Friday, October 3, 2014

NFL Week 5: Vegas Week

Because I'm tired of taking it on the chin as a prognosticator, and because I'm busy doing other shit in preparation for my 5 days in Sin City starting this weekend, I'm not going to give much "insight" into this week's picks. In fact, I've officially gone to the bullpen and have had my partner in crime, and the ass hat I'll be hanging with this weekend- The Legend- pick two of the five games for me. In any case, the Yack (dick-ish third person "speak") is on a cooler, and needs back up quickly. "Legend.....?!?!?"




Chicago (+2.5) at Carolina
Jay Cutler or L.A. Realtor?
The Panthers are starting an un-drafted rookie at running back this week. My brain has started a bunch of un-drafted brain cells through the first 4 weeks of this season, as I've struggled to an 8-12 ATS record. Jay Cutler is tied for second in the entire league with 10 TDs thrown. He also looks exactly like one of those gay real estate agents on "Million Dollar Listing L.A". And when I say gay, word police, I say it because the guy is really gay, as in he's a homosexual.

Da Bears are 0-2 at home and 2-0 on the road. Carolina's once bend but don't break defense is currently 24th in total yards allowed and 17th in points allowed. Not to mention their offense is bottom 7 in both yards and points per game. Jay Cutler stakes his claim, and puts his sign in the yard on the road again. SOLD BY JAY! 19-14 Bears.        





Pittsburgh at Jacksonville (+6)
Danny Smith's punter "booted" a 29 yard punt last week to put the previously win less Buccaneers in primo starting position, just prior to their go ahead touchdown. Following the Special Teams blunder and subsequent chok-errrrrr, losing of the game, Smith told reporters, "For a moment there, I thought I was back in Washington." And for Redskin fan, whose team has had an interesting 4 weeks doing that Special Teams thing, it was "right back at ya, Danny!"

Pittsburgh's Steel Curtain is now 21st in the league in points allowed through 4 weeks. And as a whole, the Steelers are being outscored 73-41 in the second half of games played this year. I don't think the Steelers are very good, and at some point Blake Bortles and the Jacks are going to keep a game close. The Steelers are 3-8-1 ATS in their last 12 as a road favorite. Martigale the dog piss out of the Jacks until they cover, and let's hope "until" comes this Sunday. 23-20 Steelers.




Baltimore at Indy (-3.5)
Hardy-Har-Har!!!
Although the Ravens have had an interesting first few weeks of the season with all the Ray Rice news, the only drama surrounding Andrew Luck is how long he'll let his neck hair grow, and if he'll spout off that trademark goofy laugh of his at post game pressers.

The Colts are 4-0 ATS at home in their last 4 home contests vs a team with a winning record. Baltimore is not that good, IMO. They lost at home to the only good team they've played thus far (Cincy), and getting the Colts in this spot is not exactly awful Pittsburgh on a short week with travel (Week 2) or last week at home vs a beat up Carolina team. HUH-HUH-HUH-Giggle-Giggle-HUH-HUH-HUH-Giggle-Giggle. Colts 31-23.




Tampa at New Orleans (-10)
I must've missed the memo regarding the New Orleans Saints and Drew Brees sucking, because I'm not really sure what I was watching last Sunday night in Dallas. 1-3 through 4 weeks, and Saints fans are Jonesing for the days of bounties and Sean Payton rummaging through the team doctor's office for pills.

The Saints have won 5 straight tilts between these two, which includes the last 3 played in N'Orleans. Those 3 games included 2 games which saw the Saints post at least a 40 piece on the scoreboard, with the average margin of victory being 25 points. I'll give you Mike Glennon, and I'll take Drew Brees. Fair? Don't break out those paper bags quite yet, Saint fan.  36-21 Saints.




Buffalo at Detroit (-7)
Kyle Orton was named the starter this week in Buffalo. Bad news for him and his teammates is that they have a date with the NFL's #1 ranked defense. Yep, Lion fan, you're allowing the fewest yards per game (267.3 yards/per), and the 4th lowest points per (15.5). Ndamukong Suh has been so impressed with how the Lions entire unit has come together, that he hasn't had to step on anyone's head yet, after the whistle blows.

The Bills are 0-6 ATS in their last 6 roadies vs a team with a winning record. Megatron should be a go following some ankle issues, and he is primed to go 9-172-2. The NFC North might be the most interesting and competitive division in football this year, and like my boy D. Green, I like the Lions. 31-17 Detroit.




LAST WEEK                                                        1-4 ATS
YTD                                                                   8-12 ATS (40%)
Reg. Season Since '09                          196-160-12 ATS (55%)

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

NFL Week 4: Yo, Give Me My ATS Winners, Bitch!

