Fred Faour's analysis

Free plays for the Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby

Game Winner. Getty Images.

Saturday will be the Kentucky Derby, and we are hoping to get back on track with our plays this year. If you want a look at every horse, please read this. For my premium plays, please go to pregame.com. That will give you precise trifecta and exacta plays.

The scratch of favorite Omaha Beach does hurt our plays a little, because it means Game Winner will likely be the favorite. We were hoping to get the 5-1 morning line, but that will not be the case now. Here are three plays I will be making on the Derby and Friday's Kentucky Oaks:

1) Kentucky Oaks

I like three horses here, the 1, 4 and 14. The 4 will be a heavy favorite and looks tough. I will do an exacta box with these three horses, and also play the 14 in weighted win/place/show bets (more to place and show than to win). So depending on your bankroll, a minimum play would be $2 to win, $4 to place and $8. Whatever your base win bet is, double it to place and then double again to show.

2) The Derby

I have it narrowed down to Tacitus and Game Winner to be first or second. So you can key them first and second in the exactas and tris with the logical contenders, but throw in long shots War of Will and Win Win Win. I also believe Tacitus is worth a win/place/show bet. My specific plays are on pregame,

Game Winner has been second in both starts this year after being 2-year-old champ. In his first start, he just missed against Omaha Beach despite a wide trip, coming off a layoff and losing training time because of the issues with the Santa Anita surface. In his second start, his stablemate Roadster needed a win to guarantee a spot in the Derby. Game Winner ran second to Roadster. Conspiracy theories aside, he will be 100 percent cranked up for this and we should see his best effort yet.

Tacitus has not faced the top 3 year olds, but he is bred out the ears to get a mile and a quarter, and his two starts this year were solid. He grinned out a win on the rail in the Tampa Bay Derby, then overcame tons of trouble to win the Wood Memorial. Traffic happens in the Derby, and the fact that he has already overcome it is a good thing.

Other legit contenders include Roadster, Maximum Security, Improbable. Potential long shots include War of Will and Win Win Win.

3) The pick 4

We will be playing a pick four, starting with the ninth race. It will be a .50 cent ticket. The horses to use: 1-9-10-12 with 4-10 with 2-6-9-12 with 5-7-8-16-17.

Good luck with all your wagers. Hopefully we will all be cashing tickets.


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Another tough loss for Houston. Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images.

The Houston Texans remain winless as the team comes up short against the Bears in Chicago. Here are 11 observations from the game.

1. Davis Mills made two costly mistakes with interceptions. The first one took points off the board and the second allowed the Bears to kick a game-winning field goal. These were the first two of the season and they highlight the need for near perfection from the offense.

2. Davis Mills claimed he made the correct read on the second interception. He said the tip is the reason the Bears intercepted it. I disagree. It looks like Roquan Smith read it like a book and might have been there anyway.

3. The other interception from Davis Mills wasn’t a good read either. Mills made a quick decision and rifled the ball to Brandin Cooks but the defensive back basically had his whole body between Cooks and the ball. The Bears made a nice play to come down with the deflection.

4. Davis Mills is not to be trusted in moments where most quarterbacks can move the football. The Texans failed to get into field goal range at the end of both halves. Mills has consistently failed in those spots this season.

5. There were some curious calls from Pep Hamilton. The Texans don’t have much talent, but Hamilton has had some unique moments. There was a screen to Pharaoh Brown on third and long. The team called a screen on third and one. There was a telegraph on third and short in the red zone.

6. Why can’t this team get the wideouts more heavily involved? Rex Burkhead shouldn’t be getting the second greatest number of targets. Brandin Cooks shouldn’t leave a game where he has less than 10 targets. It would be worth scheming the ball to Cooks a few more times than he is currently getting the ball.

7. Kamu Grugier-Hill is not playing well right now. The veteran just bounced right off a Bears running back at one point. He is also a liability in coverage. Christian Harris is hopefully back after next week but it would be worth seeing if Garrett Wallow has anything more to his game than the veteran.

8. The rushing defense was assaulted again. This time by running wideouts and a backup running back. Lovie Smith needs to look at playing time and the depth chart to see if something can get corrected here. This can’t keep happening earlier and earlier in games each week.

9. Jerry Hughes has been one of the best players on this team through three games. The veteran has been consistent and flashed more than a few times. A nice addition by the team this offseason.

10. Jalen Pitre is so damn good. He’s already one of the best players on this team. He had two interceptions today to go along with a sack. He wasn’t fooled on play action and nailed Justin Fields for the sack. When it felt like the Bears were getting whatever they wanted, Pitre darted in for a tackle in the backfield. He’s been awesome.

11. There must be some evaluation from the Texans. The team might need to ask if everything they’ve put together at this point is the right direction. There is a sound argument the team should be 3-0. Instead, the team is winless, and closing in on hopelessness

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