College Football Notes and Key NFL Previews
NFL WEEK 7 KICKS OFF AS SEAHAWKS SPANK 49ERS, 20-3 PLUS THERE'S KEY WEEK 7 SUNDAY PREVIEWS
QUICKIE COLLEGE FOOTBALL WEEKEND NOTES: GOFF'S STOCK DROPS IN LOSS AT UCLA
By Jim Hurley:
One of the "talking points" during last night's lopsided 20-3 win/cover by the Seattle Seahawks over the 6.5-point home dog San Francisco 49ers was whether or not the 'Hawks (now 3-4) could get on a little run and make some noise inside the NFC West where 4-and-2 Arizona currently rules the roost. As it turns out, Seattle gets extra prep time before playing in Dallas on November 1st, then it's a bye week and then three consecutive home games for Pete Carroll's club including back-to-back divisional duels versus Arizona and San Francisco.
So, guess what CBS' Jim Nantz and Phil Simms were trying to say last night is don't count the Seahawks out despite a slew of bad games (and really bad fourth quarters) in the first half of their here-and-now 2015 season.
Keep in mind that the Seahawks - coming off a short week in which two of their players were involved in car wrecks - looked like their old selves last night while winning the smash-mouth game with RB Marshawn Lynch grunting his way to a 122-yard performance (could have been even more but he spent a chunk of time in the first half throwing up into an orange bucket/dumpster) with the Seattle defense making life miserable for San Fran QB Colin Kaepernick (just 124 passing yards and zero rush attempts).
True, the Seahawks have been a bettor's nightmare so far with a 2-4-1 ATS (against the spread) start to their season but there was a little gleam in their eyes for that Thursday Night bash - and we could easily see the two-time defending NFC champs running off five or six consecutive wins these next few weeks ... you've all been warned!
In other NFL Week 7 News & Notes ...
Be sure that we'll be paying special attention to what the Dallas Cowboys, Oakland Raiders, St. Louis Rams and Tampa Bay Bucs do in their respective games this Sunday and that's 'cause they're all coming off their bye week - and so far NFL teams off their bye are an electric 5-1 ATS with Carolina, Miami, Minnesota, New England and the New York Jets all snagging SU (straight-up) wins and covers in their post-bye games while the lone loser in the post-bye crowd was the Tennessee Titans (see 14-13 loser in a pick 'em home game versus Buffalo in Week 5 action).
In case you were wondering, last year NFL teams in regular-season post-bye games went a composite 11-21 against the odds ... really! Hard to believe that NFL teams could cover just 34.4 percent of the time coming off a bye week but that's exactly what happened but maybe this year the post-bye teams flip the script and win 65 percent of the time ... stay tuned.
My handicappers and bloggers have everything all mapped out and you can get the NFL Week 7 Side & Totals winners plus all the NCAA Football and MLB Playoffs when you check with us here at Jim Hurley's Network -- keep rollin' in the green all week/weekend long with College Football action on the tube tonight (that's #18 Memphis at Tulsa on ESPN and Utah State at San Diego State on espn2) plus there is a jam-packed Saturday card featuring a slew of Top 25 teams in action. And make sure you cash in this evening with the American League Championship Series Game #6 between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Kansas City Royals. If necessary, Game #7 will be played tomorrow (Saturday) night. Check with us on game days either here online or at our toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 - and continue to make this an October to remember!
NFL WEEK 7 SUNDAY PREVIEWS
NEW YORK JETS (4-1) at NEW ENGLAND (5-0) - 1 p.m. ET, CBS
Here's a factoid that may warrant a "wow" response: The New England Patriots have not lost a "meaningful" game since November 30, 2014 (see Green Bay 26, New England 21) and the all-knowing Las Vegas oddsmakers have 'em as prohibitive 9-point betting favorites here in NE's first divisional home game this season.
True, the Jets sport the NFL's top-rated defense (allowed 75 points in five games) and there's all sorts of chatter that 2014 Patriots' star-turned-Jets-star (again) CB Darrelle Revis has a "book" on QB Tom Brady but the $64,000 question here is will New England's quick-strike, crossing-pattern oriented pass attack foul up Revis and Company here or will that fierce four-man Jets' defensive front get to Brady as he seeks protection behind a battered offensive line?