NY Giants at Washington (-3.5)
Word on the street is that the Special Olympics is filing a trademark complaint against the Redskins for using the name "Special Teams" when describing their players who handle kickoffs, punts, field goals, and extra points. Through 3 weeks of the 2014 campaign, their "Special" Special Teams unit have missed an extra point (along with New Orleans, the only other team to have failed to convert one this year), given up a 102 yard kickoff return for a touchdown, had a punt blocked that was returned for a touchdown, and in last week's 3 point loss to Philly (which included before mentioned KO return), kicker Kai Forbath missed a chip shot, 33 yard field goal. Not to mention they're DFL statistically in yardage yielded on kickoffs and bottom 10 in yardage yielded on punt returns.

But whatever you say, Mike Wise....The pressing problem at the moment for the Washington Redskins is Kirk "5 Career Starts" Cousins' inability to close games. That's on the journalistic level with the reporter who after being assigned to cover the sinking of the Titanic, opted to go with the headline: Cruise Ship's Bathroom Exhaust Fans Were Inoperable!

Speaking of Cousins, he's only ranked 1st in yards per game and he's got the 4th highest passer rating through not even 2 full games as the Redskins starter. And even after being held to just 6 points and 398 total yards in Week 1 at Houston, the Redskins now have the 2nd highest ranked offense in the entire league.

I pegged the Giants in a "due" role last week at home against the Texans. But I still think they've got problems and I would run from them in this week's role. Statistically, they're bottom 10 in the league in both total offense and defense. ATS, they're 1-7 in their last 8 in September, 3-7 last 10 following a SU and ATS win. Cousins and this offense are for real, and Eli will be running for his life. 27-13 Redskins.




Tennessee at Indy (-7.5)
If Jake Locker Can't Go, Charlie Gets The Nod
I guess when you're an NFL owner and you get pulled over during the off season shit faced out of your mind on drink and drug, Roger The Dodger gives you Denver and Philly in Weeks 1 and 2. And after starting off what some might deem a predictable 0-2 with that murderer's row of a start (although the Colts stuck around with Denver, and then they blew a 20-6 lead against Philly), Andy Luck and The Boys righted the ship last week in Jacksonville in a big way.

And like last week's cupcake in North Florida, the Colts will face another inferior offense in Jake Locker and the Tennessee Titans. And as of Thursday morning, Locker is apparently a GTD with a wrist injury. And if he doesn't go, some guy named Charlie Whitehurst (or is it "Manson"- google his picture) will start.  Through 3 weeks, the Titans are next to DFL in the entire league, averaging just 14 points/per, and Locker is averaging just 217 yards through the air. That's an offense I'd like to stick in an actual locker, and then forget the combination.

The Colts are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 as a 3.5-10 point favorite. They're also 14-2 ATS in their last 16 vs. a team with a losing record. Head to head, the Colts have won SU and covered 5 in a row. Consider Indy as your survivor team if you didn't use them last week. 38-17 Colts.






Jacksonville (+12.5) at San Diego
So I'm going from playing against one inferior team to making a case for playing another. And I hate to bet a team that I know is going to lose, and just hope they keep it close, but the factors here are telling me to do so, so just grin and bear it, bitches!

I love the Chargers. I'm on record saying that they will win the AFC this year. But the Chargers and the Jaguars are on the opposite ends of the football spectrum going into this game, and I believe it is going to collide into a pretty ugly, not so sexy game that the Chargers win, but not in a manner in which they anchor it.

How many more weeks in a row can Jacksonville get poleaxed? They are a professional football team, correct? I mean, at some point, that "being a professional football team" part will kick in, and they might actually punch someone in the face. Or at least keep it close doing so. They've started off the 2014 campaign with losses of 17, 31, and 27 points. Those beatings were so bad, that Roger Goodell admitted privately that he couldn't even watch the highlights.

Rookie Blake Bortles is getting his first professional start for the Jacks, after playing the second half last week against Indy, and now getting a full week of reps in practice. I like that. And I think his teammates will rally around him. And the Chargers have had a brutal first three weeks, and have pretty much come out smelling like a rose. Tough loss at a very good Arizona team, short week and then they beat the defending Super Bowl champs, and then they traveled across country and beat formerly 2-0 Buffalo. As British Nirvana wannabes Bush once said, "..come back down from this cloud." #TRAP  The Bolts are 0-4 in their last 4 as a 10.5 point or greater favorite. 22-14 Chargers.




