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Poker Blog established in 2003 as the first stop for poker news, poker stories, and bad poker advice.

September 17, 2006

Betting the NFL with CJ and the Boy Genius

by Luckbox

Each week we're able, BG and I will get on the girly chat thingy and show off our sports betting expertise. (Full disclosure: I'm a terrible sports betting.) In fact, we're so secure in our manhood, we'll repost the entire chat for your sports gambling enjoyment!

Buf vs. Mia

CJ: Two teams that had a chance to score a big win over superior opponents in week one, and two teams that had terrible finishes. I thought Culpepper would be better than he showed, but maybe he's still coming back from the knee surgery. I knew J.P. Losman would be that bad. Miami is at home and should cover the 6 points.
Boy Genius: I don't know about that... I'd like this line for Buffalo at about +8, but I think they can keep it closer if Lee Evans and McGahee have big games.
Boy Genius: I begrudgingly go with Miami -6, but I don't feel good about it.
CJ: I'm not betting it myself because I'm not sure I trust Miami yet.
Boy Genius: You know, Miami's starting Andre Goodman at corner until Travis Daniels gets healthy.
Boy Genius: The guy couldn't start for Detroit last year, why should I have confidence in their secondary?
CJ: That's a good point... hard to go from unable to make Detroit's lineup to starting quality anywhere!
Boy Genius: I'd like to see Losman taking a page from Trent Dilfer and doing enough not to lose. This isn't an untalented team.
Boy Genius: He needs to take advantage of McGahee and take a few shots with Evans. That should loosen things up for the Bills.
CJ: Agreed. We'll see if he has the talent to do so.

Car vs. Min

CJ: Let's move on to Carolina at Minnesota.
Boy Genius: I'm having a hard time stomaching Minnesota as a 1.5 point favorite, even at home.
Boy Genius: This isn't the same Carolina team from last year's playoffs, but it's also not the same team from last week's decimation at the hands of the Falcons.
Boy Genius: You tell me how Minnesota's offense puts up 22 points, because I think Carolina gets three TDs in the dome.
CJ: You have more faith in Carolina without Steve Smith than I do. Keyshawn Johnson is not a threat without someone on the other side of the field (i.e. Terry Glenn in Dallas).
Boy Genius: Aw, take the reins of Drew Carter Johnny Fox! Kid's got BIG PLAY written all over him!
CJ: Ha! I actually think this comes down to what the Minnesota offense can do. Remember, the Falcons rushed for 673 yards in week one against the "vaunted" Panthers defense.
CJ: If the Vikings commit to handing off 31 times again this week, they'll keep the pressure off Brad Johnson.
Boy Genius: Look up "serviceable" in Merriam-Webster and there's a picture of Chester Taylor. 3.6 yards per carry isn't going to get it done against this defense.
Boy Genius: Minnesota's linebacking corps is suspect, and I think Delhomme has got to love having Keyshawn in a game like this. He'll take a ton of underneath stuff at five or six yards a pop, and they'll move the ball.
Boy Genius: Brad Johnson's got no shot at pulling out a win here. Play the Carolina money line.
CJ: Brad Johnson is the right QB to take advantage of a defense that loves to take chances. Take Minnesota and give the points.

Cle vs. Cin

CJ: Time for Cleveland at Cincinnati. A game I think we'll agree on.
Boy Genius: That Charlie Frye's going to be on his back more than Jenna Jameson this week?
CJ: Exactly.
CJ: Who knew Charlie Frye was actually a starting QB?
CJ: Did four guys get hurt already in Cleveland?
Boy Genius: Take Cincy, feel good about ten points, and hope Chad Johnson's got something up his sleeve to circumvent league rules for a TD dance.
CJ: Not only that, but Rudi Johnson ran for three miles last year against Cleveland. This game will be a blowout from the flip of the coin.
Boy Genius: Agreed. Take Cincy and give the ten.

