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Zack Cimini and Eric Wong partner up for another all hoops podcast. In the first portion of the podcast they discuss NBA team future over/unders. In the last segment they discuss Olympic team odds. Have a listen as Eric brings great Olympic insight before the games begin.
The 2015 NFL draft class has quite a bit of potential when you look at the top positions in fantasy football. It is headlined by the two quarterbacks taken at the top of the draft, but it really shines at the wide receiver position. It might take a little while for some of these guys to live up to expectations, but for others, they are ready to contribute now. Here is a look at when to draft the three best rookies in fantasy football this year.
At Wisconsin, he was nearly unstoppable throughout his college career. He is a very disciplined running back who will get an opportunity to shine right away in San Diego. Taking him in the top 15 among running backs is not a crazy thought at all. He has a chance to be really good for a long time with his size and speed.
The running back is coming off an injury, but St. Louis plans on using him right away. They need someone with his dynamic ability in the backfield, and that is why they drafted him in the first round. The injuries drop him a bit, but he is still a top 25 running back, and a top 50 player overall in fantasy football.
Most fantasy football owners are hesitant to trust a rookie wide receiver. Cooper shouldn’t play much like a rookie though, as he is mature and disciplined already. He will be an instant difference maker in Oakland for the Raiders. He needs to make sure he is on the same page as Derek Carr right away.
All future wagers for the NFL should be placed this week. If you’re going to wait until after week 17 and before the wild card round, you’re going to lose odds value. Case in point, the Green Bay Packers in 2010 dropped to 20-1 after week 17. The New York Giants in 2011 dropped from 40-1 to 20-1 in 2011.
Get value while you can. Most people are going to run to the book and go for the slight payouts on the Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, or Packers. I like to find value and go for the hot December teams. These are the teams that typically make a solid playoff run in the NFL.
NFC Champs: Dallas Cowboys +585
Dallas has had a couple of poor losses on national television (Eagles Thanksgiving and Redskins MNF). But besides those losses they have looked the part all season long(Scratching Weeden’s start against the Cardinals from memory). In the post season they will likely have to clear past the Seahawks but who says they can’t do it again? Dallas’s offensive line is one of the few that have given the Seahawks defensive line problems. And lets not forget about Dez Bryant at wide receiver who made Seattle’s secondary look like the Bears.
AFC Champs: Pittsburgh Steelers +700-+800
Their defense may not be the greatest but what team has shown the capability to slow down the Steelers offense? They’ve been rolling the past six weeks since they decided to balance the pass/run more. That Jets loss seems like the distant past and I love the look this team has heading into the postseason.
Super Bowl Champs: Pittsburgh Steelers +2450
I mentioned a little bit above I like the Steelers to win the AFC. The Super Bowl would not be in their favor against the Seahawks, but I’m predicting Dallas to get there. It’s all about matchups in the Super Bowl and I believe Pittsburgh will continue the theme we’ve seen all year. Repeat champions of the 2000’s. UConn in college hoops, Spurs in the NBA, Giants in MLB, and Bubba Watson in golf.
Paired Odds: Dallas vs Pittsburgh 88-1. Oddly enough these two have met in the Super Bowl in the 70’s(1976 and 1979) and in the 90’s (1995 in Arizona). Lets keep the every two decades theme going!
Have fun with your futures selections and don’t wait until next Friday night to get your team’s selected.
VCU came into the 2014 campaign as an Atlantic 10 top rated team and one that has caught the eyes of several top college basketball analysts. I, myself had them ranked as a potential sleeper for a run in March. I still do. One of the things that people need to realize is just how much things can change for November until March. UConn showcased this as the most current example. Just a few weeks before the March Madness tournament they were defeated resoundingly by Louisville.
A team can grow in a quick matter. All that matters come March is seeding and the path of teams they face to get there.
For current ATS bettors, you’ve been extremely unsatisfied with VCU. They have only won two games ATS, one against Oregon and the other against Tennessee. Overall that makes them 2-6 ATS. The reason for this has been three keys in my eyes.
1. Their pressure havoc defense has been halted by poor back line defense. Teams are zipping the ball past the first wave and finding easy strides to the hoop for layups. This has been accomplished thanks to the teams they have faced having above average backcourts. That won’t last the entire season and Shaka Smart will amend his havoc defense a bit.
2. VCU’s offense at times can be stagnant. Half court execution has been better over their last few games. On the bench freshman Terry Larier and Justin Tillman are getting more and more comfortable offensively—this has to translate to the Rams havoc defense. Also sophomores JeQuan Lewis and Doug Brooks showed last year they’re capable of rising to the occasion—they just need to be more consistent.
3. Free Throw Shooting– This is VCU’s main culprit in their woes. They’ve always been a poor free throw shooting team. Against Northern Iowa though it was the difference in VCU gaining a win. Treveon Graham went 6 for 6 from the line and the team as a whole shot the ball better than Northern Iowa from the free throw line.
4. Leadership–This team has Treveon Graham, junior Melvin Johnson, Mo Allie-Cox,Jordan Burgess and defensive specialist Briante Weber. They’ve played on teams that were represented by VCU players that went to the Elite 8 a few seasons ago. They showed last year in quick stretches this team can turn a close game into a blowout.
Zack goes over his ATS percentages in college football and the NFL this season. To sign up for daily or weekly packages click here for today’s picks.
Sports Handicapping NFL Week 10 from Zack Cimini on Vimeo.
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