Philadelphia at San Francisco (-5.5)
If there was ever a case to be made for a 3-0 team who could be 1-2 right now, its that of the 2014 Philadelphia Eagles. After spotting Jacksonville a 17 zippy lead in the first half of their Week 1 tilt, they then scored 34 unanswered points to eventually beat the hapless Jaguars. Then in two consecutive weeks, they won games they were completely outplayed in. Its time to pay the piper, Philly.

After seemingly starting off pretty ho-hum with a fairly easy win at Dallas in Week 1, the 49ers returned home to piss away a 20-7 4th Quarter lead to the Bears, in a game in which they turned the ball over 4 times. And then last week got punched square in their N-bomb dropping mouths, in a tough divisional loss at Zona.

I love Frisco in this spot. They need to keep winning to keep up with before mentioned Zona and their other divisional nemesis, Seattle. And I hate Philly here for all the reasons I mentioned in the first paragraph. Frisco is 24-8-3 ATS in their last 35 following an ATS loss. Philly is 2-10-1 ATS in their last 13 the week after allowing more than 350 yards of total offense (gave up 511 total yards to Washington). Helloooo, Frisco! 30-20 San Francisco. 





New Orleans (-3) at Dallas
I've played against the Cowboys for two straight weeks, and I'm not about to turn back now. Those sons of bitches stuck it up my high and mighty ass last week, coming back from a 21-0 deficit to not just sail my ship out of Cover Harbor, but to win the game outright. That 1 pm disaster, combined with the abortion of a final 6 minutes I saw in the Baltimore/Cleveland game (see my Cleveland +1.5 loss- nice play calling at the end, Kyle, you dick), is the reason I had to double up on my AA meetings this week. (All Alcohol parties, I sometimes attend).

In short, Dallas doesn't have the luxury this week of facing either Jake Locker or Austin Davis, like they did the prior two weeks. This dude, Drew Something or Other- he's got this big hairy mole on his face and he's a pretty good Quarterback- is coming to town, and Dallas' defense is going to get burned like my bunghole after a night of Anita's bean burritos and Budweisers.

I like this game in large part because myself and the rest of the world, is waiting for Drew Brees and the Saints offense to take off. And I believe this is the week that happens. I realize they lost in a shootout to Atlanta in week 1, but they were mostly contained in both their Week 2 loss at Cleveland and last week's 20-9 home win against the Adrian Peterson-less Vikings.

Dallas is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games, and for what its worth, 0-5 ATS in their last 5 Week 4 tilts. Conversely, the Saints are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 Week 4 match ups. Dallas will score, but the Saints will score a lot more. This is my strongest game on the board (3-0 ATS in "strong/Barking Dog of week" games). 38-23 Saints.





Last Week                                                          3-2 ATS
YTD                                                                  7-8 ATS (47%)
Reg. Season Since '09                      195-156-12 ATS (55%)

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Friday, September 19, 2014

NFL Week 3: "Who Let The Dogs Out?... Ruff....Ruff-Ruff-Ruff-Ruff!"

Tom Coughlin At The End of Last Week's Loss
Houston at NY Giants (+2)
Tom Coughlin is running pretty hot these days. That red faced bastard has watched his team turn the ball over 6 times through two weeks, while forcing zero. His quarterback named Manning, although donning two Super Bowl rings, is playing more like Bradley (or is it Chelsea?) than Eli (cue a Google search by 79% of my readers). That goofy looking bastard has a 69.2 passer rating (32nd ranked) through two pretty ugly games, and the Giants look as lost as Adrian Peterson in the condom aisle at a CVS.

Fast forward to this Sunday, where the Giants host a team who is ripe for an absolute beat down. Here is the deal with the 2-0 Texans; they're not very good. They were fortunate to win their Week 1 game vs Washington, in a game they were pretty much out played in, albeit for a couple Redskins RZ turnovers, and a Houston special teams touchdown. The Texans then drew the Raiders in Week 2, who might be the worst team in the NFL. And like the gift wrapped W the Texans got in Week 1, the Raiders too turned the ball over in Texans territory; four times.

The G-Men are 16-6-1 in their last 23 as a dog of 1-3 points. And they're "riding" an 8 game losing streak in the month of September, that I'm banking on them breaking this weekend. Couple this information with (a) Houston on the back end of back to back roadies, and (b) The Giants in desperation mode in Week 3, and you've got my #BarkingDog 5 Star lock for the month of September.  Coughlin's face will be a lighter shade of red by about 3:45 Sunday afternoon. 23-17 Giants.



