It’s not much to brag about but the losing streak came to an end last week as I posted a 3-2 record. It is something to build on and that is exactly what we will be trying to do heading into the second half of the season.
The Pittsburgh Steelers looked to be in the driver’s seat in the AFC North division with the Browns a write off, the Bengals not looking good and the Ravens underachieving. And then, Big Ben goes down.
This has been sort of a normal thing in Pittsburgh and it’s like the Steelers fans just say not yet, but it was yet. Ben Roethlisberger suffered a knee injury just like last year, only this time its a torn meinscus in his left knee, which was scheduled to be operated on first thing Monday morning.
Last year he was out four weeks and the Pittsburgh fans are hoping for a quick recovery as the QB position takes a big class drop to Landry Jones.
The good thing, if there is a good thing, is after the Steelers lose this week to the Patriots they go on a bye week. We also note that Jones went 2-2 last year when Ben went down.
Look for the Steelers to change their offense around to take the pressure off Jones and use their big running back Le’Veon Bell to carry the load. One thing we do know is the iron horse will be back and Big Ben will get the Steelers into the playoffs, but only if he doesn’t get injured again.
One would think Pittsburgh will need to draft a top QB very soon to carry on after the big guy calls it a career, one would think. So how tough is it to handicap the NFL? Well, if you ask my all-knowing brother, Tom “I never had a loser” Saber, it’s very easy. You just take the team that was bad last week.
Here are a few of my bro’s winners this past weekend – Giants, Saints, Dolphins Browns – and the NFL rolls on.
BYU +7.5 at Boise St.: The Cougars have been at home just three times this year with games in Phoenix vs. Arizona, which they won, at Utah where they lost a heartbreaker 20-19, at Landover (Md.) where they lost to West Virginia and at East Lansing where they crushed the Spartans. Now they travel to Boise to play on the Blue Carpet. The Broncos come off a staunch win vs. Mississippi State, 28-21, and are a perfect 6-0 but who did they beat? They were a -28.5 point favorite last week vs. Colorado State and could only beat them 28-23 and barely beat Washington State 31-28. The +7.5 looks like a bargain. BYU.
TCU +4.5 at West Virginia: Let’s try and take down another undefeated team in the 5-0 West Virginia Mountaineers in a big revenge game for them. WVU got crushed by the Horned Frogs in Fort Worth last year, 40-10. The Frogs just did get past Kansas two weeks ago, 24-23, as a -29 point chalk but we will forgive them in that game. Now with extra rest they come to Morgantown ready to play their A-game. TCU has gone 12-0 ATS off an extra week of rest. We see a close game. TCU.
UCF -2.5 at Connecticut: The Knights are coming off a tough 26-25 loss last week vs. Temple but look to rebound under first year HC Frost, who has done a wonderful job with UCF taking them from an 0-12 season last year to 3-3 so far. UConn crushed the Knights last year, 40-13, in Orlando and we look for revenge this time around. CENTRAL FLORIDA.
OKLAHOMA -13.5 at Texas Tech: The Sooners will be taking no prisoners as they look to continue their road to the Big 12 title. The Red Raiders have a defense like a knife cutting thru butter. The Sooners will score early and often. We will see a result much like last year’s game when Oklahoma won the game, 63-27. OKLAHOMA.
TEXAS A&M +17 at Alabama: Must watch TV. When looking this game over this past Sunday, this bettor was ready to lay the 10 with the Tide but then the number came 17 and I have been forced to take the points with the undefeated Aggies who are off a week’s rest. Alabama looked like a champion last week as they completely dismantled the same Tennessee team that took A&M to double OT. I will roll the dice and take the points with LSU next for Alabama. TEXAS A&M
Last week: 3-2
BCup Seminar: Horse players, please put this date on your calendar – Friday, Nov. 4 at 8 a.m. PT – for the breakfast club Breeders’ Cup seminar at Palace Station. Come in and have some free coffee and donuts with myself hosting and top handicappers Professor Gordon Jones and Dave Valento the Track Phantom.
We will cover all the Breeders’ Cup races for Friday and Saturday at Santa Anita. Get an early start. You could be walking around lucky and not even know it.
Note: Dave Valento’s Track Phantom handicapping sheet, which will be available for free at the seminar, gave out the pick five at Woodbine this past Sunday and it paid $21,000.