Thursday, September 14, 2017
Seattle Mariners vs. Texas Rangers (MLB) - 8:05 PM EDT Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -108 Seattle Mariners Pick Title: 9 Star Stretch Driver (WIN)
I feel getting back 2 of their starters back is a real shot in the arm for the boys from the northwest. Expect Fernandez to get the run support & the "W" tonight as they cling onto fading 2nd wild card position hopes. Grab the SEATTLE MARINERS as my 9 star Stretch Driver!
Tuesday, September 12, 2017
Cincinnati Reds vs. St Louis Cardinals (MLB) - 8:15 PM EDT Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -162 St Louis Cardinals Pick Title: 9 Star MLB Heavy Responders (WIN)
I feel the Cardinals can go on a run here. The Brewers seem to not want to take over the wild card with their easier schedule. St. Louis CAN catch the Rockies but only IF their run starts here. I expect a heavy response! Lance Lynn takes the mound for the Cards. Lynn has had some hard luck of not getting run support the last 5 starts even though his ERA dictates the "W's". However, the Birds' bats will face Stephenson who they pounded this season in their only head-to-head meeting. The Redbirds have the better starter & the better pen & should execute this. Grab the wild-card pushing ST. LOUIS CARDINALS as my 9 Star MLB Heavy Responders!
Monday, September 11, 2017
New Orleans Saints vs. Minnesota Vikings (NFL) - 7:10 PM EDT Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: 150 New Orleans Saints Pick Title: 9 Star Opening Week MONEYMAKER (LOSS)
There's usually that 1 surprise on the board that makes you some nice cash every week. I've zeroed in on HC Sean Payton & the Saints. Payton isn't bad in these situations as a small dog . His defense has been looking a lot better than it did last year when they were down some key personnel. QB Drew Brees (70% completions, 5,208 passing yards, 37 TD's, sacked 27 times) has mileage but is still on a different level than the Vikings' QB Sam Bradford (72% completions, 3,877 passing yards, 20 TD's, sacked 37 times). I feel Brees has more quick-strike capabilities (despite losing WR Willie Snead to suspension) & clearly rates the edge here. I also question HC Mike Zimmer's decision to release former Pro-Bowler & OG Alex Boone last week. He's clearly has much game left in his tank so there must be a high degree of turmoil there before the season even starts. Looking @ some quick numbers, the Purple People Eaters have lost 7 home openers in a row ATS coming into the season when facing a non-division opponent. On the important flip side of that coin we find Brees (looking to impress in the last year of his contract) really loving the road of late coming into this contest winning 5 straight travelers ATS. There's also the matter of Monday Night Football history. Spanning the past 37 seasons, the favorite has lost 34 of 49 ATS. More importantly, spread favorites under a TD have gone a ticket-ripping 9-29! This is a great matchup that I believe will show how a HC utilizes RB Adrian Peterson (off 2nd knee surgery) & his strengths to the fullest. How ironic it is that his Saints' jersey was the top off-season seller in MINNESOTA! The Gold & Black also has dependable RB Mark Ingram who rushed over 1,000 yards & 5.1 yards a pop last season. Yes, ex-Florida State product & RB Dalvin Cook will shine for Minnesota. However, he will be prone to rookie mistakes like missed blocking assignments & not hitting the right gap.I'm not sure what free-agent signee Latavius Murray still has left. My bottom line says DC Dennis Allen will have success out of the 4-3 alignment (with newly-acquired SLB Manti Te'o) as NO should force Bradford into a few mistakes. I question whether the dink n' dunk mentality of OC Pat Shurmer keeps pace. The dagger for us has to be a dictated up-tempo game that the Saints & Pete Carmichael will employ. I highly question Bradford effectively doing this for a complete game. Let's travel to U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis to play the NEW ORLEANS SAINTS outright @ +150 as my 9 Star Opening Week Moneymaker!
