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Football Picks by Mike the Dealer 

Perception Vs Reality

The perception in sports  betting is that bookies put up a line to get even action on a game and just hope to collect 
10% on the vig, the 11-to-10 odds required of all wagers in sportsbooks.  This is a lie, bookies will often be very heavy 
on one side and accept it, if they like their line, they won’t move it at all. When the Steelers visited the Bears, the 
overwhelming money went on Pittsburgh but the line held at -3 all week, and then the Bears won on the field. 
The bookies have their power rankings, their formulas for tracking what teams are supposed to beat other teams 
and so on, and if the public is going against what they expect, they’ll let the suckers pour their money in and get broke.

Of course there are times when the bookies get burned,  the Giants/Patriots Super Bowl had the Giants getting 4 or 5 to 1 
on your money if you bet them to win outright. Crazy Giants fans flooded the books and spent all their money on this and 
when it happened, Vegas got cleaned out.  Various sports betting sites on-line will list for you where the money is going 
on games, if you see a game that’s got 90% of the betting on one side and the line isn’t moving, rest assured the bookies 
think they got the public right where they want them. If the line moves, then they aren’t so sure.

If it wasn’t for that…

A great many broadcasters have said over the last week “If it wasn’t for one freak play against Denver, the Bengals 
would be 3-0” and that’s true, but those plays count just as much as any other play. Football is truly a chaotic sport. 
In basketball and hockey, offense and defense are fluid, in baseball, offense and defense are fixed, in football, the offense 
and defense are fixed, but the difference is the defense can score. If your team is batting, you can’t get scored on, you 
don’t have any fears of the other team gaining points. In football, every pass is an interception run back for a touchdown 
waiting to happen, every run is a fumble. In a game where every play can lead to either team scoring 6 points (With a nearly 
assured 7th forthcoming, or 8th if they go for two)

Heck, even when the offense and defense aren’t on the field touchdowns are scored. The 2001 AFC Title game featured 
the overwhelming favorite Steelers battling a underdog Patriots team that was there ‘only because of a bad call’ (The infamous 
‘Tuck Rule’) and if you went by just what the offenses and defenses did, Pittsburgh would have won 17-10. Alas for the Steelers 
that’s not how football works, as their horrible special teams let Troy Brown rip off a punt return for a touchdown, and then later 
in the game had a Field Goal blocked and run back (Part way by Troy Brown, who lateraled the ball to Antwan Harris who 
scampered the rest of the way untouched for the backbreaking touchdown.

If your team is up or down 7 or less, anything can happen at any moment (Except when one team is in the ‘victory formation 
and just taking kneel downs.) and that’s why this game is so hard to win, cause you can have a team beat the whole day, 
and then on one play, you lose.

The picks.

Humoring the Grand Poobah will not help you:  4 people took the Panthers in ‘solidarity’ with Bartcop, and then lost.

The Grand Poobah knows not to hold a grudge when betting: Only one reader joined Bartcop in taking the Cowboys, 
and they were showered with victory.

This Betting Stuff is Easy:  5 people took the Packers and all cruised to victory, nobody bet the useless Rams. 
8 people took the Lions to only 2 who backed the ‘Skins.

The Public is All Morons: 3 people took the Steelers, and all went down in flames, nobody backed the Bengals.

We had no idea on that one:  Cards/Colts Falcons/Patriots Chargers/Dolphins Eagles/Chiefs 
all got no action from everyone in the contest.

I didn't see those games listed - I would've taken the Cards.
Maybe I ldropped the ball :)

Records after week 1

The 4 and 1 Hall of Honor

Mike The Dealer (I mail my picks to Bart on Friday, I’m not fibbing!)
Wins: Saints, 49’ers, Ravens, Lions
Loss: Texans

Mike D
Wins: Lions, Broncos, Saints, Jags
Loss: Panthers

Wins:  Packers, Saints, Giants, Lions
Loss: Titans

Nic G
Wins:  Jets, Broncos, Ravens, Lions
Loss: Seahawks

Big Orange Jeff
Wins: Packers, 49’ers, Bears, Lions
Loss:  Titans

The 3 and 2’s

James D, Paul W, Craig, The Hollywood Liberal

The 2 and 3’s

Bartcop, Peter Y, Mike R

If you didn’t see your name or thought you were incorrectly scored, shoot me an E-mail.

Week 2 additions

First off, to make things easy on me, list the spread with your picks, so I know how much your team is giving/getting.

Also this week, since last week had a lot of 4 and 1’s, make one pick your ‘lock’ of the week, if your lock wins, 
you get 2 points, this way we can break ties and be more likely to have a true weekly winner, If you don’t list a lock, 
then you just aren’t playing with the bonus option, so don’t handicap yourself and do it.

And now finally


 BYES:  Cardinals, Panthers, Falcons, Eagles

Home team in CAPS


TEXANS             -9 ½          Raiders
Titans                -2 ½           JAGUARS
PATRIOTS          -1 ½           Ravens
Bengals             -5 ½           BROWNS
BEARS                -9 ½          Lions
REDSKINS          -6 ½          Bucs
SAINTS               -6 ½          Jets
DOLPHINS         -2 ½          Bills
49’ERS               -9 ½          Rams
Cowboys            -2 ½         BRONCOS
STEELERS           -6 ½         Chargers
VIKINGS              -3 ½         Packers

Good luck everyone, you have until kick off Sunday to send your picks into

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