[SIZE=4][COLOR=”#A52A2A”][B]NFL Week 10 lines that make you go hmmm…[/B][/COLOR][/SIZE]
[I]When Jacksonville wins, it wins big, with margins of 16, 27, 21, 37 and 22 points in victories this season. Can the Jaguars cover again in Week 10?[/I]
[B]Minnesota Vikings at Washington Redskins (-1.5, 42.5)[/B]
The early offshore number came out with -2 on the Vikings and that quickly dropped to as low as -1 from the outset. I favor the offshore number, in fact, I made this Minnesota -2.5 to be honest.
As good as Washington looks at times, its season has been an up-and-down affair. A quality win in Seattle doesn’t mask the fact that they can’t seem to win against other top teams in the league. Prior to last Sunday, the Redskins fell to Dallas, Philadelphia and Kansas City, and their lone win was against the cellar-dwelling 49ers.
Minnesota has been pretty much lights out. Winners of four in a row, the Vikings defense has been their calling card. For six games in a row, they have not given up more than 17 points. This makes it a lot easier for the offense. Now, with a week off, both sides of the ball are well rested and ready to go. You have to think these guys are energized for this game.
No matter who you like with a line this low, all your asking for is your team to win. The spread appears to be a non-factor. That’s why I believe the value is with the Vikings. The way this line is moving, you just might want to wait to see if this hits the Pick’em level by game day.
[B]Los Angeles Chargers at Jacksonville Jaguars (-3.5, 41)[/B]
Again, the early number coming out from the offshores was -4.5 and that was quickly bet down to the current -3.5. And like Vikings-Redskins game, I agree with the bookmakers on this one. I’m riding the Jaguar Express while it’s hot and made this line closer to -5.5, bordering -6.
Despite Philip Rivers’ mounting passing yardage, the Chargers don’t seem to be scoring a lot. Their offense is mustering less than 19 points per game, averaging only 17 the past three weeks. Certainly, there’s nothing wrong with their defense, but after losing their first four games of the season, their three-game win streak seems a little tarnished beating teams like the Giants, Oakland and Denver. Three teams that total just eight wins for the season.
Jacksonville is hot. Add the return of top running back, Leonard Fournette, and the offense can keep some distance on the scoreboard. As for the defense, the Jaguars have held three of their last four opponents to single digits. When Jacksonville wins, it wins big, with margins of 16, 27, 21, 37 and 22 points.
The momentum appears to be with the Jaguars, who are locked in a two-way tie for first place in the AFC South. Don’t be afraid of the hook – not when this game should be around a touchdown difference.
[B]Cincinnati Bengals at Tennessee Titans (-5, 40.5)[/B]
Tennessee broke out of the gate at -5.5 and the line has been slowly creeping downwards, in some cases, as low as -4.5 at some books. I’m with the early money on this one. I made this no higher than -3.5 and was thinking -3 (-120) was better.
Cincinnati traditionally is a betting favorite for good reason. And although they don’t always play up to their expectations, the Bengals are a team that has the perception that they can break out at any time. With WR A.J. Green dodging the suspension bullet, the Bengals appear to be at their crossroads for this season. Their two losses in the past five weeks were to quality teams in Jacksonville and Pittsburgh. And if not for those defeats, they’d be in the thick of things in the AFC North. They’ll be in thicker things if they lose this week.
Tennessee is mounting the W’s but peeling back the layers a bit reveals wins against Baltimore, Cleveland and Indianapolis. The Titans’ combined efforts have yielded a mere seven wins total. With an erratic offense, it seems that Cincinnati can stay close all game and even win this one straight up.
After last week’s dismal display, I get the feeling the Bengals will have something to prove and will be highly energized to get this game underway. The value here is with the dog, grabbing as many points as you can.
Week 9 Record: 2-4 SU, 2-4 ATS
Overall Record: 27-27 SU, 23-30-1 ATS
Vikings (-1 ½, 42 ½) at Redskins – 1:00 PM EST[/B]
Record: 6-2 SU, 5-3 ATS, 4-4 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 16/1
The Vikings return from the bye week seeking their fifth consecutive victory after pulling away from the winless Browns in London two weeks ago, 33-16 as 11-point favorites. Minnesota’s defense continues to shut opponents down by allowing 17 points or less in six straight games, while outgaining each of those teams during this stretch. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was added to the active roster, but Case Keenum will remain the starter as he seeks his first 300-yard passing game since Week 2.
Record: 4-4 SU, 3-5 ATS, 5-3 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 40/1
The Redskins went to the west coast for the second time this season and knocked off an NFC contender for the second time. After defeating the Rams in Week 2, Washington pulled the trick again last week in a 17-14 triumph as eight-point underdogs at Seattle. That victory put an end to a two-game losing streak, as the ‘Skins improved to 4-1 against teams outside the NFC East. Washington and Minnesota have hooked up six times in the last seven seasons as the Vikings have captured four of those six matchups.
[B]Best Bet: Redskins + 1 ½
Chargers at Jaguars (-3 ½, 41) – 1:00 PM EST[/B]
Record: 3-5 SU, 3-4-1 ATS, 5-3 UNDER
Super Bowl Odds: 50/1
The Lightning Bolts have thrived on the highway this season compared to their new home in Carson. Los Angeles is 2-2 SU and 2-1-1 ATS away from southern California, including underdog victories over the Giants and Raiders. The Chargers are back from the bye week following a 21-13 setback at New England in Week 8 as 6 ½-point underdogs to halt a three-game losing streak. This series has been owned by the Chargers, who have won six straight meetings with the Jaguars since 2010, including a 38-14 blowout of Jacksonville last season in San Diego.
Record: 5-3 SU, 5-3 ATS, 4-4 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 25/1
The Jaguars’ defense continues to dominate as Jacksonville has allowed single-digits in each of its five victories. Jacksonville picked up consecutive wins for the first time this season in last week’s 23-7 rout of Cincinnati as six-point favorites, while cashing the UNDER for the third time in the past four games. Jaguars’ running back Leonard Fournette is expected to return to the lineup after missing last week’s win due to a violation of team rules.
[B]Best Bet: Chargers +3 ½
Bengals at Titans (-4 ½, 40 ½) – 1:00 PM EST[/B]
Record: 3-5 SU, 3-5 ATS, 5-3 UNDER
Super Bowl Odds: 100/1
The Bengals entered last week’s game at Jacksonville winners of three of their past four contests. However, wide receiver A.J. Green was ejected in the first quarter following a fight with Jacksonville’s Jalen Ramsey and the Bengals’ offense couldn’t get anything going in a 23-7 loss. For the third time this season, Cincinnati was held to 10 points or less, while the Bengals accumulated only 148 yards of offense. Cincinnati and Tennessee have met just twice since 2009 with the Bengals winning each time as the previous matchup came in 2014 at Paul Brown Stadium, 33-7.
Record: 5-3 SU, 3-4-1 ATS, 5-3 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 25/1
The Titans are heating up of late by pulling off three straight wins, including each of the past two by three points each. Tennessee held off Baltimore last week at home, 23-20, while eclipsing the OVER for the third straight time at Nissan Stadium. Five of the next six opponents for the Titans are currently below .500, although four of those games are away from Nashville. Tennessee has won seven of its last eight home contests dating back to last season.
[B]Best Bet: Titans -4 ½
Saints (-2 ½, 46 ½) at Bills – 1:00 PM EST[/B]
Record: 6-2 SU, 6-2 ATS, 4-4 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 12/1
The 0-2 start by the Saints seems like a long time ago as New Orleans has built a six-game winning streak to take over first place in the NFC South. New Orleans has also covered each time during this hot stretch, while coming off a pair of home victories over Chicago and Tampa Bay. Since losing the opener at Minnesota, the Saints are a perfect 3-0 SU/ATS away from the Superdome, while posting an incredible 12-2 ATS mark in their last 14 road games since December 2015.
