravens vs. Miami Dolphins    
Play:Baltimore Ravens +3

Baltimore has dropped three straight games, two of which came by a field goal, and a loss here likely puts the Ravens three games back in the AFC North. This game starts a stretch of four straight winnable games as Oakland, Cleveland and Houston follow before an absolutely brutal end to the schedule follows after that. The Ravens are remaining competitive with their defense as usual as the offense has been slow to catch up but that could change here.

Miami had won two big games in a row over New England and San Diego but the defeat at Houston last week was a stinger. The Dolphins are going to try and regroup and while many believe last season is behind them, this team has not turned the corner just yet. While the two wins were impressive, the three losses were not as Miami was outgained in each of those and by a total of 340 yards. While the running game has been the strength, the Dolphins were actually outrushed in those three losses as well.

Ronnie Brown has been the catalyst of the rushing offense and while his overall numbers have been impressive, they are good only because of two games. In those wins over the Patriots and Chargers, Brown rushed for 238 yards on 41 carries (5.8 ypc) but in the three losses, he rushed for just 98 yards on 30 carries (3.3 ypc). It is no coincidence that the two successful games came against rushing defenses ranked 22nd and 17th. Baltimore comes into this game with the best rushing defense in the NFL, allowing just 66.4 ypg.

The perennially solid Ravens defense is at it again as the team has held opponents to an NFL-low 220.8 ypg and has allowed the sixth-fewest points per contest at 17.4 ppg. On the other side, Miami is 18th in total defense which is respectable but certainly nothing outstanding. Baltimore is ranked 25th in total offense and it relies on the seventh-ranked running game as quarterback Joe Flacco has had his share of rookie issues. However there is a sense that the play-calling is improving over the Brian Billick regime.

These teams are very even in terms of point differentials and the Ravens fall into a solid situation involving those numbers. Play on road underdogs or pick after scoring 14 points or less last game and now playing in a game where both teams are +3 to -3 in scoring differential. This situation is 23-8 ATS (74.2 percent) over the last 10 seasons. The Dolphins are just 3-11 ATS in their last 14 games coming off as road loss and have covered just eight of their last 28 games against a team with a losing record. 3* Baltimore Ravens

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Wunderdog

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati
Pick: Cincinnati +10

Both of these teams have been beaten up through the first six weeks of the season. Pittsburgh may be the healthier of the two, and they are certainly in better shape record-wise at 4-1 vs. Cincy's 0-6. The Steelers likely just want to get out of here with a win, knowing they have a big challenge at home next week against the Superbowl Champ Giants. Following that big game are games against Washington, Indianapolis and San Diego. So the 0-6 Bengals, without Carson Palmer, can't excite the Steelers here and I don't see them expending too much energy as a result. That makes this a dangerous game, because this is a division matchup and the Bengals have played to the level of the competition this season. They have played a very difficult schedule, but they aren't getting blown out by the big teams they face. They more than held their own against three powerhouses on the road, dropping a 9-point decision in Dallas (covering a 17 point spread), taking the Giants to OT in New York, and losing by just a TD at Baltimore. All of those games resulted in smaller final margins than this spread. The Bengals are home and hungry for their first win and would like nothing more than to see it come vs. the Steelers. It may surprise some that 0-6 teams have shown good value, as they are 5-3 ATS since 2000. I look for the Bengals to catch the Steelers napping here, as they did vs. the Cowboys two weeks ago. The Steelers are rested off a bye, but that hasn't helped them in the past as they are just 5-10 ATS in their last fifteen post-bye games. They are also 1-8 ATS in their last nine road games following a win. Bengals plus the points here.

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Tony George

NY Jets -3 @ Oakland

In the wild and crazy world of the NFL, anyone can beat anyone on any given Sunday.  The past few weeks have been an example of this scenario. More times than not I look at lines set by Vegas oddsmakers as an acid test to the general public.  Oakland is a bad football team, with no direction and little chance of winning more than 4 games this year. Al Davis has ran this one proud franchise with rabid fans who follow them regardless, into the ground. That being said, The Jets have won with smoke and mirrors all year long, but none the less the better of the two teams here should be at least a 6 point favorite in this game. 

You have on Friday at Wagerline 77% of the public on the NY Jets and YET the line has yet to move. Do you think if Vegas sportsbooks and offshore books would want to balance their action, they would at least put a hook on that line, meaning -3.5 for the Jets or go higher based on public opinion and action?  This is a line play and a set up line in my opinion.  The Jets managed 242 total yards against the hapless Bengal's last week on offense. One thing I can say is the Raiders have a defense that matches up well against NY. Now New Orleans shredded Oakland last week, but how many times have you seen a team who play like crap one week, look like super bowl champs the following week  The Jets defense gives up 26 ppg this season and QB Favre is always worth a couple of interceptions, and I have a hunch that Oakland wins this straight up at home in a shocker.  Common opponent - The Chargers who beat NY by 19 but only beat the Raiders by 10. 

Oakland 24  NY Jets 17

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SportsInsights

San Diego Chargers versus Buffalo Bills

JC, one of our offshore contacts circled this game early.  Very early sharp money moved the line from San Diego being a slight favorite to Buffalo being favored.  Cris opened at SD -2, but is currently at Buffalo -1.  The line moved fairly significantly, even though about two-thirds of the bets are landing on San Diego. 

This kind of market action is a good indication that early, large money came in on Buffalo, overwhelming the Public's bets.  Our readers know that we like to go with the "big, smart money."  You can still get Buffalo +0 (moneyline) for a decent price.     

Buffalo Bills PK


Dallas Cowboys versus St. Louis Rams

In this match-up, we like Dallas minus the points.  We don't often like laying points and taking a favorite -- but in this case -- we're selling St Louis's big win over Washington.  In addition, we're buying Dallas at a bargain because of a loss to Arizona last week and the injury to QB Tony Romo.  Dallas is well-balanced team with or without Tony Romo in the lineup.  Only laying a TD against St Louis is like betting with tomorrow's scores!

Let's buy (Dallas) low and sell (St. Louis) high.  Dallas is one of the league's elite teams, while St. Louis is currently going through tough times.  The Rams have been outscored 62-164 this season.  Go with America's team this week.

Dallas Cowboys -6.5


New Orleans Saints versus Carolina Panthers

Including teasers and parlays, about 70% of all bets are on the surging Saints.  The Saints blew out Oakland last week, 34-3.  The Saints' offense has been explosive this year, leading the league in passing yards/game (324.7 yards/game) and total yards/game (412.2 yards/game).  Reggie Bush has had an inconsistent season -- but has been explosive on punt returns and receiving.  The Saints have outscored their opponents 172-133 but are just 3-3. 

