Thursday's Preseason Tips
August 7, 2014
By Kevin Rogers
Colts at Jets (-3, 36 ½) - 7:00 PM EST
2013 Preseason Records: IND (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS), NYJ (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS)
Previous Preseason Meeting: Jets (+3) beat Colts, 31-7 in 2004
IND - A. Luck, M. Hasselbeck, C. Harnish
NYJ - G. Smith, M. Vick, M. Simms, T. Boyd*
Expert Handicapper Analysis: Dave Cokin - Colts head man Chuck Pagano is the first to come right out and say this game doesn't mean a whole lot to him. His team has some early injuries, and his "just trying to get through this" comment is telling. The Jets offense has not looked good in scrimmages, which is not shocking at all, but the defense appears to very sharp already. Not necessarily saying the Jets will want this more, but I'm pretty sure the Colts want it less. That's enough to get me to the favorite in this game, laying the points with the Jets.
Patriots at Redskins (-1 ½, 38) - 7:30 PM EST
2013 Preseason Records: NE (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS), WSH (4-0 SU, 4-0 ATS)
Previous Preseason Meeting: Patriots (-3 ½) beat Redskins, 27-24 in 2009
NE - R. Mallett, J. Garoppolo*
WSH - R. Griffin III, K. Cousins, C. McCoy
Expert Handicapper Analysis: Bruce Marshall - While the track record of new head coaches (such as Washington's Jay Gruden) in their first preseason games is not particularly illuminating, Bill Belichick's recent marks in preseason openers are worth noting. That's because his Patriots have won five consecutive lid-lifters, as Belichick usually likes to set a winning tone at the outset before inevitably delivering a flat effort or two later in preseason. Play the Patriots.
49ers at Ravens (-1, 35) - 7:30 PM EST
2013 Preseason Records: SF (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS), BAL (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS)
Previous Preseason Meeting: First ever meeting
SF - C. Kaepernick, J. Johnson, B. Gabbert, M. Bethel-Thompson, K. Faulkner
BAL - J. Flacco, T. Taylor, K. Wenning*
Expert Handicapper Analysis: Hank Goldberg - The Harbaugh brothers will match wits and I believe John takes the exhibition more seriously. He’s 5-1 against the spread in his last six preseason openers. Plus, I believe it will be very tough for San Francisco, who has to travel cross-country to Maryland.
Bengals at Chiefs (-1 ½, 36 ½) - 8:00 PM EST
2013 Preseason Records: CIN (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS), KC (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS)
Previous Preseason Meeting: First ever meeting
CIN - A. Dalton, J. Campbell, A.J. McCarron*
KC - A. Smith, C. Daniel, T. Bray, A. Murray*
Expert Handicapper Analysis: Pat Hawkins - I'm taking the Bengals on the money line because taking under a field doesn't help especially when laying odds (-110). Andy Reid has a proven track record of not caring about the first preseason game going 1-8 in his last nine openers while the Chiefs are 6-23 ATS in their last 29 preaseason games. Kansas City is coming off a surprise season in 2013, but look for Reid to address this game as a practice in pads and play very conservatively.
Seahawks (-2, 37 ½) at Broncos - 9:00 PM EST
2013 Preseason Records: SEA (4-0 SU, 4-0 ATS), DEN (2-2 SU, 1-3 ATS)
Previous Preseason Meeting: Seahawks (-5) beat Broncos, 40-10 in 2013
SEA - R. Wilson, T. Jackson, T. Pryor, B. J. Daniels
DEN - P. Manning, B. Osweiler, Z. Dysert, B. Renner*
Expert Handicapper Analysis: ASA - Seattle’s offense scored a bunch of points in last year’s pre-season schedule (30 PPG), but they were breaking in Russell Wilson at QB and he picked up a lot of playing time. That won’t be the case this year. They know what Wilson can do so look for him to only be in for a series or two. The Bronco defense will be focused in here after allowing 43 points in the Super Bowl and we expect a big effort on that side of the ball. Look for a defensive battle with neither team revealing much offensively here. Take the under.
Cowboys at Chargers (-3, 37) - 10:00 PM EST
2013 Preseason Records: DAL (2-3 SU, 2-3 ATS), SD (1-3 SU, 2-2 ATS)
Previous Preseason Meeting: Chargers (-3) beat Cowboys, 28-20 in 2012
QB Rotations: DAL - B. Weeden, C. Hanie, D. Vaughan*
SD - P. Rivers, K. Clemens, B. Sorensen
Expert Handicapper Analysis: Tony Stoffo - Going with a highly recommended play on the over in this spot between the Cowboys and Chargers - as first the Chargers with McCoy in his first season as head coach of the Chargers saw 3 of the 4 San Diego preseason games go over the posted total. With his former offensive experience from his Denver days, I look for more of an wide open offensive approach in the preseason this year. I can see the Cowboys offensive numbers going up this preseason with the addition of Brandon Weeden in the offseason.
* - Rookie
You can reach Kevin Rogers via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.
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