|2013 Steelers Fan of the Year, Trevor Ditz|
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 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%)
Follow along as we pursue excellence in the Las Vegas Hilton Super Contest.
@Sportsyack on Twitter.