Here's my analysis on the Redskins/Giants game...all of my picks are free at www.blackboxsports.net ... I might post my Denver play later as well, but it's up on the site if you're interested. Good luck to all the gamblohrs in here!
The Giants have put up quite a few points this season, but have had a relatively easy schedule thus far, at least in terms of defenses they’ve played. In fact, the highest ranked defense they’ve played recently was the Patriots (7th), who held them to 26 pts. That said, the Redskins don’t qualify as having a good, or even average defense themselves, as they currently rank 31st in our Power Rankings, with a pitiful power rating of 20 (out of a 100). They can’t stop the run at all, allowing 4.8 YPC this season (t-2nd last), and also have a hard time against the pass, allowing 7.7 YPA this season. They also can’t get to the QB, and are allowing a 109 QBR and a whopping 6.4 YPP (yards per play) over the last 6 weeks….they’re just pitiful. While the Giants probably won’t be able to take advantage on the ground, Eli and company will certainly take advantage aerially.
On the other side, the Redskins do have some hope. The Giants rank in the middle of the pack at stopping the run, which will be important in this game as the Redskins try to control the clock with Matt Jones and Alfred Morris. If they can keep Cousins in manageable down and distances, I like their chances of putting up a ton of points themselves. The Giants D, despite being ranked 23rd in our Power Rankings, are allowing 6.6 YPP over the last 6 weeks (worse than the Redskins) and, despite JPP playing a lot better than expected off an amputated finger, still struggle to get any pressure on the QB (I’m not buying the Patriots game – Brady has been under duress all season).
This game is shaping up to be a back and forth affair, so I like taking the home team with the free FG. I also like the situational angles here, as the Redskins are coming off a blow-out defeat to the Panthers, while the Giants are coming off a very tight loss to the undefeated Pats, and are also off a bye, which explains why this spread is moving in the direction of the Giants. The whole point of the Model is to cut thru all the noise, public bias, media hype and other crap that can move a line, so I’m not surprised it’s saying the Redskins are undervalued right now. The standard method for recommending units likes the Skins for 2 units (see above in the Statistical Model section), and so does the new method. I’m sticking with 2 units on the Redskins.
LINE MOVEMENT: This line has dropped to 2.5, indicating the professional bettors are all over the Redskins. I still like the skins for 2 units, even at 2.5, but I'm going to hold out and see if 3 pops back up again. We're not risking much by doing this, since the worst case scenario is the line moves down to 2, which isn't a big deal.
OVER-UNDER: I don't normally play over-unders, but for whatever reason I'm trying it this week for a few games. This total doesn't make sense to me - 47? Both teams can put up 30+, and a 28-24 final would actually be on the low side to me. I'm going with 1 unit on the Over.
FINAL BET: This line has dropped to +2..I'm locking this in for 2 units.
INJURY UPDATES: I don't normally post all the injuries, but considering a lot of people are scared to take the Redskins, I decided to give an update. The Giants have 2 key injuries on their Offensive Line - G Justin Pugh and C Weston Richburg (who is having a stellar season). Center is so important, so the latter is really going to hurt.
2013 NFL Free Agency: Star rating is out of five. Age listing as of Sept. 1, 2013.
Follow me @walterfootball for updates.
Elvis Dumervil, DE, Broncos. Age: 29. Signed with Ravens
Elvis Dumervil has 63.5 sacks in six NFL seasons (he missed all of 2010 with an injury). This includes 11 sacks in 2012. He can be a liability in run support, but his tremendous ability to get to the quarterback makes up for that.
Anthony Spencer, DE/OLB, Cowboys. Age: 29. Re-signed with Cowboys (1 year, $10.6 million)
Anthony Spencer dealt with consistency issues early in his career, but he was amazing for the Cowboys this past season, both in terms of stopping the run and getting to the quarterback.
Michael Johnson, DE, Bengals. Age: 26. Franchised by Bengals
The sky's the limit for Michael Johnson, who turns 26 in February. He recorded 11.5 sacks in 2012 while playing the run very well. He's expected to be franchised.