Record: 5-3 SU, 5-2-1 ATS, 4-4 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 66/1
The Bills were tripped up by the Jets last Thursday, 34-21 to fall to 1-3 on the road. However, Buffalo has yet to lose at New Era Field this season by compiling a 4-0 SU and 3-0-1 ATS record, while putting up over 30 points in each of its last two home wins. The Bills have been outgained in the yardage category in seven straight games, but have covered in each of their two games as an underdog against NFC South opponents this season (Panthers and Falcons). Buffalo has dropped each of the past four meetings with New Orleans since 2001, including a 35-17 loss at the Superdome in 2013.
[B]Best Bet: Bills +2 ½
Cowboys at Falcons (-3, 50 ½) – 4:25 PM EST
Record: 5-3 SU, 5-3 ATS, 5-3 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 16/1
The Cowboys have rebounded from a minor two-game losing streak in early October by winning three straight contests. Dallas took care of Kansas City last Sunday, 28-17 as 2 ½-point favorites, highlighted by two touchdown passes and a touchdown run by quarterback Dak Prescott. The Cowboys were blown out in their first road games of the season at Denver, but are rolling away from the Lone Star State by beating the Cardinals, 49ers, and Redskins in their last three road contests.
Record: 4-4 SU, 2-6 ATS, 5-3 UNDER
Super Bowl Odds: 33/1
The Falcons didn’t seem to have a Super Bowl hangover following a fast 3-0 start. However, the Falcons have been grounded lately by dropping four of their last five games, including a 20-17 defeat at Carolina last week in their NFC South opener. Atlanta squandered a 10-0 lead, while being held to 17 points or less in all four losses this season. The Falcons erased a 21-7 deficit in a 39-28 victory at Dallas in their last meeting two seasons ago, highlighted by a 12-catch, 164-yard, two-touchdown performance by wide receiver Julio Jones.
[B]Best Bet: Falcons -3
Giants (-2 ½, 42) at 49ers – 4:25 PM EST[/B]
Record: 1-7 SU, 3-5 ATS, 4-4 OVER
Super Bowl Odds: 250/1
Amazing to think that these two teams met for the NFC Championship in 2011, but as they say, life comes at you fast. New York is coming off a humiliating 51-17 home loss to the Rams last week to fall to 0-4 SU/ATS at Met Life Stadium this season. However, the Giants haven’t been horrible on the highway as their only victory this season is at Denver, while covering three straight on the road. The Giants are making their first appearance ever at Levi’s Stadium, while traveling to the Bay Area for the first time since a 26-3 blowout of the Niners in 2012.
Record: 0-9 SU, 4-5 ATS, 5-4 UNDER
Super Bowl Odds: 5000/1
The 49ers acquired quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo at the trade deadline, but are in no rush to play the former Patriots’ backup. San Francisco is still searching for its first win under Kyle Shanahan after dropping a 20-10 home decision to Arizona last week. Following a 4-1 ATS run which included five losses by three points or less, the Niners have failed to score more than 10 points in each of the past three games, while losing each time by double-digits.
Best Bet: 49ers +2 ½[/B]
[B][I]Best Bets – Week 10 Sides
November 9, 2017[/I][/B]
[B]NFL Week 10 Best Bets – Sides[/B]
Week 9 was a good one for my NFL Best Bets as the decision to lay some small chalk with two teams ended up sweeping the board. Carolina and Arizona managed to hang on for outright wins and ATS covers, and I’m hoping for similar results from the two plays I’ve selected in Week 10.
The two best bets this week may not be the most attractive games on the board, but they do have something in common as they are both more of the mindset of fading teams that are on the verge of mutiny in 2017.
[B]Best Bet #1: Tennessee Titans -4.5[/B]
Tennessee managed to hold on to a 23-20 win over Baltimore last week, and now they host their second straight AFC North opponent when the Bengals come into town on Sunday. This is actually the third straight game against AFC North teams for Tennessee and they’ve got Pittsburgh on deck, so this run of conference non-division games will go a long way in determining the Titans playoff hopes this year.
Tennessee may be 0-1-1 ATS in their first two AFC North games so far, but neither the Browns or Ravens are quite as dysfunctional at the moment as the Cincinnati Bengals are and that’s saying something. The Bengals have been an utter disaster for much of the year and now they’ve got their All-Star WR AJ Green reenacting UFC fights on the football field. Throw on top of that a backup QB who’s filed a grievance against the organization for a botched trade that would have got him out of town, a long-tenured HC who’s completely lost the room and should be on his way out, and a starting QB in Andy Dalton who looks lost out on the field right now. Cincinnati is one more bad loss away from an all out mutiny within the organization, punting on 2017 and completely blowing things up to try and regain some sort of positivity within the organization going forward.
Defensively the Bengals are still pretty decent, but when the offense has scored a grand total of 7 points combined in the 2nd half of their last three games, things are bad. No halftime adjustments are being made, opposing defenses are keying on Green as Cincy’s only legit weapon, and not scoring in the final 30 minutes of NFL games is how a team piles up SU and ATS losses in a hurry (Bengals are 1-2 SU and 0-3 ATS in those three games).
Tennessee hasn’t exactly been great ATS-wise of late either with a 1-3-1 ATS mark over thier last four, but only two of those games were at home and they did go 1-0-1 ATS in those contests. The Titans prefer to run the ball down opponents throats to break their will, and with the Bengals “will” fractured and hanging on by a thread already, this could finally be the game we see the entire Cincinnati team blatantly quit on Marvin Lewis. That Titans ground attack will bury the Bengals in the 2nd half here, and with Cincinnati being 4-10 ATS with Dalton under center in their last 14 games against winning teams, Bengals fans better be prepared to abandon ship come Sunday night.
Best Bet #2: San Francisco 49ers +2.5[/B]
A game between the 1-7 SU New York Giants and 0-9 SU San Francisco 49ers is going to get next to nothing in terms of viewership during the 4 pm EST slot of games. The majority of football fans/bettors will gravitate towards the Dallas/Atlanta game for the most part, and the Houston/L.A Rams to a lesser extent, but this Giants/49ers game may turn out to be the easiest to bet of the three.
New York is in a similar position to the Bengals given their disastrous year, but unlike negative Bengals fans actively waiting for the mutiny to happen in Cincinnati, Giants fans know it’s already happening with their team in New York. There have been reports all week that HC Ben McAdoo has completely lost the room, the Giants are getting more and more desperate to move on from Eli Manning at QB, and it would be in the best interest of New York’s long-term franchise health to “tank” away the rest of 2017. Whether that ends up happening or not remains to be seen, but you’ve got to figure that motivation, energy, and focus is at an all-time low for the Giants right now – oh, and the cross-country trip just to struggle doesn’t exactly help morale either.
San Francisco has become a team that no better really wants a piece with their 0-9 SU start to the year (4-5 ATS), but unlike the Giants and all their dysfunction, the 49ers poor record simply comes from a lack of talent. That’s not exactly what you want to hear about a football team you are going to back, but everyone in the San Francisco organization knew this year would be rough and it’s just Step 1 in a full-blown rebuild. Yet, inside that locker room, the players are still a prideful bunch and have to be more enthused then they have been all year because they’ve got to view this game vs. New York as one they can legitimately win. Nobody wants to be remembered for being on a winless NFL team, and outside of road games against the Bears and Texans coming up, this may be San Francisco’s last legitimate shot to break that goose egg in the win column this year.