Carolina, on the other hand, is less explosive -- and has outscored their opponents by a more pedestrian 117-97.  However, they have a better and more consistent defense that has led them to a 4-2 record.  We're looking for Carolina to bounce back after getting man-handled by Tampa Bay in the previous week.  Again, we are buying (Carolina) low and selling (NO) high -- especially after New Orleans' offense has caught the Public's attention. 

Carolina Panthers -3

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WUNDERDOG

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati
Pick: Cincinnati +10

Both of these teams have been beaten up through the first six weeks of the season. Pittsburgh may be the healthier of the two, and they are certainly in better shape record-wise at 4-1 vs. Cincy's 0-6. The Steelers likely just want to get out of here with a win, knowing they have a big challenge at home next week against the Superbowl Champ Giants. Following that big game are games against Washington, Indianapolis and San Diego. So the 0-6 Bengals, without Carson Palmer, can't excite the Steelers here and I don't see them expending too much energy as a result. That makes this a dangerous game, because this is a division matchup and the Bengals have played to the level of the competition this season. They have played a very difficult schedule, but they aren't getting blown out by the big teams they face. They more than held their own against three powerhouses on the road, dropping a 9-point decision in Dallas (covering a 17 point spread), taking the Giants to OT in New York, and losing by just a TD at Baltimore. All of those games resulted in smaller final margins than this spread. The Bengals are home and hungry for their first win and would like nothing more than to see it come vs. the Steelers. It may surprise some that 0-6 teams have shown good value, as they are 5-3 ATS since 2000. I look for the Bengals to catch the Steelers napping here, as they did vs. the Cowboys two weeks ago. The Steelers are rested off a bye, but that hasn't helped them in the past as they are just 5-10 ATS in their last fifteen post-bye games. They are also 1-8 ATS in their last nine road games following a win. Bengals plus the points here.

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Mike Wynn

San Diego @ Buffalo

San DiegoChargers begin the longest road trip of the season with a stop in Buffalo this Sunday. From Buffalo the Chargers head straight to London where they will face the New Orleans Saints. San Diego arguably coming off their best game of the season defeating the New England Patriots 30-10 in the Sunday night prime time game, and we’ll see if that momentum carries over here. Buffalo off a rough loss at Arizona two weeks ago as their QB Edwards was knocked out early in a 41-17 embarrassment against the Cardinals. Buffalo QB Edwards suffered a concussion in that game but he’s had the bye week to get healthy and has been cleared to play. So who’s got the edge here today? Let’s take a look a closer look at both squads and we’ll start with the visiting Chargers.

San Diego now stands at 3-3 on the season and sit a game back of Denver in the AFC West standings. Of course San Diego fans and referee Ed Hochuli will tell you that the Chargers should be the 4-2 team and Denver 3-3, but that’s a whole different discussion. Chargers have the twelfth ranked offense in the league averaging 318 yards per game, but unlike years past, LaDainian Tomlinson hasn’t been the main reason. LT only averaging 3.7 yards per carry this season and he’s only scored 4 touchdowns this season. Without LT producing the Chargers have turned to the air to get it done. Rivers has nearly 1500 yards passing this season with 14 touchdowns and only 4 picks. Vincent Jackson and Chris Chambers a terrific tandem at WR, Antonio Gates one of the best tight ends in the game, and the special teams with Darren Sproles have been excellent. Defensively it’s another story for San Diego. The Chargers rank twenty-eighth in the league in defense giving up 366 yards per game and gets even worse on the road where they’ve given up a whopping 400 yards per contest. Charger secondary is allowing 65.3% pass completions this season and they’ve got to get better is they expect to make a Super Bowl run.

Buffalo Bills 4-1 on the season are coming off their first loss of the season at Arizona two weeks ago, and they’ll look to get back on track at home where they’re 2-0 this season. Bills offense has been more productive this year with Edwards at QB scoring 25.2 points per contest. Edwards is completing 66.4% of his passes, and he has a nice young RB in the back field in Marshawn Lynch who has 4 scores this season. Defensively the Bills hold the edge here today. Buffalo ranks ninth in the league in overall defense and eighth against the pass, so it’ll be interesting to see that Charger passing attack against the Bills pass defense. Buffalo special teams should get a boast with the return of Roscoe Parrish to the line up, and like San Diego’s return man Sproles, he’s a threat to score every time he gets the ball. Bills suddenly find themselves in the role of favorite in the AFC East division and a favorable schedule could just put them in the playoffs for the first time since 1999.

Checking the trends and angles for this one we find that San Diego is a terrific 36-17 ATS on artificial turf since 1992, and 16-4 ATS versus AFC opponents the last 2 seasons. Bills are a solid 11-3 ATS in tight games where the line is 3 or less in any direction, and a money making 12-6 ATS at home the last 18. San Diego is 4-2 straight up in the series but just 3-3 ATS and Buffalo has actually covered 3 of the last 4. It’s certainly a good situational spot for Buffalo as the Bills are coming off a loss and a bye while the Chargers are off a satisfying revenge win over New England and they’re headed straight to London to face New Orleans next week. With that said I’m going to take the over in this one Sunday. Bills should have success against that Charger secondary and San Diego’s balanced offensive attack should get some good play action going against Buffalo. Buffalo 4-1 over this season including 2-0 over at home and the Chargers are 5-1 over on turf the last 2+ seasons. I don’t think 45 is enough points and I’ll side with the over here.

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Dr. Vegas

New Orleans vs Carolina

Here is a solid NFC South matchup that promises to be a battle. We have two teams that have shown moments of promise, and moments of disappointment. Carolina is a 3-point favorite and the total is 44.5. New Orleans is 3-3 SU and 4-2 against the number, while Carolina is 4-2 SU and 3-2-1 ATS. Both teams want to show that their losses were not representative of their abilities to win.

The Saints have lost their road games by an average of 3.5 points per game, while the Panthers have won their home games by an average of 17.3 points per game. The Panthers have outscored their opponents 117-97. The Saints have scored more and given up more, outscoring their opponents 172-133.

Last week, the Saints looked impressive against the Raiders, posting a 34-3 rout. The Panthers, on the other hand, only managed a field goal in their 27-3 loss in Tampa Bay.

Looking at the exclusive Dr. Vegas power ratings, we see New Orleans at +0.99, with an opponent rating of +1.97. The Panthers have a +4.54 ratings, with an opponent rating of +1.52. Their opponents have been similar, but the Saints have underperformed at times.

