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DALLAS COWBOYS (7-5) at CHICAGO BEARS (6-6)
2013-12-09

The Cowboys set their sights on the NFC East crown while the Bears try to keep their playoff hopes alive when the teams collide on Monday night.
Dallas defeated the Raiders 31-24 on Thanksgiving Day despite being down two touchdowns late in the second quarter. Chicago was saddled with a 23-20 road loss against the Vikings in overtime, making the team 2-4 SU (1-5 ATS) in its past six games. The Bears have yet to cover a spread at home this year (0-5-1 ATS), while the Cowboys are 2-4 SU on the road, but a solid 4-2 ATS. These teams last met in Dallas last season where Chicago won 34-18 as a 3-point underdog, picking off Tony Romo five times in the victory. That made this series an even 5-5 split (SU and ATS) in the past 10 meetings. Both clubs have negative betting trends working against them. The Cowboys are 10-23 ATS (30percent) in road games after outrushing their opponent by 75+ yards in their previous game since 1992. But over the past two seasons, Chicago is 2-11 ATS (15percent) in games where the line is +3 to -3. The big injury story in this game is Bears starting QB Jay Cutler (ankle) who is out, while the Cowboys will get a huge boost with top LB Sean Lee (hamstring) set to return after missing the past two games.

The Cowboys appeared to be in trouble against the Raiders on Thanksgiving Day before QB Tony Romo (3,140 passing yards, 7.1 YPA, 24 TD, 7 INT) began to throw all over the Oakland defense. Romo went 23-of-32 for 225 yards and a touchdown, and constantly had the Cowboys in the red zone in the second half. RB DeMarco Murray (697 rush yards, 4.9 YPC, 7 TD) was able to cash in on those opportunities as he rushed for 63 yards and three touchdowns. Backup RB Lance Dunbar (150 rush yards, 5.0 YPC) also rushed 12 times for 82 yards before being injured (knee) and lost for the season. This was a welcomed change from the pass-happy attack Dallas has shown all year, where the team ranks 15th in the NFL in passing yards (243 YPG) and 27th in rushing offense (85 YPG). The Cowboys offense has still be able to find ways to score though, with 27.4 PPG this season (3rd in NFL). They will need to step their defense up, however, as they are allowing a league-worst 422 total YPG, broken down between 295 passing YPG (2nd-worst in NFL) and 127 rushing YPG (27th in NFL). Dallas also ranks 28th in the league in red zone efficiency (62percent TD rate) and 27th in third-down defense (41percent efficiency). The return of LB Sean Lee should immediately help the struggling defense get on track.
Chicago lost a heartbreaker in Minnesota last week that couldve really gone a long way in helping the club make the playoffs. The Bears should be fine with Josh McCown playing excellent football for Chicago. He has thrown for 1,461 yards (7.9 YPA) this season with nine touchdowns and just one interception. He also has two exceptional receivers in WRs Brandon Marshall (990 rec. yards, 9 TD) and Alshon Jeffery (1,109 rec. yards, 5 TD), who is coming off a mammoth 249-yard performance with 2 TD in Minnesota. The Bears are passing for 272 YPG (6th in NFL) while allowing just 232 passing YPG (14th in NFL). Their big problem, however, comes stopping the run. They have allowed an NFL-worst 154 rushing YPG on 5.0 YPC, but the red-zone defense has been pretty good (50percent, T-10th in NFL). Despite this efficiency, Chicago is still allowing 27.7 PPG (5th-most in league). RB Matt Forte will need to have an effective game for the Bears to come away with this one. He has been one of the best running backs in football this season with 971 rushing yards (4.5 YPC) and seven touchdowns. He has also added 58 receptions for 445 yards and a touchdown in the passing game.




NFL, NFLPA running out of time on HGH agreement
2013-08-29

The tentative agreement -- contingent Apuestas Deportivas Online Bingo Play Slots Online in US March Madness Bracket 2020 on the parties agreeing to whether or not NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has appeal power over cases involving the law and evidentiary cases -- relies on preseason collection of blood samples in order to conduct a population study, which would set the threshold for a player's positive test. The league then would collect samples for testing starting in Week 1, with potential suspensions coming once the population study is completed.
Saturday is roster cutdown day, so the reality is that the time is now for a deal. George Atallah, NFLPA assistant executive director for external affairs, told NFL.com last week that it would take one to two days to organize the blood draw and three to five additional days to execute it, meaning that even a finalized agreement Tuesday would mean a rushed process.