Furthermore, we can’t discount the fact that oddsmakers opened up this game with San Francisco being a -1/-1.5 point home favorite. The expected plethora of action has since come on the Giants as after all, they are the team who has at least won once this year, and nobody has really wanted any piece of the 49ers. But now that this line has flipped all the way to the original home favorites catching nearly a FG, I don’t care how bad these teams are, that’s value I can’t pass up. When you sit back and consider that the 49ers are trying to actively win (at least a couple of games in 2017) and the Giants are actively trying to lose right now, the 49ers at this underdog price appears to be the better play.
Opening up the week I was fully prepared to lay the -1 with the 49ers at home in this spot against this Giants team that’s going to explode from within in the coming weeks, but now that we’ve got even more value on the 49ers (and a ML play) and the dysfunctional Giants are a hugely popular public side (75% on ML, 80% on spread according to VegasInsider.com), I’ll be taking the points now and dabbing a bit on the 49ers ML (+125) as well.
[B][I]Best Bets – Week 10 Totals
November 9, 2017[/I][/B]
[B]NFL Week 10 Best Bets – Totals[/B]
Last week’s Totals Best Bets piece ended up splitting the board as the Bengals offensive woes in the 2nd halves of games continued, and despite even getting a bad number on the ‘under’ 51 in KC/Dallas – it closed at 53 – those two teams still managed to play a sub-50 point game.
Week 10 has quite a few unattractive games on the board overall, but the entire NFL season hasn’t been the greatest with all the injuries teams have suffered and some very suspect QB play.
Yet, that doesn’t mean we won’t see a few higher scoring games this week as we’ve got plenty of totals in the mid-to-low 40’s range, and I do believe we see at least a few of them surpass their numbers.
[B]Best Bet #1: Cincinnati/Tennessee Over 40.5[/B]
The fact that Cincinnati has scored just a single offensive TD during the 2nd half of their last three games is astonishing and burned me last week, but if the Bengals want to save their 2017 season, this offense has got to find a way to produce.
The Bengals are a franchise that’s in a bit of a dysfunctional state right now, but they did manage to catch a break when WR A.J Green was only fined and not suspended for his role in a fight last weekend. Green is by far the most explosive weapon QB Andy Dalton has at his disposal, and Dalton himself has to step up his level of play dramatically as well if the Bengals want a shot at the outright upset. But this lack of scoring in 2nd halves has to have been a focal point in the offensive meeting room, and all involved, (QB, WR, RB, Offensive Co-ordinator), should be better this week. I mean, they really can’t be much worse right?
Tennessee is a team that prefers to run the ball which isn’t ideal for ‘over’ plays, but the weakness of Cincy’s defense is against the run (116.5 yards allowed/game) and the Titans should take full advantage of it. They’ve got two great RB’s in DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry that should be able to find large holes created by their O-line. Cincy’s defense has allowed at least 23 points in road contests against teams not named Cleveland, meaning the Titans should be able to put up 24+ themselves on Sunday afternoon.
That means that the Bengals will have to pull their weight to the tune of at least 17 points, and given this Week 10 game is a vital turning point in their 2017 campaign, I believe the Bengals offense steps up and performs. Cincinnati saw how Baltimore was able to put up multiple scores in a comeback effort last week against this Titans defense, and with the Bengals on a 22-8 O/U run after scoring 14 or fewer points the last time out – including 2-1 O/U this year, this game should see at least 44+ points by the time the final horn sounds.
[B]Best Bet #2: Cleveland/Detroit Over 43.5[/B]
The winless Browns are coming off their bye week after they were spanked in London two weeks ago, giving them plenty of time to work on all the problems they’ve got on both sides of the ball. Cleveland’s issues on more on the offensive end as they’ve only scored 20 or more points once all year and a stat like that speaks to just how bad their QB play has been. But if there ever was a time to put a bit of faith in a young QB like DeShone Kizer and a flailing Browns offense, it would be after a week off where practice time and the like gives them a chance to regroup.
Furthermore, what do the Browns really have to lose at this point of the year by going out and adopting a “gunslinger” mentality to try and get in the win column? Cleveland is staring another possible winless season right in the face for the 2nd straight year, and well an outright victory may not be in the cards as a double-digit road underdog this week, if their offense can at least take some strides forward and put up 20+ for the first time since Week 3, who knows what the remaining seven weeks hold in terms of potential wins for Cleveland. The organization is 3-1 O/U the last four years after their bye week, and on an 8-2 O/U run in their last 10 on the road overall.
Admittedly, most of those Browns ‘overs’ away from home have come thanks to the opposition piling on the points against Cleveland, and that’s some good news for a Detroit team who’s had red zone efficiency problems all year long. Two weeks ago against Pittsburgh those red zone issues were magnified and exposed as they cost the Lions the game, and even on MNF last week in Green Bay, nothing really operated smoothly for Detroit in that regard. Well, getting to face this Browns defense should fix some of those immediate concerns for the Lions attack, and a 4-0 O/U run going off a MNF game as an organization suggests the short week doesn’t hurt Detroit in terms of points being scored one way or another.
If Cleveland does decide to adopt a more aggressive approach to try and obtain that first W, the Lions will be able to match that aggressiveness with some drives that end in TD’s themselves. Something like a 30-14 Detroit win is very reasonable to project, but I do believe we see a few more points then just winning by the hook here.
[B][I]NFL notebook: Elliott’s suspension back in effect
November 9, 2017[/I][/B]
Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott had his latest legal motion denied by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York on Thursday, meaning his six-game NFL suspension is back in effect.
Barring a last-minute maneuver, Elliott will begin his suspension when the Cowboys visit the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.
Elliott is in line to miss at least four games barring some unforeseen development. His next court date is set for Dec. 1, after the NFL Players Association requested an expedited appeal of Thursday’s decision.
Elliott’s suspension was immediately reinstated upon the court’s ruling.
If the six-game suspension sticks, Elliott will next be eligible to play against the Seattle Seahawks on Dec. 24.
Elliott ranks second in the NFL with 783 rushing yards. He led the league with 1,631 last season as a rookie.
[B]–The Indianapolis Colts[/B] released two-time Pro Bowl cornerback Vontae Davis, the team announced.
The move comes one day after multiple outlets reported that Davis would have season-ending groin surgery. The 29-year-old reportedly had been seeking additional medical opinions before accepting the decision to have surgery.
Also, the Colts promoted receiver Matt Hazel to the 53-man roster from the practice squad.
[B]–The New England Patriots[/B] claimed tight end Martellus Bennett off waivers, the team announced. The move came one day after Bennett was waived by the Green Bay Packers.
Bennett, who was released by Green Bay with the designation that he failed to disclose a physical condition, rejoins the team with which he won a Super Bowl ring last season.
[B]–The Philadelphia Eagles[/B] signed defensive tackle Tim Jernigan to a four-year contract extension, the team announced.
The deal is worth $48 million, including $26 million guaranteed, according to ESPN.
–Tampa Bay Buccaneers[/B] quarterback Jameis Winston was fined $12,154 for his role during an altercation in Sunday’s game against the New Orleans Saints.
Winston’s tap on the helmet of Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore instigated an incident in which Buccaneers receiver Mike Evans came running over and drilled the rookie in the back. Evans received a one-game suspension and a $40,588 fine earlier this week.
Winston’s action came after he had left the game with an injury to his passing shoulder that is expected to sideline him for at least two games.
–Cincinnati Bengals[/B] wide receiver A.J. Green said he does not plan to appeal the reported $42,000 fine he received from the NFL for punching Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey.
[B]–Detroit Lions [/B]right guard T.J. Lang has entered the NFL’s concussion protocol, coach Jim Caldwell announced.
Lang’s concussion symptoms developed during practice on Wednesday, two days removed from the Lions’ 30-17 win over his former team, the Green Bay Packers.
The concussion puts Lang’s availability for Sunday’s matchup against the Cleveland Browns (0-8) in jeopardy.
