Play action or pass Week 9: New faces in new places

Duane Brown was dealt to the Seahawks. Tim Warner/Getty Images

The NFL trade deadline that was:

Jimmy Garoppolo - In the most significant move of the trade deadline, the 49ers took a gamble and traded their 2nd round pick in 2018 to the Patriots, for the heavily coveted back up quarterback in New England. The move comes at somewhat of a surprise as many fans were assured that an offseason move for top free agent Kirk Cousins was on the horizon. Also, add in the reunion of Kyle Shanahan and Kirk Cousins, and $115 million in cap space this offseason, the move for the Redskins Quarterback, was inevitable. Let's scratch that and look to the future. Although the move may not be permanent, San Fransico gets to experiment. With John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan both on six-year deals, the move came sooner than later. As for the Patriots, Did they really lose? This offseason they were going to lose Garoppolo to free agency anyways as he had made it clear that he wanted to be somewhere he would start and playing time was his main priority. The genius in Bill Belichick, in turn, gets essentially the first rounder he was asking for this offseason that no team bit on also having to add a fourth-round pick. Trading with a 0-8 team essentially sets up the Patriots to draft at the top of the second round.

Jay Ajayi- The Dolphins dealt the ball carrier to the Eagles for a fourth round pick. Ajayi's knees are alarming and will be something to monitor. But for a fouth round pick, the Eagles, which many are saying are the currently the best team in the NFL, added a versatile weapon to the offense. We all know Ajayi can run the ball, but what's overlooked is his ability to catch out of the backfield where he has 48 receptions for 308 yards in his career.  Coming off a 1,272-yard season, he will carry the majority of the snaps at Lincoln Financial Field. The hidden gem here is LeGarrette Blount; he will be aided in workload as the 30-year old has surpassed 100 carries already through eight games. Fatigue was his downfall as we can remember last year in December where he seemed tired and was unproductive. Saving him for short yardage and late game situations will be ideal for keeping defenses tired and off balance.

Kelvin Benjamin- The Panthers made a move to open up room for speed to the receiving group. With Devin Funchess being six-foot-four, and Benjamin six-foot-five, the loss of Ted Gin took away the speed and deep threat of the offense. Making this move will allow players like Russell Shepard and Curtis Samuel to see the field more. The Bills add a big target that will help Tyrod Taylor immensely. But the move is somewhat confusing as the Bills looked like they were rebuilding when they got rid off both Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods.

Marcell Dareus- The Jaguars reached out to Buffalo trying to bolster the already dangerous defense. The Bills signed Dareus to a six-year $95 million contract in 2015. The Bills traded Dareus for a conditional 2018 sixth-round pick. The move was brilliant ,saving the Bills a total of $54 million over the next five years for a player who has been demoted on and off this year and also violated team rules earlier this season.

Duane Brown- The Texans traded the three-time pro bowler for Jeremy Lane( failed physical), a 2018 fifth-round pick and a 2019 second-round pick. Something that was long coming with all the off-field issues with the front office.  Lane failed the team physical and will return to Seattle changing the deal to a 2018 third-round pick and a 2019 second-rounder in exchange for Brown and a 2018 fifth-round pick.

Most bet teams

86% Seahawks

78% Oakland

75% Colts

75% Falcons


Rams-3 (if 3.5 buy the hook)

First, let's thank the Giants for the Primetime performance they gave against the Broncos a few weeks back. In a game that was perceived to be a blowout with a double-digit spread, the Giants did the unthinkable and won the game outright as a +13 point road underdogs. Much of this game has to be credited to the Giants defense that caused havoc all night on Trevor Siemian. Fast forward a week when they hosted the Seahawks, and things quickly showed what the reality of the hobbled Giants offense is. New York fell to 1-6 straight up and 3-4 ATS, the team ranks 30th in scoring (14ppg). Both teams are coming off a bye, perfect for the Rams as they are 7-2-1 ATS in their last ten following a bye. Also, the Rams have played really well on the road this year where they are 4-0 straight up and 3-1 ATS.


If you were lucky enough to get the opening number of 4, consider yourself sharp, as this line was quickly pounded by pros everywhere sending it to the 5.5-6 point range. The Bengals are coming off an underwhelming performance where they edged out the Colts and earned a late victory but failed to cover as a big favorite. Since offensive Coordinator Bill Lazor has taken over, the Bengals have been more effective averaging 22 points per game after starting the season 0-4 straight up. Under Lazor, Daltons TD-INT ratio has boosted to 11-4. This game will be dictated by a Jaguars defense that only allows 15 points per game and 300 offensive yards. Look for a long day for Andy Dalton as no quarterback this year has finished better than the QB 18 vs. the stout defense. The Jaguars defense has only allowed one wide receiver to eclipse the 65-yard mark so look for this game to be won on the ground, where the Jacksonville run game has averaged 169 yards per game to the Bengals 78. Leonard Fournette has reached the end zone in six out of six games this year, rumbling for 120 yards total yards per game on 24 touches. Look for a heavy dose of Fournette on Sunday backed by a lethal defense. Jacksonville is now a quiet 7-3 ATS in its last ten games.