If the Saints can keep Drew Brees focused and on top of his game, they have the weapons to win.

Take Carolina -3 over New Orleans.

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Nevada Sharpshooter

Indianapolis Colts at Green Bay Packers

The Colts travel to Green Bay to take on the Packers.  The up and down Colts found their swagger in a 31-3 whipping of Baltimore.  Offensively Indy seems to be hitting their stride, scoring 31 points in each of their last 2 games.  At QB Peyton Manning has been solid completing 63 percent of his passes and throwing 8 TDs to 5 INTs.  The running game has faltered with Joseph Addai averaging only 3.5 yards per carry.  Defensively the Colts have struggled until the Baltimore game.  They gave up 29 points to Chicago and 27 to Houston.

Green Bay has also been up and down.  After starting the season 2-0 they have lost 2 of their last 3 games with the only win coming against a bad Seattle team without starting QB Matt Hasselbeck.  Offensively the Pack has been one dimensional. The passing game has been strong with Aaron Rodgers (11TDs and only 4 INTs) and big play WR Greg Jennings (653 yds, 4TDs).  While Rodgers has been everything the Pack could hope for the running game has been horrible.  Ryan Grant is averaging 3.4 yards a carry and has yet to cross the goal line.  Defensively the Pack gets former 1st round pick Justin Harrell back from injury, but overall the team has been crippled with injuries to key players, some who will be held out like Al Harris and many who will play hurt like AJ Hawk.

This Packer defense was unable to stop Atlanta at home 2 weeks ago and I do not believe that they can stop the Colts either.  While the Packer offense should have some success vs the Colts they will not be able to keep up.  Take the Indianapolis Colts -1.5 over the Green Bay Packers.

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Razor Sharp Sports

Minnesota @ Chicago

So when you are talking about a division lead being up for grabs in the NFL, you usually aren’t talking about a pair of 3-3 teams doing battle.  That is exactly what we have this week as the Minnesota Vikings take on the Chicago Bears.  Both teams look like they have plenty of holes, but then again both teams also look like they have plenty of potential to be good football teams.  In both cases, they will go as far as their defenses will take them.  Let’s take a look at each team a little closer.

If you have ever heard me on the radio, or have read any of my other articles, you may know that my heart is with the Vikings.  As a handicapper, I try to keep my heart out of it and this year I have done a pretty good job.  I have cashed in by going against Minnesota quite a bit including last week against Detroit.  The way they played last week, you can see how easy it is to keep my heart out of it, because that team surely didn’t play with any heart either.  Still they did get the win and after a 1-3 start, they have put together 2 wins and are now tied for the division lead.  It is the defense that is the strength of this team.  Currently they are allowing less than 20 points per game.  They rank 7th overall in yards allowed at 284 yards per game and are 4th in rushing defense at 73.7 yards/game.  This unit is led by their front line.  DTs Kevin and Pat Williams anchor this unit. Kevin Williams has 29 tackles and 6 sacks and Pat Williams has added 24 tackles.  They have been helped out by the addition of 2007 sack leader DE Jared Allen.  Allen has 16 tackles and 3 sacks.  The linebacking unit is banged up.  Captain and team leader E.J. Henderson has been lost for the year.  Henderson’s back-up David Herron left last weeks contest with a ankle injury.  Vinny Ciurciu then stepped in. Ciurciu had just returned from injury himself.  Of course, if you are going to talk about the Vikings offense, you have to talk about Adrian Peterson.  Peterson currently ranks #3 in the NFL in rushing with 563 yards.  Last week, Peterson bounced back with 111 yards, after being held to just 32 against New Orleans, 2 weeks ago.  I truly expected Peterson to be helped out with the return of suspended OT Bryant McKinnie two weeks ago, but it has taken a while to get the line that includes 3 Pro Bowlers to gell.

If Peterson and that line is going to get going this week it is going to be against one of the best defenses in the NFL.  The Chicago Bears are also going to go exactly where their defense takes them.  Currnetly the Bears are allowing just 18.2 points per game.  They are 12th in the NFL overall in yards allowed at 310.7 yards per game, but are 5th versus the rush at 74.3 yards per game.  The names are all still there on the Bears defensive unit.  LB Brian Unlacher is the man in the middle and is still the leader.  He has 33 tackles this season.  He is only behind All-Pro LB Lance Briggs with 37 and S Charles Tillman with 36.  Up front Alex Brown (3 sacks )and Adewale Ogunleye (1.5 sacks) lead the pressure on the QB, while Mike Brown and and Kevin Payne handle the defensive backfield.  Offensively, QB Kyle Orton has taken over as the starting QB and had done a pretty good job.  He is completinig 61.6% of his passes for 231 yards per game 8 TDs and just 4ints.  Rookie RB Matt Forte has done a solid job with the ground duties.  He has run for 459 yards and has found the endzone 5 times (3 rushing & 2 receiving)>

As I mentioned before, both of these teams are lead by their defensive unit and I agaon expect a defensive struggle here.  Over the last 2 years 3 of the 4 games have had 35 points or less scored in them.  Look for another one here.  As a free winner for this week take the MINNESOTA/CHICAGO game UNDER the total of 38.5. 

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JB Sports

Houston Texans -9.5

Let's lay the big number with the Texans. After a couple of heartbreaking losses against Jacksonville & Indy, the Texans finally broke through with a win last week against Miami. The Texans are a lot better than their 1-4 record would indicate. Meanwhile, the Lions come in having another miserable season. They currently stand at 0-5 having basically been blown-out in their first four games & even last week's last second loss to Minnesota was misleading. It appeared the Lions played a good game, losing 12-10, but a closer look shows they had their fewest first downs in any game so far this season with just eight & were held to only 212 yards of offense while giving up almost 400 yards. Let's look for the Texans to roll to a big win heading into their bye week, while the Lions drop to 0-6.

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MARC LAWRENCE

Baltimore Ravens @ Miami Dolphins
PICK: Baltimore Ravens +3

The Dolphins return home to host the Ravens in a battle of AFC wannabes in Miami this Sunday.

The Dolphins find themselves dressing up as favorites for the first time under head coach Tony Sparano knowing they are 0-10 ATS laying points in games off a loss.

On the flip side Baltimore's top-ranked defense is more than 100 YPG better than Miami's defense.

Look for the Black Birds to improve to 8-1 ATS on the October road in games off BB SU and ATS losses here today. Take the points with the Ravens.

We recommend a 1-unit play on Baltimore.