–New Orleans Saints[/B] cornerback Delvin Breaux will remain on injured reserve for the rest of the season following a setback sustained in his recovery from a broken fibula, coach Sean Payton announced.
Breaux had been designated to return from the injury, which he sustained in training camp. He will be a restricted free agent next season.
[B][I]NFL HALFWAY: Strong as ever, kickers remain a key to success
November 9, 2017[/I][/B]
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) When the Minnesota Vikings signed Kai Forbath last season, he’d gone 10+ months without kicking in a meaningful game.
Having emerged as the most viable candidate from the tryout group assembled amid Blair Walsh’s persistent struggles, Forbath was the favored option when the Vikings made the change. He’d diligently kept up his kicking and training during the hiatus, of course, but there was no way he could actually create game-like atmospheres and conditions in preparation for the return to live action.
Forbath stepped in and performed like he’d never missed a turn. He’s not the only one in the NFL fraternity who has done so.
”It’s tough coming straight in and having to play a few days after your tryout,” Forbath said, ”but that’s part of the job.”
In 15 games for the Vikings since his arrival, Forbath has made all but one of his 37 field goal attempts. That’s the best rate in the league over that span.
”Fortunately for me it wasn’t my first time doing that, so I had a little experience coming in and doing it right away,” said Forbath, who’d been released by Washington after the first game of the 2015 season before joining New Orleans six weeks later.
Forgetting for a moment the perplexing recurrence of missed extra points, Forbath has been an unquestionable success coming straight from the street. Rookie Harrison Butker has also filled in seamlessly for AFC West leader Kansas City, which lost Cairo Santos to groin trouble three games in. Another rookie, Jake Elliott, has been holding his own for NFL-best Philadelphia after a hip injury waylaid Caleb Sturgis in the season opener. The 35-year-old Mike Nugent has fared well over the last two games for Dallas after stalwart Dan Bailey hurt his groin.
”Those guys are always working out, always prepared, always ready for any type of workout that could help them make a team down the line,” Vikings special teams coordinator Mike Priefer said. ”You can tell the guys, when they come to workouts, if they haven’t been working out a lot lately because they just don’t go out and perform very well. Especially kicking and punting, even snapping, too: It’s like golf. It’s like any kind of specialty type of sport. You’ve got to do it a lot. You have to continually work on that if you’re going to be good at. Especially for a workout: You might get called on a Monday for a workout on Tuesday.”
Incumbents around the league have been thriving, too. Aside from the longer 33-yard distance for extra points, there’s never been a better time in NFL history to be a kicker. There are so many artificial surfaces in the NFL’s stadiums and lifelong opportunity to hone their craft and learn the best techniques.
”The science of it has changed a lot. When these older guys were kicking back in the day, they were kicking the ball just like a soccer ball. Now guys are going to camps when they’re young,” Forbath said. ”It has gotten pretty technical.”
According to research by SportRadar, the league-wide field goal rate is 83.6 percent. That’s slightly down from the 2013 peak, which was 86.5 percent, but it’s a marked improvement from 15 years ago, when NFL kickers combined to make 77.5 percent of their field goals.
From long range, they’re as on-target as ever. The league-wide rate from 50-plus yards is 69 percent, which is on pace to establish an NFL record. In 2013, that number was 67.1 percent. In 2002? Only 51.8 percent of 50-plus yard attempts were successful.
Forbath and Elliott are two of six kickers in the league this season who have made four or more 50-yarders.
According to the Pro Football Reference database , the five most accurate field goal kickers in league history are all active: Bailey, Baltimore’s Justin Tucker, Forbath, Buffalo’s Steven Hauschka, and New England’s Stephen Gostkowski.
That would explain why Gostkowski was so upset about missing two of six field goal tries in his team’s last game, despite a victory.
”I get mad. It’s going to bother me for a week, probably two weeks, but that’s just part of the game,” Gostkowski said. ”If you can’t deal with it, then you probably shouldn’t be here.”
Keeping an even keel amid the seven missed extra points in 30 attempts for the Vikings has helped Forbath, for sure. He’s 21 for 22 on field goals, tied for the second-most makes in the NFL.
”He went through his up and downs in his career early and seems to have found his groove here,” Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said. ”It’s a pretty good, comforting feeling to know that when your guy goes out there to kick the field goals that he’s got a 97 percent chance of making it.”
[B][I]Vegas Money Moves – Week 10
November 10, 2017[/I][/B]
Sharp action has jumped on a couple sides Las Vegas sports books will eventually need in Sunday’s Week 10 NFL action. There are also a few large favorites involving popular public teams the books know they’re going to have beat down to have a winning day.
“This one is the most fun of the week,” an excited Jason Simbal said Friday in regards to booking Sunday’s card for his seven CG Technology sports books. “All the sharps are on the Browns. They took +12.5, +12, and then +11.5 last night — all max bets. I’m going to leave it at (Lions) -11 for now and see where it takes us because I know the majority of the public action this week isn’t taking the Browns.”
The Detroit Lions (4-4) are one of three double-digit favorites Sunday which causes a danger alert for the sports books because large money-line parlays and teasers will create some major risk. Pittsburgh is -10 at Indianapolis and the Los Angeles Rams are 12-point home favorites over quarterback Tom Savage and the Texans. Watching Houston’s offense without DeShaun Watson behind center is eye opening to just how good Watson was as a rookie.
The winless Browns (0-8) have gone 2-6 against the spread this season. In their last 16 road games, the Browns have gone an ugly 3-12-1 ATS. But still, inflated lines on the Browns opponents attract the wise guys tpo Cleveland. The Lions have gone 4-9 ATS in their last 13 and come off a Monday night win at Green Bay, which snapped a three-game losing skid.
The popular Steelers have taken 87 percent of the cash wagered on the game at William Hill sports books through Thursday night. The 3-6 Colts have covered their last two and five of nine this season. Pittsburgh (6-2) comes off a bye and have won and covered their last three with an attacking defense that is allowing just 16.4 points per game which has helped them become the best ‘under’ team (7-1) in the NFL. Despite the Steelers total trend, this total has moved up from 43.5 to 45.
Other one-sided tickets written games at William Hill’s 107 sports books across Nevada include the Bears (80%) at home against the Packers, Jets (91%) at Tampa Bay, Rams (87%) at home against Houston, Cowboys (89%) at Atlanta and Patriots (84%) at Denver.
The most bet game of the week so far is also the Sunday Night Football game, which means the result of the game will probably dictate whether or not the books win on Sunday.
“The biggest public play of the week has been the Patriots at Denver,” said Simbal, who has the Patriots -7 -120. “It’s been all Pats and I don’t think that is going to change. We have a ticket ratio on them already at 8.8-to-1 and that figure will rise over the weekend.
“While we haven’t had a lot of tickets written on the Broncos, the bets that did come on them were all sharp guys taking +7.5,” he explained. “There were four of them.”
Simbal also said that despite the large Broncos (3-5) money, he’ll still be rooting for Denver to cover or win because the parlay liability from the first 11 games will have the majority of the payout tickets tied to the Patriots (6-2). The combination of the three double-digit favorites and the Patriots covering would be a crushing four-bagger on all payout charts (teasers, parlays, money-line parlays, parlay cards).
“Yeah, we’re going to need the dog to cover a couple those,” Simbal said, despite already having large money on the Browns and Patriots.
There’s one other game the sharps jumped at during the week. It’s the battle for the overall No. 1 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft with the 1-7 New York Giants visiting the 0-9 San Francisco 49ers. Sam Darnold or Josh Rosen? I don’t know if there’s a loser in either selection, so let’s see both sides play the game to win.
