Submitted by Jim Hurley on Wednesday, January 31, 2018 at 10:34 AM
THREE MAJOR KEYS TO VICTORY AS EAGLES, PATRIOTS DRAW CLOSER TO SUNDAY SHOWDOWN
COLLEGE BASKETBALL'S TOP TWO TILTS ON THE LAST NITE OF THE MONTH
Hey, we just saw a figure of $4.76 billion that's expected to be bet on Sunday's Super Bowl LII - we imagine that includes the $1 million bet earlier this week by a single person on the Philadelphia Eagles at the money line of + 165 over defending champion New England - and so Philly continues to be the people's choice these days as this Las Vegas price tag now has dropped from an opening line of Patriots - 6 points to Pats - 4 points ... and we gotta say that we're a bit surprised!
As we likely mentioned in a recent Jim Sez column, the Eagles have won outright as underdogs on four different occasions this year including those recent back-to-back playoff wins against Atlanta and Minnesota (also bested 2-point favorite Los Angeles Chargers 26-24 back in Week 4 and topped 3-point home fav Carolina 28-23 in Week 6).
Conversely, note that since 2001 New England has been a betting favorite in a Super Bowl game five different times and Bill Belichick's crew covered the pointspread just once in these handful of chalk outings in the "big game" ... check 'em out:
|SB 38||New England||- 7||Carolina||32-29|
|SB 39||New England||- 7||Philadelphia||24-21|
|SB 42||NY Giants||+ 12||New England||17-14|
|SB 46||NY Giants||+ 2.5||New England||21-17|
|SB 51||New England||- 3||Atlanta||34-28 (ot)|
Jim Hurley's Network of Handicappers and Bloggers will get you the winning Side & Totals plays (and top props) on Super Bowl LII between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots on Sunday when you check in with us then on game-day morning. Jim's gonna keep blasting the books with his NFL post-season winners so get 'em right here online or 1-800-323-4453 and cash in big! Plus, there's a whole lot of College Basketball and NBA winners each and every day/night as the hardcourt action is really heating up this winter. So, keep rollin' in the profits with Jim Hurley's Network and count down with us towards Super Bowl Sunday!!!!
The Super Bowl LII Report rolls on ... Okay, so our headline blares out "Three Major Keys to Victory" - yes, there could be more! - so let's get started:
1 - Come hell or high water, New England QB Tom Brady likely will be putting the ball in the air some 40 times here (he completed 26-of-38 passing attempts for 290 yards with two TDs and 0 INTs in the 24-20 non-cover win against Jacksonville in the AFC Championship Game) and the Patriots' offensive line must limit the pocket hits taken by Brady. If Philadelphia - starring DL Fletcher Cox - is getting between-the-guards pressure on Brady here, then the Pats' passing game with or without TE Rob Gronkowski will be compromised.
2 - If Philadelphia is gonna pull off the mild upset here in Super Bowl 52, then an Eagles' ground game that rushed for 110 yards on 30 carries in the 38-7 win against 3-point fav Minnesota in the NFC Championship Game must be more productive and must chew some clock. We're not saying the time of possession stat is uber-important but let's just say we'd like Philadelphia's chances of winning here if RBs Jay Ajayi and LeGarrette Blount (24 combined carries against the Vikings two weeks back) get 30+ totes and get a minimum of a buck-twenty-five rushing yards.
3 - Can Philly PK Jake Elliott keep the Eagles "in the game" or even win it with a clutch late-game kick? Hey, have you been paying attention to this 2017 season as Elliott drilled a 61-yard game-winner against the New York Giants back in Week 3, bagged four FGs in a win the next week against the Chargers, beat Oakland on Christmas night with a 48-yarder and has gone 4-of-4 this post-season. In short, if/when Elliott gets a shot to put up three points for an Eagles team that may have some red-zone woes against this bend-but-don't-break Patriots defense, he absolutely must deliver. If you think back to Super Bowls in fairly recent years, you remember how important New Orleans PK Garrett Hartley was in Super Bowl 44 when he drilled field goals from 46, 44 and 47 yards to keep the Saints alive and nobody needs any reminding of just how important former New England/current Indianapolis PK Adam Vinatieri has been in Super Bowls past.
THE COLLEGE BASKETBALL UPDATE
The college world says farewell to the month of January with a very busy menu on this Wednesday-before-the-Super Bowl and so keep your eyes peeled on the following:
LOUISVILLE (16-5, 6-2 ACC) at #2 VIRGINIA (20-1, 9-1 ACC) - 7 p.m. ET, espn2
Will there be a post-Duke letdown here for the Wahoos?
Well, Virginia head coach is worried less about that possibility and more about his team's health as DeAndre Hunter (ankle) didn't practice on Monday and Isaiah Wilkins (back) has been slowed too plus a few Cavaliers are suffering from the flu. Maybe this is where Louisville - winners of five of its last six games - pulls the stunner behind V.J. King and Quentin Snyder who each scored 15 points in the Cardinals' easy-as-pie 96-77 win against Wake Forest last weekend. P.S., the Redbirds won the bench battle 42-15 against Wake Forest ... more of the same here?
#9 ARIZONA (18-4, 8-1 Pac-12) at WASHINGTON STATE (9-11, 1-7 Pac-12) - 10 p.m. ET, Pac-12 Network
Don't look now but the U of A Wildcats roll into this road clash on a six-game SU (straight-up) winning streak and Sean Miller's crew is fresh off a hang-on-for-dear-life 74-73 win against Utah. The 'Cats nearly blew a 13-point second-half lead in that one but Arizona's seven-footer Dusan Ristic bagged his first three-pointer of the year inside the game's final two minutes. Pin us down this minute and we say Arizona is looking at a #2 seed come the NCAA Tournament.
NOTE: Get more Super Bowl LII News/Notes in the next edition of Jim Sez.