Michael Bennett, DE, Buccaneers. Age: 27. Signed with Seahawks (1 year, $5 million)
One of the more underrated players in the NFL, Michael Bennett is a solid pass-rusher and a premier run-defender. He plays all three downs and deserves a big contract.
Cliff Avril, DE, Lions. Age: 27. Signed with Seahawks
Cliff Avril is a relatively young, dynamic pass-rusher, but he tends to struggle in run support. He rejected a 3-year, $30 million deal last offseason.
Dwight Freeney, DE, Colts. Age: 33. Signed with Chargers
Dwight Freeney didn't have a good 2012 campaign because he was bothered by an ankle injury and had to transition into a 3-4 for the first time in his career. He should be better on a team with a 4-3 defense next year.
William Hayes, DE, Rams. Age: 28. Re-signed with Rams
William Hayes could start for some teams, but he can't crack the lineup in St. Louis because of Chris Long and Robert Quinn. He's terrific against the run and can get to the quarterback on occasion.
Osi Umenyiora, DE, Giants. Age: 31. Signed with Falcons
Osi Umenyiora had some decent games this past season, but was mostly invisible. It's fair to wonder if Umenyiora's talents have eroded. He'll be 32 in November.
John Abraham, DE, Falcons. Age: 35.
John Abraham still got the job done as a 34-year-old last season, registering a team-high 10 sacks. He was cut because of his $7.25 million cap number. He can still start, but it's fair to wonder how much he has left in the tank, given that he'll be 35 in May.
Israel Idonije, DE, Bears. Age: 32. Signed with Lions (1 year)
Israel Idonije is coming off a fantastic season in terms of getting to the quarterback (7.5 sacks) and stopping the run. He'll be 33 in November, however.
Junior Galette (RFA), DE, Saints. Age: 25. Re-signed with Saints (3 years)
Junior Galette is a solid situational pass-rusher who should have seen more action last year.
Robert Geathers, DE, Bengals. Age: 30. Re-signed with Bengals
Robert Geathers did not play well this past season because of a lingering knee injury. He was still decent as a run-stopper.
Wallace Gilberry, DE, Bengals. Age: 28. Re-signed with Bengals (3 years, $6.75 million)
Wallace Gilberry is a quality nickel pass-rusher. He recorded 6.5 sacks despite not playing very many snaps.
Juqua Parker-Thomas, DE, Browns. Age: 35.
Juqua Parker-Thomas served as a decent situational pass-rusher for the Browns, registering six sacks. He'll be 35 in May, however.
Kyle Moore, DE, Bills. Age: 26. -- Signed with Bears
Lawrence Jackson, DE, Lions. Age: 28.
Frostee Rucker, DE, Browns. Age: 29. -- Signed with Cardinals
Kyle Vanden Bosch, DE, Lions. Age: 34.
Matt Shaughnessy, DE, Raiders. Age: 26. -- Signed with Cardinals (1 year)
Trevor Scott, DE, Patriots. Age: 29.
Shawne Merriman, DE, Bills. Age: 29. -- Announced retirement
Andre Carter, DE, Raiders. Age: 34. -- Re-signed with Raiders (1 year)
Antwan Applewhite, DE/OLB, Panthers. Age: 27.
George Selvie, DE, Jaguars. Age: 26. -- Signed with Buccaneers
Willie Young (RFA), DE, Lions. Age: 27. -- Tendered by Lions (2nd round)
Darryl Tapp, DE, Eagles. Age: 28. -- Signed with Redskins
Jason Hunter, DE, Broncos. Age: 30. -- Signed with Raiders
Lawrence Sidbury, DE, Falcons. Age: 27. -- Signed with Colts
Jarvis Moss, DE, Raiders. Age: 29.
Jarius Wynn, DE, Titans. Age: 27. -- Signed with Chargers
Keyunta Dawson, DE, Titans. Age: 27.
Turk McBride, DE, Saints. Age: 28. -- Signed with Bears
Edgar Jones, DE/OLB, Chiefs. Age: 28. -- Re-signed with Chiefs