“They’ve (sharps) pushed the Giants up -2.5 -120 after we opened the 49ers -1,” said Simbal, CG’s VP of risk management. “We took max bets at Giants +1, pick, and then we went to Giants -2 and they laid -2 and -2.5, which is where we’re at now, -120.”
Rookie QB C.J. Beathard is expected to start again for the 49ers while new acquisition Jimmy Garoppolo will be on the sideline in uniform and ready to go if needed. The Giants have lost and failed to cover their last two — both at home — following their only win at Denver. The 49ers have covered only twice in their last 11 home games.
Simbal also said his books took some sharp action on the Jets (4-5) at Tampa Bay (2-6). They opened the Bucs -1.5 and the number ran to Jets being -2.5. The Bucs are starting Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback for the injured Jameis Winston. They’ve gone a disappointing 1-6-1 ATS so far. The Jets have been one of the best cover teams in the league at 6-2-1 ATS. Jets QB Josh McCown has completed 70.4 percent of his passes this season.
[B][I]Total Talk – Week 10
November 11, 2017[/I][/B]
The ‘under’ produced a 7-6 mark in Week 9 and that record could’ve easily been 10-3 to the low side. Outside of the two easy ‘over’ winners between the Broncos-Eagles and Rams-Giants matchups, the other four tickets that went high received some late explosions. Those games included the Bills at Jets, Ravens at Titans, Raiders at Dolphins and of course we can’t forget the ‘bad beat’ in the Lions-Packers game on Monday Night Football. Losing an ‘under’ bet on an untimed down is a tough way to lose, lucky way to win. Through nine weeks of the NFL regular season, the ‘over’ holds a 67-64-1 record.
Listed below are the largest line moves as of Saturday morning based off the Week 10 openers posted last Sunday at BookMaker.eu.
[B]Pittsburgh at Indianapolis: 43 to 45
N.Y. Jets at Tampa Bay: 41 to 43 ½
New Orleans at Buffalo: 48 ½ to 47 ½
Houston at L.A. Rams: 47 to 45 ½
Dallas at Atlanta: 50 ½ to 48 ½
New England at Denver: 46 ½ to 44 ½[/B]
After three straight solid defensive efforts, it appears that bettors are starting to believe that the Saints have become an ‘under’ team. Their total at Buffalo has dropped and Scott Cooley of BookMaker.eu talks about the drop.
He said, “Really looking forward to the Saints-Bills matchup as it will give the Buffalo defense and New Orleans offense great litmus tests. I think the total drop is warranted as I expect the Bills’ defense to come out on top of this bout.”
Another indoor team watching the total drop in Week 10 is Atlanta, who hosts Dallas.
“I think the sharps are hitting the under in Dallas-Atlanta due to the unknown effectiveness of the offense without Zeke, as well as Tyron Smith. We shouldn’t be too exposed in the end however as the public will pound the over at whatever number,” Cooley added.
One total that jumped up was on the Jets-Buccaneers game, which could have you scratching your head considering both teams are dealing with key injuries and suspensions to their offensive units.
Cooley explained, “I think you can look to the fact that the Jets haven’t been as offensively deficient as expected this year, and the we know that Mr. Harvard will be good for a couple of turnovers in plus territory. The number feels about right at 43 or 44.”
Mr. Harvard is Jets former quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and he’ll be starting for Tampa Bay this week with Jameis Winston nursing a shoulder injury.
Along with the NY-Tampa Bay game, Cooley told VI that BookMaker.eu is also has a lot exposure on the ‘over’ in the Pittsburgh-Indianapolis.
Excluding this past Thursday’s result between Seattle and Arizona, the ‘under’ has gone 27-12 (69%) in divisional contests this season and that includes a 4-1 record to the low side last week. The one ‘over’ was the aforementioned ‘bad beat’ between the Packers and Lions.
There’s only one divisional matchup this week and it happens to have the lowest total (37 ½) on the board, plus it’s a rematch game. I mention that because we’ve seen the totals on these games produce the opposite result in the second encounter so far this season.
[B]Green Bay at Chicago:[/B] In Week 4, Green Bay dropped Chicago 35-14 at home in a Thursday Night game and the ‘over’ (44 ½) connected behind four passing touchdowns from Packers QB Aaron Rodgers. He’s out for this game and so is Mike Glennon, who started for the Bears in that contest and is now the backup. This game will have Brett Hundley and Mitch Trubisky taking over at QB for the Pack and Bears respectively. Chicago has gone 3-1 to the ‘under’ with the rookie and the lone ‘over’ came against Baltimore, which featured three defensive and special team touchdowns. Hundley should be 2-0 to the ‘under’ and I won’t touch on last Monday’s result anymore.
AFC vs. NFC[/B]
With only one divisional game on tap, that leaves us with a handful of non-conference matchups. We haven’t had a solid lean one way or the other but through nine weeks, the ‘over’ holds a 19-15-1 edge in these contests.
N.Y. Jets at Tampa Bay:[/B] The Jets have shown some life on offense recently (28, 20, 34) and that’s led to a 3-0 ‘over’ run. Meanwhile, Tampa Bay will be limited offensively (QB Wintson, WR Evans) this week and the unit has been held to 13 total points the last two games. Defensively, the Buccaneers are still near the bottom on the league in scoring (24.8 PPG), yards per game (389) and yards per play (5.9). Make a note that it’s rare to see the Jets as road favorites but they’ve been solid (4-1) in this role recently and so has the ‘under’ (4-1) as well.
[B]New Orleans at Buffalo:[/B] Saints enter this matchup on a 3-0 ‘under’ run while the Bills are holding a 3-0 ‘over’ streak. I’m still not sold on either team defensively and their overall stats aren’t exactly eye-opening but you can’t ignore the fact that they make plays. Plus it helps that Buffalo (17 takeaways, 1st) and New Orleans (12, 10th) have both created a ton of turnovers. The Bills offense has been much better at home (27.8 PPG) this season and the team has posted 28 PPG off a loss this season. Buffalo was just embarrassed at the Jets last Thursday and will have extra time to focus here. For those of you believing the Saints aren’t the same team on the road, my colleague Kevin Rogers pointed out in his ‘Pick Six’ piece that New Orleans is 12-2 ATS in its last 14 away.
[B]Cleveland at Detroit:[/B] The Lions have been a solid ‘over’ bet at home (3-1) but their last four games versus AFC opponents have all went ‘under’ the number and that includes their result vs. the Steelers two weeks ago from Ford Field. The Browns don’t have much of a pulse these days and it appears that the defense seems to pack it in on the road, allowing 24, 31, 33 points and they just gave up 33 at London in a designated home tilt.
[B]Houston at L.A. Rams: [/B]I’m guessing the Rams-Over combination will likely be a popular wager in the late games this Sunday and I would advise bettors to be careful. While Los Angeles has put up some crooked numbers on offense this season, it hasn’t played in California in over a month when Seattle stifled them in a 16-10 loss. For whatever reason, the home numbers are down and even the 46 they posted over the Colts in Week 1 featured a couple pick-six scores by the defense. Due to the QB injury, it’s hard to expect much from Houston offensively but its defense could make this game competitive.
[B]Miami at Carolina:[/B] (See Below)
[B]Under the Lights[/B]
As mentioned above, the MNF result was a fortunate ‘over’ result and that helped the high side go 3-0 in Week 9. The ‘over’ has gone 19-11 (63%) in night games this season, which includes this past Thursday’s result between the Seahawks and Cardinals.
[B]New England at Denver:[/B] The late-night chase game could have you scratching your head on this total. The Patriots started the season with four straight ‘over’ wins but followed that run with four consecutive ‘under’ tickets and even though the defense doesn’t boast great statistics, they’ve only allowed 12.8 PPG during this span. At the same time, the New England offense (21.8 PPG) hasn’t been clicking on all cylinders lately and neither has been the Broncos defense. That unit has allowed 31 PPG in their last four games, resulting in a four-game losing streak albeit three of the losses were on the road. At home, Denver is still stout defensively and they’ve kept Tom Brady in check when he visits. The Pats are 1-3 in the last four road games at Denver and the offense (18.5 PPG) was less than stellar.