Det vs. Chi

Boy Genius: How about my boys in Detroit traveling to Chicago? Bears giving eight, and they blew them out at Soldier Field last year. Did last week change your mind on this one?
CJ: Detroit is not a playoff team this year. They will, however, win games they shouldn't and be good against the spread for the first half of the season, until they start getting more credit.
CJ: That front four effectively handled the Seahawks last week and could do the same this week.
Boy Genius: Plus, Roy Williams said the offense "left 40 points" on the field last week.
Boy Genius: I think the Martz offense gets on track sooner rather than later, and if you've got Roy Williams in fantasy, play him. He's fired up and guaranteed a win this week.
Boy Genius: I think they cover, and I think this is an atypical game for the black-and-blue - How about a 33-28 win for the Bears?
CJ: Wow, playing the over, too! Obviously, you can't take anything from the Bears game last week. They had a bye against Green Bay. This will be a better test. The guarantee actually worries me (Williams is no Chad Johnson), but I LOVE Detroit with the points, especially if you can get 9 or 9.5.
Boy Genius: Take the Lions, but don't break the bank. This game last year was a blowout.

Hou vs. Ind

Boy Genius: How are you feeling about Peyton Manning taking on the Texans? You saw Houston first hand last week, can they hang with the Colts?
CJ: Ha! Fantasy owners should start Peyton Manning, Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne, Dallas Clark, Bryan Fletcher, Aaron Moorehead, Brandon Stokely and John Standeford
Boy Genius: Isn't Stokely hurt? Guess it doesn't matter this week, eh?
CJ: I'd start Flipper Anderson, too. Didn't he finish up with Indy?
Boy Genius: Flipper? Come on now... that's probably going a bit too far. Let me go out on a limb with Houston. One of the following things will happen today:
Boy Genius: David Carr will go for 300 and three TDs,
Boy Genius: Mario Williams notches his first two sacks,
Boy Genius: Wali Lundy gets 120 combined yards and a score
Boy Genius: or Gary Kubiak enters Witness Protection by the time the final gun sounds.
Boy Genius: Yeah, Colts are going to cover, even at a gaudy 13 points.
CJ: Right... all you suggested may happen, and that still won't stop Indy from scoring 45. I like Indy giving the 13 and take the over.

NO vs. GB

Boy Genius: Now, you have to watch the Green Bay - New Orleans game on local TV this week, right?
CJ: Game of the Week!
Boy Genius: Are you pumped?
CJ: They'll be sending everyone's jerseys to the Hall of Fame. This game is THAT BIG!
CJ: Now the pick...
CJ: Green Bay is TERRIBLE! Wow, I didn't think a Favre-lead team could ever be that bad. That said, the Saints aren't exactly world beaters. In fact, when was the last time the Saints were favored on the road?
Boy Genius: I think we'd be talking St. Peter and the apostles in that case.
CJ: Right.
CJ: The pick? It's tough... I'm taking the Saints
Boy Genius: I don't know how to gauge the Saints. Cleveland's not terrible, I suppose, but even with Brees pulling the trigger I'm unsure about their passing game.
Boy Genius: Plus, I think there are four games this year where Brett Favre hangs 300 and three. This is one of them. I like Green Bay outright in this spot. Home opener, Favre isn't going to want to look bad two weeks running.
CJ: It's gonna be about Reggie Bush. When he steps on the field, defenses get kooky. If he gets 15-20 touches, the Saints win.
Boy Genius: I like what they're doing with the kid, but Favre can put the Pack on his back and get the win. Better enjoy it Cheeseheads, may not be two or three more of these all year.
CJ: It could happen, I'm lukewarm here.

