The boys in Vegas set traps all over the place last week and it makes me nervous looking at the current slate of games.
Normally scared money is dead money.
This is not going to unfold as a normal situation. Once I am done with this opening segment, I will feel confident and I will produce winners.
First I need to remind myself that the books are not trying to get 50 percent of the money on each side of every game. It doesn't work like that and it never will. There are plenty of games every week when 70 to 80 percent of the money hits a team. If that happens, the books need to be on the right side once and they will clean house.
Vegas cleaned house all right.
On two games alone Vegas had enough money to put up another casino.
Both favorites received 70 percent of the money and they went up in flames as they lost outright. That means a pretty penny was lost by the public on the money line as well.
This serves notice to fade the public and back the bookie.
That is remarkable.
Basically you had to two options last week: Lay the points with the favorite or play the money line with the dogs.
An impressive six underdogs won the games outright.
My record dropped to 30-28 and I am going to go back to basics.
I need to do what I did at the beginning of the season: Read the lines, evaluate a team's emotional state and fade the public.
Calculate those three variables correctly and you will have plenty of winners.
Here we go kids:
Baltimore (+1) vs. Indianapolis
This is the perfect spot to fade the public and to evaluate a team's mental state.
Everyone is going to jump all over the Colts and pad the wallets of their local bookie. That should be enough of a reason for me.
Did you see how excited the Colts were to win last week? They acted like it was the Super Bowl. The Colts will be drained and will come out flat. I guarantee it. You can’t let yourself get that emotionally high and not expect a letdown.
And I guess people want to forget about the beat down the Colts were taking before the miracles of all miracles happened.
Imagine if the hooded boy decided to punt on fourth down and the Pats won. If that happens the Colts are an underdog in this game.
I will take the generosity here as the book is setting a line based on public perception.
Baltimore 30 - Indianapolis 26
Miami (+3) @ Carolina
The Panthers are hot right now and the public is all over them.
Take a closer look at the Panthers and you will realize this is the kind of game that sets up perfectly for Miami.
The Dolphins want to control the run game on both sides of the ball and they do it pretty well.
Carolina needs their run game to help out Jake Delhomme and that will not happen on Thursday night.
Miami will use its strong defensive front to limit the Panthers run game and force Delhomme into making poor decisions.
Meanwhile I expect Miami to run all over the Panthers defense which has given up over 150 yards of rushing in four games this season.
Plus I love the fact that Carolina is coming off a huge divisional game and now must play on a short week. That would be the emotional aspect of the game.
I know Miami was pushed to the brink against Tampa Bay, but that game was not as physical as the battle that Carolina was involved in with Atlanta. Carolina is going to look sluggish to start this game.
Miami 26 - Carolina 20
The Lions were three-point favorites against the winless St. Louis Rams and they lost.
Now they are laying three and a hook to a team in complete disarray.
The public is all over the Lions too.
I'll stick to my guns and fade the public once again.
And this may be the one game that is ideal for Brady Quinn. He gets to play indoors against a terrible defense as opposed to playing under the bright lights of Monday Night Football in front of fans that hate you.
I also think people don't give the Browns defense enough respect.
Cleveland 20 - Detroit 17
St. Louis (+9) vs. Arizona
This is the perfect game where the book knows something we don't and they are going to exploit the average Joe big time.
This line makes no sense to me whatsoever.
Arizona is undefeated on the road and has wins by the following margins: 24, 24, seven, and 20. I can assure you all of those teams were worse than the St. Louis Rams.
So why in the name of gambling are the Cardinals not laying double digits here?
The public wants to hammer away at the Cardinals and I will once again jump the other way.
Arizona 27 - St. Louis 20
Tampa Bay (+11) vs. New Orleans
The Saints look like the worst 9-0 team ever assembled.
New Orleans can thank the schedule maker for their fraudulent start.
A shot to prove their worth is right around the corner as New England comes into town next week and will play in one of the biggest regular season games ever played in the Superdome.
Everyone is looking forward to it including the players themselves.
Meanwhile Tampa Bay has their biggest game of the season this week when the Saints come into town.
The perfect storm: A team looking ahead while another team is playing its Super Bowl.
Whenever you take a team lightly in the NFL you get burned.
And oh yeah, the public loves the ‘Aints here too.
New Orleans 26 - Tampa Bay 20