[B]Miami at Carolina[/B]: Low total (38 ½) for this non-conference matchup and the number seems fair when you look at both offensive units. The Panthers are on a 3-0 ‘under’ run and the defense has been solid (37 points) during this span. Miami has shown a little pop in its last three games (31, 24) but it was also shutout in between those efforts. If you include their other shutout versus the Saints from London, the Dolphins are averaging 9 PPG away from home this season.
Going all in on the ‘under’ in the Bucs-Saints matchup cost me twice but I caught a fortunate push on the Ravens-Titans game and it was nice to see the Broncos offense actually showed up. The weekly deficit ($120) was still in the read and we’re down over five units ($560) with eight weeks of the regular season left. As always, Press, Pass or Fade but in the end – Good Luck!
Best Over: Pittsburgh-Indianapolis 45
Best Under: Cincinnati-Tennessee 40 ½
Best Team Total: Under 26 New England
Three-Team Total Teaser (8.5-Point, +100)
< Under 46 Green Bay-Chicago
Over 35 ½ Cleveland-Detroit
Under 53 New England-Denver[/B]
[B][I]NFL notebook: Luck searching for shoulder treatment
November 11, 2017[/I][/B]
Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, who went on season-ending injured reserve last week, continues to look for answers about his surgically repaired right shoulder.
Sources told ESPN’s Mike Wells and Chris Mortensen that the 28-year-old Luck is in Europe seeking treatment on his throwing shoulder.
The Colts decided to place Luck on the IR Nov. 2 following his visit with doctors to ask why he still had soreness in his right shoulder. The move ended months of speculation about whether Luck would play this season after he underwent surgery in January.
Luck finally returned to practice on Oct. 4 for the first of two times since December 2016. He practiced two more times before being shut down by the team as he continued to have shoulder soreness. Luck, who has not taken a snap in a game since Week 17 last season, underwent surgery to repair a torn labrum on Jan. 15.
–The Cincinnati Bengals[/B] placed running back Jeremy Hill on season-ending injured reserve with an ankle injury.
Hill tweaked an ankle in last Saturday’s walkthrough and did not practice during the week ahead of Sunday’s game against the Tennessee Titans.
Hill’s career in Cincinnati is likely over as he will be an unrestricted free agent after the season. His role was reduced in 2017 after the team drafted rookie Joe Mixon in the second round.
The Bengals’ second-round pick in 2014, Hill had just 116 rushing yards and no touchdowns on 37 carries this season despite starting seven games. In his rookie season, he rushed for 1,124 yards and nine touchdowns.
[B]–Kansas City Chiefs [/B]defensive tackle Roy Miller was arrested in Jacksonville, Fla., and charged with domestic battery.
Miller, 30, was taken into custody on suspicion of domestic battery and booked into the Duval County Jail at 4:53 a.m. ET, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Department of Corrections.
The incident involved a minor injury, according to local news outlets. Miller was released on his own recognizance after an initial court appearance Saturday afternoon. Another hearing was set for Nov. 28.
With the AFC West-leading Chiefs (6-3) on a bye this week, Miller traveled to Florida.
[B]–The Miami Dolphins[/B] activated safety T.J. McDonald off the reserve/suspended list.
McDonald was suspended the first eight games this season for violating the NFL’s policy and program for substances of abuse.
McDonald, 26, pleaded no contest in January to a reduced form of DUI. He was sentenced to 36 months probation and required to serve 200 hours of community service.
The 6-foot-2, 223-pound McDonald signed a one-year deal with the Dolphins as an unrestricted free agent on March 31. The team then signed him to a four-year extension worth $24 million, including $10 million guaranteed, in September.
[B]–The Seattle Seahawks[/B] left Arizona Thursday night with a lengthy list of injuries as over 10 players had to leave the game against the Cardinals at one point or another.
And while players weren’t fond of Thursday Night Football games before their win in the desert, wide receiver Doug Baldwin was especially critical of the endeavor in the game’s aftermath. Baldwin believes the Thursday games should be banned.
“This s— should be illegal,” Baldwin said. “It is not OK. It’s not OK. You can quote me on that. This is not OK. … Absolutely, guys do not have enough time to recover. You can’t recover in four days.”
Baldwin was one of at least 15 players hurt or injured in the game between the two teams. He had a hip issue flare up on him in pregame warmups. A dozen Seahawks in total eventually had injuries in some fashion coming out of the game.
[B][I]NFL Today, Week 10
November 12, 2017[/I][/B]
Monday, Nov. 13[/B]
Miami at Carolina, 8:30 p.m. EST, ESPN. The Dolphins (4-4) are averaging a league-low 14.5 points per game, but Jay Cutler returned last week from cracked ribs and had his best performance with Miami by completing a career-high 81 percent of passes (34 of 42) for 311 yards with three touchdowns against Oakland. The Panthers (6-3) try to keep pace with first-place New Orleans (7-2) in the NFC North. Cam Newton has been solid in five previous Monday night appearances, averaging 273.8 yards passing with 11 TDs and four INTs.
– Jared Goff, Rams, passed for a career-high 355 yards and four touchdowns to lead Los Angeles to its fourth straight victory, 33-7 over Houston.
– Case Keenum, Vikings, threw touchdowns to four different receivers to build a big lead, and NFC North-leading Minnesota won its fifth in a row by beating Washington 38-30.
– Tom Brady, Patriots, had three TD passes and finished 25 of 34 for 266 yards in New England’s 41-16 victory at Denver.
– Matthew Stafford, Lions, threw three touchdown passes in the second half to help Detroit come back and beat winless Cleveland 38-24.
– Marcus Mariota, Titans, tossed a 7-yard touchdown pass to DeMarco Murray with 36 seconds left and Tennessee rallied to beat Cincinnati 24-20 for its fourth consecutive victory.
– C.J. Beathard, 49ers, threw for 288 yards and two touchdowns and ran for a third score to lead San Francisco to its first win of the season with a 31-21 victory over the New York Giants.
– Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers, threw two second-half touchdown passes to erase a 14-point deficit and help Pittsburgh top Indianapolis 20-17.
– Mark Ingram, Saints, had 131 yards rushing and scored three times in New Orleans’ 47-10 victory at Buffalo.
– DeMarco Murray, Titans, ran for two touchdowns and also caught a 7-yard TD pass with 36 seconds left to help lead Tennessee past Cincinnati 24-20.
– Alvin Kamara, Saints, ran for 106 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries and also caught five passes for 32 yards as New Orleans rolled past Buffalo 47-10.
– Isaiah Crowell, Browns, had a season-high 90 yards and a score on 16 carries in Cleveland’s 38-24 loss at Detroit.
– Carlos Hyde, 49ers, rushed for 98 yards on 17 attempts in San Francisco’s 31-21 victory over the New York Giants.
– Adam Thielen, Vikings, had eight catches for a season-high 166 yards in Minnesota’s 38-30 win at Washington.
– Michael Thomas, Saints, caught nine passes for 117 yards in New Orleans’ 47-10 rout of Buffalo.
– Robert Woods, Rams, finished with eight catches for 171 yards, including a career-best 94-yard TD reception, in Los Angeles’ 33-7 win over Houston.
– Austin Ekeler, Chargers, had two touchdown catches in Los Angeles’ 20-17 overtime defeat at Jacksonville.
– Sterling Shepard, Giants, caught 11 passes for 142 yards in New York’s 31-21 loss at San Francisco.
