By now the champion will have been crowned in college football and the very long bowl season comes to an end. Next year there will be more bowls – so save your money.
Now it’s time to get ready for this weekend’s Divisional Playoff games with the crazy Wild Cards over and done. This past weekend three of the four games were won by road teams. For all intents and purposes all four should have been as the Colts behind Andrew Luck mounted a NFL comeback to win by 1.
The game opened with the Colts -2½ and closed with the Chiefs as the favorite by -1½ – not a good result for the books. In the Ice Bowl it was another bad result for the books with the 49ers winning by a field goal, which was the line on the game. There was a ton of cash given back and all the two team parlays with the UNDER had to be paid out.
The only good spot about the 3-point win was it took down most of the ties lose parlay cards around town. While I was watching the 49ers-Packers with my dog Dino and having a small glass of wine, Dino was just sitting there looking me in the eyes barking that he was cold and wanted his new sweater on.
I was getting cold watching the game myself and thought, boy are those fans and players lucky we have global warming. Just think how cold it would be if that were not the case!
Well, scientists are much like the zebras in the NFL, they are right around 50% of the time. Let’s look at the four NFL games this weekend.
Saints +8½ at Seahawks (48): Is it time for the home teams to start winning? Seattle is just about unbeatable at home but did lose to Arizona and almost fell to Tampa Bay. In their first meeting here at Century Link Field the Seahawks cruised to a 34-7 win as a 4½ point favorite so why are they -8½ on their way to -9 this time? New Orleans suffered some defensive injuries in their 26-24 win over the Eagles, their first road playoff win ever. They were just 3-5 SU and 1-7 ATS on the road. The -8½ looks hard to chew for me but I will play the Seabirds in all of my teasers. SEAHAWKS -2½ (teaser).
Colts +7½ at Patriots (53): The weather could factor, but give Belichick two weeks to prepare and his QB will come out smoking. I have the utmost respect for Luck but also for Brady who has been here many times before. All roads lead to Brady and the hated Belichick in this game. There will be no miracle comeback on the road. I’ll buy the game down to 7. PATRIOTS -7 (-120)/(-1½ teaser).
49ers -2 at Panthers (43): Niners come off very gutty win on the road at hostile Green Bay in the Ice Bowl – a brutal game that had to take a lot out of them. Now they must hit the road again and play a rested Panther team that has a lot of defense but little offense. They were able to secure home field with a win over New Orleans, getting a key call on the goal line that cost the Saints the game. Not a fan of this bunch and think the 49ers will be the play in a low scoring game. 49ERS.
Chargers +10 at Broncos (55): “Come on Man” you’re kidding me! Did anyone watch the Chargers dismantle the Bengals? They have won five straight, including being the only team to beat the Broncos in Denver. That happened Dec. 12 by a 27-20 score after losing to the Broncos in San Diego, 28-20. Now they get 10! You have to love Manning but the Chargers believe and will make a game of it. CHARGERS.
Illinois State vs. Wichita St.: Ok, the Shockers are very good, undefeated and at home, but did you know they have gone 0-14 ATS in games after facing Northern Iowa who they beat this past Sunday, 67-53?
Figuring on getting double digits, ILLINOIS ST.
Richard Saber, a former director of race and sports at the famed Stardust book, is GamingToday’s horse racing and sports handicapper. Follow Richard on Twitter @SabesBet. Contact Richard at [email protected].