Preseason football is really a big tease. Our sports loving populous is chomping at the bit to see some meaningful football action, and they are only experiencing withdrawal symptoms since they are only getting a “diet” version of their fix.It’s times like these where us football craving fanatics should start taking different measures in order to sufficient quell our want for important football.
Betting on things always makes them more interesting, and pre-season football is no exception. In fact, the unpredictability, and sometimes comical nature of the beast makes for some great betting scenarios. Let’s go over some…
Coaches will often allude to how long they will allow their star players will be allowed to participate in the meaningless game, but they almost never tell us exactly when they will be relegated to bench duty.
Make a bet with a group of friends as to when a team's star quarterback, flashy receiver, or injury prone defensive end will be taken out of the game. Will it be after the first drive? How about after the first quarter? Or, will the coach play a wild card and never take them out? Guess right, and you may get an early pay day.
Towards the end of these exhibitionistic affairs, players who will never see a regular season game in their lives get folded into the high-octane environment that is an NFL football game.
When these players step on the field, they either look unmatched, or they look like amazing athletes that are taking advantage of the weaker opponents on the other side. Every so often, a player will separate himself from the pack. Literally.
It's practically a guarantee that various no-names will end up returning a punt to the house, or will make a fantastic grab in the back of the end zone a few times over the course of a preseason. If you can convince some buddies to bet on when that might happen, perhaps you will never forget a rather forgettable player because he made you quite a bit of dough.
The NFL preseason can be rather predictable sometimes. Occasionally, entire game plans are divulged by coaches prior to kickoff since they are just looking to get some glorified practice in. Quite often, the spreads are decided well before these details are revealed.
As an example, let's shoot ahead to the week three preseason game between the Washington Redskins and the Baltimore Ravens. On Monday, the spread of the game is set at Baltimore by six points. On Wednesday, Washington coach Mike Shanahan says that he wants QB Rex Grossman to play the entire game against the Ravens to see how he handles a Super Bowl calibre defence.
Knowing that the Ravens probably won't allow the entirety of their defence play the entire game, it would be smart to take the six points and bet on Washington.
If your friends don't pay as much attention to this stuff as you do, a lot of easy money could be made before the season even begins.
Remember how we talked about how many practice squad players can be on the field at a time in a preseason game? Sure, some of them will make the highlight reel, but the rest will flail around on the field like an epileptic break dancer.
Place an over-under on how many missed tackles there will be in a single preseason game. Five is a solid number to use, since the volume of reserve players used in the game fluctuates on a week-to-week basis.
Keeping with the inferior players theme, place another over-under on how many times the two teams will get flagged for dumb penalties.
Too many men on the field, delay of game, and any sort of unsportsmanlike conduct call would certainly qualify as asinine penalties a team could commit. Each game should have a few, especially in the third and fourth quarters.
There are several position battles taking place in the NFL at this very moment. Cam Newton is trying to overtake the Carolina starting QB position from Jimmy Clausen, Matt Moore is lobbying the Dolphins brass that he's superior to Chad Henne, and Vince Young may not have the number two spot on the depth chart locked up in Philadelphia since Mike Kafka has been making a strides to be the back-up plan if Vick goes down.
Let's make these battles all the more interesting. Take any given position battle on a team and throw down some money on one of them having a better game than the other. If the stat lines are similar, just call it a wash and go get a burrito or something. It's only the pre-season, after all.
San Diego at Dallas, Houston at Minnesota, Indianapolis at Cincinnati, and St. Louis at Jacksonville. Those are at least four of the games that might have head coaching job implications.
Norv Turner, Jack Del Rio, and Gary Kubiak have to actually try in their preseason games. Any cracks in the armour may call for a coaching change. In the games that pit one maligned coach against another, wouldn't it be fun to bet on which one of them will be smarter with the clipboard?
Pro tip: always vote against Norv Turner. The guy's job should be getting outcoached.
It's OK to be jealous of sports broadcasters. They get paid to watch sports, and there are few things more amazing than that.
However, they are human (except for maybe Al Michaels) and they are well aware that these games don't matter. When that sinks in for the umpteenth time, it's nature for them to start powering down the ship. This happens most often in games that turn out to be blowouts.
Try and guess at what time and in what quarter will the guys in the booth start openly sighing and complaining about how late it is. It would be wise to pick a time late in the third quarter in most cases, but in games that involve the Patriots, Packers or Eagles, that time could come much earlier.
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