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SPORTS ADVISORS

Tennessee (5-0 SU and ATS) at Kansas City (1-4, 2-3 ATS)

Two teams headed in opposite directions get together when the unbeaten Titans travel to Arrowhead Stadium to take on the Chiefs.

Tennessee took last week off after edging Baltimore 13-10 two weeks ago as a one-point road favorite, staying perfect both SU and ATS on the season. In fact, the SU winner has cashed in seven straight and 10 of the last 11 games for the Titans. Against the Ravens, QB Kerry Collins struggled, going 17 of 32 for just 163 yards with two INTs, but his lone TD pass came on a game-winning drive late in the fourth quarter. Tennessee won despite generating a paltry 210 total yards and despite losing the time-of-possession battle by nine minutes.

Kansas City, which also is coming off its bye, got pasted 34-0 at Carolina as a 9½-point underdog in its last outing. The Chiefs finished got outgained 441-127, and QB Damon Huard (10 of 21, 86 yards) accounted for all three turnovers, throwing two INTs and losing one of his two fumbles. K.C. had an 18-minute deficit in time of possession.

These teams have met just three times this decade, with Tennessee going 2-1 SU, but 1-2 ATS. Last December, the Titans scored a 26-17 win in K.C. giving 3½ points. The visitor is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings between these two, all as an underdog.

Tennessee is on ATS streaks of 7-2-1 on the road, 5-0 following a SU win, 4-0 after a spread-cover and 5-1 against losing teams. Conversely, the Chiefs are on pointspread streaks of 1-6 at home, 2-8 on grass and 2-6 against winning teams.

The under for Tennessee is on stretches of 6-2 overall, 4-0 on the road, 6-1 against AFC foes and 12-3-1 after a SU win, but the over is 8-2-1 for the Titans coming off a bye. The over for Kansas City is on runs of 5-1 after the bye, 5-1 after a non-cover, 6-2 at home and 11-4 in October.

ATS ADVANTAGE: TENNESSEE


San Diego (3-3 SU and ATS) at Buffalo (4-1, 3-2 ATS)

The Chargers, who next week will fly to London to play the Saints, first make a cross-country trek to upstate New York to take on the resurgent Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

San Diego is coming off a 30-10 blitzing of defending AFC champion New England as a six-point home chalk, making the SU winner a sterling 23-1-1 ATS in the Bolts’ last 25 games, including 5-0-1 ATS this season. Against the Tom Brady-less Pats, Philip Rivers padded his stats by going 18 of 27 for 306 yards and three TDs with no turnovers, and San Diego outgained New England 404-299.

Buffalo was off last week after tasting defeat for the first time in 2008, falling 41-17 at Arizona as a one-point road pup Oct. 5. QB Trent Edwards completed his first three passes (for 18 yards) before exiting the game with a concussion, and though J.P. Losman (15 of 21, 221 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT) was serviceable, the Bills never drew closer than seven after falling behind 14-0. They lost the turnover battle 4-0 and the time-of-possession battle by 13 minutes.

These clubs have met five times this decade, with San Diego going 3-2 SU and Buffalo going 3-2 ATS.

The Chargers are on a lengthy 47-22-3 ATS streak overall and sport additional positive pointspread runs of 5-0-1 against winning teams, 9-2 after a SU win and 9-2 after a spread-cover. However, they’re 2-6 ATS in their last eight trips to the Eastern time zone and 1-7 ATS in their last eight non-divisional road games. Meanwhile, the Bills are on ATS runs of 5-1-1 coming off the bye, 4-1 after a non-cover, 11-4 at home and 13-4 on turf.

The over for the Chargers is on runs of 4-1 on turf and 13-4-2 on the highway. For Buffalo, the over streaks including 4-1 this season, 7-0 on turf and 6-0 at home. Finally, the over has cashed in four of the last five clashes in this rivalry.

ATS ADVANTAGE: OVER


Pittsburgh (4-1, 2-3 ATS) at Cincinnati (0-6, 2-4 ATS)

The Steelers look to strengthen their stranglehold on the AFC North when they roll into Paul Brown Stadium to take on the freefalling Bengals.

Pittsburgh, coming off its bye week, upset Jacksonville 26-21 two weeks ago as a five-point road ‘dog, halting a three-game ATS slide. QB Ben Roethlisberger (26 of 41, 309 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT) got hit a lot but made few mistakes, leading the Steelers to a whopping 415-213 edge in total yards. Pittsburgh’s defense also held the Jags’ vaunted running game to just 38 net yards.

The Bengals fell 26-14 to the New York Jets last week getting 9½ points on the road to remain winless this season. Cincy’s offense went nowhere without QB Carson Palmer (injured), as backup Ryan Fitzpatrick (20 of 33, 152 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs) paced an offense that finished with a meager 171 yards. The Bengals finished with an 11-minute deficit in time of possession and couldn’t take advantage of a 3-1 edge in turnovers.

Pittsburgh has won and covered the last three in this rivalry, including a 24-13 win as a four-point favorite last year in Cincinnati. In fact, the Steelers are 6-0-1 ATS in the last seven meetings in Cincy and 4-1 ATS in the last five battles overall, and the road team is on a 6-1 spread-covering streak.

The Steelers are in a 1-8 ATS rut facing division foes after a bye and are on further pointspread skids of 0-4 after a spread-cover, 1-4 in the AFC North and 2-5 on the highway. The Bengals aren’t any better, posting ATS slides of 2-5 at home, 2-5 overall in divisional play, 2-7 as a division home ‘dog and 0-4 against the AFC.

For Pittsburgh, the over is on streaks of 7-2 overall, 6-1 against AFC foes and 11-5-1 inside the division. Conversely, the under for Cincinnati is on runs of 9-3 overall, 5-0 at home, 6-0 in AFC North contests and 9-3 against winning teams. Also, the under has cashed in six of the last seven Steelers-Bengals meetings in Cincinnati.

ATS ADVANTAGE: UNDER


Baltimore (2-3, 3-2 ATS) at Miami (2-3, 3-2 ATS)

Two teams looking to get back to .500 square off when the Dolphins welcome the Ravens to South Beach.

Miami fell just short at Houston in a 29-28 loss a week ago, snapping a two-game win streak, but the Dolphins cashed as a three-point pup for their third straight spread-cover. QB Chad Pennington (19 of 25, 284 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT) had a solid outing, and the Dolphins won the turnover war 4-1, but they lost the game when Texans QB Matt Schaub scored on a 3-yard TD run in the final seconds.