Dallas at St. Louis (+1.5)
Per a source a couple years ago, Austin Davis was on the Shanahans board along with Kirk Cousins, the year the Redskins took Cousins 4th in the 2012 draft. The Redskins eventually took Cousins, the Shanahans moved on, Griffin got hurt for the 983rd time last week, and now Cousins is starting in DC. I guess its a good thing the Shannys opted for Cousins, considering Davis wasn't even drafted that year, and a pick at 4th wouldn't have been too wise. However, Davis wound up in St. Louis, and due to Sam Bradford's 1,172nd injury, Davis is now starting in St. Louis.

If you're wondering who this Austin Davis dude is, check his college career numbers. They're not too shabby, and they include a lot of records held at Southern Miss, that were once held by one, Brett Favre. In any case, he's playing at the pro level now and the Dallas Cowboys are in town. I don't know what to make of the Cowboys. They cost me a W last weekend in Tennessee, but I'm still not buying their defense, Tony Romo's back is jacked again, and I'm playing against them on their back end of back to back roadies (sound familiar, Texans fan?).

I'm throwing out the Rams week 1 pollaxeing at the hands of the Minnesota Vikings. Following Bradford's pre-season injury, they trotted out Shaun Hill at QB, who lasted all of a half before being injured. They then brought in un-tested Davis in relief for the second half. But then last week, Davis and the Rams grinded out a tough road win at Tampa.

Dallas is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 after they've allowed 14 points or less. They're 8-18 in their last 26 following a SU win. And I still believe they're a 5 or 6 win team at most, who will not be starting off their season 2-1. Rams, 26-20.



Baltimore at Cleveland (+1.5)
The Browns are Top 5 in the league through two weeks in points scored per. The Ravens, IMO, have been very unimpressive through two home games. 16 points in a week 1 loss to the Bengals, and then they had the benefit of catching the Steelers in the dreaded (short week, plus travel) Thursday night game, which was an ugly, penalty filled, two hand touch abortion of a football game.

Conversely, I like what I've seen from Cleveland through two weeks. After sleeping through the first half of their Week 1 tilt in Pittsburgh, the Browns have since gone 24-3 vs Pittsburgh in the second half of that game, and then last week- although winning it in the end with a field goal, they seemed to never lose control of a game they essentially dominated. Also, when was the last time Drew Brees was held to just 237 yards passing? (I don't have the answer, but I know it doesn't happen very often)

I've been preaching the Browns under the radar defense for over a year now. And the Ravens are not the type of West Coast type offense that will go into the Dawg Pound and put up monster numbers. Last year in Cleveland, the Jason Campbell led Browns beat the Ravens 24-18, while holding Joe Flacco to just 250 yards passing, and the Ravens rushers to just 55 yards. In the game these two played in Baltimore last year, in which the Ravens won 14-6, Flacco had just 211 yards passing. Keep the faith in the D, and keep the faith in Brian Hoyer. The Browns are on a 4-0 ATS heater in the month of September, and have covered 4 of their last 5 at home as a dog of 1-3 points. 27-13 Browns.




Kansas City (+4.5) at Miami
A Young Andy Reid in a Pie Eating Contest (1971)
Andy Reid claims that the only thing he can think of when playing in the city of Miami, are the two 'M's in the word 'Miami'. It reminds him of 'M&M's, which is his favorite candy. He also went on to say that, "and Miami has great pasta, pizza, seafood- one of my favorite Dunkin Donuts is on A1A, I LOVE the stadium hot dogs there, the pretzels that they twist into the shape of a dolphin, the escargot at...."

The Chefs have lost 5 straight regular or playoff games, dating back to last December. They also backed up the Brinks truck for Alex Smith, just prior to the start of the season. And after a devastating playoff loss at Indy- in which the Chiefs blew a 38-10 3rd Quarter lead (still absolutely mind boggling to me)- and now starting off the 2014 campaign at 0-2, Lardass Hogan and the boys are ready to right the ship.

The Dolphins are 5-21 ATS in their last 26 as a home favorite of 3.5-10 points. And I'm not exactly sure what Vegas is looking at here. Sure, they beat the Patriots at home in Week 1, but they went on the road last week, and got absolutely pollaxed in Buffalo. And now you're asking me to lay 4 and a hook to a wounded animal, whose QB and coach I like a lot better, than the QB/coach combo in Miami? Like Bryce Harper told Danny Espinosa after hitting that moon ball at Citi Field last week, "ummm, no." 21-17 Chiefs.




Denver at Seattle (-5)
Here is why I'm taking the Seahawks in this spot. (1) The game is in Seattle, which is arguably the toughest place to play for a visiting team in the NFL.  (2) The Seahawks are NOT going to lose two games in a row. And (3), am I the only one who saw that 43-8 Superbowl beat down between these two seven months ago?