– Dion Lewis, Patriots, returned a kickoff 103 yards for a touchdown to help lead New England to a 41-16 win at Denver.
– Josh Lambo, Jaguars, made a 30-yard field goal with 3:12 remaining in overtime, giving Jacksonville a 20-17 victory against the Los Angeles Chargers.
– Chris Boswell, Steelers, kicked a 33-yard field goal as time expired to give Pittsburgh a 20-17 victory at Indianapolis.
– Corey Grant, Jaguars, ran for a 56-yard touchdown on a fake punt in Jacksonville’s 20-17 overtime win against the Los Angeles Chargers.
– Greg Zuerlein, Rams, kicked four field goals in Los Angeles’ 33-7 rout of Houston.
– Corey Liuget, Chargers, blocked an extra-point attempt in the first quarter of Los Angeles’ 20-17 overtime loss at Jacksonville. It marked the first blocked PAT for the Chargers since John Parrella knocked away a kick by Kansas City’s Todd Peterson in 2001.
– Adrian Clayborn, Falcons, had a franchise-record six sacks, forced two fumbles and recovered a fumble in Atlanta’s 27-7 win against Dallas.
– Nevin Lawson, Lions, forced a fumble, recovered it and ran it into the end zone 44 yards for a score in Detroit’s 38-24 win over Cleveland.
– Nick Perry, Packers, had three sacks to help Green Bay beat Chicago 23-16 and snap a three-game losing streak.
– Tre Boston, Chargers, had two interceptions in Los Angeles’ 20-17 overtime loss at Jacksonville.
– D.J. Swearinger, Redskins, intercepted consecutive throws by Case Keenum in Washington’s 38-30 loss to Minnesota.
STREAKS & STATS[/B]
New Orleans rushed for 298 yards, including 131 by Mark Ingram and 106 by Alvin Kamara, and a franchise-record six touchdowns against the Bills in a 47-10 rout. The Saints are the fifth team in NFL history, including the postseason, to rush for at least 295 yards and six TDs in a single game, joining the 1940 Chicago Bears (Dec. 8, 1940, NFL championship), 1950 New York Giants (Nov. 19, 1950), 1951 Los Angeles Rams (Nov. 18, 1951) and 1957 Cleveland Browns (Nov. 24, 1957). … Tennessee rallied to beat Cincinnati 24-20 for its fourth consecutive victory, the Titans’ longest winning streak since getting five straight in 2009. … Titans kicker Ryan Succop’s NFL record streak of successful field goals inside the 50 finally ended at 56 after his first attempt, a 48-yarder in the second quarter against the Bengals. He came in having easily topped the previous league mark of 46 in a row, set by Matt Bryant of Atlanta between 2013 and 2015. It was Succop’s first miss from inside 50 yards since Sept. 21, 2014, in a loss at Cincinnati. … Tampa Bay entered its 15-10 win over the New York Jets with a league-low eight sacks. The Buccaneers nearly doubled that as six players – Robert Ayers Jr., Gerald McCoy, Kendell Beckwith, Darryl Tapp, Clinton McDonald and Will Clarke – got to Josh McCown. … The Los Angeles Rams cruised past Houston 33-7 to improve to 7-2, their best start since 2001, when they went 8-1 in St. Louis and made the Super Bowl. … New England’s 41-16 win at Denver was its 12th straight on the road. They Patriots also won a dozen consecutive road games from 2006-08. The NFL record is 18, set by the Joe Montana-led San Francisco 49ers from 1988-90.
Atlanta’s Adrian Clayborn had a career-high and franchise-record six sacks, forced two fumbles and recovered a fumble in the Falcons’ 27-7 win against Dallas. The six sacks are tied for the second most in a game, behind only Derrick Thomas’ seven in 1990, since sacks became an official statistic in 1982. … The Falcons’ Matt Ryan has 40,073 passing yards in 151 career games, reaching 40,000 in the fewest games in NFL history, surpassing the previous record held by Drew Brees (152). … New England’s Tom Brady won his 86th game as a starter in the Patriots’ 41-16 victory at Denver, breaking a tie for first in NFL history with Peyton Manning.
New Orleans defeated Buffalo 47-10 to improve to 7-2, becoming the second team since the merger in 1970 to start 0-2 and win its next seven games. The 1993 Dallas Cowboys are the only other team to accomplish that feat, and won the Super Bowl that season.
GOFF GOES OFF[/B]
Jared Goff completed 25 of 37 passes (67.6 percent) for 355 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 125.4 passer rating in the Los Angeles Rams’ 33-7 win over Houston. Goff passed for 311 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions for a 146.8 passer rating last week, becoming the first player in franchise history to throw for at least 300 yards and three TDs with no INTs in consecutive games. Goff threw a 94-yard touchdown pass to Robert Woods, the third-longest offensive play from scrimmage in franchise history and the longest since 1964, when Bill Munson tossed a 95-yard TD pass to Bucky Pope in 1964.
[B]THEY COME IN BUNCHES[/B]
Adrian Clayborn set an Atlanta record with six sacks and forced a pair of fumbles to lead the Falcons past the Dallas Cowboys 27-7. He surpassed the team record of five sacks in a game, held by Chuck Smith and Hall of Famer Claude Humphrey, and matched the second-most sacks in NFL history. Derrick Thomas, Osi Umenyiora and Fred Dean are the only other players credited with six sacks in a game, while Thomas holds the league record with seven for Kansas City against the Seahawks on Nov. 11, 1990. Clayborn had more sacks in this contest than any other season except for his rookie year in 2011, when he had 7 1/2. He came into Sunday with two sacks on the season and 22 1/2 over his seven-year career.
BRETT GETS A `W'[/B]
Brett Hundley threw for 212 yards and a touchdown, leading Green Bay to its first win since losing Aaron Rodgers, a 23-16 victory over the Chicago Bears that snapped a three-game losing streak. Hundley, making his third start for Rodgers, completed 18 of 25 passes – even though his hamstring tightened during the game – to help the Packers win their eighth straight at Soldier Field counting the playoffs. He also became the first Green Bay starting quarterback other than Brett Favre or Rodgers to win against the Bears since Don Majkowski on Dec. 17, 1989.
BOSWELL BOUNCES BACK[/B]
Chris Boswell kicked a 33-yard field goal as time expired to left Pittsburgh to a 20-17 victory at Indianapolis. It was the culmination of an otherwise rugged day for Boswell, who had an extra point blocked that was nearly returned for two points by Colts safety Matthias Farley. Boswell also had a chance to give Pittsburgh the lead with a 37-yard field goal with 6:17 left, but the ball hit the right goal post and bounced off.
Detroit’s Matthew Stafford threw three touchdown passes, including the winning score to Eric Ebron with 10:46 remaining in the fourth quarter, in the Lions’ 38-24 win over Cleveland. The performance marked Stafford’s 30th career winning drive in the fourth quarter or overtime. Among players who made their NFL debut since 1970, Stafford has reached 30 winning drives in the fewest number of career games (118).
[B]ONE FOR THE AGES[/B]
Pittsburgh rookie JuJu Smith-Schuster had five catches for 97 yards with a touchdown, while Indianapolis’ Adam Vinatieri had a field goal and two extra points in the Steelers’ 20-17 win over the Colts. It marked the first time in NFL history that a player under the age of 21 (Smith-Schuster, 20 years old) and a player over the age of 40 (Vinatieri, 44 years old) each scored a point in the same game.
After falling to 0-9 with a 38-24 loss at Detroit, the Cleveland Browns are headed toward NFL infamy a year after losing their first 14 games in coach Hue Jackson’s debut season and finishing 1-15. Jackson is 1-24, a 25-game record since 1960 that is better than only Tampa Bay’s John McKay 0-25 mark. And those Bucs were a first-year expansion team.
