Submitted by Jim Hurley on Wednesday, September 7, 2016 at 11:25 AM
HEY, GO AHEAD AND START THE DRUM ROLL - THE NFL KICKOFF GAME IS FINALLY HERE AS DEFENDING CHAMPION BRONCOS IN SUPER BOWL REMATCH VERSUS THE PANTHERS COME THURSDAY NITE IN MILE HIGH CITY
PLUS WE HAVE THE WIN-IT-ALL SUPER BOWL ODDS TOO!
THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL MID-WEEK UPDATE: WHAT CAN WE GET FOR AN ENCORE AFTER THE "GREATEST COLLEGE FOOTBALL KICKOFF WEEKEND EVER?"
Hey, National Football League ... we welcome you back to the playing fields of America. Missed y'all!
The 2016 NFL season happens to be 12th straight year in which a defending Super Bowl champion looks to repeat - something we have not had happened since the 2004 New England Patriots, remember! - and so let's see if the here-and-now Denver Broncos can get "mission accomplished" this season.
In case a buddy of yours tries to stump you with a trivia question, let 'em know that the Broncos are one of seven franchises that have repeated as Super Bowl champs (see 1997 and '98 seasons) to go along with the Green Bay Packers (SB 1 and 2), the Miami Dolphins (SB 7 and 8), the Pittsburgh Steelers twice (SB 9 and 10; SB 13 and 14), the San Francisco 49ers (SB 23 and 24), the Dallas Cowboys (SB 27 and 28) and the aforementioned NE Patriots (SB 38 and 39).
Now, here's the Odds to Win it All for Super Bowl LI in Houston come February 5, 2017:
|TEAM||ODDS TO WIN IT ALL|
The NFL 2016 season gets going on Thursday Night with the much-anticipated battle royal/Super Bowl 50 rematch as the Carolina Panthers play at the defending champion Denver Broncos and that's followed by a whopper NFL Week 1 card on Sunday/Monday featuring such marquee matchups as the New York Giants at Dallas, New England at Arizona and Green Bay at Jacksonville. Remember also the usual opening-week Monday Night Football twin-bill too - that's gonna be Pittsburgh at Washington followed by Los Angeles at San Francisco.
The College Football 2016 campaign already is off to a really dizzying start and Jim Hurley's Network will continue to pound out the winners this week after cashing last weekend with Western Michigan (+ 3.5) besting Northwestern 22-21, Wisconsin stunning 12.5-point favorite LSU 16-14, Auburn slipping under the 9-point price in that 19-13 loss to Clemson and last Sunday it was Texas (+ 3.5) toppling Notre Dame 50-47 in double overtime. The winning action this week begins with Friday's two games - that's Maryland at Florida International and Louisville at Syracuse - plus a healthy Saturday card that features Arkansas at TCU, Penn State at Pittsburgh, Kentucky at Florida and Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee.
Heck yeah, we're ready for some Football!
Hey, there's also plenty of winners in Major-League Baseball these days too and all you need to do to win in the NFL, NCAA Football and MLB is to check in either right here online or via our toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 any time after 1 p.m. Eastern time for all the weeknight action, after 11 a.m. ET for all weekday games and after 10 a.m. ET for Saturday/Sunday/Holiday Winners ... can't beat that, right? Sign up today either here online or at the 800# and we'll offer you a great discount price!
NFL WEEK 1
On Thursday Night, it's ...CAROLINA at DENVER - 8:30 p.m. ET, NBC
The Las Vegas number-crunchers established the Broncos as 2.5-point betting favorites a while back but that quickly zoomed in the other direction and so here's the "revenge-minded" Carolina Panthers laying a FG price in this kickoff game ... is that a mere over-reaction to the fact that Denver's starting novice QB Trevor Siemian here? The new kid on the block is hardly expected to fill the shoes of Peyton Manning (or Brock Osweiler, for that matter) but be sure Broncos' head coach Gary Kubiak wants his new gunslinger to challenge a defense that sports three new faces and no CB Josh Norman (see Washington Redskins).
On the flip side, 2015 MVP QB Cam Newton can't be blamed for spending every waking moment thinking about OLB Von Miller but expect the Panthers' do-it-all signal-caller to play-fake often and try to keep Miller and Company at bay - we say a very important part of this game will be what Carolina does in short-yardage situations 'cause Newton could look for some long balls to WRs Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess if give the time.
Spread Notes - Denver is 5-2-1 versus the vig in its last eight season-opening games and the Broncos won all three of their games last year when placed in the home underdog role (against Green Bay and then New England twice). On the flip side, Carolina covered 10-of-13 games a year ago when playing outside the NFC South.
In other NFL Week 1 News/Notes ...
Is it us ... or is the fact that Philadelphia rookie QB Carson Wentz starting the Week 1 home game against the Cleveland Browns one of the really crazy things in recent league history? C'mon, the draft's second overall pick played in the first preseason game, suffered rib injuries and now is getting the nod to start here?
The weekend past trade of disgruntled QB Sam Bradford to Minnesota for first- and fourth-round draft choices was a sound move by the rebuilding Eagles but starting wet-behind-the-ears Wentz over Chase Daniel? Kooky stuff ...
There are three divisional matchups on the Week 1 Sunday card - that's Tampa Bay at Atlanta, San Diego at Kansas City and the New York Giants at Dallas -- and there are some significant pointspread ditties to consider:
Betting Favorites are a rock-solid 14-6 ATS (against the spread) in the last 20 games played in the Bucs-Falcons NFC South series the past 10 years; The Chiefs bested the Chargers by a composite score of 43-6 last year - and still San Diego managed a spread split as the Bolts covered as 10.5-point pups in the 10-3 loss at Arrowhead Stadium; And the Giants have covered five of their last seven games played in Dallas including last year's hard-to-stomach 27-26 loss-but-cover as 7-point underdogs.
THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL MID-WEEK UPDATE
First things first, College Football Betting Favorites enter this second full week of play at 18-23 against the odds (a .439 winning rate for the chalk sides) and - in case you were wondering - so far the single-biggest outright upset to come down the pike was South Alabama's 21-20 triumph over 28-point fav Miss State in which the SEC Bulldogs churned out just 2-of-9 third-down makes and just 23:19 in time of possession. Yes, where's Dak Prescott when you need 'em, right? ...
Okay, so the week after the "Greatest College Football Kickoff Week Ever" there are precious few marquee matchups and, in fact, there's not a single game pitting Top 25 teams against one another but no doubt one game lots of folks are looking forward to this Saturday is that Virginia Tech versus #17 Tennessee tilt at the Bristol Motor Speedway (in Tennessee) where it's expected some 150,000 fans will be in attendance.
Hey, if the Hokies lose four fumbles again here (see last weekend's 36-13 non-cover win against 31-point pup Liberty) than Tech head coach Justin Fuente's return to the Volunteer State - yes, he was formerly the head coach at Memphis for the past four years - could be a real car wreck. Get it?
Note: Catch up with more NCAA Football and NFL Week 1 News & Notes in the next edition of Jim Sez.