Monday night double – Week 1

A slight profit on the evening last night thanks to the Spread treble landing with a little 10% bonus at 365. Unfortunately the Rams v Cowboys game stayed way under the total meaning just 2 of 3 of those, some of you may have cashed out for around 3/1, fair play if you did.

TD scorers? AJ Green was missed wide open for a walk-in and had on brought back for offensive PI on the last meaningful snap of the game, definitely want to keep him onside as Burrow and he build their connection. Gesicki was used in the slot a lot but didn’t really get the targets. The Raiders only really used Jacobs, Ruggs and Waller, one reception for Edwards which was disappointing. Ekeler receiving yards went nowhere. Tyrod either tries deep throws or holds on to it and rushes himself, Ekeler only targeted twice catching 1 for 3 yards. Probably looking under on him although they play the Chiefs this week and will need to score so avoid him in that game. Arnold had a couple of receptions, neither in the redzone, he was worth a shot at the odds. Are these excuses? Maybe, but just saying what I sees.

On to Monday night!

Pittsburgh Steelers -6 @ NY Giants: 45

LIVE ON CHANNEL 5!!!! THEY’VE GOT THE MNF GAME EACH WEEK WHICH IS AWESOME

Oh what a treat, the Steelers get a prime-time game, how lucky we all are. If you’ve not read my blog before you won’t know that I dislike the Steelers. I do my best to be unbiased on here but it’s not easy. So let me get this out of the way now.

I hate the publicity they get, the fact they can be dirty as hell and it’s “good hard AFC North football” yet anyone else does it and they’re dirty. I hate the hype they constantly get. I hate that we “can’t judge anything that any of their players did last year” because of the QBs, I hate that they’re apparently the only team in the whole league capable of developing wide receivers because AB was good and they took him late on. “Chase Claypool is raw but if anyone can make him good it’s the Steelers and their record of developing guys” I hate Big Ben, the guy is a prick. I dislike Juju and Tomlin.

Yes I sound like a butthurt Bengals fan, I know.

For me, this is generally going to be a wait and see. They won 8 games last year with historically terrible QB play after Big Ben went down in week 2. Incidentally he was shit in week 1 and the start of 2, I assume hampered by the elbow injury which ruled him out for the year. So his return this year, and him saying he’s throwing without pain for the first time in a long time, that’s obviously great for him, if it’s true. But a year out, with that frame and at this age, I think he’ll be adequate and that’s a big improvement on last season, I’m just not sure how good he’ll be. Will he throw for 4500 yards? Maybe, it could easily be mistake filled though.

Juju. He’s young so you’re not allowed to say he’s not very good. He was a brilliant #2 when Antonio Brown was taking the main coverage, personally though I don’t think he’s a 1. Yes, the QB play was woeful but he didn’t get separation last year either although he was banged up a bit. Diontae Johnson was a hype guy in fantasy early in the year after a decent year last year, he did got open downfield quite well last year, if he can do that with an accurate QB he’ll do well this year. James Washington flattered to deceive, but the Steelers are great at developing WRs, so expect him to do well this year, he was apparently better than the numbers show, and Chase Claypool is a beast of a man, very raw, but physically impressive, he’ll actually be a very interesting one to watch.

They brought in Eric Ebron who they’ve been positive about as well, he had a 13 TD season in Indy a couple of years back and it wouldn’t surprise me at all to see him hit double digits again in what’s probably a decent offense. Vance McDonald did not have me doing the Vance Dance much last year.

I’m not convinced on James Conner being a good running back either to be honest, maybe subconscious bias coming through, he’s fine behind a very good offensive line I just don’t think he’s a top 10 back. Averaged 4 yards per carry last year in 10 games, but again played a lot of the season banged up. He’s beefed up a lot over the summer which might help him carrying the load and Tomlin has said he’s the workhorse despite bringing in a rookie. Behind him Benny Snell and Jaylen Samuels from last year and rookie Anthony McFarland who may get some third down work.

The defense is where you can see some continuity though, and it was brilliant last season (the only team inside the top 5 on DVOA for rush and pass D) after Minkah Fitzpatrick came in from Miami “Well he was basically their first round pick so they won the draft this year” yeah, I get it, he was good. He was the final piece in a good unit. They finished last season with a league leading 38 takeaways last year, 20 ints and 18 fumble recoveries. They’ve got pretty much the same people returning as well. I’ve tipped up TJ Watt for defensive player of the year him, Bud Dupree and Cam Heyward cause chaos up front, if you’ve got pass rush and coverage then you’ll get home a lot.

That defense could prove to be an issue for Daniel Jones and the Giants in this opener, he had a fumbling issue last year, maybe trying to do too much, but it’s something he’ll have worked on over the summer. I thought he had a decent debut season in fairness, 3,000 yards and 24 TDs from 13 games, but 12 fumbles. He never got to play with his full quota of weapons in any one game either, one of them always injured and that might be the case in this one as well.

Golden Tate is officially questionable with a hamstring, they might go easy with him as that’s an injury which lingers. Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton are the other two main receivers, Shep usually in the slot and Slayton had a good second half of the season with some big TDs, something which doesn’t usually stick, but he did look good in his rookie year. Evan Engram missed a lot of last season with injury as well, he’s the starting TE, but is essentially a big WR and a potential mismatch for teams in any week.