Spread Notes - New England's off to a 3-1-1 ATS (against the spread start) following last year's Super Bowl crown but did you realize the Pats are 80-69-3 vig-wise as favorites the past 10-plus seasons? On the flip side, note that the J-E-T-S are 4-1 ATS so far in the Todd Bowles Era and they are a spiffy 9-4 spreadwise in divisional play since the start of 2013.
DALLAS (2-3) at NEW YORK GIANTS (3-3) - 4:25 p.m. ET, Fox
The Brandon Weeden "Experiment" didn't work - no shock there - and so now the Dallas Cowboys have turned to long-time journeyman Matt Cassel to try and remedy a season that's quickly spiraling out of control. Okay, so the 'Boys have not won since Week 2 and neither QB Tony Romo nor WR Dez Bryant will be on the field here (don't buy any of this talk that Bryant's busted foot will be healed enough to let him play a bunch of snaps at MetLife Stadium here!) and so 3.5-point underdog Dallas is gonna have to make due with a bunch of backups and - believe it or not - an underachieving offensive line that last year had everyone singing its praises.
The Giants? Well, Tom Coughlin's crew has its own myriad or problems not the least of which involves $84 million man QB Eli Manning who raised the coach's ire with a pair of silly intentional grounding penalties and a couple of putrid picks in last Monday's 27-7 slop-fest loss in Philadelphia. Gotta expect Manning will be firing lots of passes in the direction of WR Odell Beckham, Jr. here as he goes up against a Cowboys' defense that has been a tad spotty this year.
Spread Notes - The NY Giants have split their first six pointspread verdicts this year but note the G-men are just 8-13 spreadwise in their last 21 home games played against fellow NFC East teams. Meanwhile, Dallas has failed to cover four of its first five pointspread decisions so far in 2015 but the Cowboys are a solid 12-6 spreadwise as point-grabbers the past two-plus seasons.
Hey, in yesterday's edition of Jim Sez we rolled out College Football's week-by-week Betting Favorites vs. Underdogs records, so let's do the same here with the NFL through Week 6 action:
NFL BETTING FAVORITES
Note there's been a pair of pick 'em games as part of the NFL mix through the first six weeks of regular-season play but overall note the Underdogs have the (slightly) upper hand right now with the Betting Favorites entering Week 7 on a three-week losing skid.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL NOTES
Hey, one of the real under-the-radar games on Saturday's College Football card is the duel between born-again Washington State (4-2) and Arizona (5-2). Okay, so neither team is currently ranked but nice, juicy bowl games await a few Pac-12 teams at year's end and the Wazzu Cougars - who sport the nation's fourth-best passing offense (398.5 ypg) have a real magic-maker in QB Luke Falk who enters this 4 p.m. ET tilt having completed 72.3 percent of his 325 pass attempts for 2,371 yards and 21 TDs. Maybe if he clicks off a few scoring strikes here and 7.5-point dog Wash State wins, we might have to put Mr. Falk on our Heisman Trophy Watch List this week ...
Finally, speaking of stats how about some love for Bowling Green QB Matt Johnson who enters Saturday's game at two-TD dog Kent State as the nation's leading passer with 2,891 yards? Johnson gets zero national attention while playing for a solid Bowling Green (5-2) squad but did you know he's thrown for 24 TDs and just 3 INTs and there are pro scouts sitting up and taking notice.
If you happened to watch UCLA's easy 40-24 win against 3.5-point dog California last night, then you saw Cal QB Jared Goff (295 yards passing with 3 TDs) really struggle with accuracy, footwork, touch, etc. and yet he's considered one of the top couple of slingers that will come out of college this year - others on the "Mel Kiper List" included Michigan State's Connor Cook, Baylor's Seth Russell and Memphis' Paxton Lynch. Don't know about you but we just dropped Goff a few pegs!
NOTE: More NFL Week 7 Previews/Forecasts in tomorrow's Jim Sez including the Sunday Night game between the Philadelphia Eagles at the Carolina Panthers ... so don't dare miss out!
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