NFL gambling guide

Play Action or Pass Week 10: Keys of Life

Jonathan Joseph and the Texans can't stop the Rams. Bob Levey/Getty Images

NFL Key Numbers:

Before heading into wagering this weekend, let's talk about the importance of key numbers when betting in the NFL.

The No. 3, is the most common number in football betting. Nearly nine percent of favorites win the game by three points. The No. 7, is the second most common. Games end on the lucky number 7 six percent of the time.

Other Key numbers are 4, 6, 10, and 14.

Games ending by 3, 4, 6, 7, 10 or 14-points: 29% of games

Games ending by 4, 6, 10, 14: 14% of games

Remember these key numbers, and look for opportunities to gain half points on or off these key numbers. If you see the juice going up on a line around the -135 mark, that is when you will see the change in the spread.

Teams receiving the most bets Week 10:

Patriots- 90%

Rams- 87%

Cowboys- 86%

Buccaneers- 74%

Giants- 71%


Plays

Browns +11

In the world of betting, the non-marquee/primetime games are where you can find value. The Browns are on the opposite side of attractive competitions. Football is a game of situations; The Lions are coming off two back to back primetime games vs. The Packers and Steelers; will they get up for this game? What's on deck for this team? Two divisional games, Road Trip to Chicago, then a home Thanksgiving matchup vs. the Vikings. Also, the Browns are coming off a bye. The Lions have gone 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games. The Lions should win this game and will be content with doing so by any margin. Take the Browns to keep it closer than most think.

Rams-11

This game matches up the #1 scoring offense (32 ppg) vs. the 30th ranked scoring defense (26 ppg). The Rams are 4-1 ATS in the last five games and 5-1 straight up. The Rams have quickly become must-watch TV. The team is exciting, and much has to do with the evolution of quarterback Jared Goff. LA has won their last three games all by double digits, and the defense has only given up 12.5 points. I just don't see how the Texans will move the ball vs. this defense, and if they go down early, I can't see Tom Savage bringing them back. Look for the Rams to put a drubbing on the Texans.

Action

Buffalo: +3

Vikings/ Redskins: Under 43

Steelers Team Total over: 27.5

Teasers 7 points:

Patriots -.5/ Panthers-2

Patriots -.5/ Rams-4

Pass

Cowboys+3

Pass on the Cowboys this week with the uncertainty behind the Elliott suspension. Curious to see how the team plays without the running back, and also I believe the Falcons will run the ball successfully vs. the Cowboys controlling the pace of the game.

Trendy

Every year since 2000, a team in the top three of net yards per play has made the Super Bowl. This year the Falcons, Jaguars, and Vikings fit the build. Not condoning in betting Blake Bortles to win a Super Bowl, but with a defense like that behind him and 40-1 odds, a hedge opportunity might be available with a bye week very possible in the playoffs. Jaguars schedule Chargers, Browns, Cardinals, Colts, Seahawks, Texans, 49ers, and Titans.

For any questions or comments reach me at @JerryBoKnowz on twitter.









 

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Rootes began writing The Winning Game Plan last March. Photo via: NRG Park/Facebook

Football players, coaches and general managers have come and gone, but only one person has been running the business side of the Texans, well, even before they were the Texans. Jamey Rootes has been President of the Houston Texans since 1999, when an NFL team in Houston was still just a gleam in owner Bob McNair's eyes. That's before the team adopted the name "Texans" in 2000, before there was NRG Stadium, which opened as Reliant Stadium in 2000, and before they became serial champs of the AFC South, six titles between 2011-2019.

The precise date was Oct. 6, 1999 when NFL owners voted 29-0 to award the NFL's 32nd and newest franchise to Houston. Not only that, Houston was awarded the 2004 Super Bowl. Rootes, 34 years old with no NFL experience, had his work cut out for him. Before taking the job in Houston, Rootes was team president, general manager and CEO of selling peanuts and popcorn for the Columbus Crew of Major League Soccer.

Major League Soccer, with all due respect, is not nearly a national obsession like the National Football League.

"I wasn't intimidated," Rootes said. "There's a quote that I love, 'Do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain.' I've always been a purpose-driven person. As for the step up to the NFL, I went from knowing nothing at the start of my time in Columbus to five years later thinking, OK, I've got this sports thing down. Actually, I had a very significant reduction in my responsibilities in Houston. When I was in Columbus, I ran the stadium, I ran the team's business, I was the general manager so I did the talent side of it, too. When I came to Houston, all I had to do was the business, so that was great."