Sunday, September 10, 2017
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Washington Redskins (NFL) - 1:00 PM EDT Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -120 Philadelphia Eagles Pick Title: 9 Star Heavy Arsenal Wins Out (WIN)
The Eagles are favored here for a reason. Many number-crunchers will quickly point out that Philadelphia lost 3 straight to the Skins' @ this venue by 27-20, 23-20 & 27-24 scores. However, I'm expecting a different turnout after having analyzed new personnel on both sides. The Redskins also come into this game having lost their last 3 straight home openers SU @ FedEx. On the flip side of the coin, the Eagles have been very successful of late in their road openers. They've won their last 7 of 8 (lost @ Atlanta 26-24 in 2015 under Chip Kelly) & also won their 2013 road opener right on this field in a 33-27 shootout. Even though Washington QB Kirk Cousins had better numbers Philly QB Carson Wentz last season, Cousins comes into the 2017-18 campaign without his 2 top 1000-yard WR's in Pierre Garcon (79 receptions, 1,041 yards) & DeSean Jackson (56 receptions, 1,005 yards). For this matchup, Eagles' HC has to be ready for another unexpected ground game (Washington ran the ball just 37% of the time last year) that buried the Birds for 230 rushing yards in meeting 1 of 2016. I look for the Redskins' to predictably use their strong front to pound undrafted rookie Rob Kelly (had 704 rushing yards in an abbreviated season LY after taking over for the now-departed Matt Jones) AND 4th-round draft pick out of Oklahoma Samaje Perine. A big difference this Sunday has to be the return of ORT Lane Johnson (missed both Skins' meetings last year). I also feel that Carson Wentz should sign with better chemistry with the acquisitions of RB LeGarrette Blount (18 TD's with NE last year), WR Alshon Jeffery & WR Torrey Smith. Look for OC Frank Reich to create mismatches in the secondary (away from CB Josh Norman) since Washington's dial-up pressure took a hit when LB Trent Murphy was lost to a ACL injury. Philadelphia is an effective offense when OLT Jason Peters & ORT Johnson are both healthy. My bottom line points out that the Eagles should also have that special teams edge (finished 1st twice the last 3 seasons of the NFL) that should prove itself throughout with P Donnie Jones, PK Caleb Sturgis & dangerous PR Darren Sproles. Heading to FedEx Field in Landover, we'll take the PHILADELPHIA EAGLES as my 9 Star Heavy Arsenal Wins Out Play!
Oakland Raiders vs. Tennessee Titans (NFL) - 1:00 PM EDT Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -154 Tennessee Titans Pick Title: 9 Star Highly Motivated Momentum Grabber (LOSS)
Don't look now but these Titans come into this campaign winning 6 out of the last 9. Not having made the playoffs since the 2008 season makes this a VERY hungry team. Compound this double-revenge for back-to-back home losses the past 2 seasons to these Raiders (17-10 & 24-21) & we certainly have something brewing in our favor. DC Dick LeBeau is a seasoned veteran & now has a strong front inside his 3-4 defensive alignment that should make things difficult for newly-acquired RB Marshawn Lynch & returnee RB's Jalen Richard & DeAndre' Washington. Remember, this LeBeau's defense ranked 5th in the NFL in touchdowns yielded last season. On the flip side of the ball, QB Marcus Mariota has 2 years of maturity under his belt & will only get better with new WR Eric Decker & rookie WR out of Western Michigan Corey Davis. Yes, Derek Carr has just as good weapons on the other side of the ball. But those no ignoring that ROLB Brian Orakpo & LOLB Derrick Morgan are thriving in LeBeau's system as they recorded 10 1/2 & 9 sacks respectively. My bottom line says to look for those multiple close games won last year to turn into a few L's as the Raiders were out-gained overall by their opponents last season despite a 12-4 record. The dagger for us has to leave OC Terry Robiskie salivating as his highly-motivated offense with excellent play-action gets to face an Oakland "D" that gave up a staggering 6.1 YPP which was the WORST in the NFL! Mark down that Tennessee is MY PICK to win this division over favored Houston.This year, I'm having difficult seeing the Silver & Black duplicating that stellar 6-2 road record they enjoyed last season. Let's make way to Nashville's Nissan Stadium to play the home-standing TENNESSEE TITANS as my 9 Star Highly Motivated Momentum Grabber!
