Thursday, October 3, 2013

Dave's LOCKS of the Week: October 3rd

Folks it's LOCKTOBER on 

Dave's (bang!)
LOCKS (zip)
of the Week (bop)

Five weeks in a row I've missed my Friday pick on the Yahoo! Pick'em.  Two weeks in a row I featured Utah State on LOCKS of the Week.  This week, I revisit both of them.   I will TAKE Utah State -6 at home against BYU.  I will GO to yet another Friday game, and a second Friday game in a row for the Aggies, and I will PICK them to take over and give the 6.  Utah State -6 at home.

Next in College Football, we go to Northwestern where the Wildcats host the Big Ten leading Ohio State Buckeyes.   This might be a pick that ends my LOCKS of the Week streak of winning weeks, but they've said all year that Northwestern can keep pace with any other team in the Big Ten.  This week, I put it to the test.   Ohio State was forced into a push last week at home against Wisconsin (the spread was 7 points).  On the road, it could be a different story.  This isn't a major LOCK per se, but I think I like Northwestern to cover at home.  Home dogs are usually a good value bet anyway, so we go Northwestern +7 at home.

It's an admittedly tough week to select college games.  Impossible to really have confidence in any of these games, but I couldn't go on here and write "No LOCKS this week!  We'll try again next time."  However, the Pro Football scene has a few tasty trinkets, let's check out the particulars.

First, in Cincinnati.  As I did with Georgia, I'm putting my money where my mouth is.  I really think the Bengals are going to avenge their loss to Cleveland and take the game outright vs the banged up by resilient New England Patriots.  I *LIKE* the Bengals.   Bad losses happen.  Bad QB happens.  Yet, their defense, their playmakers, and their record at home is pretty good.  It's just too much talent to lose out to anybody so long as the team is motivated.  I feel like Marvin Lewis will motivate the Bengals plenty to get a big win.  The only worry is that Andy Dalton will turn the ball over like a sieve and give the Patriots an edge on the scoreboard.   I know it's possible, but I'm taking that chance.  Bengals -1.5 at home.

Next to Green Bay -- the Packers have a remarkably good performance in games after a bye.  A few weeks ago, I did some exhaustive research on Packer games at home following a loss and  they have been incredibly dominant.  All of them were wins, and nearly all of them were wins by over 12 points.  On that basis alone, coupled with the fact that the Lions are keen on turning the ball over, AND the fact that a loss would basically put the Packers in a 1-3 hole, I have the Packers winning big.  Packers -7 at home.

Lastly we head to Big D to check out the Broncos at the Cowboys.   Seeing what the Giants became, this is now the de-facto first road test for the Broncos.  As good as they are, they don't scream 15-1 record to me.  I think this is one of their few tough games of the season, and for the Broncs, things are going to get much tougher for them as we go along.  Peyton Manning on the road at Dallas is tantalizing, the Cowboys do have a knack for giving up the ball (in the form of Tony Romo a lot of times), but despite the sloppy football I think the 'Boys clean it up and give Denver a tougher game.   I'll go Broncos +7.5 to keep it closer than people expect.  If the Cowboys get blown out altogether, then all of us who cover the NFL have grossly miscalculated the value of their individual players -- all of them.  Cowboys have got to make it happen, especially after a loss at San Diego.  Dallas +7.5 at home.

On a side note, for Pick'em Purposes, there are 5 home underdogs this week, and I took all of them except for Oakland.  The home dogs I picked were Dallas, Arizona, Tennessee, and Indianapolis.  I don't think they all hit, but this would be the football gambling equivalent of doubling-down when you get dealt an "11" in blackjack.   In almost every case, it's good value.  

That's all for LOCKS.   Here's to another week of good games.

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