Hope you all had a successful day punting on the horses today, one blogger definitely did in Ian over at www.waywardlad.blogspot.com who found two very nice winners at 14/1 and 9/2. His blog his worth following over the winter as he puts up selections over the jumps.
Moving on to part 2 of the Week 5 lines. I’ll try not to bleat on so much –
Tennessee Titans (3-1) @ Pittsburgh Steelers (2-2) – Line (Titans +3) Over/Under (39.5)
The Steelers have doubts over QB Ben Roethlisberger and key running back Rashard Mendenhall, with further defensive injuries to the squad, added to a perceived lack of firepower has caused many observers to believe the team is not the same which reached last year’s Superbowl final. Defensively they appear sound – albeit not in Fantasy terms – thanks in part to their only home match against the Seahawks in which they won (24-0). The Titans for their part are an improving side but also have injury problems with wide receiver Kenny Britt out for the season, a lot rests on Chris Johnson’s shoulder and he’ll be pleased to take on a defense which lies 11th in conceding rushing yards. It’s a tough match up because I think a Steelers team with a fit and on fire QB and Mendenhall wins and they need to win to keep pace with the Ravens in the AFC North. The points spread doesn’t grab me either way it looks about right. No bet match mainly due to the injury situation.
Score Prediction Steelers 22 – Titans 17
Green Bay Packers (4-0) @ Atlanta Falcons (2-2) – Line (Falcons +5.5) Over/Under 53.5
A repeat of the playoff match last season in which Green Bay slaughtered the Falcons on their way to lifting the bowl, the Packers have started this season in terrific mood having beating the Panthers and Bears away and scored heavily in beating the Saints and Broncos at home. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers remains a machine and one who has many weapons to choose from, the Falcons for their part have stuttered so far this season and will have a fight on their hands to stay pace with New Orleans and Tampa in their division. Green Bay have scored an average of 37pts so far this season, against the Falcons 22.5pts. They also concede a fair few points and although this points spread looks right, Atlanta have given up the 8th most passing yards which should play into Rodgers hands to spread it around. This may prove to be the holders toughest test so far but the Falcons don’t look as strong this season and to beat the spread they’d have to put a better fight than the Bears who were beaten 17-27 in Chicago. Worth noting Chicago beat the Falcons 30-12 in week one. I think this one is another win for Green Bay.
Score Prediction Falcons 20 – Packers 33
Back Packers -5.5 @10/11
San Diego Chargers (3-1) @ Denver Broncos (1-3) – Line (Broncos +4) Over/Under 46
San Diego have scored an average of 22pts and conceded 21pts. Denver scored 20pts against 27.8pts against. San Diego have a few injury concerns not least to Gates who is unlikely to play again until after the bye week and Vincent Jackson their number one wide receiver. The Broncos are better at defending the run than the pass so far this year so they are problem areas, I’d also be concerned that Philip Rivers the Chargers QB has yet to hit top gear, they also have the propensity to flatter to deceive and have played three very poor sides to get their current record in the Vikings, Chiefs and Dolphins – note mind the Broncos are also a poor side. Looking at the line though I think you need to try and ignore the Broncos result last week against the Packers where they were stuffed out of sight prior to that they beat the (2-2) Bengals and narrowly lost at home to Oakland before losing at Tennessee again by only three points. It’s probably a 50/50 call but I feel the Broncos will keep this one tight especially being a divisional match up. I also think the scoring line may be a little high only just mind. Going to have a stab ..
Score Prediction Broncos 19 – Chargers 22
Back Broncos +4 @ 10/11
Back Under 46 @ 10/11
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-1) @ San Francisco 49ers (3-1) – Line (Buccaneers +3) Over/Under 41
Tampa come off a short week having faced the Colts in Florida on Monday night, they remain on a decent streak however having won their last three since an opening day loss to the Lions which doesn’t look as bad as it did then, fair to say they don’t get the recognition they deserve. The 49ers are a team I’d suggest are in transition the defense is solid and they took advantage of some sloppy play from the Eagles in the last half in week 4. They are also on a decent streak since having lost to the Cowboys in Week 2. Points wise Tampa average 21pts for them and 19pts against, whilst the 49ers have 23pts for and 18pts against, I’d argue though that the 49ers have played a couple of flashier sides in the Eagles and Cowboys who tend to feature in high scoring games. This match up reminds me somewhat of the 49ers game in Cincinnati where they won 13-8. Tampa are a doughty side but one who don’t have any stand out weapons, it will be close however I’d lean to Tampa covering the spread ahead of probably playing the points although it will be around the 40 mark.
Score Prediction 49ers 19 – Buccaneers 22
Back Buccaneers +3 @ 5/6
New York Jets (2-2) @ New England Patriots (3-1) – Line (Jets +9.5) Over/Under 49.5
You know what you’re going to get with Patriots, lots of yardage, lots of touchdowns and lots of points. The Jets for their part have also featured in three high scoring games, the only other one was where they themselves won (32-3) over the Jaguars. The Patriots are currently second in points scored and are some 50 yards clear of their nearest rivals in the league for passing yardage. The Jets passing defense should be noted is the second best currently so this may draw that stat back slightly albeit the Patriots feature highly on rushing yards also. The Jets so far have been weak on the run which should suit a high scoring game as the Patriots have given up most yards to the pass. Anyways what I’m getting at is with 7 of the games played featuring these teams so far this season above 50 points the 49.5pts is worth taking on. I’d expect a shoot-out in the air and although I think the Patriots will win the Jets have a fair bit to prove after a poor performance last week.
Score Predictions Patriots 38 – Jets 27
Back Over 49.5 @ 10/11
Seattle Seahawks (1-3) @ New York Giants (3-1) – Line (Seahawks +9.5) Over/Under 43.5
The Giants are a dogged outfit and this game should see them go to 4-1 in the standings and look in excellent health in the NFC East. The Seahawks are a poor side especially away from home having won only 5 matches on the road since the 2007 season. The Giants have played one match at home this year beaten the equally poor Rams 28-16 they have since defeated Arizona and Philadelphia on the road. The Seahawks on the road have been smashed by the Steelers without scoring a point and then beaten comprehensively by the 49ers by 16pts. The spread of 9.5pts looks small considering those two defeats and with the Giants running at (3-1). Not going to look at the points spread as it could go either way I’d side towards the unders mainly based on the Seahawks poor average on the road but it’s tight. I do think the Giants are the play and they will win relatively convincingly as they’re a better team than the 49ers and Steelers who both stuffed the Seahawks by more than the spread.
Score Predictions Giants 28 – Seahawks 14
Back Giants -9.5 @ 10/11
Will look at the Monday game nearer the time. So far 13pts staked we’ll see come Monday how we fare!
Away to London tomorrow so may not be an update before then, although I’ll try and have a look at Saturday’s racing as we have some top class juvenile action.