Seattle Seahawks vs. Green Bay Packers (NFL) - 4:25 PM EDT Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -150 Green Bay Packers Pick Title: 8 Star Road Opener Failures Play (WIN)
There's no doubt that the Seattle Seahawks defense will looked improved with the acquisition of all-pro DT Sheldon Richardson from the Jets. However, this will take time to happen. The Seahawks (Without Pro-Bowl S Eric Thomas) were left very vulnerable in Game 13 last season which GB controlled from start to finish in an embarrassing 38-10 loss for Seattle. Having to face them right off the bat has to give more of an edge to QB Aaron Rodgers & Green Bay. It's no secret that Rodgers & OC Edgar Bennett will devise a game plan to constantly pick on rookie CB out of Florida State Shaquill Griffin & the 6-year veteran CB Jeremy Lane. I'm looking once again for WR Devante Adams (12 TD's) to have a similar big day (104 receiving yards in last season's matchup) as well as top wideout Jordy Nelson (97 catches for 1,257 receiving yards & 14 TD's). My bottom line says that DC Dom Capers must know what Seattle QB Russell Wilson has in store in his passing game. In 5 games versus these same Packers, Wilson has thrown a total of 10 INT's. This has translated in 2 consecutive double-digit wins the past 2 seasons for Green Bay by 38-10 & 27-17 scores. In the numbers, we cannot ignore these facts. HC Pete Carroll is 1-6 SU lifetime in road openers since taking over the Seahawks. The Packers are 9-1 SU their last 10 home openers. Spread-wise, Seattle has been money-burners over the long haul losing 11 of their last 12 ATS in road openers. Even though some point out Carroll's excellent dog with revenge ATS record, I feel the experience of Rodgers negates that in the end. Let's go to historical Lambeau Field to play the GREEN BAY PACKERS as my 8 Star Road Opener Failures Play!
Arizona Cardinals vs. Detroit Lions (NFL) - 1:00 PM EDT Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -135 Arizona Cardinals Pick Title: 9 Star Having Their Number Play (WIN)
There's just certain teams that always have great success against others. Whether the talent is close or further apart, the result still remains the same. That's what I feel taking the side of the Arizona Cardinals. Besides being highly motivated to improve off a rare losing season for HC Bruce Arians (7-8-1 last year), I feel DC Teryl Austin's 3-4 defensive scheme will find it tough to stop all-everything RB David Johnson who amassed 2,118 total yards combine rushing & receiving along with scoring 20 TD's. With the Cardinals still having two of the best edge-rushers in the business (SAM-back Chandler Jones & WLB Markus Golden) returning to a defense that finished 2nd in the NFL in total yards allowed (305.2), look for Arizona to turn some of those close losses of last year into W's this year. Rookie RB out of North Carolina T.J. Logan must be high on Arians' list since he the converted Andre Ellington into a WR for an added dimension. My bottom line says I don't trust Jim Caldwell. He had a few good seasons with Indy before everything went south. Detroit is a tough venue in a tough division to produce winners year-in & year-out on a consistent basis. OC Jim Bob Cooter will have pressure on him now after the Lions' made QB Matthew Stafford an exuberantly high-paying contract. In the numbers, Arizona has had Detroit's beating them 7 times in a row (3-0 with Arians in 13', 14' & 15' by scores of 25-21, 14-6 & 42-17 scores). Remember, these Cards led the NFL in sacks & now face a Silver & Blue team that's breaking in 3 new offensive linemen. Let's make way to Ford Field to play the ARIZONA CARDINALS as my 9 Star Having Their Number Play!
NOTES: Started off mediocre also when we won the Hilton 10 years ago. It's a tough week when you pick the Cards (David Johnson hurt), Titans (lost 3 years in a row to Oakland) & the Saints (have always hung around in this situation by 7 or less- Sam Bradford played the best game of his career). However, MLB swept the week as we stayed right around an untouchable 66% for the season!
2017-18 NFL Overall Seasonal Record: 2-3----40%