The Ravens got blasted 31-3 at Indianapolis as a four-point ‘dog for their third straight defeat and second consecutive ATS setback. QB Joe Flacco looked like a rookie, throwing three INTs and no TDs despite going 28 of 38 for 241 yards, and he now has just one TD pass against seven INTs. Overall, Baltimore committed five turnovers and forced none against Indy.

Miami is 3-1 SU and ATS in the last four meetings with Baltimore, including a 22-16 overtime home win last December catching 3½ points – the Dolphins’ only victory in 2007. Miami is 5-2 ATS in the last seven series clashes, but the underdog is 5-1 ATS in the last six battles.

The Dolphins are 3-7-1 ATS in their last 11 home games and are in additional ATS funks of 8-20-1 against losing teams and 9-21-1 after a spread-cover, but they are 5-2 ATS in their last seven against the AFC. The Ravens are 1-9 SU and ATS in their last nine on the highway and are on further ATS declines of 6-16 overall, 3-12 after a SU loss, 5-13 versus AFC foes and 2-5 against losing teams.

The under is 5-2 in the last seven meetings between these teams and 4-1 in the last five battles in Miami. But the over is on runs of 7-3 for the Dolphins overall, 8-3 for Baltimore against AFC foes and 8-2 for Baltimore on grass.

ATS ADVANTAGE: MIAMI


Dallas (4-2, 2-4 ATS) at St. Louis (1-4 SU and ATS)

After a week filled with distractions, the Cowboys aim to regain their focus when they take on the Rams at the Edward Jones Dome.

Dallas tumbled to Arizona 30-24 in overtime as a 4½-point road favorite, losing on a blocked punt near its own goal line that was returned for a short TD, and the Cowboys are now on a three-game ATS slide. QB Tony Romo (24 of 38, 321 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTs) suffered a broken right pinkie, and his status this week is in doubt. The Cowboys couldn’t get the job done despite forcing three Cardinals turnovers and posting a 374-276 yardage edge.

If Romo doesn’t go, 40-year-old Brad Johnson will get the nod at QB.

St. Louis finally broke through for its first win, coming out of its by and stunning Washington 19-17 as a 12-point road ‘dog under newly promoted head coach Jim Haslett. The SU winner is now 15-1 ATS in the Rams’ last 16 games (5-0 ATS this year). St. Louis did little on offense, finishing with just 200 total yards – while Washington racked up 368 – but the Rams defense forced three turnovers, returning a fumble 75 yards for a TD at the end of the first half, and Josh Brown won it on a 49-yard field goal as time expired.

Dallas pounded St. Louis 35-7 last year laying 13 points at home, but in four meetings this decade, the teams are dead-even at 2-2 SU and ATS.

The Cowboys are in a 2-9 ATS freefall in their last 11 overall and are mired in additional ATS slumps of 2-11 as a road chalk of seven or more, 1-8 against the NFC and 1-6 after a non-cover, but they are 14-6-1 ATS in their last 21 following a SU loss. The Rams are on a 7-3 ATS run after a SU win, but the pointspread trends are all negative from there, including 1-7 overall, 3-7 as a home pup of seven or more, 0-4 at the dome and 5-17 against winning teams.

The under is 4-1 in Dallas’ last five road games – with last week’s game being the one that cleared the total – but the over is on streaks of 4-1 overall and 5-1 on turf for the ‘Boys. Also, for St. Louis, the over is on runs of 6-2 overall, 5-0 at home, 5-0 on turf and 4-1 against winning teams.

ATS ADVANTAGE: OVER


Minnesota (3-3, 2-4 ATS) at Chicago (3-3, 3-2-1 ATS)

The Bears will look to break up a three-way logjam atop the mediocre NFC North when they host the Vikings at Soldier Field.

Chicago suffered a stunning loss last week at Atlanta, falling 22-20 as a three-point chalk. The Bears scored a go-ahead TD with 11 seconds left, but the Falcons miraculously got themselves in position for a 48-yard field goal with one second left, and Jason Elam nailed it. It was an evenly played contest, with Atlanta narrowly outgaining Chicago 376-361, and both teams committed just one turnover.

The SU winner is 18-1-1 ATS in Chicago’s last 20 games (5-0-1 this year).

Minnesota proved quite fortunate in eking out a 12-10 win over hapless Detroit as an overwhelming 13-point home favorite. A questionable pass-interference call led to Ryan Longwell’s 26-yard field goal in the waning seconds secure the win. Minnesota had a whopping 392-212 edge in total offense, but the Vikings lost the turnover battle 3-1, and their only first-half score came on a safety.

Minnesota won both meetings in this rivalry last year (1-1 ATS), including a 34-31 victory in Chicago getting 4½ points. The underdog is 17-8 ATS in the last 25 clashes, but the home team is on an 8-3 ATS roll, and Chicago has taken the cash in four of the last five at Soldier Field.

The Bears sport positive ATS streaks of 6-2-1 overall, 6-1 after a non-cover, 7-2 after a SU loss and 9-4 in October, though they’ve gone just 1-5 ATS in their last six as a division chalk. The Vikings, meanwhile, are in a 2-7 ATS slump and are on further pointspread slides of 0-4 after a SU win, 1-4 inside the division and 2-5 on grass.

The over for Chicago is on runs of 17-5 at home, 5-1 after a SU loss, 24-9-1 against NFC foes and 15-6 after a pointspread setback, and the over for Minnesota is on a 4-1-1 stretch on the road and is 11-3-1 in the Vikes last 15 games after a non-cover. Lastly, the over is 3-1-1 in the last five meetings between these hated rivals (2-0 in Chicago).

ATS ADVANTAGE: CHICAGO and OVER


New Orleans (3-3, 4-2 ATS) at Carolina (3-3, 3-2-1 ATS)

The Saints, coming off a nearly flawless effort last week, head to Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte for an NFC South battle against the Panthers, who are licking their wounds after getting whipped in Tampa Bay.

New Orleans blasted Oakland 34-3 a week ago, easily cashing as a seven-point home favorite. QB Drew Brees was 26 of 30 for 320 yards and three TDs, helping New Orleans post a huge 441-226 yardage edge. The Saints had no turnovers while forcing two and finished with a nearly 13-minute edge in time of possession.

Carolina went to Tampa Bay last Sunday and got drilled 27-3 as a one-point road pup, halting a two-game SU and ATS streak. Turnovers and special teams proved to be the difference, as QB Jake Delhomme threw three INTs, and the Bucs returned a blocked punt for a TD in the first quarter.

The SU winner is 20-1-1 ATS in Carolina’s last 22 contests dating to the 2007 season opener (5-0-1 this year) and 15-1 ATS in the Saints’ last 16 outings (5-1 this year).