They missed Saquon Barkley for a lot of last season as well with a high ankle sprain and even when he came back he would have been hampered by it. I can’t wait to see him at a full go again, he’s really fun to watch and with Jason Garrett in calling plays now I don’t see why he won’t be loaded up with a ton of carries in every game. They brought in Dion Lewis as backup who new HC Joe Judge knows from their time in NE, but he was ineffective at Tennessee last year

I am fairly surprised to see that the Giants defense last season ranked 7th against the rush, maybe because it was easy to pass against them, ranking 30th in that facet. They brought in Blake Martinez from GB who led the league in tackles last year and paid a lot for James Bradberry who should help at CB especially after cutting Deandre Baker who’s been charged with armed robbery or some ridiculous shit.

This line was 3 earlier in the summer, now smashed up to 6 points for the Steelers. It’s the right move, I think the Steelers will be considerably better, but I also think the Steeler hype-train has gained too much speed. Even if Big Ben is half-decent, he and Tomlin still have some pretty significant home/road splits in their time there when it comes to covering the spread.

Pretty much everyone is above even money to score a TD, just Conner at 10/11 under that. Ebron looks good at 23/10, Danny Jones 7/1 on Uni/888 not bad either.

  • Steelers win, not touching the spread but would think they’d cover
  • No lean on total

Tennessee Titans -3 @ Denver Broncos: 40.5

Weird line movement on this one as the Broncos were 2.5 point favourites until this week when it flipped completely, around the time Von Miller was announced out for the season, there’s no way a defensive player moves the line that much though so must be other reasons for it.

The Titans made it all the way through to the AFC Championship game last year beating the Ravens and the Pats on their way there. It was really quite impressive. Highly efficient and effective on offense and solid on defense.

Once Ryan Tannehill took over in week 6 the Titans became somewhat of a juggernaut, way ahead of everyone else in a lot of stats and Tannehill himself looking like a bloody MVP candidate. The redzone efficiency they showed surely won’t carry on for this year? He finished the year with 22 TDs, 6 INTs, and a top 10 QBR. They are however a run-heavy team, and his mobility helps the run game as much as his passing skills help the offense as a whole.

Derrick Henry is basically the offense. He led the league in rushing yards at 5.1 yards per carry last year after they ran him into the ground in the final game and finished the playoffs with 83 carries for 446 yards. It was a huge workload for a gigantic human being and he held up well but the season after 300+ carries is usually not great for players. Henry is built to handle the carries though so if anyone can buck the trend it’s probably him. Once he’s moving he’s very tough to stop. Darrynton Evans comes in to replace Dion Lewis as a change of pace back, maybe.

AJ Brown had some huge plays through the air averaging a league 2nd 20.2 yards per catch last season; he’s basically the receiving version of Henry, once he’s moving you’re not stopping him and he’ll be looking to carry that on coming into this season. He’ll be the #1 without a doubt and there’s not a huge amount behind him. Adam Humphries will be the slot guy, short targets to move the chains and Corey Davis needs to impress after they didn’t pick up his 5th year option. They use the tight ends a lot so expect a big season from Jonnu Smith who’s now the main man there, he’ll get the yards, but I like me a bit of Anthony Firkser who scored a couple in the post-season from the slot. He’s more of a redzone threat than Jonnu.

The defense is good without really having any names although they did pick up Clowney to help with their pass rush, so in fairness they’re not bad up front, they’re just a solid unit all round basically.

The Broncos have been a hype team this summer as well after making additions on offense and they’ll be starting a QB who won 4 of his 5 starts towards the end of last season.

They’re no Lock to make the post-season in a tough division though… see what I did there? Their QB is named Drew Lock, so… I used his surname to suggest they might not be a “lock” to make the playoffs, meaning they’re not a guarantee to get there. Clever huh? He was all right at the end of the year and it’s good to have hope with a young QB at the helm.

They gave him weapons as well, adding Jerry Juedy who was the best route runner and probably most pro-ready of the players drafted this year, he fills a need probably in the slot for the team with Courtland Sutton on the outside who had a good year with over 1,100 in his second season in the league, Sutton is carrying a knock but looks like he’ll be a go tonight. Daesean Hamilton hasn’t lived up to the billing and KJ Hill is the rookie they brought in to add so needed speed. Noah Fant is a promising young tight end who had a couple of 100 yard games last year but didn’t find the endzone too much. Jake Butt might be able to do something after injury and Albert Okwuegbunam (definitely didn’t copy/paste that) has had good reviews in camp after testing off the charts at the combine this year.

They brought in Melvin Gordon at RB. It seems a slightly weird decision after Philip Lindsay had a good year and got a new contract last season, Lindsay have over 1,000 yards and 7 TDs and a couple of hundred through the air as well. Gordon is probably the better player in fairness though so it does add some depth and variation at RB for them with Royce Freeman as the third man there.

The defense is their strength even though it definitely took a hit with the Von Miller injury. Bradley Chubb is back from an injury which led him to miss the whole of last season and it’s harsh that we’re not able to see them together. They brought in AJ Bouye to replace Chris Harris Jnr. which isn’t a major downgrade.

These two faced each other last season, the game ending in a 16-0 win to the Broncos. Most season, going to Mile High early in the year is a bad spot for travelling teams. They’ve won 13 of the last 15 home games in September, although the two losses were both last year as they started 0-4.

  • I’ve got to lean to the Broncos now that they’re underdogs
  • Lean under.

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