"It's one of those things that's tough to put an end date on, but we're certainly at the point where every second matters," Adolpho Birch, NFL senior vice president of law and labor policy, said Tuesday. "The longer we wait, it becomes increasingly hard to do what the parties agreed to. Players are starting to be released, and with every player released, that's one less eligible to participate in the population study. We're already starting to erode our ability to do what was agreed to."

Atallah said that, "at this point, things have pretty much been status quo."

Birch didn't rule out the idea that testing could go midstream during the 2013 season, but he said that it would be more difficult logistically.

"Anything is possible, but it's logistically challenging to figure out a method by which we could carry out the plan as the parties agreed to it," Birch said. "To implement the regular testing, we'd have to allow players to understand the system, clubs would have to have an understanding of how it would work, collectors, independent administrators those issues are all compounded with a makeshift system that doesnt have a fluid start."

The sides have only briefly touched base since last week, according to Birch.

"We've touched base, we resent them the letter (on the population study agreement) recently, reminding them what we agreed to," Atallah said. "But I mean, we're status quo."

Birch also emphasized, in explaining the league's position, that the NFL has made several concessions to have testing implemented.

One such agreement was on the controversial issue of Adderall. Birch said that, as part of the tentative plan, Adderall would be treated as a recreational drug during the offseason and a performance-enhancer during the season under the policy. That would mean that, in the offseason, a first positive would not lead to a suspension.

Birch took exception to the idea that the NFL and NFLPA don't want testing and are conveniently avoiding an agreement.

"We've been asking for HGH testing since 2008. It's been part of every proposal we've put together," Birch said. "When you look at the number of concessions we've made in order to fulfill the commitment to do HGH testing, one would have a hard time arguing that we'd make those concessions if we didn't want the testing. And look at the nature of the concessions we've made, they're sizable, but in the interest of resolving the issue and getting testing, we've made those concessions.

"From a PR standpoint, we've always maintained the best PR is to have an effective policy that restores public confidence in the game, is fair for the players and sends the right message to kids."
Atallah echoed Birch's thoughts there, saying in response to any question of the union's motivation, "I think that's silly."


2015 Kentucky Derby Odds
2015-04-15

Kentucky Derby week is one of the most thrilling times of the year. This race is known as "The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports" for its approximate time length.



Check 2015 KY Derby Schedule May 1 and 24 at Sportsbook.com



Odds to Win 2015 Kentucky Derby


NFL: Favre, Minnesota on NBC Sunday night football
2010-08-21

Favre-watch for the summer of 2010 is over as the 40-year old indecisive legend has chosen once again to come back for another season. For a second straight year, he will put on the pads and purple for the Minnesota Vikings, looking to take last year’s magical campaign one more step. His first action, albeit for just a series or two will come on Sunday night in San Francisco, when his club travels to San Francisco to take on the 49ers in an exhibition game. Sportsbook.com lists the hosts as 3.5-point favorites with an accompanying total of 34.5.

The biggest question in San Francisco on Sunday night won’t have anything to do with the 49ers; it’ll focus entirely on who is under center for the Vikings. The summer drama that is Brett Favre is quickly becoming an August tradition, and Favre is now back with the Vikings. Of course, the way Sage Rosenfels started the preseason, there may be no need for Favre. Rosenfels was 23-34 for 310 yards and three touchdowns in Minnesota’s 28-7 win over St. Louis. The Vikings defense was equally as impressive, only allowing the Rams only 150 yards of offense.

On the injury front for Minnesota, wide receiver Percy Harvin is not expected to be in uniform following a scary episode on Thursday that saw him collapse on the practice field. Harvin, who has battled migraines throughout his life, was hospitalized overnight but is not expected to be out of the lineup for an extended period. Linebacker E.J. Henderson (leg) is a question mark for the Vikings on Sunday.

The 49ers opened the preseason in grand style with a 37-17 rout of the Colts in Indianapolis. David Carr was solid in relief of Alex Smith, connecting on 9-of-11 attempts for 98 yards and a TD. Rookie Anthony Dixon handled the load on the ground, rushing 21 times for 100 yards. The 49ers will have to take better care of the ball this week. Smith threw an INT and the team fumbled four times (losing three) vs. Indy.

After the strong defensive effort against St. Louis, one particular FoxSheets system points to Minnesota here:

Play On - Underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (MINNESOTA) - after allowing 75 or less rushing yards last game. (27-8 over the last 10 seasons.) (77.1%, +18.2 units. Rating = 2*).

Interestingly, the line and total for Sunday night’s game moved in exactly the opposite direction of what you would expect upon Favre’s return. After opening a 3-point favorites, the 49ers are now off the key number and laying 3.5. The total has actually dropped from the initial number of 35 to 34.5.

Look for Sunday’s contest in primetime on NBC, starting at 8:00 PM ET.