Hey talking heads, spare me the "Denver has had this game circled on their calendar for seven months" bullshit. Nonsense. The Broncos- and horse-tooth jack ass John Elway- convinced Roger "Short Timer" Goodell to cupcake them two home games to start this campaign. This would give one of the few NFL players without a mugshot, the best chance to start the season 2-0, and in turn the best chance to secure a second Lombardi Trophy. Well, that's exactly what they got.

The only consequence for this, was that in Week 3 they were going to have to travel up to the Pacific Northwest and get their asses handed to them. And that's exactly what they got there, as well.

Don't concern yourself with Seattle's loss last week at San Diego. They still played a very physical game, and in my opinion, ran into what will end up being the AFC representative in this year's Super Bowl. Denver is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall. They also play the underdog role- though an infrequent spot, very poorly. 1-6 ATS last 7 as a dog. Deju Vu all over again, Yogi. 31-16 Seahawks. 


Last Week                                                             3-1 ATS
YTD                                                                     4-6 ATS (40%)
Reg. Season Since '09                          192-154-12 ATS  (55%)

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Swipe That Became The Beginning of The End For The Braves

By. Mike Baxter

Back on August 9th while the Nats were playing a series in Atlanta, the tomahawk chopping, fair weathered fans of the Braves, took exception to Bryce Harper dragging his foot across the Braves 'A' logo that is carved into the dirt behind the batter's box. The ire for the young phenom even carried over to this week's series in Atlanta, when home plate umpire Tim Welke ejected a Braves fan ,who I think directed 6 of the 7 dirty words George Carlin said you cannot say, at Harper.

In any case, Bryce Harper's swipe of his cleat across the 'A' back on that August Saturday night, seemed to spark the Nats, and essentially became the beginning of the end for the Braves.

When the Nats left Atlanta that weekend, they were just 3.5 games up on their divisional foes. They proceeded to win their next 10 games in a row, and 12 of 13. In total during this stretch, they won 25 of 37 games, while the Braves went just 16-21 during that same period. Also, worthy to note, the Nats- who hadn't consistently beat Atlanta since the 2012 campaign, took 5 of 8 from their divisional foes.

Fast forward to the middle of September, the Nats have an 11.5 game lead, they clinched their division with almost two weeks to go in the season, and the Braves are making tee times for the first week in October. Swipe on, Bryce.


@Sportsyack on Twitter

Sunday, September 14, 2014

NFL Week 2: Its Early. Have Some #Faith in The Yack

Side Effects of 1-4 ATS: alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, and shame.
Coming off a sub .500 season (first in 5 years of documenting ATS), I did not want to start the 2014 campaign the way I did last week. A 1-4 ATS diarrhea all over myself  debut, is the last thing this diaper-less wearing, part time handicapper needed. That and the email ridiculing that ensued from my partner and bet runner, "The Legend".  (Side note: between you and me, Fuck The Legend) Couple that with our Thursday night misstep on the Steelers (+2.5), and we have some digging out to do, 10 days into the season.

But there is no time for crying and dwelling in our miserable start to the 2014 campaign. And quite frankly, Legend- if you're reading this- there is no time and place for obscene language directed at buddies. I apologize, and the first drink is on me Oct. 4th. Actually, we'll be at your crib watching MLB playoffs, so the first drink will actually be on you. So make sure The Goose is stocked to capacity. In any case, I've picked myself up from the canvas, and accepted responsibility for my role in the matter, and I've capped 4 new "winners" for you to read about this week. 



Jacksonville at Washington (-6)
Multiple Red Zone turnovers and failing to protect your kicker and punter during basic NFL plays, are all sure fire ways to lose NFL games. And regardless of how many coaches come trotting through Daniel Snyder's office door with dollar signs in their eyes, somethings will never change in Ashburn. Including the team name.

Speaking of faith, my faith was somewhat restored in RG3, as I think he performed and did what he was asked to do last week at a descent level. I might've been looking thru my burgundy and gold colored glasses, but I'm still not sure how the Redskins lost that game. Oh yeah, nevermind, I just re-read the very first sentence of this post.

The Jags were gift wrapped a 17 point lead courtesy of 3 Eagles turnovers last week. The Jags then opted to do their best Roger Goodell impression, and fall asleep while on the job. 34 unanswered points later, and it was business as usual for the 11 point favorite Eagles.

The Jags are 0-6 ATS in their last 6 games in September. RG3 has only tweeted 7 times since last Sunday's loss, including a picture of him stopping to say hello to some kids at a bus stop on his way home from practice. I know its not video of him Mike Tyson-ing his wife or beating the shit out of one of  his kids, but Roger Goodell said it will have to do for now. Good guys sometimes do finish first. 27-10 Redskins.



