Divisional games – Saturday – #Falcons @ #Eagles, #Titans @ #GoPats

A quick round-up of last weekend from my tips stand point, not great, went for a short priced Lucky 15 and only 1 of them came in, at a dreadful, 1/2, so lost a lot on that one, other than that we were only 2 points down in the end, 2 win, 2 losses on the Saturday and 1 from 4 on the Sunday, at Evens, and 2 points, while we had two 1 point bets and a 0.5 point, so the staking plan sorted it so there wasn’t a huge loss.

Frustratingly there were quite a few things I gave prices for in the write-ups that landed but I didn’t back. Robert Woods yards, Cooper Kupp TD, Mo Sanu yards, Ted Ginn TD. All of these landed so if you read through the 2,500 words then you may have been able to pick something out yourself, I know that a few guys got on various bets after reading which is great to see.

The games themselves? What a great weekend of football! The NFL must have been loving the unpredictability of it all. The Chiefs gave up the 2nd biggest lead in wildcard history in eventually losing to the Titans with Derrick Henry running all over the Chiefs tired defence finishing with 156 yards and a TD. Although they should never have been in with a chance of winning it, the loss of Travis Kelce to concussion obviously hurt the Chiefs, but despite that you shouldn’t be losing from being 21-3 up at half time. A mix of very bad luck, awful officiating and terrible play calling really hurt them. The fact that Kareem Hunt, the leagues leading rusher last year finished with just 11 carries is criminal. 22-21 to the Titans

The second game threw up some more surprises as well with the 6 point underdogs the Falcons controlling the game pretty well and stopping Goff and Gurley from getting going from the start. They couldn’t get moving at all, maybe it was the inexperience that I hinted at in the preview, maybe they were a little rusty coming off a weeks break, or maybe the Falcons defence was just very good on the day. Probably a mix of both, the pace of the Falcons defence was brilliant to watch, they were everywhere. The main difference between the teams though was probably the special teams for the Rams. They were the second best unit in the league last season but fluffed and muffed everything this week, Pharoah Cooper had a night to forget fumbling a couple of kick returns to give the Falcons short fields on a few occasions, these were the difference between the teams. 26-13 to the Falcons

The Bills v Jags game won’t need too much of a write up. Blake Bortles couldn’t throw the ball, he finished with 89 rushing yards, and 87 passing yards. Horrible. BUT he did put together 1 drive which provided the only TD of the game to Ben Koyack who I have to imagine was around 40/1 to score anytime! It wasn’t a good game to watch and the game finishing with a Nathan Peterman interception was the only way it could have gone really. 10-3 to the Jags.

I’ll be honest, I don’t have an awful lot to say about this game either, not because the action wasn’t great. I’m sure it was. BUT this was the one game I missed most of, after a very long Saturday and a few beers on Sunday I managed until about the end of the 1st quarter! Graham Gano missed an early chip shot field goal, and 2 plays later Drew Brees  threw an 80 yard bomb to former Panther Ted Ginn who ran in from 20 yards away for them to take the lead. We had a bet on Kaelin Clay to score anytime at 12/1 and he would have done had it not been PI on him a few mins later. That was annoying. It looks like Cam took a lot of punishment and a lot of the talk today has been about the seemingly obvious concussion that he “overcame.” He did lead them to a TD to get the game within 5 points with a long McCaffery TD run, something we’ve been waiting 18 weeks to see! But they couldn’t pull it back at the end and it ended aptly with a Cam Jordan sack. 31-26 to the Saints.


Atlanta Falcons (-3) @ Philadelphia Eagles – o/u – 41

The Falcons become the first 6th seed to enter the divisional game as favourite in playoff history and it’s probably rightly deserved as the Eagles will have Nick Foles under centre and Matt Ryan seems to be very good in the playoffs! They will probably need to convert more opportunities as they’ve been settling for a lot of 3s all season long. There’s not a whole lot of change from last weeks write up, Sanu o50ish (50.5 on betfred) will probably be a decent look, Julio is always set at around 90 (95.5 on skybet) I’ll be waiting to see what the other bookies offer, I would think they’ll probably lower those lines against the #1 seed. Taylor Gabriel was a little more enticing at a big price despite only scoring once this year, he was available at 13/1 earlier in the week, he’s not worth a risk for me at 13/2 though. The Eagles D is pretty good on the whole though so it’s tough to have a huge amount of confidence in any of them. In fact they’ve got everyone at over Evens at the moment, Freeman at 11/10 looks like the sensible option in the cold of Philadelphia where it seems likely that they’ll run the ball a little more than normal.