Cowboys/ Chiefs over 54

Saints/ Buccaneers over 51


Saints Team Total over 28.5

Teaser of the Week:

2- 6.5 point teasers I love this week using the Seahawks

Seahawks -1/ Colts +13.5

Seahawks -1/ Packers +8.5


Saints -7

Tempted to take the Saints -7 at home where they are rolling at the moment. Only thing is the last few weeks the defense has only been tested by two sub-par quarterbacks in Mitch Trubisky and back up Brett Hundley. The last four meetings between these two teams have been split with no team winning by more than 7 points.

Let me take a second and share something with you that can help you now and long-term. In last weeks episode of the Pre Game line with Fred Faour and RJ Bell, they go into depth on many handicapping tips such as bankroll management and different ways to attack angles. Take some time out and listen to it, I guarantee, you will be better for it.

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


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The Astros suffered a heartbreaking loss to the Yankees Thursday. Composite image by Brandon Strange.

After an impressive two-game sweep of the NL-best Mets at home earlier in the week, the Astros took to the road to begin a four-game series with the league-best Yankees on Thursday night. To little surprise, the series started with a bang (no, not a trash can bang) in more ways than one, confirming that this series should be a must-watch this weekend.

New York's comeback proves no lead will be safe

Right from the get-go, the loud Yankee Stadium faithful had their chance to rain boos down on Jose Altuve before showing some pleasure as he led off the series by being hit by a pitch. They were quickly, though only temporarily, quieted as Altuve would come in to score two batters later on a three-run blast by Alex Bregman.

Three-run homers seemed to be a theme, as New York would get one of their own to tie the game off the bat of Giancarlo Stanton to tie the game, then Yordan Alvarez continued his dominant June by pushing the Astros back in front by three with another three-run bomb in the third, making it 6-3. That lead held through to the bottom of the ninth, where instead of holding it, Ryan Pressly issued two walks to set up the fourth homer of the game to tie things again before Aaron Judge would get a walk-off single to complete the impressive comeback.

Not only will we get to sit back and watch the slug-fest between Yordan and Judge this weekend, but it looks like with Alex Bregman swinging well again to round out the top of Houston's order, the Astros may be getting closer to their full power. So far in June, these two teams sit third and fourth in on-base percentage, with the Astros at .351 and the Yankees right behind at .350. That means we should continue to see scoring opportunities on both sides that can tilt momentum one way or the other as these lineups try to battle against the opposing pitcher.

How will the aces fare

Verlander vs. Judge, and Cole vs. Alvarez, need I say more? Although we won't see Justin Verlander go up against Gerrit Cole in the same game in this series (they should go head to head next Thursday, however), they will pitch on back-to-back days, with Houston's ace going Friday night and New York's on Saturday afternoon. Verlander is coming off his worst start of the year, a three and two-thirds inning outing where the White Sox put up seven runs, four earned, against him and knocked him out early to give him his third loss and increased his ERA from 1.94 to 2.30.

The last time he faced the Yankees was in the Bronx in the 2019 playoffs, in ALCS Game 5, where he went seven frames while allowing four runs, all on two homers in the first inning, which is all New York needed to grab the 4-1 victory to make it a 3-2 Houston lead in the series, which the Astros would go on to clinch in Game 6. So, with the double dose of bad taste in his mouth, it will be interesting to see if he can use that as the fuel to get back to the phenomenal form he's had this year or if the Yankees try to jump on him early like they did nearly three years ago.

Cole, meanwhile, is fresh off of two quality starts in a row against the Rays, where he allowed just one run on six hits with nineteen strikeouts over 13.1 innings of work. He's had his share of strife this season, though, including a seven-run shelling by the Twins earlier this month, along with a start in April where he couldn't make it through two innings against the Tigers. He's had success against his former club, most notably a complete-game shutout in Houston last July with twelve K's and holding the Astros to just three hits.

If the series opener was any indication, we are in for the treat of a playoff-caliber matchup, if not a potential ALCS preview that we may see in October. The Yankees showed why they have the best record and are the hottest team in baseball on Thursday night, but the Astros were only a good outing from their closer away from having a relatively lopsided win. The rivalry is real; the competition is close, and we get to enjoy the show.

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