Dallas at Tennessee (-3.5)
Looks Like Romo Threw Another Pick
The Cowboys are coached by a guy who has zero job security after this season, and probably should've been fired last year. They're owned by an ego maniac, 70 something year old dipshit, who thinks he knows more about football than Jimmy Johnson does, whose also now involved in some kind of sex scandal with a stripper. They're quarterbacked by a guy who has long since cashed his $55 million check, whose coming off back surgery, whose coming off a 3 interception, 3 sack "performance" in his home debut.

Not to be pessimistic Cowboys fan, but there is a better chance of "Mrs. Doubtfire 2" hitting the big screen, than there is of your team winning more than 4 games this season.

This game could get ugly. While the Cowboys and Romo had absolutely nothing to counter San Francisco last week, the Titans rolled into Kansas City and beat down the Chiefs.  Newly extended Alex Smith did one better than the before mentioned Romo. He threw 3 picks, but he was sacked 4 times. Jamaal Charles was held to just 19 yards on 7 carries. And the Chiefs only TD came in garbage time late in the 4th quarter.

Dallas is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games dating back to last season. This is a bad spot against an upstart, younger Titans team, whose adopted Ken Whisenhunt's smash mouth attitude. Poleaxeing alert, poleaxeing alert! 30-14 Titans. 





New Orleans at Cleveland (+6.5)
In my first of two games where I hopped on a home team catching at least a TD, I'm simply betting with some disturbing trends against New Orleans, and laying some faith in a player I've liked a lot the last couple years, Brian Hoyer.

For starters, the Saints haven't exactly been world beaters on grass, and neither has Drew Brees. The Saints were 1-2 ATS last year, and Drew Brees threw just 4 TDs, in the 3 games they played on the natural surface. Another mind boggler, is the fact that in the 38 road games in which Sean Payton has coached the Saints, the road team has covered the number just 5 times.

The Browns "won" the second half of their game last week in Pittsburgh, 24-3. They can move the ball and they can score. That might not bode well for a Saints defense that yielded almost 600 yards of total offense in Atlanta last week. New Orleans is a stock I'm selling. The Brownies are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 as a home dog. "Who dat at 0-2?" 30-27 Browns.



Seattle at San Diego (+6)
Its been 10 days since the Seahawks took it to Aaron Rodgers and the Pack. And its been 9 days and 23 hours since the onslaught of non-stop Seattle love has poured through my radio and TV speakers. I know you have 4 hours to kill, "guy with a radio show, who broke into the business writing what are actually boring sports column, but now you and your PD think you're a radio sports shock jock", but for Christs sake, its one fucking game!

I mean, whats not to like about Seattle? 11-2 ATS last 13.  And their last two "real" games involved absolute beat downs of future HOFers Peyton Manning and Aaron Rodgers. That's impressive.

But so is a San Diego Chargers team who has gone toe to toe with some real heavy weights lately. The Bolts are 6-1 ATS in their last 7, which includes ATS wins against tough Zona in Zona, and two ATS covers vs Denver, including a SU win in Denver in Week 14. Don't sleep on Seattle's less than stellar road record. They're 32-45-1 ATS on the road since 2005, and were 4-4 ATS last year. 23-20 Chargers.




Last Week (Including Thurs. Pit/Bal)                     1-5 ATS
YTD                                                                          1-5 ATS
Regular Season ATS Since '09                 189-153-12 ATS (55%)                                            

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Thursday, September 4, 2014

NFL Week 1: The Beginning of The End for The Las Vegas Hilton

2013 Steelers Fan of the Year, Trevor Ditz
Cleveland at Pittsburgh (-6.5)
Its a big week for Big Hair, Big Ass, and Big Truck Nation. Not only is it the first week of school for the inbred kids up dare in Steeler Country- 72.7% of which are repeating the grade they were in last year-but they also open their 2014 campaign at home against their division rival Brownies. "I don't got time to help you with your spelling homework, Jim Bob, the Steeler game is on. Go ask my cous- I mean, your mama..."

Although Johnny "Why Are You Rolling Up Dollar Bills in A Club Bathroom" Football won't be playing this weekend, you can rest assured he'll be under center at some point soon. Brian Hoyer, coming off ACL surgery, won't be effective out of the gate, and the Brownies didn't take JF 22nd overall so that he could sit on the bench and pick his zits. I'll put the over/under on JF's NFL debut at Week 6.

The Steelers have won 7 of the last 8 between these two teams, with the average margin of victory being 15. And the last 3 games between these two teams have resulted in Steeler victories of 13, 16, and 14 points. Couple that with the Steelers home ATS record coming in (5-1 ATS last 6) and their mini heater at the end of '13- finishing on a 3 game win streak, including a season concluding 20-7 win against the Browns in Pittsburgh. Northeast Ohio radio will be calling for JF by 6 a.m. Monday morning. 23-13 Steelers.