These teams split last year’s meetings, with the road team winning and cashing in both, including a 31-6 Saints rout in Charlotte as a three-point favorite. In fact, the Saints have covered in six straight trips to Carolina, and the road team is on a 14-2 ATS spree in the last 16 clashes.

The Saints are 10-2-1 ATS in their last 13 games as a division road pup, but they are in ATS skids of 1-5 after a SU win and 3-9 after a pointspread cover. The Panthers are 4-9 ATS in their last 13 as a division home chalk, but they are on positive spread runs of 6-2-1 overall, 5-0-1 at home, 5-0 after a SU loss and 5-2-1 against NFC opponents.

For the Saints, the over is on streaks of 9-1-1 overall, 4-0 on the highway, 8-0 after a SU win and 19-7-1 in conference play. On the flip side, the under for Carolina is on runs of 5-0 overall, 21-8-1 at home, 4-0 against NFC foes and 6-1 inside the division. Finally, the under is 6-1 in the last seven series meetings overall and 5-0 in the past five clashes at Carolina.

ATS ADVANTAGE: NONE


San Francisco (2-4 SU and ATS) at N.Y. Giants (4-1, 3-2 ATS)

The defending Super Bowl champion Giants hope to bounce back from their first loss since the 2007 regular season when they invite the 49ers to East Rutherford, N.J.

New York went off as a nine-point favorite in prime time Monday night at Cleveland, then got humbled in a 35-14 wipeout for its first setback since losing to New England in the 2007 regular-season finale. QB Eli Manning (18 of 28, 196 yards, 1 TD) had his worst outing of the season, throwing three INTs, including one in the fourth quarter that was returned 94 yards for a TD as New York was threatening to get back in the game. The Giants got outgained 454-373.

San Francisco fell to Philadelphia 40-26 as a 4½-point home underdog, taking a 26-17 lead into the fourth quarter before imploding in giving up 23 unanswered points. QB J.T. O’Sullivan (17 of 30, 199 yards, 0 TDs) had two INTs and a lost fumble during the fourth-quarter meltdown, with his final pick going back for a TD in the last minute.

The SU winner has cashed in each of the 49ers’ last 21 games, and the winner is also 9-1 ATS in the Giants’ last 10 starts (5-1 this year).

New York is on a 4-0 ATS run (2-2 SU) in four meetings this decade with San Francisco, including a 33-15 home rout last year laying 9½ points.

The Giants are still 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games and sport additional ATS streaks of 5-0 after a SU loss, 4-0 after a pointspread setback and 20-8-1 against the NFC. Conversely, the 49ers haven’t got a positive ATS trend to speak of, shouldering pointspread slides of 2-5 overall, 0-6 outside the NFC West, 1-5 against winning teams, 8-23-1 in the Eastern time zone and 4-11 in conference games.

For New York, the over is on runs of 4-0 overall (all against losing teams), 7-2 at home and 5-2 following a Monday night appearance. The over is also 5-2 in San Francisco’s last seven against winning teams.

ATS ADVANTAGE: N.Y. GIANTS and OVER


Detroit (0-5, 1-4 ATS) at Houston (1-4 SU and ATS)

The winless Lions travel to Reliant Stadium for a non-conference matchup with the Texans, who finally cracked the win column last week.

Detroit let one get away last week in a pedestrian 12-10 loss to Minnesota as a heavy 13-point underdog, losing on a field goal in the last minute following a controversial pass interference penalty. The Lions put up just 212 total yards, while allowing 392, but they led most of the game by winning the turnover battle 3-1. QB Dan Orlovsky (12 of 21, 150 yards, 1 TD), making his first career start, took an unusual first-quarter safety, inadvertently running outside the back of the end zone for several yards while scrambling on a pass play, ultimately leading to the game-deciding points.

Houston broke through with a 29-28 win over Miami, winning on QB Matt Schaub’s 3-yard run in the game’s final seconds but failing to cover as a three-point home chalk. Schaub (22 of 42, 379 yards, 1 TD, 2 INTs) led a Texans offense that racked up 485 total yards, which helped offset a 4-1 turnover deficit, and WR Andre Johnson went off with 10 catches for 178 yards and a TD.

These teams have met just once, with Detroit claiming a 28-16 home win as a three-point favorite in 2004.

The Lions are on a bevy of ATS slides, including 1-7 overall, 2-8 on the highway, 1-5 after a SU loss, 4-11-1 after a spread-cover and 4-9 against losing teams. Likewise, the Texans are on pointspread skids of 0-7 in October and 10-21 after a SU win, but they are 4-1 ATS in their last five against losing teams and have cashed in eight of their last 12 at Reliant Stadium.

The over for Detroit is on runs of 8-3 overall and 8-3 in roadies, and the over for Houston is on a 9-1 tear overall (5-0 this year) and is 4-1 in its last five at home and 6-0 in its last six on grass.

ATS ADVANTAGE: HOUSTON and OVER

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N.Y. Jets (3-2 SU and ATS) at Oakland (1-4, 2-3 ATS)

Brett Favre leads the Jets on a trip to the West Coast for a matchup against the Raiders at McAfee Coliseum.

New York dropped winless Cincinnati 26-14 and got the cash as a 9½-point home favorite last Sunday, making the SU winner 5-0 ATS in Jets games this season. Favre (25 of 33, 189 yards, 1 TD, 2 INTs) had a mediocre outing, and New York lost the turnover battle 3-1, but the defense shut out Cincy in the second half and yielded just 171 total yards, and the Jets finished with a nearly 12-minute edge in time of possession.

Oakland, playing its first game under newly appointed head coach Tom Cable, came out of its bye and got flattened 34-3 at New Orleans as a seven-point pup. QB JaMarcus Russell was a putrid 13 of 35 for 159 yards passing, with no TDs and one INT, and the Raiders finished with just 226 total yards while allowing the Saints to roll up 441 yards.

New York is 3-1-1 ATS in its last five meetings with Oakland, winning the last three games SU (2-1 ATS), including a 23-3 rout as a 13-point home chalk two years ago. The home team is on a 4-1-1 ATS run in the last six contests.

The Jets are on pointspread streaks of 4-1 on the highway and 10-5 as a non-division chalk, but they are on ATS skids of 2-6 coming off a SU win and 2-6 against losing teams. Oakland’s plethora of negative pointspread trends include 28-57-1 overall, 2-11 at home (0-2 this year), 16-37-1 after a non-cover and 19-43-1 after a SU loss.

