Submitted by Jim Hurley on Friday, December 30, 2016 at 12:33 PM
HEY, ALL THE BOWLS ARE JUST GREAT BUT WE DIDN'T FORGET ABOUT NFL WEEK 17 - CHECK OUT SUNDAY'S UBER-IMPORTANT AFC WEST TILTS FROM BOTH DENVER & SAN DIEGO ...PLUS MORE COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFF GOODIES
Never mind that there are a bevy of National Football League teams sitting out their star players this weekend - okay, it's true that a batch of NFL Week 17 games have "no meaning" when it comes to either the post-season or playoff seedings but you better believe a heckuva lot is on the line for the two AFC West teams that already have their playoff tickets punched.
And you know the deal by now:
Either the Kansas City Chiefs or the Oakland Raiders could be as high as the AFC's #1 seed (more likely #2) or as low as the conference's #5 seed depending on all the activity this weekend (and that includes New England's game in Miami) - and we'll get to the games involving the Raiders and the Chiefs in just a moment but first this key reminder:
Get all the College Football Bowl Games including Saturday's College Football Playoff tilts - that's #4 Washington vs. #1 Alabama and #2 Clemson vs. #3 Ohio State on New Year's Eve beginning at 3 p.m. ET -- plus get all the NFL Week 17 action when you check with us here at Jim Hurley's Network. And, of course, make sure you're all aboard for the NBA and NCAA Basketball daily/nightly winners all this week/weekend action either online or at our toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453. Don't get left out in the December/January cold - win big with Jim Hurley's Network today!
NFL WEEK 17
On Sunday, it's ...
OAKLAND (12-3) at DENVER (8-7) - 4:25 p.m. ET, CBS
So, who knew back at the very start of this 2016 season that the AFC West crown would - to a large degree - rest with a dude named Matt McGloin? No question that the Oakland Raiders' journeyman QB-turned-starter here because of the devastating broken leg suffered by MVP candidate Derek Carr (3,937 yards passing with 28 TDs) would be in the bright spotlight for this regular-season finale that's gonna determine whether the Raiders have a playoff bye next week or else have to go on the road for a first-round matchup. Note the Broncos opened as a 3.5-point betting favorite for this clash and it's since dropped to 1.5 points.
Spread Note - Oakland is 2-7-1 ATS (against the spread) in its last 10 head-to-head showdowns against Denver.
KANSAS CITY (11-4) at SAN DIEGO (5-10) - 4:25 p.m. ET, CBS
The number's going up, up and away for this AFC West bash - the Chiefs have gone from an opening price of - 4.5 points to - 6 points and don't be shocked if it hits a "full TD" by game time. Kansas City's won its last 10 consecutive AFC West games and Andy Reid's crew has covered seven of those 10 games. The Chiefs' main game plan is to get the ball in the hands of explosive rookie WR/KR Tyreek Hill but if San Diego is gonna spoil this afternoon for the visitors than the league's sixth-best passing attack (averaging 262 yards per game) starring QB Philip Rivers must avoid those rotten throws into traffic (see 19 INTs for Rivers).
Spread Note - Kansas City is 5-4-1 versus the vig as betting favorites this season and overall the Chiefs are a decent 23-18-1 as the chalk dating back to the start of 2013.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS
If you missed our Jim Sez Game Previews for the College Football Playoffs, just check our archive column (dated Wednesday, Dec. 28th) but right now we wanted to delve into some of the pointspread-related numbers as it concerns the four teams:
#4 WASHINGTON (12-1) vs. #1 ALABAMA (13-0) - 3 p.m. ET
This is Alabama's third trip in as many years into the College Football Playoffs and the Crimson Tide's only covered one of its three playoff games - a 38-0 semifinal round win against 10-point pup Michigan State last year - with spread setbacks against Ohio State (2014) and Clemson (2015) with the latter a 45-40 non-cover win in the title tilt.
On the flip side, Washington covered four of its six bowl games between 2010 and '15 including last year's 44-31 triumph over 8-point underdog Southern Miss in the Heart of Dallas Bowl but did you know the Huskies are 10-5 spreadwise when facing non-conference foes the past three-plus seasons?
#3 OHIO STATE (11-2) vs. #2 CLEMSON (12-1) - 7 p.m. ET
Quick: Who's the only team that an Urban Meyer-led Ohio State squad has failed to cover in bowl/playoff action the past three years? If you said Clemson, you win! In the past two seasons the Buckeyes have covered Alabama and Oregon (2014) in the College Football Playoffs en route to a national championship and last year the 'Eyes battered 3.5-point dog Notre Dame 44-28 but go back to the Orange Bowl following the 2013 season and you see Ohio State lost 40-35 as 2-point favorites versus Clemson ... so there!
Finally, the ACC guys are a collective 6-2 ATS in post-season/bowl games coached by Dabo Swinney and that includes a five-game spread streak while heading into Saturday night's fandango in the desert.
NOTE - More College Bowls plus the NFL Week 17 Sunday Night Game preview (that's Green Bay at Detroit) in the next Jim Sez.