NYG vs. Phi

CJ: How about NY at Philly?
Boy Genius: Here's the one under-examined factor at play in this game - Philly's D-Line.
Boy Genius: In last year's playoffs, the Giants got beat when Carolina (or was it Seattle?) challenged Eli to beat them in the air by stuffing Tiki at every turn. That's your template. Eli's going to have to light it up, and Philly can play the pass too.
CJ: It's deep... 10-deep. They rotate 4-man lines every series, at least that was the play against Houston. Tiki historically roughs up the Eagles. This D is probably better prepared for Tiki than they've ever been.
Boy Genius: Agreed, but what about Westbrook? Is he going to play? How bad does this hurt Philly?
CJ: Andy Reid announced 10 minutes ago that Westbrook will start. He's the key. The Eagles are 7-0 against New York when McNabb starts, but one of those wins was a miraculous Westbrook punt return with under 3 minutes in the 4th.
Boy Genius: That news gives me hope for the Eagles. If I were Coughlin, I would have been praying to the god of knee injuries hoping to keep him out this week. With Westbrook on the field, this offense is multi-dimensional.
Boy Genius: So who's your pick? Philly's giving three...
CJ: I have to... my heart won't let me pick otherwise. Philly wins by a TD. Watch this game for one thing: field position. The team that has the shorter field will win this game.
Boy Genius: I like the Giants to cover, but I still think Philly wins 24-23.

Oak vs. Bal

CJ: Back to one of the week's ugliest games... Oakland at Baltimore.
CJ: Will Baltimore score back-to-back shut outs?
Boy Genius: Ugh. Who cares? Next.
Boy Genius: Just kidding.
CJ: Ha!
Boy Genius: Oakland will get on the board if they have to throw nineteen straight deep balls hoping to connect on one. Randy Moss gets on the board, Brooks throws two picks and fumbles once, and Baltimore's swagger carries to week three. But did you really think BALTIMORE would be a two score favorite over anyone this year?
CJ: Before the season? Probably not. Now? I think they may be double-digit favorites 4 times this year. It's a perfect marriage of QB and coach. Steve McNair is perfect for this team. He will not put this spectacular defense in a hole. Baltimore covers easily.
CJ: And I like the under!
Boy Genius: No way. Oakland covers in a 17-10 Baltimore win. I wouldn't have Baltimore giving thirteen to LSU, let alone Oakland. Take the Raiders. They couldn't be THAT bad.
CJ: They may be. We'll find out today!

TB vs. Atl

Boy Genius: Does Tampa find their offense this week, or does John Abraham and the Falcons D-Line cause Chris Simms to throw another batch of bad balls this week? Tough game to pick.
CJ: I think so to. This is a trap game. Is Atlanta as good as they showed last week? Is Tampa as bad?
Boy Genius: No and no
CJ: Something tells me Tampa not only covers, but wins this outright. John Gruden is a real football coach. He can scheme. He knows offenses. He'll get what he needs this week out of Simms.
Boy Genius: I worry about this line. It hasn't moved all week, and Atlanta's giving less than a TD at home? That seems odd to me. Gut says Atlanta covers, but my head thinks it'll be closer. I've got to go with my gut on this one. Atlanta 24 - Tampa 17.
Boy Genius: I can't for a minute think that Simms doesn't have a few good games in him this year, but I don't think it happens against this defense. Atlanta should be geared up for this important division game. Going two up on the rest of the NFC South pack is going to be a great cushion for them. They'll come out firing.

Ari vs. Sea

CJ: Okay, what about Arizona and Seattle? Another of the 11 divisional matchups this week.
Boy Genius: Arizona ripped up on San Fran, who looked a lot better than people thought they would. Seattle looked inept and got beaten up by the Lions in a win. I don't expect a slugfest today, this should be a high-scoring affair.
CJ: I see a lot of points, too. The over is a good bet here.
Boy Genius: Especially at 47 points. You're telling me this doesn't have 28-24 written all over it? Come on, this one's almost a gimme.
CJ: Right, I think it's one of the top plays. But does Seattle cover the 7?
Boy Genius: Yes. Yes, yes and yes. I think they come out feeling embarrassed by last week and Hasselbeck has a monster day. Monster. They're going to hang 35 or more. Period.
CJ: If I had to be this game, I'd like it a hell of a lot more at 6.5. But since it's 7, and I have to make a pick, I'd still have to say Seattle covers.