Rootes has captured his remarkable journey from the soccer team at Clemson to grad school at Indiana University to the business world at IBM and Proctor & Gamble to the Clemson Crew, to ultimately being named President of the Houston Texans in his new book, The Winning Game Plan: A Proven Leadership Playbook for Continuous Business Success, available next week.

I've known Rootes from his day one with the Texans, but I still had to ask: everybody knows what the general manager does, and what the head coach does. What exactly does the President of an NFL team worth $3.3 billion do?

"I like to use the parallel of a pharmaceutical company to describe my job. There are two sides to that company. First you put scientists in one building and you leave them alone. They create products, which is what our football team is. The football side has a coach and general manager and all the people who prepare the team to play on Sunday. But getting that product to market is done by the business side, traditional business disciplines. Those are the things that fall to me. Basically, everything between the white lines is run by the football side. Everything outside of those lines, I do," Rootes said.

Between 1999 and 2002, when the Texans played their first game (let the record show the Texans defeated the Dallas Cowboy, 19-10), the team was essentially a massive start-up project. First orders of business for Rootes involved building a new stadium, developing relationships with suppliers, contractors and government officials, preparing for a Super Bowl and, most important, developing a relationship with fans.

Rootes began writing The Winning Game Plan last March, but it's really an accumulation of lessons learned and behind-the-scenes stories about building the Texans from scratch into one of the most admired and valuable franchises in all of sports.

"I've always been a meticulous note-taker. I've kept every presentation I've ever done. I took all of my notes and concepts and put those down on paper," Rootes said. "To be a good leader, you need a wild imagination. You can show me a blank piece of paper, but I don't see it as blank. To me, it's a finished product that hasn't been created yet," Rootes said.

Rootes lays out his leadership strategy in seven chapters: Are You a Manager or a Leader, Get the Right People on Your Team, Build a Winning Culture, Create Raving Fans, a Winning Playbook for Adversity and Success, Your Leadership Playbook and Play to Win.

He learned lesson No. 1 the hard way. A friend once counseled Rootes, "your staff doesn't like the way you're all up in their business, you need to back off." Rootes took that advice to heart.

"It was an epiphany. I wasn't a leader. That's when I truly began thinking about leadership. I say this all the time, I don't do anything. All I do is create an environment where exceptional people can be their very best self. I know what's going on. I'm fully informed. I leave every game day exhausted. I get there early. I do the things I need to do. I kiss babies. I shake hands. I present checks. I entertain clients. I'm dialed in. It absolutely wears me out because I love this organization so much. I am so proud of what we've been able to do for this great city of Houston."

I asked Rootes, as someone who lives for Game Day and a packed NRG Stadium, are you devastated by 2020, the year of COVID-19 and small crowds limited by Centers for Disease Control guidelines?

"I don't look at it that way. I think there's a song by 10,000 Maniacs that said, these are the days that you'll remember. I told my staff, I know you're all going through hell right now, but later on in life, you'll talk about this year. Things that are important are memorable, for the positive and those things that leave a scar. You learn from adversity and you're a better person for enduring it. Victor Frankl said 'We can discover meaning in life in three different ways, by creating a work or doing a deed, experiencing something or encountering someone, and by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering.' Suffering is part of life. He should know, he survived a Nazi concentration camp," Rootes said.

H-E-B President Scott McClelland wrote the forward to The Winning Game Plan. Rootes dedicates the book to late Texans owner Bob McNair. Rootes' book is a fun read. All I kept thinking was, where was this book when I needed it? And before you buy too much into Rootes as a leader, consider that Rootes admits that he had to ask for wife Melissa's permission before he could accept the Texans job.

Personal note: I believe that a big part of leadership is the ability to keep a promise. Several years ago, I was riding my bicycle with my dog Lilly on a leash. It was the only way I could keep up with her. Well, one time Lilly saw a squirrel and pulled me off my bicycle. I tumbled a few times and rolled next to the curb. When I looked up, there was Jamey Rootes. I told him, "There's no need for you to tell anybody about this." He never said a word.

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