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Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Monday, August 7, 2017 at 4:00 PM

Here in my “Advanced Sports Betting” study course, I’ve always encouraged hard workers to do their homework. My role as The Dean of Sports Handicapping is to point you in the right direction. I assign the homework. You do the work. You learn from your work. You develop the skill sets it takes to pick winners and make money as a professional gambler. Sounds great on paper…but only if YOU are able to do the work!

Here’s your first batch of homework for the 2017 NFL Preseason. It should go without saying that you should read my post at this website from late last week regarding anticipating likely PLAYMAKERS in upcoming exhibition action. If you missed that, go back and read it! If you’re up to speed, get to work on the following:

*Make a complete list of first-year and second-year NFL head coaches. Those are the men most likely to be working for results this month rather than just biding their time until the regular season. There’s always a sense of urgency with a new head coach. And, a second-year coach realizes that his honeymoon period is over and he must make sure his team is ready to perform. Now, I’m not going to pretend that each and every one of the men on your list are going to cover all of their pointspreads this month. I do believe they’ll slide the percentages in your favor…particularly in the first and second weeks, and then in the lame-duck finales when many teams don’t even bother to show up. (In dress rehearsals, they may be at a disadvantage against quality teams who will play their starters deep into the second half…so focus on new coaches in games 1-2-4.)

*Isolate any “quarterback wars” that involve at least two different challengers trying to win the starting job. Wednesday’s opener offers one up already, as the Houston Texans are trying to decide if veteran backup Tom Savage or rookie from Clemson Deshaun Watson should lead the offense this season. Both men are motivated to get points on the board. That’s what you want, generally speaking. Now, maybe on the road against a Carolina team coming off a horrible season isn’t the best spot to take advantage. (Maybe it is! You’ll have to be a paying customer to find out!). My point is…YOU need to be aware of all the quarterback wars going on, and monitor those teams closely this month.

*Study past Preseason history to learn which veteran head coaches DON’T CARE. Sometimes your best NFLX bets involve fading disinterested head coaches, rather than finding a team that’s going to play like gangbusters. Some years, nobody plays like gangbusters! But, there are definitely head coaches who don’t care if they lose…don’t want to run anything beyond vanilla offenses or defenses…and aren’t interested in getting key players hurt. You need to find these coaches and fade them.

Also be aware that coaches generally transition from one style to another the longer they’ve been with one team. There might be a fourth-year coach out there who brought intensity earlier in his career, but is now going to bide his time with more experience under his belt. His “career history” will trick you! It’s a good rule of thumb to always assume the worst about “motivation to win” unless you can find real evidence that a team will bring a special attitude to a particular Preseason game.

*My final homework assignment is one that looks forward. Once the games are being played, read the boxscores and log the stat performances of all the quarterbacks, and then the backup running backs and wide receivers who are putting up numbers. This is where you’ll find the PLAYMAKERS AND GAMEBREAKERS that matter most in August (as discussed last week). You may have heard some pundits say that stats are meaningless in the Preseason. Well, in terms of making the playoffs…almost everything is meaningless in the Preseason! We’re here to make money. If you want to WIN BETS in August, you need to find the key athletes who are likely to get you the money in August. That’s not meaningless.

If you prefer to avoid all the homework and take the easy way out, KELSO STURGEON’S BEST BETS can be purchased right here at the website with your credit card. Questions about extended service and combination packages (football AND baseball) can be answered in the Vegas Sports Masters office during normal business hours at 1-888-777-4155, or on weekends before the first games get started. Remember…the first full week starts WEDNESDAY, so you’d best take care of business now!

I greatly appreciate all of you who read the coursework then put your noses to the grindstone. Hard work reaps rewards. That was true way back in the day when we did everything by hand. It’s true now with all the quants out there plugging numbers into their algorithms. I strongly believe the human touch is better than algorithms…which is why I teach you how to think, and how to recognize edges. Thanks for your attention. See you at the end of this week for another lesson.

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