StL vs. SF

Boy Genius: Now we talk Niners football against the Rams. Another divisional game with an upstart San Fran team and a Rams team who didn't move the ball as effectively as their stats and the score showed last week. Still, the line is San Fran +3 in their home opener. Tough to back this one, or do you smell upset?
CJ: I'm with you. Tough to back this one. St. Louis may not have been efficient, but they beat a Denver team that was supposed to be among the best in the AFC. San Fran hung tough against an Arizona team that's been the sleeper pick each of the last 3 years. San Fran gets just 3? Rams cover.
Boy Genius: I'm troubled by how Edgerrin ran the ball against the Niners D last week, and I know Linehan wants to make sure Jackson gets his touches. I think the old Rams offense blows this team out, but the new Rams offense needs to find their stride in order to pull away down the stretch.
Boy Genius: Does that mean I'm backing the Niners? No.
Boy Genius: But I think that San Fran has a shot at being that team this year who's in more games than they should be. They'll lose this one by ten (24-14, if you're curious), but I like them as a road dog in coming weeks if they show they can hang with the Rams this week.
CJ: An upset wouldn't surprise me, but the bet is St. Louis to cover.

KC vs. Den

CJ: Now we get to what was supposed to be a big game... KC at Den.
Boy Genius: Supposedly. But you've got one QB wearing a neck brace like he got rear-ended in traffic and another who's hearing footsteps behind him for the umpteenth time in his career. Does Huard keep KC in the game, or does Plummer play out of his mind to secure his hold on the job... for now?
CJ: Over/Under on sideline shots of Jay Cutler?
CJ: I'd give the Chiefs a fighting chance with Trent Green under center.
Boy Genius: Depends - there's a formula to use when considering mentions and shots of Cutler on the sidelines:
Boy Genius: Take three-and-outs, add incompletions, divide by interceptions and subtract touchdowns. In other words, eleven. I don't even know what that's supposed to mean.
Boy Genius: Ten and a half is way too much. Waaaay too much to give to KC here.
CJ: That's the biggest problem with this game. 10.5 is alot!
CJ: In a game between these two bitter rivals, I'd never be able to bet a double digit line. You're telling me the smart money is on a Denver team that lost to St. Louis last week and now can't even win the bet with a 24-14 win?
Boy Genius: The only 10.5 I'm taking on Denver is on articles by disgruntled Denver-area sports columnists wondering where the vaunted Bronco offense has gone. Chiefs don't win, but they don't lose by ten either. Denver 17 - KC 10.
CJ: I'm with you on this pick. As long as Huard knows how to turn around and hand off to Larry Johnson. Denver outright, KC beats the spread.

NE vs. NYJ

Boy Genius: So my afternoon game on CBS is the Pats and Jets. Am I in for a good one?
CJ: Yes, you are. Jets are better than last year and Pats are worse. That makes for a closer game.
CJ: So why are the Jets GETTING 6 points at home?
Boy Genius: Because it's the pupil meeting the master. Mangini versus Belicheck. I don't see this as the same situation Gruden got in his Super Bowl win with the Bucs knowing what the Raiders were going to do before they did it. Belicheck is a gameplanning master, and I'm going to go out on a limb... The Pats blank the Jets and win by 24.
CJ: Wow! That is a limb! I still worry that the Pats offense doesn't know where it's at right now. No David Givens. No Deion Branch. I love Ben Watson... but someone has to pull that D away from him. I think the Jets pull off the upset at home and win outright.
Boy Genius: Wow, well one of us is going to be more right than the other... I think your limb is shakier than mine to be sure.