Buffalo wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin, acquired in a trade with Carolina on Oct. 31, finished with just three catches for a team-best 42 yards in the Bills’ 47-10 loss to New Orleans.
Ryan Fitzpatrick made his first start for Tampa Bay in place of the injured Jameis Winston and got a win against his former team. Fitzpatrick, who spent the past two seasons with the New York Jets, completed 17 of 34 passes for 187 yards and was intercepted once in a 15-10 win that snapped a five-game losing streak for the Buccaneers.
[B]SAN FRANCISCO’S TREAT[/B]
San Francisco took a lead for the first time since Oct. 1 at Arizona when it got a field goal from Robbie Gould on the opening drive of the 49ers’ 31-21 win over the New York Giants. The five games without holding a lead tied a franchise worst, set in 1963. The 49ers also got their initial first down while holding a lead this season on a 40-yard pass from Beathard to Louis Murphy in the third quarter.
Dallas started former Pro Bowler Alfred Morris at running back in place of the suspended Ezekiel Elliott, but he didn’t have much of an impact beyond a 20-yard run in the Cowboys’ 27-7 loss at Atlanta. Morris finished with 53 yards on 11 carries. Rod Smith ran three times for 14 yards, while Darren McFadden was thrown for a 2-yard loss on his lone carry. Quarterback Dak Prescott chipped in with 42 yards on six carries.
Indianapolis quarterback Jacoby Brissett was being evaluated for a head injury by team doctors even though he had cleared through the NFL’s concussion protocol late in the third quarter of the Colts’ 20-17 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Team officials said Brissett was initially evaluated for a concussion on the sideline twice – once with team doctors and once by the unaffiliated neurological consultant. He passed both times. Then, after the game, he developed concussion-like symptoms again and returned to the protocol. … Pittsburgh cornerback Joe Haden broke his left leg in the game. Starting safety Mike Mitchell left on a cart with an injured right ankle and did not return. … Running back Devonta Freeman was hurt on Atlanta’s second offensive play in the Falcons’ win over the Cowboys. … Dallas linebacker Sean Lee also went out in the first quarter with a hamstring injury. … New Orleans running back Daniel Lasco had feelings in his extremities after sustaining a spine injury while tackling Brandon Tate on a kickoff return six minutes into the second quarter at Buffalo. Lasco was loaded into an ambulance and transported to a Buffalo-area hospital. … Green Bay running back Ty Montgomery ran for a 37-yard touchdown in the second quarter, but sat out the second half of the win against the Bears because of a rib injury. That left the Packers without their top two running backs after Aaron Jones hurt his knee in the first quarter.
”I’m exhausted right now. I’m shot. I’m shot. … I’m living and dying on every single play with every call that we have. So after the game is over, I’m shot.” – Jacksonville coach Doug Marrone, after the Jaguars beat the Los Angeles Chargers 20-17 in overtime.
”AC went crazy today.” – Atlanta wide receiver Julio Jones on teammate Adrian Clayborn, who set a franchise record with a career-high six sacks in the Falcons’ 27-7 win over Dallas.
[B][I]NFL notebook: Chiefs DT Miller abused wife
November 12, 2017[/I][/B]
The Seattle Seahawks likely violated the NFL’s concussion protocol when they allowed quarterback Russell Wilson to re-enter Thursday night’s game without a concussion evaluation.
A violation occurred when Wilson re-entered the game against the Arizona Cardinals without going to the locker room and being cleared by a team doctor and an independent physician, a source close to the situation told ESPN.
The NFL announced Friday that the league is conducting a “thorough review” of the situation.
Wilson briefly left midway through the third quarter of the Seahawks’ 22-16 win after taking a hit to the chin from Cardinals linebacker Karlos Dansby. Referee Walt Anderson then sent Wilson off the field for a test.
[B]–New Orleans Saints[/B] special teams player Daniel Lasco was taken off the field by ambulance during Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field and taken to a local hospital.
The team announced Lasco suffered a spinal cord injury, but he has movement in his extremities.
Lasco was injured while tackling Buffalo’s Brandon Tate on a kickoff return. He laid face-down on the turf for several minutes before trainers helped him onto a stretcher.
Also, Saints linebacker A.J. Klein also went to the locker room with a hamstring injury.
[B]–Cincinnati Bengals[/B] linebacker Vontaze Burfict may be in trouble with the NFL again after being ejected in the second quarter of the game against the Tennessee Titans.
Burfict was part of a pileup near the left corner of the end zone on Marcus Mariota’s eight-yard run to the 1. Following the play, Burfict made contact with an official and was immediately booted by referee Jeff Triplette.
Burfict, who drew a personal foul a few plays prior to his ejection for a late hit on running back DeMarco Murray out of bounds, has been fined and suspended on multiple occasions in his career for unsportsmanlike conduct and late hits.
Meanwhile, cornerback Adam Jones left after suffering a concussion in the third quarter.
–Atlanta Falcons[/B] running back Devonta Freeman and Dallas Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee both left the matchup between the teams with injuries.
Freeman left the game against Dallas early in the first quarter and was taken to the locker room to be evaluated for a head injury. The team late announced Freeman had a concussion and would not return to the game.
Lee left the game in the first quarter because of a hamstring injury and he was ruled out for the rest of the game.
[B]–Kansas City Chiefs[/B] defensive tackle Roy Miller, who was arrested in Jacksonville, Fla., early Saturday morning and charged with domestic battery, is accused in the police report of dragging his wife by the hair, tearing a braid from her head and nearly ripping off her shirt.
According to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office police report obtained by ESPN, the altercation between the 6-foot-1, 301-pound Miller and Nicole Miller began with an argument after the couple returned home separately.
Miller, 30, was taken into custody on suspicion of domestic battery and booked into the Duval County Jail at 4:53 a.m. ET, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office. With the AFC West-leading Chiefs (6-3) on a bye this week, Miller traveled to his home in Jacksonville.
[B]–Minnesota Vikings[/B] sacks leader Everson Griffen was inactive for Sunday’s game against the Washington Redskins.
Griffen, who entered the day third in the NFL with 10 sacks, has a foot injury and was listed as questionable, but Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said during the week he expected Griffen would play.
The Vikings were also without starting right tackle Mike Remmers (concussion). Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, activated this week, was active.
[B]–The Tampa Bay Buccaneers[/B] were without quarterback Jameis Winston (shoulder), defensive lineman Will Gholston (neck) and wide receiver Mike Evans (one-game suspension) for the game against the New York Jets at Raymond James Stadium.
Additionally, Tampa Bay was without cornerback Robert McClain (hamstring).
[B]For the Jets[/B], running back Matt Forte (knee), who had a season-high 77 rushing yards in New York’s victory against the Buffalo Bills on Nov. 2, missed the game.
[B]–Cleveland Browns[/B] rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer left in the third quarter against the Detroit Lions with a rib injury after taking a hard hit.
He returned after missing two series with 4:28 remaining.
Kizer was tackled by cornerback Quandre Diggs on a blitz while throwing an incompletion. He was replaced by Cody Kessler.
–Buffalo Bills[/B] defensive end Jerry Hughes left Sunday’s game against the New Orleans Saints with a shin injury.
Hughes was hurt late in the second quarter while the Saints were driving in for a field goal. He limped to the sideline without assistance.
[B]–Green Bay Packers[/B] running back Aaron Jones departed the game against the Chicago Bears because of a knee injury.
The Packers later lost running back Ty Montgomery when he injured his ribs.
Third-string running back Jamaal Williams replaced Jones and Montgomery in the second half.
[B]–Pittsburgh Steelers[/B] cornerback Joe Haden left the game against the Indianapolis Colts in the first quarter because of a left leg injury.
Haden was taken to the locker room, and he returned to the sideline on crutches. He was ruled out for the rest of the game.