Editor's note: Tony Stoffo has started the preseason with an eye opening 5-1 (86.6%) run. His upcoming selections can be purchased here at VegasInsider.com!
Let me start off by saying that I feel the NFL preseason is a great opportunity to start and build a nice bankroll for the upcoming regular season. Many handicappers have the opinion that the preseason games should be left alone and not bet on. I feel just the opposite. If you do your homework the preseason games offer the betting public a tremendous chance to make a ton of money.
In the preseason, many head coaches have a track record of wanting to win and some just don’t care and are just preparing for the regular season. You can find many games this preseason where you can get a definite edge. Below I have put together a list of all 32 teams with a breakdown of things to look for this preseason that will give you that winning advantage.
A very important thing to remember for this upcoming preseason is that there will be 7 new head coaches this season, so previous preseason trends for these teams are no longer valid. However I have found some nice hidden trends that can still show us a profit with these teams.
Here are the 7 teams with new head coaches for the upcoming season:
Arizona - Ken Whisenhunt
Atlanta - Bobby Petrino
Dallas - Wade Phillips
Miami - Cam Cameron
Oakland - Lane Kiffin
Pittsburgh - Mike Tomlin
San Diego - Norv Turner
Arizona – With Dennis Green now gone Ken Whisenhunt takes over as the new head coach of the Cardinals. For the past 3 seasons Whisenhunt has been the offensive coordinator of the Steelers. For this upcoming preseason I would definitely make the Cardinals a team to play on as they have gone 11-5 against the spread the last 4 years, and have a new coach that wants to impress immediately.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Matt Leinatt, Kurt Warner, Shane Boyd
Atlanta – The offensive minded Bobby Petrino of Louisville has been named the new head coach of the Falcons. However Atlanta has retained both their offensive and defensive coordinators from a year ago. So a very strong preseason trend should continue to show a profit for this year. In their 'dress rehearsal' games the last three years the Falcons have gone 3-0 outscoring their opposition 80-23 This year’s 'dress rehearsal' game for the Falcons will be on August 27th when they play Cincinnati at home.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Joey Harrington, D.J. Shockley, Chris Redman, Michael Vick (suspension)
Baltimore – The Ravens under head coach Brian Billick are just a .500 team ATS over the past four preseasons (10-10). However, there is a very strong trend that can make you some money on the Ravens this preseason. Baltimore in the past two preseasons has seen the under go 6-2. Plus in week # 3 when the regulars play the under has gone 3-1 the past 4 years.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Steve McNair, Kyle Boller, Drew Olsen, Troy Smith
Buffalo – The Bills lost 3 of their 4 preseson games last year under new head coach Dick Jauron. This follows a trend that in Jauron’s last two preseasons when he was head coach of the Chicago Bears back in 2002 and 2003, he went 2-6 ATS. Buffalo also hired Marv Levy last year as its vice president of football operations. Remember Levy coached all those great Buffalo teams that went to the Super Bowl. But Levy never cared about winning in the preseason. Under this new leadership will have to make the Bills a definite fade again this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: J.P. Losman, Craig Nall, Trent Edwards.
Carolina – The Panthers played it close to the vest last year with all 4 of their preseason games going under the total. With Carolina having to play the Giants, Eagles, Patriots, and Steelers this year look for this trend of low scoring games to continue this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Jake Delhomme, David Carr, Brett Basanez.
Chicago – In Lovie Smith’s three seasons as Chicago head coach the Bears are just a .500 team against the spread. However a trend has definitely developed in the preseason in the 13 games the Bears have played, nine of them have stayed 'under' the total. A possible 'under' play this preseason is on August 30th when the Bears play Cleveland on the road. The Browns have seen the 'under' go 4-0 in their last preseason game of the year the past 4 years which 3 of these were against the Bears.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Rex Grossman, Brian Griese, Kyle Orton, Chris Leak.
Cincinnati – Some early preseason trends to follow for the Bengals this year. Cincinnati really doesn’t care about their opening preseason game going 1-3 the last 4 years. However the Bengals are a perfect 4-0 against the spread the last 4 years in game 2 of the preseason. This year’s game #2 opponent is a Saints team coached by Sean Payton who has shown that winning preseason games is not one of his top priorities.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Carson Palmer, Doug Johnson, Jeff Smith, Jeff Rowe.
