Motivation is a stat that fails to show up in the box score or in the spread, but unquestionably you see it with the on-field performances in the closing weeks of the regular season.
Week 16 brings us various spots that we look to take advantage of using motivation as an angle we can capitalize on.
We currently sit at:
1. Patriots 11-3
2. Steelers 11-3
3. Jaguars 10-4
4. Chiefs 8-6
5. Titans 8-6
6. Bills 8-6
Trailing behind them and still in contention.
1. Eagles 12-2
2. Vikings 11-3
3. Rams 10-4
4. Saints 10-4
5. Panthers 10-4
6. Falcons 9-5
Trailing behind them and still in contention
Playoff Seeding Motivation
Philadelphia has clinched the NFC East and a first-round bye. The Eagles will clinch home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with a win over the Raiders, or a tie combined with a Vikings loss/tie, or a Vikings loss. How much motivation will Oakland have after the tragedy of last Sunday night? After being on the wrong side of the most bizarre first down measurement "paper gate," Derek Carr fumbled Oakland's playoff chances out of the end zone for a touchback. Although they aren't mathematically eliminated, the Raiders would need to win out and have multiple scenarios to play out in order to punch a ticket into the postseason. Cross-country travel, on a short week vs. a non-conference opponent, where will the fight for the Raiders come from? Offensive tackle Donald Penn held a streak of 174 straight games played, but this Christmas, he will be at home. To lose your left tackle, Derek Carr's blindside, while traveling into a hostile environment, to play against a defense that underachieved the prior week isn't the ideal situation. Yes, these are professionals, but at the same time they are human, and with the dream being basically crushed by Carr's fumble, how can we expect the Raiders to get up for this game. How can Oakland salvage some kind of motivation going into the off-season? A trip to L.A in week 17 vs. the Chargers with the chance to play spoiler could be the remedy. Look for the Raiders to sleepwalk through this game with the season finale serving as some type of redemption game.
Job security motivation
"We have a great relationship; Coach OB is fun to play for. He's very tough on you. He wants you to be successful. I would love to have coach OB back, and I'm ready to have him with me for my whole career." These were the words of new found leader Deshaun Watson, amidst of all the talk of Bill O'Brien's future with the team. When Watson, the future of the team, comments about who he would like to play for and shows that he is in Bill O'Brien's corner, it has to bring a sense of motivation from a coaching standpoint as well as a perception of optimism in the locker-room. When asked about his quarterbacks support, the QB whisperer O'Brien said “I appreciate all the support that anybody — I think that’s just the way I think any of us are. People support you, it’s a nice thing. But we’ve got to focus on Pittsburgh, and that’s what we’re trying to do.” The Steelers are coming off a wild finish in a matchup they had circled all year. By now, we all know about the Jesse James catch being overturned, and the catastrophic mistake Ben Roethlisberger made, so where is the mental state of the Steelers locker room? They are still playing for a first-round bye week, and they lead Jacksonville by a game, but the Jaguars face off a day earlier vs. the 49ers. Will the outcome of that game factor into this final score? Tomlin has been very inconsistent as a double-digit road favorite losing outright on five occasions in his tenure. In road games the Steelers have been favored in this year they are 2-4 ATS. Take Houston to keep it close enough to leave the back door open.
Winning Mentality Motivation
Since handing the keys to Jimmy Garoppolo, the 49ers have played like an inspired team. San Francisco is 3-0 straight up and 2-0-1 ATS with Garoppolo at quarterback. San Fransisco averages 5.9 yards per play on offense with Garoppolo, surpassing the league average of 5.4. The stat that jumps out is the improvement on defense. When you think of the Jaguars, you automatically think defense. The Jags hold opponents to 4.9 yards per play. During the last three weeks, the 49ers have held opponents to the exact same number. Since changing quarterbacks, the 49ers have improved on both sides of the ball giving merit to our theory of motivation in the locker room. This team is playing like a 3-0 squad, not one that resembles the 4-10 record they hold in 2017.
Seahawks/Cowboys over 47
Rams/Titans under 49
Teaser 7- point
Chiefs PK/ Eagles+1/Patriots -1.5
Eagles+1/Seahawks-Cowboys over 37/Chiefs PK
Play action or Pass went 8-1 in week 15 bringing our yearly record to 41-28-1. 59.4%
Most Bet teams
For any questions or comments reach me at @JerryBoKnowz
With a new season on the horizon, the Astros have high hopes for 2024 after coming just one game shy of being in the World Series for three consecutive seasons.
If Houston wants to get back to the Fall Classic in 2024, they're going to have to rely on their pitching. Owner Jim Crane believes the club has 8 starting pitchers when Luis Garcia and Lance McCullers Jr. return mid-season.
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Check out the video above as ESPN Houston's Jeremy Branham goes through the entire staff and makes his case for the Astros having the best pitching staff in baseball.
You can listen to The Killer B's with Jeremy Branham and Joel Blank every weekday on ESPN 97.5 & 92.5 from 3 pm - 6 pm!