Submitted by Jim Hurley on Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 7:00 PM
As promised, we’re back today with a look at the final Regular Season Win Totals for the NFC to get you ready for Thursday Night’s Green Bay/Seattle game on NBC. If you missed yesterday’s look at the AFC, please check the archives and get caught up!
Defending champion Seattle has the best number in the conference. But, four different teams are projected to double digit victories. And, market estimates are always closer to .500 than reality usually sees because they have to price in the percentage potential for key injuries or other surprise developments. Conference champions usually win 12-13 games. It’s rare for markets to post numbers that high because you can’t know in advance who will have injury luck and inordinate good fortune in close games.
We start in the East, a division that looks uglier now than it did a month ago!
NY Giants 7.5 to 8
Dallas 7 to 7.5
This division was initially seen as being more dynamic and competitive when summer prices first came out. But, the Giants struggled through August trying to incorporate a West Coast offense, Washington struggled with RGIII because he still isn’t moving with confidence on his rebuilt wheels, and Dallas struggled because Tony Romo hasn’t fully recovered from back surgery. Philadelphia nudged up a bit just by default (since they’ll have SIX games against teams who are quickly losing respect!). The market has priced in some regression for the Eagles because they’ll likely fall back to earth in turnover differential (Nick Foles had an amazing TD/INT ration that will be tough to duplicate). There will be a lot of media drama in this division if nothing else!
Green Bay 10 to 10.5
Chicago 8.5 to 9
Detroit 8 to 8.5
Minnesota 6.5 to 7
Green Bay might have been a 12-win team last year if Aaron Rodgers had stayed healthy. And, they’d probably be priced at 11 or more above if anyone could guarantee he’ll play all 16 games in 2014. Some good storylines developing behind the Packers. Chicago took a step forward last year on offense, and could become a serious threat if they upgrade their defense. Detroit made a coaching change. If that roster can ever cut down on dumb mistakes, the Lions are an immediate force to be reckoned with. Minnesota has impressed many sharps during August, as their win total and Power Rating has inched forward. It’s not the NFC West yet…but the smartest money in the marketplace is showing respect to this group.
New Orleans 10 to 10.5
Tampa Bay 7
If there was one thing that almost every sharp agreed on, it was that Carolina was going to fall back to earth with a thud this year. They lost their top receivers. They were fortunate in close games last year. They had a great turnover differential. And, THEN, Cam Newton cracked a rib! New Orleans is positioned to storm to the top of the South and re-take the divisional crown. Atlanta doesn’t look to have solved some of last year’s bad developments. Sharps are sour on them, but sweet on Lovie Smith and the Bucs. Tampa Bay is likely to have one of the best defenses in the NFC this year, which automatically gives them a shot to rise to the .500 mark.
San Francisco 10 to 10.5
Arizona 7.5 to 8
St. Louis 7.5 to 8
Sharps are paying very close attention to the top two teams in the West. Seattle is in the classic “Super Bowl Letdown” spot, and may have trouble finding peak intensity every week. You’ll recall that they were caught flat footed a few times last year when they got ahead of themselves emotionally. Does this team have the maturity to repeat? San Francisco may be imploding before our eyes, with a struggling offense, off-the-field drama, and a move to a new stadium that’s becoming a comedy movie because the turf was so bad. Coach/Players/Ownership all have to be on the same page! St. Louis only took a minor hit when Sam Bradford was lost for the season to a knee injury because the market didn’t respect him much anyway. Arizona would have been a more popular darkhorse if they had a better quarterback.
That completes our two-day summary of “regular season victory” projections from Las Vegas (and offshore) sportsbooks. LET THE GAMES BEGIN! You’ll be able to purchase game day BEST BETS in the NFL and college football all season long right here at the website with your credit card. If you have any questions about seasonal packages, or combination packages for football and baseball, call us in the office at 1-888-777-4155.
A great mix of pro and college action is on the calendar the next few days. Here’s this week’s NOTEBOOK schedule…
Thursday: NFL TV Preview…Green Bay at Seattle (pro season begins!)
Friday: Early College Preview…USC at Stanford
Saturday: College Football TV Preview…Michigan State at Oregon
Sunday: NFL Sunday Night TV Preview…Indianapolis at Denver
Monday: NFL Monday Night TV Preview…San Diego at Arizona
Serious bettors will build some bankroll Wednesday Night with baseball…then it’s WALL-TO-WALL FOOTBALL through another blockbuster weekend. Be sure you GET ALL THE MONEY with JIM HURLEY’S NETWORK!