Cleveland – It should be noted that Romeo Crennel brought over New England’s winning ways with the Browns, going 6-2 against the spread in his first two preseasons with the Browns. With a nice 07 draft look for these winning ways to continue for the Browns this preseason with a coach that’s under a lot of pressure to win this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Charlie Frye, Ken Dorsey, Derek Anderson, Brady Quinn
Dallas – Wade Phillips takes over as the Cowboys' new head coach. Phillips is the perfect fit to take over Bill Parcells 3-4 defense as he has been the Chargers' defensive coordinator the past 3 seasons. So I look for the Cowboys to be concentrating on defense this preseason which will lead to a bunch of low scoring games this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Tony Romo, Brad Johnson, Matt Baker, Richard Bartel
Denver – Head coach Mike Shanahan loves to win preseason games. In the last five years, the Broncos have gone 13-8 against the spread. Shanahan also puts a great emphasis on the Broncos' final preseason game, going 6-1 against the spread the last seven years making this one of the Best preseason plays that you will find.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Jay Cutler, Patrick Ramsey, Preston Parsons, Darrell Hackney
Detroit – Last year I told you that that the Lions head coach Marinelli has been the defensive line and assistant head coach for Tampa Bay the past 10 years. He helped put together the awesome Buccaneers defensive units of the past. With him emphasizing defense and toughness, playing Detroit 'under' this preseason might be the way to go. Well the Lions saw the 'under' go 3-1 in their preseason games last year. I see no reason why this trend won’t continue this preseason making the under a strong play for this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Jon Kitna, Dan Orlovsky, and Drew Stanton
Green Bay – In his first year as head coach of the Packers Mike McCarthy showed no signs of being interested in winning preseason games as Green Bay went 1-3 against the spread last year. The Packers have also been blown out in their last 2 dress rehearsal game being outscored 75-20. With a very poor quarterback rotation in place for this year look for the Green Bay preseason woes to continue this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Brett Favre, Aaron Rogers, Ingle Martin, Paul Thompson
Houston – Gary Kubiak brought the Denver preseason winning ways to Houston last year as the Texans went 3-0-1 against the spread last year in his first year as head coach. With a very solid quarterback rotation in place I look for the Texans to again be a winning proposition this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Matt Schaub, Sage Rosenfels, Bradlee Van Pelt, Jared Zabransky
Indianapolis – Two late preseason trends to watch this year for the Colts. Over the past 5 years Indianapolis has been a money maker in their dress rehearsal game going 4-1 against the spread (this year’s dress rehearsal game is on August 25th against Detroit). While just as impressive is how poorly they play in their last preseason game of the year going 1-4 against the spread. Look for both of these solid trends to continue this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Peyton Manning, Jim Sorgi, Josh Betts, and John Navarre.
Jacksonville – The Jaguars are sure known for their defense in the regular season. However head coach Jack Del Rio has pulled in the reigns during the last 2 preseasons allowing the Jaguars to open things up offensively as the 'over' has gone 6-2. Look for this trend to again be a money maker this year as the odds makers continue to post low totals on all of the Jacksonville preseason games.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Byron Leftwich, David Garrard, Quinn Gray.
Kansas City – One strong early trend to watch this preseason for Kansas City. The Chiefs definitely don’t look forward to playing their first preseason game of the year going 0-4 against the spread the last 4 years. Look for this trend to continue this year as the Chiefs open up on the road against a Browns team that has excelled against the spread since Romeo Crennel has taken over as head coach.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Damon Huard, Brodie Croyle, Casey Printers, Jeff Terrell
Miami – Cam Cameron takes over as the Dolphins new head coach. Over the last 5 years Cameron has been the offensive coordinator of the potent Chargers offense. However with all the uncertainties the Dolphins have on both sides of the ball coming into this year their definitely a team to stay away from this preseason. The one thing I did find that sticks out is that Miami is a perfect 0-6 against the spread in the first preseason game the last 6 years.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Trent Green, Cleo Lemon, John Beck
Minnesota – Brad Childress in his first year as the Vikings head coach played it very conservative in the preseason as Minnesota saw 3 of their 4 games go 'under' the total. With a very poor quarterback rotation in place for this year look for this trend of low scoring preseason games to continue again this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Tarvaris Jackson, Brooks Bollinger, Drew Henson, Tyler Thigpen
New England – Coming into last years preseason the 'under' was an impressive 13-3 in the Patriots last 16 preseason games spanning the previous four years. However last year Bill Belichick opened things up offensively with the Patriots scoring 23, 30, 41, and 23 points in their 4 preseason games. Knowing that the odds makers will continue to post low totals on all of New England’s preseason games, I would look to take advantage of this and play the 'over' off of last years results.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Tom Brady, Matt Cassel, Matt Gutierrez
New Orleans – Off of last years preseason results it is obvious that Sean Payton does not really care about winning preseason games as the Saints lost 3 of their 4 contests. What really verifies this is the game the Saints played against the Cowboys in Week 2 of the preseason where they lost 30-7, and remember the Saints came back in the regular season and blew away the Cowboys in Dallas. With the Saints playing the extra game this preseason I would make a strong play against them in their first preseason game against the Steelers.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Drew Bees, Jamie Martin, Jason Fife, Tyler Palko
