2011 NFL Preview, Spoken in Wagering-ese
I hope everyone who has had a chance to check out our Texans 2011 preview "The New Normal" has enjoyed it.
The betting window is open.
Big ups to Monica Fuentes for coming up with the season-long interactive game card tracking Texans' results. You need to go check it out.
If you haven't read it, you're really not ready for the season quite yet. I mean, yeah, you can read other previews and come away sounding like a quasi-expert on the 3-4 defense, but what other preview can you find that compares Brian Cushing to Clark Kent (the "getting ass kicked in diner" version from Superman 2) and compares Arian Foster's hamstring to Charlie Sheen?
In short, ask yourself is it better to be highly educated and boring or slightly educated and funny? Stew on that.
As for my overall 2011 predictions, I think the best way to convey these is to speak in the language of my people -- closet degenerates. So without further ado, with odds courtesy of bodog.com (Who knew you could gamble on the Internet? No way!), here are my 2011 NFL predictions in wagering-ese:
(My selections in bold. My comments in italics.)
Unsigned/Retired Players Props
The Barbers: Will Tiki return?
Will Brett Favre play in a game in the 2011 Regular Season?
(SP: Favre finally has people deciding for him that he won't play anymore. 32 people to be exact. We call them "general managers.")
Will Tiki Barber play in a game in the 2011 Regular Season?
(SP: Ostensibly, he won't play but I think at some point, with his brother Ronde getting older, they're gonna pull the old WWE tag team trick where the lookalike partner sneaks in with fresh legs during a game.)
Will Clinton Portis play a game in the 2011 Regular Season?
(SP: The league is finally learning that running backs age more like bread, not wine. But selfishly I hope Portis comes back because he's a radio-content machine.)
Will Randy Moss play in a game in the 2011 Regular Season?
How many coaches will be fired during the the 2011 Regular Season?
Over 1½ (-150)
Under 1½ (+110)
Who will be the first coach fired in the 2011 Regular Season?
Jack Del Rio 3/1
Tony Sparano 7/2
Gary Kubiak 11/2
Marvin Lewis 15/2
Tom Coughlin 15/2
Mike Shanahan 10/1
Norv Turner 10/1
Lovie Smith 12/1
Andy Reid 15/1
(SP: Too many of the bad teams have new coaches to go over the total number. Del Rio has just been surviving too long, and the David Garrard cut is a pretty transparent effort to have an excuse for a 4-12 season. Marvin Lewis is a chic pick, but the Bengals are too cheap to pay someone to do nothing, the track record of 80 percent of the players who've ever played for them notwithstanding.)
Cam Newton -- Total Rushing Yards in the 2011 Regular Season
(SP: "36, and that's a play!")
Cam Newton -- Total Rushing Touchdowns in the 2011 Regular Season
(SP: Again..."36, and that's a play!")
Michael Vick -- Total games started in the 2011 Regular Season
Over/UNDER 14 ½
(SP: Vick is a virtual lock to miss games either because of injury and/or the Eagles being good enough to rest guys in Week 17. Vick's missing just two games is a winner? Yes.)
Tom Brady -- Total Passing Yards in the 2011 Regular Season
Tom Brady -- Total Passing Touchdowns in the 2011 Regular Season
OVER/Under 30 ½
(SP: Ride Brady all day long. Like Gisele!)
Terrelle Pryor -- Total Receptions in the 2011 Regular Season
(SP: I'd feel more comfortable with a "New Tattoos -3 1/2 vs Total Receptions" bet, but whatever.)