Sorry I’m late. It was a weird week.
But gambling! Gambling on Sunday football is only three hours away! And we have games to pick! How exciting. Last week, I went 0-4 on Sunday, after entrusting my picks to some of the NFL’s heroes of facial hair. The only thing standing between me and a second 0-5 week (and probably giving up on life in general) was Colt McCoy. It was a situation I hope none of you ever find yourselves in.
But Colt came through! Washington not only covered, but actually won the game, knocking the Cowboys down a peg in those pesky Power Rankings which I despise so much. How did he do it?
When I wrote last week’s column, I was hoping to make a stand for all us guys who can’t grow a good beard. Movember is now in effect, and for many of us there are trying times ahead. What Colt proved on Monday Night is that us no-growers are in fact capable of amazing things. We can get the girls. We can win football games. We can make money covering spreads.
We just need a good shave.
Anyway, we’re down to the wire. Here is the Week 9 slate, home team gets the asterisk.
Hmmmm. Interesting. Maybe. I don’t know what constitutes interesting anymore. What I expected? What I didn’t expect? Time is a flat circle and home dogs seem to cover more on Sundays. I’ve been writing a gambling column long before I was paid to write one. I just liked it. Sometimes you have to go backwards in order to pick forwards. What?
Sorry. I got lost for a minute there. But since we are on the clock, we are going with gimmick picks this week. And my oh my, do I have a helpful gimmick this week. Have you kids ever heard of Sports Insights?
I hadn’t either, until listening to the Behind the Bets podcast with Chad Millman of ESPN and Bob Scucci of The Orleans in Vegas. They are two of my favorite gambling minds, and when they began talking about the site Sports Insights, I was intrigued. This site keeps tabs on where the money is going in Vegas – which teams are getting bet to an absurd degree and which teams can’t find a shred of public support.
My first rule of gambling is “You know nothing, Vegas is smarter than you, never try to outsmart her.” Hence, information like this is a blessing. I now have an idea of where all of the idiots that think they can outsmart Vegas are putting their money. This makes it very easy to bet against the idiots.
This is what the Sports Insights betting board looked like as of 10:20AM this morning.
According to this, there are five games this week where the public has put more than 70% of their money on a particular side. We will pick against them in hopes that their collective faith is actually a communal delusion. We are the evil empire, they are the mindless sheep. We are the all-knowing eye, they are the plebs. We are procrastinating to write a gambling column, they have actual money on these games.
Am I evil? Possibly. But probably not for this.
Dolphins* (-1.5) over Chargers
Brutal. The Dolphins are fine, but not great and I am buying into the Chargers this season. And it feels like the Dolphins play bad at home, but that might just be me projecting. But hey! Betting against Philip Rivers! That’s always fun.
Texans* (+2) over Eagles
Ugh. I have to bet against my Eagles? I guess it makes sense. They have been overrated in the “Power Rankings” almost as horrendously as the Cowboys had. Seriously, people need to watch the games. I don’t care if the Packers have three losses to our two, they would be favored over us on a neutral site. Whatever. I need to get past my grip with Power Rankers. Plus, home dogs! And JJ Watt! That’s always fun.
Cowboys* (-3.5) over Cardinals
Would have liked this a lot more if I didn’t just find out that Brandon Weeden was starting under center for the Cowboys. I really like the Cardinals. I think they are a top five team in football right now. And they are perfectly suited to beat the Cowboys; they possess one of the best run defenses in the league, and while their pass defense leaves something to be desired, Brandon Weeden leaves much more to be desired. Also, I am getting the worst possible line on this game – the SuperContest lines are published Wednesday, at which point the public still thought Romo had a chance to play. Now that Weeden is starting, the line has moved FIVE FULL POINTS to have the Cardinals favored by 1.5. So not only am I asking the Cowboys to cover, I am asking that they cover five more points that Vegas considers them capable. This is what you get when you leave your picks to a gimmick. Whatever. Sticking to my guns. BRING IT ON CARSON PALMER.
Rams (+10) over 49ers
The Niners are coming off a bye and watching their division devolve into madness. They need to catch the Cardinals and hold off the Seahawks? Who saw that coming? Probably no one. Definitely not me. The Niners terrify me. Maybe the Rams have another dope fake punt or sneaky punt return up their sleeves, but I doubt it. Jeff Fisher always seemed like a one-trick-per-sleeve kind of guy to me. I do love Austin Davis though, he’s like a Derek Carr who wins sometimes.
Giants* (+3.5) over Colts
Vomiting. Vomiting all over the floor. Vomiting all over the television. Vomiting all over the house at the idea that I will once again be staring down a winless week after an 0-4 Sunday and my only hopes of escaping will be *gulp* Eli Manning. This is the worst. I hate gimmicks. Someone get me out of here.
So yeah, Week 9 picks. I sort of hate all of them. Which is probably a good thing, as following picks I like has not lead to great success in recent weeks. Maybe this is the start of something grand. Maybe this is the week things turn around. The quest back to .500 is a long one, and I am totally down for taking baby steps to get there. But man do these look awful.
The lesson, as always kids, we know nothing. Also, try not to procrastinate. It isn’t good for your work.
Last Week: 1-4