Vegas Sports Masters Blog
Back to Blog Home…

Submitted by Jim Hurley on Monday, October 10, 2016 at 12:00 AM






Okay, so maybe we were just getting a little cranky late Sunday night while watching our gazillionith hour of football this past Thursday/Friday/Saturday/Sunday, but gotta pick a quickie bone here with NBC announcers Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth when it comes to Green Bay’s 23-16 win against the 7-point underdog New York Giants:

Sure, the boys correctly pointed out how tough it was to run on that Packers’ defense and how the Giants’ well-paid D-line provided next-to-no pass rush pressure on QB Aaron Rodgers but can you folks at least have given us viewers an honest assessment of both Rodgers and Giants QB Eli Manning?

They were rotten, they stunk as in big-time bad in this prime-time game whether it was Manning taking unnecessary sacks or throwing high/wide on many plays or whether you wish to talk about Rodgers who never did get things timed up with favorite target WR Jordy Nelson.

The final stats for Rodgers read 23-of-45 passing for 259 yards with 2 TDs and 2 INTs – note that Nelson was targeted 13 times and finished with just four receptions, for 38 yards – while Manning finished 18-of-35 passing for 199 yards with 1 TD and 0 INTs with four sacks.

Yes, both are Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks and definite icons in a league where quarterback play is everything but this shabby showing by both slingers should have earned ‘em harsh criticism on the national TV stage but the good ole NBC boys blamed everyone else such as receivers, pass blockers, etc… nice!

Okay, here’s what is on tap this evening…

TAMPA BAY (1-3) at CAROLINA (1-3) – 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN

Word came down this past weekend that Panthers’ mega-star QB Cam Newton (concussion) would not play here but we’re wondering why the Las Vegas price tag is sitting there at 5.5 or even 6 points … doesn’t that feel like what the price should be if Newton was in the lineup?

No doubt Carolina coach Ron Rivera – who always has a post-game press conference attitude with the media folks – is desperate to reel in his reeling squad here without Newton but can career backup Derek Anderson flip the magic switch and produce a win/cover here?

Tampa Bay is a minus 9 in the all-important turnover margin category these days but if erratic QB Jameis Winston can spot rangy WR Mike Evans (top 10 in receiving yards, receptions and receiving TDs) deep against this slumbering Carolina secondary, it could be a big night for the point-grabbers from the Sunshine State.

Spread Notes – Carolina has covered 10 of its last 15 showdowns versus Tampa Bay but note the Bucs are a decent 10-8 versus the vig away the past two-plus seasons.

Extra, extra…

We’ll get you our Monday Night Football preview/forecast of tonight’s game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at the Carolina Panthers in just a moment but first this key reminder and that’s Jim Hurley’s Handicappers and Bloggers have everything all mapped out for this evening’s big NFC South game and you can get the Side & Totals winners when you check with us here at Jim Hurley’s Network at the toll-free # of 1-888-777-4155 or Get Jim's Best Bet Hotline Picks at and his exclusive Blue Ribbon Picks right here online at .

Then remember to get all the NCAA Football, NFL Week 6 and Major-League Baseball Playoff winners all this week/weekend and don’t miss a beat as we tear it up this month of October!

We’re already looking ahead to some key college games this Saturday such as Alabama at Tennessee, Ohio State at Wisconsin and UCLA at Washington State.

Note the college kids kick it into high gear this week on Wednesday night with an espn2 tilt between Appalachian State at UL-Lafayette and don’t forget Thursday night with giant-killer Navy at East Carolina on ESPN!

In other NFL Week 5 News/Notes…

You didn’t think this year’s Philadelphia Eagles were gonna be the next edition of the 1972 Miami Dolphins now, did you? The Birds had their perfect 3-and-oh bubble popped in the 24-23 loss at 3.5-point dog Detroit and don’t blame rookie QB Carson Wentz (238 yards passing with a pair of one-yard TD tosses). Philly committed 14 penalties (worth 111 yards) and lost its cool at the wrong times …

Meanwhile, one other previously unbeaten team bit the dust as the Trevor Siemian-less Denver Broncos were doused 23-16 by 4-point underdog Atlanta. Funny how the defending champion Broncos were humming along there with previous no-name Siemian steering the ship but when fancy-dan first-round pick Paxton Lynch got the start the champs were toast. Lynch was sacked six times and generally looked lost for much of this game – don’t be fooled by the 223 yards passing ‘cause Denver was in a deep hole much of the afternoon …

Finally, there was one undefeated team that flicked off yet another foe as the Minnesota Vikings (5-0) cruised past 6-point pup Houston 31-13 as WR Adam Thielen (127 yards receiving and one TD) suddenly became a household name outside of Minneapolis/St. Paul and can we update y’all on this terrific Vikings defense:

Mike Zimmer’s stop unit now has allowed 63 points in five games (that’s 12.6 ppg) and barely anyone said anything about Minny playing without its original QB (Teddy Bridgewater), RB (Adrian Peterson) and best WR (Stefon Diggs).

Oh, yes, the Vikings are 29-9 ATS (against the spread) in the Zimmer Era that began in 2014.


Here’s just some observations from the past weekend in College Football:

No doubt the torrential rains brought to land by Hurricane Matthew wreaked havoc with many of the weekend games but did anyone look more lost in the muck than Notre Dame? The Fighting Irish’s 10-3 loss at soggy N.C. State “featured” Notre Dame going 1-of-15 on third-down plays and totaling 113 yards on 64 plays…

Talk about a bunch of underachievers: Pac-12 teams Stanford, UCLA and Oregon all have plenty of explaining to do following their games of October 8th and we don’t need any west coast bias folks telling us the league is catching up to the SEC – baloney!

UCLA is 3-3 with top 15 talent; Stanford is in sad shape and it’s about time “brilliant” head coach David Shaw took some hits; and Oregon boss Mark Helfrich might be – dare we say – one of the worst five coaches among the 128 FBS schools following his team’s horrific 70-21 home loss to Washington. Hey, the Ducks allowed 682 yards on 73 offensive snaps for the Huskies, that’s 9.3 yards per play. Egads!

NOTE: Catch our Mid-Week Report in the next edition of Jim Sez and get our NFL Week 6 Thursday Night Preview – that’s Denver at San Diego – plus lots of College Football goodies.

Join the discussion


Forgot password

Keep me logged in