The Eagles defence will need to keep them in the game with Foles at QB for them, it’s been pretty good for most of the year but the fact that they’re likely to be on the pitch a lot is always going to make it difficult for them, he played well against the Giants in the one good game he’s had since coming in for Carson Wentz, but has struggled badly since then. Backup QBs do tend to target the tight end though and the Eagles have a top 5 guy at that position in Zach Ertz, I’ve already got 3pts on him anytime at 2/1 on 365. That’s now in to 15/8 but is probably still a bet there. Alternatively you can look towards Trey Burton who seems to have good chemistry with his fellow backup, he’s 10/1 on 365 (and 500/1 for 2 or more on Paddypower!) Outside of those two, the Falcons are fairly good at shutting down WR1s, so it may be worth overlooking Jeffrey for Nelson Agholar (39.5 on PP). It would be nice if they gave Mack Hollins a few more chances instead of Torey Smith, but neither are trustworthy not even at 10/1. The running game should be on the up, and Jay Ajayi should be the main man in that area, they signed him for a Superbowl run and he’s pretty cheap for them at the moment so they won’t care if his knee explodes as long as they get the use out of him right now, he’s o65.5 on Skybet and at 17.5 attempts. I’d hope for a lower line on the attempts with the look of going over o15.5 attempts is 8/11 on 365, or you can go for 16.5 on PP at 5/6 I’ll be taking the lowest number as it’s a risky line, but the yards are pretty good. The one decent game he had for Miami was 130 yards vs the Falcons. They also have Blount as a basher, and Corey Clement as a scat-back if they want to mix it up. Clement is 15/2 anytime and 175/1 for 2 or more. Given that he’s had a hat-trick game this year that’s not horrible!

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The more I write, the more I have some faith in the Eagles! They have a decent run game, but the Falcons did shut down Gurley last week pretty well, so the end result is that I don’t think the Eagles will be able to keep up with the Falcons, they have a good defence and if it clicks, their offense should be able to pick apart the Eagles to cover the spread – FALCONS

  • Zach Ertz anytime TD – 15/8 (365) – 3pts
  • Corey Clement anytime – 15/2 (PP) – 1pt
  • Corey Clement 2 or more – 175/1 (PP) – 0.25
  • Trey Burton anytime – 10/1 (365) – 1pt
  • Trey Burton 2 or more – 500/1 (PP) – 0.25
  • Jay Ajayi o15.5 rush attempts – 8/11 (365) – 2pts

Tennessee Titans (-13) @ New England Patriots – o/u – 48

The only thing that could have been better for the Pats would have been a Nathan Peterman led Bills somehow scraping the win in Jacksonville. But instead they get to face the Titans who will be without DeMarco Murray who has already been ruled out, probably not a hard choice after how well Derrick Henry did last week, I think Henry could do some real damage here (o77.5 rush yards on skybet), even at 18 points down they just kept giving the ball to him last week (again I’ll be waiting for some alternate lines from other places), and they’ll probably be trailing this week too. Mariota looked all right in the passing game in the end last week and will probably put up decent yardage, he also did very well with his legs moving the chains (o19.5 rush yards on skybet) and throwing the crucial block to spring Henry to seal the game, but the Pats don’t tend to break and allow TDs. Delanie Walker will get his usual workload. The yards should be there for the Titans, i’m not sure on the TDs though.

This time last year the Pats faced the Texans and kept them in the game for a lot of it until Will Fuller dropped a big TD pass from Brock Osweiler, the game changed and they ran away with it in the end, and although a lot has been made about this ESPN report into the relationship of Brady, Bill and Kraft, I’m not buying that it makes even the slightest difference to this game. They should be nearing full fitness coming into this game, Burkhead should be back, he’s been training well and is expected to play, Chris Hogan should be nearing fitness although it looks like he’s still not 100% though which is frustrating and they may even have one of last years playoff heroes Malcolm Mitchell back. As always it’s tough to figure out who will get the ball in the run game in New England but I would imagine they’ll be back to Lewis doing the work then Burkhead as the goal-line back, but he won’t be fully fit so might be a bit of a risk. The Pats should be able to score at ease this week, and while it’s a high spread I wouldn’t be shocked to see them beat it, I don’t think I’ll back them against the spread, but it’s hard to see past the PATRIOTS. As always with the Pats the prices on anytime TDs are pretty short. I do like Hogan at 16/5 but it comes with a risk as I’m not sure how fit he is and how much of the game he’s going to be playing.

  • Chris Hogan anytime – 16/5 (Betfair) – 2pts
  • Derrick Henry anytime – 17/10 (Betfair) – 2pts

Summary –

  • Zach Ertz anytime TD – 15/8 (365) – 3pts
  • Corey Clement anytime – 15/2 (PP) – 1pt
  • Corey Clement 2 or more – 175/1 (PP) – 0.25
  • Trey Burton anytime – 10/1 (365) – 1pt
  • Trey Burton 2 or more – 500/1 (PP) – 0.25
  • Jay Ajayi o15.5 rush attempts – 8/11 (365) – 2pts
  • Chris Hogan anytime – 16/5 (Betfair) – 2pts
  • Derrick Henry anytime – 17/10 (Betfair) – 2pts

This will be updated over the weekend but I’m out tomorrow night and working Saturday so hopefully be able to get a look at some player props on Saturday afternoon and either tweet or update this thread.

Seems stupid that I’ve picked so many Eagles players given they’ve got Nick Foles at QB and I think they’ll lose, but that seems to be where the value is in that game, the Falcons players are all pretty short now. Obviously the 2 or mores are very unlikely, but at those odds it’s worth a small nibble! Both of them have 2 or more games at some point this season.

Good Luck if you’re following and enjoy the games, hopefully they’ll live up to last weekend!

Adam

 

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