The under for New York is on runs of 7-2 overall, 6-0 after a SU win, 8-0 after a spread-cover and 7-1 against AFC foes. On the flip side, the over for Oakland is on stretches of 9-3 overall, 5-1 versus the AFC and 4-1 at home.

ATS ADVANTAGE: N.Y. JETS


Cleveland (2-3, 3-2 ATS) at Washington (4-2 SU and ATS)

The Redskins, coming off a stunning loss, look to rebound when they host the Browns at FedEx Field.

Washington was a heavy 12-point home chalk against winless St. Louis last Sunday, but came up short in a 19-17 loss, ending a 4-0 SU and ATS surge. The Redskins rallied from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to take a 17-16 lead, but the Rams won it on a 49-yard field goal as time expired. Washington held St. Louis to just 200 yards while gaining 368, but the Redskins also lost the turnover battle, 3-1.

Cleveland was part of an upset last week, as well, whipping the New York Giants 35-14 catching nine points at home Monday for its second straight win and cover. QB Derek Anderson was a steady 18 of 29 for a season-best 310 yards with two TDS and no INTs, as the Browns finished with no turnovers and rolled up a 454-373 total yardage edge. Cleveland also forced three turnovers, including Eric Wright’s game-clinching 94-yard INT return for a TD late in the fourth quarter.

These teams have met just once in regular-season play this decade, with Cleveland winning 17-13 as a three-point home favorite in 2004.

The Redskins are on ATS runs of 4-1 overall and 4-1 at home, but they also carry pointspread slumps of 0-4-1 as a non-conference home chalk and 2-10-1 against losing teams. The Browns are on positive ATS streaks of 15-5 overall, 13-3 against winning teams, 6-2 after a SU win and 7-3 following a spread-cover.

The over for Washington is on a 6-2 stretch following a SU loss and is 8-2-1 in Cleveland’s last 11 against winning teams, but the under for the Browns is on runs of 9-2 overall and 4-1 on the highway.

ATS ADVANTAGE: WASHINGTON


Indianapolis (3-2 SU and ATS) at Green Bay (3-3 SU and ATS)

The Colts, seemingly back on track after a slow start, travel to Lambeau Field for a non-conference clash against the Packers.

Indianapolis blasted Baltimore 31-3 as a four-point home favorite. QB Peyton Manning (19 of 28, 271 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTs) had his best overall outing of the year, and he got plenty of defensive help, as Indy won the turnover battle by a lopsided 5-0 count.

Green Bay posted a 27-17 win at Seattle getting one point, shaking a three-game SU and ATS slide in the process, and the SU winner is on an eye-opening 23-0-1 spread-covering run in the Pack’s last 24 games. QB Aaron Rodgers (21 of 30, 208 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INTs) was solid enough, and the Packers held the ball for over 37 minutes, aided by a defense that allowed just 177 total yards.

The SU winner is an eye-popping 23-0-1 ATS in Green Bay’s last 24 games overall and 9-1 ATS in Indy’s last 10.

These teams haven’t met since 2004, when Indy won a 45-31 shootout giving 6½ points at home.

The Packers are on ATS runs of 17-7-1 overall, 12-5 after a SU win and 11-5 after a spread-cover, though they are on pointspread hiccups of 2-6 at home against AFC foes and 1-4 against winning teams. The Colts, meanwhile, sport ATS streaks of 10-2 against the NFC, 4-1 in roadies and 9-4 after a SU win.

The over for Green Bay is on tears of 21-8-1 overall, 10-1 on grass, 7-1 at Lambeau and 6-1 against winning teams.

ATS ADVANTAGE: INDIANAPOLIS and OVER


Seattle (1-4 SU and ATS) at Tampa Bay (4-2, 5-1 ATS)

The Buccaneers try to keep their spread-covering streak intact when they face the Seahawks in a prime-time Sunday battle at Raymond James Stadium.

Tampa Bay ripped Carolina 27-3 as a one-point home chalk, bagging the cash for the fifth straight week (4-1 SU). QB Jeff Garcia returned to action and was an efficient 15 of 20 for 173 yards and a TD, and Tampa finished with a nearly 10-minute edge in time of possession. The Bucs also forced three turnovers while committing none.

Seattle fell to Green Bay 27-17 giving one point at home for its second consecutive SU and ATS setback. Backup QB Charlie Frye, subbing for the injured Matt Hasselbeck, somehow tossed two TD passes despite an ugly 12-for-23, 88-yard, 2-INT passing effort. The Seahawks mustered just 177 total yards and had a 15-minute deficit in time of possession.

The SU winner has cashed in each of Seattle’s last 20 games and 22 of Tampa’s last 23 outings.

Seattle opened the 2007 season with a 20-6 rout of the Bucs as a six-point home favorite, improving to 3-0 SU and ATS against Tampa in the last four years.

Along with their current 5-0 ATS streak, the Buccaneers are on pointspread runs of 9-3 at home, 16-8-1 as a non-division home chalk, 5-0 on grass and 4-0 in conference play. Meanwhile, Seattle has struggled against the number on cross-country trips, going 4-14 ATS in their last 18 games in the Eastern time zone, and they are in further ATS ruts of 1-5 overall, 0-5 on the highway, 1-4 against the NFC and 1-4 against winning teams.

The under is 5-0 in the last five meetings between these NFC rivals. Conversely, the over for Tampa Bay is on runs of 6-0 against losing teams, 6-1 after a SU win and 7-3 against the NFC, and the over for Seattle is on streaks of 7-0-1 overall, 4-0 on the road, 4-0 against winning teams and 6-0-1 against NFC foes.

ATS ADVANTAGE: TAMPA BAY

MLB

Boston (6-4) at Tampa Bay (6-4)

The defending World Series-champion Red Sox look to cap another improbable October comeback when they send ace Jon Lester to the hill for Game 7 of the ALCS against the Rays’ Matt Garza at Tropicana Field.

Two days after rallying from a 7-0, seventh-inning deficit to beat Tampa Bay 8-7 and force a Game 6, Boston gutted out a 4-2 victory at Tropicana Field on Saturday night. The Sox got a solid five innings from injured starter Josh Beckett, four shutout innings of relief and enough timely hits – including solo home runs from Kevin Youkilis and Jason Varitek – to push this series to a deciding Game 7.

Boston is now on a 13-4 run in the playoffs and sports further positive streaks of 5-1 on the road and 7-1 in road playoff outings, and under manager Terry Francona, the Red Sox are now 9-1 in elimination playoff games. On the downside, the BoSox have still lost 21 of their last 30 contests on artificial turf.