New York Giants – Under head coach Tom Coughlin the Giants have shown some strong trends over the past 2 years. First the Giants have won and covered 7 straight preseason games which includes 4 outright wins as a dog. Plus the under has been the right side in 6 of the Giants last 8 preseason games. With Coughlin’s job in jeopardy as this season begins I would look for another big preseason from the Giant’s this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Eli Manning, Jared Lorenzen. Tim Hasselbeck, Anthony Wright
New York Jets – In his first year as head coach of the Jets Eric Mangini showed no willingness to win preseason games as the Jets lost 2 of their 4 games. Their only win came against a Joe Gibbs Washington team that has lost 7 of their last 8 preseason games. Even though we have only one year to look at, I would say this short term trend will continue this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Chad Pennington, Kellen Clemens, Marques Tuiasosopo
Oakland – Lane Kiffin takes over as the new Oakland head coach. Kiffin has run the USC Trojans offense over the last 4 years. Well it doesn’t matter who has been the Raiders head coach over the past two years as a very strong trend has developed. The 'under' has been a big money maker going 8-1. With Kiffin’s inexperience as a head coach will only add to this trend as he will be taking things easy this preseason, and remember they will also be simplifying things offensively for JaMarcus Russell.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Daunte Culpepper, Josh McCown, Andrew Walter, JaMarcus Russell
Philadelphia – Andy Reid and the Eagles show no trends that we can take advantage of going 11-10 in the preseason over the last five years. However Reid doesn’t care about playing defense in the Eagles last preseason game of the year as the over has been the right side in 4 of the last 5 years.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Donovan McNabb ???, AJ Feeley, Kelly Holcomb, Kelvin Kolb
Pittsburgh – Mike Tomlin takes over as the new head coach of the Steelers. Tomlin was the Minnesota Vikings' defensive coordinator in 2006 after spending the previous five seasons as defensive backs coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In his first preseason as defensive coordinator last year with the Vikings defense ruled in the preseason with Minnesota giving up only 16, 10, 7, and 10 points. May be something we can take advantage of in his first preseason as head coach of the Steelers.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Ben Roethlisberger, Charlie Batch, Brian St. Pierre, Bryan Randall
St Louis – Scott Lineham will be in his second year as head coach of the Rams, and a strong trend easily sticks out that we can make some money with this preseason. Two years ago as offensive coordinator with the Dolphins Lineham saw Miami go 0-3-2 against the spread, and last year in his first year as a head coach Lineham led the Rams to a 0-4 mark against the spread. So in the last two preseasons Lineham’s teams have gone 0-7-2 against the spread making this one of the top trends to watch for this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Marc Bulger, Gus Frerotte, Ryan Fitzpatrick
San Diego – Norv Turner takes over the reigns of the Chargers for this season. In Turner’s last head coaching job with the Raiders in 04 and 05 some trends can be taken away from it that can give us an edge for the Chargers preseson games this year. First of all in both of his dress rehearsal games the Raiders went 0-2 against the spread. However Turner put a little more empathic in the last preseason game of the year going 2-0 against the spread.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Phillip Rivers, Billy Volek, Charlie Whitehurst.
San Francisco – In Mike Nolan’s first two year’s as head coach, the 49ers have gone 6-2 against the spread in the preseason. Here is another team that has a strong quarterback rotation setup for this preseason. So I look for the 49ers to once again have another winning preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Alex Smith, Trent Dilfer, Shaun Hill
Seattle – The Seahawks' head coach Mike Holmgren doesn’t put much emphasize in preseason games, going 8-12 ATS the last five years. However a strong trend has developed that has seen 7 of the last 10 Seattle games go over the total. Something to definitely keep your eye on for this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Matt Hasselbeck, David Greene, Seneca Wallace.
Tampa Bay – The Buccaneers have one of the top preseason trends that we look forward to every year. Tampa Bay has been a perfect 5-0 in their opening preseason game the last five years. I look for this trend to easily continue this year with the great quarterback rotation that the Buccaneers have this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Jeff Garcia, Bruce Gradkowski, Luke McCown, Chris Simms
Tennessee – Two years ago, Titans head coach Steve Fisher had won 75 percent of his preseason games in the previous five years. However, things started to turn around in 05 with the Titans going 1-3 ATS. Then last year the Titans came with another 1-3 ATS record for a combined 2-6 record against the spread over the past two years. With Vince Young seeing limited action this preseason, and the rest of the Tennessee quarterback rotation unsettled. I look for the Titans to again be a play against team this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Vince Young, Kerry Collins, Kent Smith
Washington – In Joe Gibbs' last two years as head coach of the Redskins it is become apparent that the Redskins preseason games don’t mean anything to Gibb’s as Washington has gone 1-7 both straight up and against the spread. Can’t see anything changing this strong trend coming into this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Mark Brunell, Jason Campbell, Todd Collins, Jordan Palmer
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