Play action or Pass Week 14: All dogs go to heaven
Sometimes, people are granted positions in life which they are not qualified for. Let's look at McAdoo's resume in the last ten years; He served as a tight ends coach in Green Bay from 2006-2011. For the next two years, he had the simplest position in football as quarterback coach for Aaron Rodgers, which is basically making sure he has a helmet on. Then his stint in New York started, where he was OC for two years, cruising as a middle tier offense ending 15th and 19th overall in DVOA those two seasons. Oddly, he was promoted to head coach where again, his offense was inept, ranking #22 overall in his first year as head coach. So you ask yourself, how did the Giants go 11-5 last year and make the playoffs?
Enter Defensive Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo.
In 2016 the Giants defense was fierce under DC Spagnuolo. According to football outsiders, they were No. 2 in weighted DVOA. So why has this team fallen off so bad this year going from fourth vs. the pass down to 23rd, and second vs. the run to No. 24? Motivation and you have to assume that McAdoo lost the locker room weeks back. The Giants have made it clear that Spagnuolo, will be in consideration for the coaching vacancy. So with four games left in the season, three of which are division foes, could the team be extra motivated to put on good performances if this is the coach they want? When asked how he felt about his audition, Interm Coach Spagnuolo said, “ I'm not focused at all on that, and I would say this to everybody, and I mean this sincerely, I leave that in God's hands, I'll be where he wants me to be, and right now he wants me to be here for this game, and that's how I'll function. And that's as honest as I can get.”
Eli Manning, on the other hand, has to be highly motivated, he's being handed back the keys after being benched by the former head coach. “I'm happy that [Spagnuolo] went with that decision and he has faith in me, we can go win this football game with me as the quarterback,” Manning said.
Not to give merit to Spagnuolo as a great head coach, he holds a 10-38 record in his three years with the Rams. The hope, Spagnuolo said, is “to unite, restore and find a way to win football games. When I mean, restore, you know, restore Giant pride. It's hard to be real prideful when you don't win a lot of football games.”�
All dogs go to heaven and this week we like the underdogs
Week 14 brings us a tricky card. Only one game this weekend carries a spread greater than 6 points (Patriots-11). Eight games hold a line of 4 points and under with two of the contest have no spread at all. Week 14 serves us a menu of competitive games, so let's eat a W, Who wants to eat a W (in my Jameis Winston voice)?
Most bet team
Play, action or pass went 8-2 last week, and we are 30-23-4 in 2017.
Eagles+3 (Buy to 3 if at 2-2.5)
Sunday night, in a primetime matchup, the world got to see Carson Wentz be human and come back down to earth. The 24-10 final score doesn't tell much of what happened Sunday night. The Eagles, moved the ball all night, just failed to convert those yards into scores, with one of the drives ending in a turnover at the one-yard line. This game is said to be the "Game of the Week," but I see the Eagles clearly being the better team, giving no credit to the role as an underdog. Yes, the game is being played in the Colesium, where the Rams have been excellent vs. the number 4-2 ATS, but the Eagles have been no slouch as visitors either, also holding a 4-2 record. Where this game will be won is in the trenches, and that's where the Eagles hold an advantage. If the Rams have one weakness, it's stopping the run. They rank 26th overall and give up an average of 4.7 yards per rush. That certainly won't bode well going up against a three-headed backfield that ranks 3rd in the league in rushing while averaging 143.3 yards a game. Philadelphia will establish the run early and often, opening the door for the play action deep ball. Give me the Eagles with the better quarterback, coming off an underwhelming performance on the national stage.
We spoke about the added motivation in the New York Locker room, and that will be the difference this week. Since 2015, Dallas is 14-20 ATS in conference games. Before the firing of Ben McAdoo and GM Jerry Reese, Dallas was listed as a 6.5 point road favorite. Since the announcement, the line has been punished by sharps everywhere showing that indeed motivation might have been a factor for the Giants squad. When the opening line moves against the Cowboys, they own a horrible 17-32 ATS record since 2003. The Giants will keep this close with Angry Eli at the helm. Look for this game to go down to the last possession.
Cardinals +4 (buy .5 if 3.5)
Chiefs/Raiders over 48
Teasers 7 point
Eagles+9.5/ Oak-KC over 41
Teaser 10 point
Patriots-1/Eagles+12.5/Oak-KC over 38
The Patriots are clearly the better team, and they can name the score in this matchup. That in itself, is why I have to pass. The Patriots are currently on a four-game road trip. The worse part about this is the last two legs of the road trip have them in two primetime spots. Next week, the Patriots travel to Pittsburgh to play in what many say will decide the AFC and the road to the Super Bowl. New England will come out fast and get this game to where they are comfortable, using as least energy as possible, with one eye on the Steelers. They very well could be up by three scores, but with the team thinking about next week, the back door will be wide open for Miami.
For any questions or comments reach me at @JerryBoKnowz on twitter.