Washington at Houston (-3)
The Shanahans and The Kubiak have left their respective buildings. Entering the building is Jon Gruden's less attractive, and more chubby brother for the Redskins (**Editor's Note** Sportsyackontap.com will be using the term Redskins in all our posts. We will not be joining the ranks of those who, for the most part, are lying about their fake outrage regarding the name. In fact, when Goodell and Snyder finally cave to the nonsense that is called political correctness, and they actually do change the name, this blog will still refer to them as the Redskins. On a side-note, retired New York Giant QB, and longtime Redskins rival Phil Simms, can go fuck himself. Now carry on...), and on the Texans sideline is Bill O'Brien.

The Texans were a big fat ATS loser for this blog last year, dropping dimes on their side 5 different times. They were 1-7 ATS at home, and a dreadful 4-12 ATS overall. But the new coach, coupled with a new guy under center, regardless of how bad you think Ryan Fitzpatrick may or may not be, is enough to get me back on the horse. And for what its worth, Matt Effing Schaub couldn't even win the job in Oakland this year versus a rookie who only had one start during the pre-season. That should tell you where Houston's problems started during the 2013 campaign.

This game will come down to a very underrated Texans defense (7th overall in '13), with the addition of Jadeveon Clowney and the newly extended (and very rich) JJ Watt, against a struggling RG3 leading Jay Gruden's offense, that will take a few weeks to get going and acclimated with. And the talking point that will be proven to be garbage very quickly, is that Mike Shanahan held back Jim Haslett's defensive scheming. The guy is a career loser as a DC, check the numbers for yourself. Sorry RG3, but I doubt you will cover here. 24-17 Texans.




Oakland at NY Jets (-5.5)
Three games into the 2014 season, and "Yack the Dog Chaser" has yet to get down on a dog. What can I tell you, this game has too many trends going against Oakland for me to not play the J-E-T-S. For one, the Jets ended the 2013 season on a mini heater, winning 3 of their last 4. And now they open at home, against a west coast team whose making the dreaded 1 pm EST start, sporting a rookie at the helm. Boat-race watch...

The Rai-duzz are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games vs the AFC, and they also finished their 2013 campaign on an 0-4 ATS cooler.  And west coast teams playing the 1 p.m. EST start are just 41% ATS since 2005. Although the game itself is about as sexy as a yeast infection, this may be the strongest game on the board in Week 1. Geno Smith will shine, and the NY Jets defense will smother Derek Carr. 33-13 Jets.




Cincy at Baltimore (-2)
Sugar Ray Rice Won't See The Field Until Week 3
The good news for Ray Rice's wife is that two casinos in Atlantic City- Revel and The Showboat- recently shut down, giving her husband less options to get caught on camera pounding her face to a pulp, and then dragging her through the casino like a cave man. The bad news for Ray Rice's wife, is that Ray Ray was suspended for the first two games of the season, so in turn has nothing better to do this weekend, and he has a "$500 Match Your Play" comp from Borgata, that expires this Sunday.

The Ravens own Cincinnati in Baltimore. They've won 4 straight against their divisional foes in the Charm City, and Bengals coach Marvin Lewis isn't exactly "quick out of the gate guy". His opening day record is 4-7 overall,  3-5 on the road, including an opening day beat down here in Baltimore two years ago, 44-13. Conversely, John Harbaugh is an impressive 5-1 SU and ATS in season openers since taking the helm as the Ravens head coach.

Andy "I got paid even tho I suck" Dalton is 0-3 at Baltimore, throwing 7 pickles during those 3 games. Bet the Ravens to cover this game, while Ray Ray is in Atlantic City betting on black.... eye. 22-13 Ravens.



San Francisco at Dallas (+4.5)
The kiss of death is honing in on a team like I did 6 weeks ago ("I love San Fran at Dallas in week 1"- me to the Legend, back in July), and then flip flopping on their asses the week before the season starts. Besides the fact that its the annoying as shit and hated Dallas Cowboys, who you're flip flopping for. I don't know what it is, but I've done the proverbial 180 on this game, and I'm actually feeling pretty good about it.

Most of my "feeling" on this game revolves around all the bad news and press coming out of Dallas. We've heard all off season about how bad the Cowboys defense is. And ESPN just ran a lengthy interview with Jerry Jones, highlighting how much of an ego maniac he is, and how much of the fan base is fed up with him. It just seems to me that the point spread should be a couple points higher here, and there is some reason why its not. Who knows?