The Rays entered this series on a 55-17 run at Tropicana Field, but they’ve lost two of three at home to Boston (Games 1 and 6). They’re still on positive runs of 9-3 against divisional foes and 10-5 against the Sox (7-2 at home against Boston). And going back to last season, Tampa has taken 11 of the last 14 from Boston at the Trop.

The home team won the first 12 series meetings between these teams this year, but the visitor is 7-4 in the last 11.

With Lester on the hill, the Red Sox are on runs of 36-15 overall, 17-6 against the A.L. East and 7-1 when he pitches on Sunday. However, after two outstanding postseason starts against the Angels in the divisional round (no earned runs allowed in 14 innings), the southpaw came unglued Monday in Game 3 at Fenway Park. He was touched up for five runs (four earned) on eight hits in 5 2/3 innings, losing 9-1.

Prior to Game 3, the Red Sox had won all seven of Lester’s career starts against the Rays. He’s still 4-1 with a 3.74 ERA against Tampa Bay, but 1-0 with a 6.75 ERA in two outings at Tropicana Field. Additionally, including one postseason start in Anaheim, Lester is 6-5 with a 3.81 ERA in 17 road starts.

The Rays are 2-5 in Garza’s last seven starts overall and 1-4 in his last five on Sunday, but the right-hander outpitched Lester in Boston in Game 3, allowing just one run on six hits in six innings en route to his first career postseason victory. The right-hander is now 4-1 with a 3.49 ERA in seven career starts against Boston, and the Rays are 3-1 in his four starts against the Sox in 2008 (3-0 at home).

Even though he was dominant at Fenway Park six days ago, Garza still has much better numbers this season at Tropicana Field (7-3, 2.89 ERA) than on the road (5-7, 4.53 ERA).

The under is 5-2 in Lester’s last seven starts overall and 5-2-1 in his last eight on the road. Conversely, with Garza pitching, the over is on runs of 5-2 at home and 4-1 versus divisional foes.

Saturday’s game stayed under the posted total, snapping a four-game “over” run in this series. The over is still 13-5 in Tampa’s last 18 at home, 7-3 in Tampa’s last 10 on Sunday and 5-2 in Boston’s last seven ALCS contests.

ATS ADVANTAGE: BOSTON and OVER

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MTi Sports

Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals are 0-10 OU (-7.5 ppg) at home vs a divisional opponent when they faced non-divisional opponents in each of the previous two weeks. Pittsburgh always has played it close-to-the-vest vs a poor team, as the Steelers are 0-8 OU as a favorite when facing a team with no wins after week 1, staying under by a whopping 16.6 ppg. Finally, the Bengals are 0-8 OU (-10.8 ppg) when facing a team that has allowed less than 3.75 yards per carry season-to-date.

Play on: Under

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VEGAS EXPERTS

Tennessee Titans at Kansas City Cheifs

Other than the fact that both these teams are coming off a bye week, they have nothing in common. The Titans come in as the NFL's only unbeaten team, SU and ATS, while Kansas City has lost 13 of its last 14 games going back to last year. The Cheifs have covered just two of their last 10 home games. Tennesee has not allowed any of their previous 10 opponents to score more than 19 points. They are #1 in scoring defense and face a KC offense that averages just 13 PPG.

Play on: Tennessee

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Alex Smart

Detroit Lions @ Houston Texans Over 46.0

The Detroit Lions and Houston Texans enter into this head on collision , both exhibiting some horrible defensive tendencies .

The Lions are allowing 252.8 total yards per game which ranks them 30thin the league . The Motown stop unit, has been run over for 171 YPG on the ground , which ranks them 31st in the league, and are ranked 30th in the NFL against aerial attacks allowing over 250 + YPG.

Meanwhile, the Texans have given up the most touch downs in the league, (20) and have one of the worst pass rushes in pro football , as is evident by notching just 7 sacks. Their lack of any type of blitz, exotic or otherwise ,constantly makes them vulnerable to being torched for big down field plays, gains and scores. The Texans defensive front have also looked shabby against the run, ranking 24th in the league allowing 131 YPG.

These teams, despite of frequent offensive inconsistencies will both find plenty of holes to exploit here today for plenty of scoring opportunities.

Final notes & Key Trends: Houston is 12-3 OVER hosting a game with a total of between 42.5 and 49 points, with the average combined score clicking in at 51.9 PG. Houston has allowed opponents to score an average of 31.6 PPG this season. Detroit has allowed foes to torch them for 31.8 PPG.

Play OVER

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Bob Harvey

San Diego Chargers @ Buffalo Bills Over 44.0

Buffalo is 4-1 and coming off a bye week. That gave them an extra few days to think about their ugly 41-17 setback at the hands of the Arizona Cardinals. Quarterback Trent Edwards was knocked out of that with a concussion but will start today against the ‘Bolts. Edwards has completed 66.4 percent of his passes and has a 93.9 passer rating. Edwards and company will NEED a big game to keep up with this potent Chargers offense. San Diego is averaging 29.7 points, tops in the NFL, and is coming off a 30-10 blowout of New England in Week 6. LaDanian Tomlinson has been hampered by a toe injury and it shows. The Chargers have been one of the NFL's top 10 rushing teams in each of the last six seasons, but they're tied for 21st so far this season with just 98.5 ypg. LT’s sore toe equals big problems for San Diego. Tomlinson is averaging just 3.4 yards per carry in his last two games and he hasn't scored. He could get healthy (at least his stats anyway) given that the Bills are 18th in the NFL in rush defense, allowing 114.2 ypg. With the running game at a standstill, more of the offensive load has been heaped upon the shoulders of QB Phillips Rivers. And so far the former NC State star has been up to the challenge. Rivers is the NFL’s highest rated passer with at 109.4. He’s also tied for the league lead in TD passes with 14. Rivers has also thrown at least three touchdown passes in four of the previous six games.

In summary, I’m forecasting a track meet. The Bills last seven games on turf have exceeded the number. Offensively both teams can score and rack up the yards. San Diego has the 12th ranked offense in the league while Buffalo is 18th. It’s likely both teams will get their points with the Bills likely getting more against the Chargers 28th ranked defense. Before their bye week, Buffalo struggled mightily against the prolific Arizona passing offense (#2 in the league). The Chargers passing game was hitting on all cylinders against the Patriots. With a question mark surrounding both running attacks, my guess is that Rivers and Edwards will combine to throw 60-70 passes and that most of the scoring will come via the air.
I’m taking the OVER and a serious look at the Bills. By day’s end, San Diego could also be the best 3-4 team in the NFL.

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