Ten vs. SD

Boy Genius: One more 4PM game... Tennessee and San Diego renewing a decades-long rivalry... aw, who are we kidding. When does Vince Young start for Tennessee? Kerry Collins? Really?
CJ: Has a QB fallen from grace as fast as Billy Volek in the history of the NFL? The Titans could have gotten a first round pick for the guy... now he can't beat out a drunk QB and a QB who won't be ready for 2 years.
Boy Genius: Hey now, Kerry Collins is ready to play now. He doesn't need two years.
CJ: Ha! I'll give you this... Drew Bennett had a big game, so someone had to be throwing to him.
CJ: Not that that matters... SD in a romp. LT only has to play one half for the second straight week.
Boy Genius: Amen to that. I'd play this game at 17, and I'm not kidding. Tennessee gave up 30-something to the JETS last week. Keep your eyes on the prize, Tennessee is as bad as Oakland and Green Bay. Don't forget this.
CJ: That's exactly what I was going to say. 17 is not too much to give Tennessee today.
CJ: Shawn Merriman will just about lock up defensive player of the year after getting to sack the clueless Aaron Brooks and the flat-footed Kerry Collins.
Boy Genius: He gets Brooks twice, by the way. That's good for ten sacks right there.

Was vs. Dal

Boy Genius: Fine, Washington vs. Dallas, the game the networks think the nation gives a shit about.
Boy Genius: Sigh
CJ: Prop bet... more viewers... Washington vs. Dallas or The Wire?
CJ: It should be The Wire! One of TV's best!
Boy Genius: What I hope and what I think are two different things here.
Boy Genius: I want this game to be a 4-4 tie, with all points coming off safeties when the QBs fumble and chase the ball out the back of the end zone. 85 total yards combined in the game, Terrell Owens loses a leg in a freak tarpaulin accident, and Joe Gibbs gets fired.
CJ: I could get behind that result. Bottom line: Dallas can't lose here. They have last year's MNF debacle that cost them their season. They're already 0-1 after blowing a game against Jacksonville. They're at home. Bledsoe wants to keep his job.
Boy Genius: No Romo this week?
CJ: Not this week. Parcells gives Bledsoe at least 2 full games.
CJ: I also think Dallas covers the 6.5. It's a big line for a game like this, but Washington had their problems last week.
Boy Genius: I hate this rivalry. TV executives want to put this one in primetime constantly, and I just loathe both teams. I don't even care about the spread. Just to be contrary, I'll go with Washington to cover, although Dallas wins outright 23-20.

Pit vs. Jax

CJ: Fair enough. That brings us to MNF.
Boy Genius: The only thing I'm watching Monday night is the premiere of "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip." Sorkin is a genius, and it's about time Matt Perry got a chance to say his words every week. He was great in his guest spots on "West Wing." This show's going to be awesome.
CJ: The West Wing died when Sorkin left. I hope he brings that great writing to this new arena.
Boy Genius: Yeah, with John Wells at the helm they did that "ER" thing where SOMETHING BIG had to happen every week. Can't have a nuanced show about the Stackhouse filibuster anymore. Anyway, I think the MNF matchup is totally devoid of nuance. Jax and Pitt, and they're both sledgehammers on defense. Who comes out unscathed?
CJ: Tough one. How does Jacksonville win 12 games last year? I mean, really? How do they ever win? Leftwich always looks like he's one hit away from a body cast. Fred Taylor has 17 reconstructed knees.
Boy Genius: Yeah, but the line opened at Jax minus two, and it's now Jax plus two. Is Roethlisberger worth four points, or is this his "I'm Keith Hernandez" moment? He's not Superman, but I think he thinks he is.
Boy Genius: I'm onboard the Jags train. Great defense, big and fast wideouts, and Leftwich is a leader. I think Jax steals this one outright 17-14.
CJ: That's a pretty substantial move on the line, and the Jax deal is good. Those Jag wideouts may be the difference. Jones, Wilford, Williams. Unheralded, but Leftwich gets them the ball. I'm with you. Jacksonville wins.

Locks of the week

Boy Genius: Lock of the week?
Boy Genius: For me, it's San Diego. Play all your money at -11.5 on these guys, this one won't be that close.
CJ: Not a bad pick. I think it's Cincy giving 10 to the Browns. It won't be close either. In fact, if you're dying for a three team parlay, throw in the double digit line in Indy with the Colts.
Boy Genius: Well, good luck to us this week. One of these weeks I'm going to have to throw a lot of money out and back this stuff up with dollars. For everyone else? Fade me immediately, I couldn't be more wrong.
CJ: And, as I'll always say, I suck at sports betting. Have a good Sunday!

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