Tony Romo is healthy, and can put up points on his own, regardless of how piss poor his defense is. Remember last year's home tilt against the Broncos? And the Cowboys have actually been the play in the role of a dog. Dallas is 6-2 ATS in their last 8 as an underdog, including 4-1 ATS in their last 5 as a home dog. Frisco has had some off the field issues this off season, both with players and chatter regarding the coach and the front office.  Is this the year the Niners finish behind both the Seahawks and/or the Cardinals/ Rams in the NFC West? Will Dallas' defense be as bad as everyone thinks? Because if you want to take down the field in the LVH Super Contest, over the course of a grueling 17 Week NFL season, you need to "start asking the right fucking questions." 27-24 San Fran.




Reg. Season ATS Record since '09              188-148-12 (56%)


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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Paternity Leave Tweet

By. Mike Baxter


I was assaulted yesterday on Twitter for saying the following things regarding Nats' Catcher Wilson Ramos' paternity leave:

"Paternity leave for a guy who is making $2m+/year to play a game, is embarrassing. Its not like the are on the road either. My point is that his wife is here in DC, are on home stand. He doesn't really need 3 days off from that "rough and tough, $2m/year job" of playing baseball."

First things first, I do not have kids. And from my standpoint, this is not relevant to this particular opinion. Secondly, if the Nats had been on a road trip and/or Wilson Ramos' wife was not residing in the DC area with him, my opinion would be that he most certainly deserves the time off, and I would not make issue with him missing 3 games. Logistically, he would need to take the 3 games off to be there for his wife and child.

But that's not the case. The Nats are at home for 3 games against the Mets and his wife is here in the DC area as well. In fact, she had their baby daughter Monday morning.

The question is not whether or not Wilson Ramos deserves to be there for the birth of his first child; he does. The question is not whether or not Wilson Ramos should be there in the hours and days following the birth of his child, as he should be.

So let me address what I was saying, since most of the assaulters yesterday, are too concerned with getting offended first, screaming at me second, and then maybe taking two seconds out of their day to consider what I was actually saying, third.

@EricFingerhut on Twitter said to me, "So you believe paternity leave in general is embarrassing, or just for rich baseball players. Either way, you're wrong."

Actually, Eric, I am not wrong. And I don't think paternity leave in general is embarrassing. But I'm glad you brought up the money aspect of it and what he does for a living.

The fact that he makes $2M/year is a consideration. Its only about 20 times more than the typical American family makes in a year.  It affords Ramos and his family to have the best medical staff and help that's available in the country. So is the fact that he's a Major League Baseball player. Unlike you and me and the majority of the rest of the country, Wilson doesn't have to get up at the crack of dawn, fight traffic for an hour, and then grind away at his job for 8 hours or more. He plays baseball for a living. He probably gets to the ball park around 1:30 or 2pm for a 7:05pm start. Of a game...

I'm pretty sure, considering the circumstances of his wife being right here in DC and the Nats playing games right here in DC, that Wilson with the permission from the team- which he would most certainly get, that he could cut his pre-gaming down by a couple hours, maybe he gets to the ball park at 4:30 or 5 for Games 2 and 3, puts in the 4-5 hour day and then returns back home.

Is that asking too much?

Bottom-line, he is compensated handsomely to play a game. The team still pays him and has been there for him when he's injured. And in professional sports, unlike other jobs out there ERIC, your season is condensed into about a 6-7 month window, not a 12 month out of the year job like the rest of us working class slobs. And when that season is in full swing, and you're in a pennant race in early August, your team expects you to perform and you should do everything in your power to be there.

Anthony Harris, @Skull_Bonez on Twitter said to me, "If it was a woman, you'd feel different."

Well, no shit, Sherlock. I'll let the genius known as Anthony Harris, ponder this proposition for an hour (or maybe he needs more than an hour), to consider why I might feel different if we were talking about a woman athlete needing leave because of the impending birth of a child, much more so than a man would.

Interestingly enough, I had 16 different assaulters on my Twitter timeline following my comments yesterday. However, when I proposed the same statement/question, regarding how fans and people in general would feel if one of the Nats star players wanted to take paternity leave under the same circumstances, BUT it was a home World Series game, only 1 person replied.

My tweet and thought process wasn't an attempt to insult women or anyone for that matter. It wasn't an attempt to be insensitive, or to dismiss the importance of family or the need to be around for the birth of a child. It was simply a thought, based on the reasons I've presented both here and on Twitter, that would be logistically possible for Mr. Ramos to pull off. But instead, as is Twitter's modus operandi, it became a "let's all get offended and then piss and moan and whine" at the offender, as if he just ran over our dog or took our first born.