Football

NFC West Handicapping Preview

Thursday, 30 July, 2015

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Zack Cimini and Hollis Barnhart give their opinions on the NFC West division from a handicapping perspective. See where they see the San Francisco 49ers, St. Louis Rams, Seattle Seahawks, and Arizona Cardinals falling at season’s end from the current win total lines.

NFC West Handicapping Preview from Zack Cimini on Vimeo.

Hollis Barnhart and Zack Cimini discuss the NFC West from a sports handicapping perspective.

NFC North Handicapping Preview

Wednesday, 29 July, 2015

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Hollis Barnhart and Zack Cimini continue their handicapping previews in the NFC. Wednesday, they covered the NFC North and West. See what they have to say about the NFC North involving the Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, and the Minnesota Vikings.

NFC North Handicapping Preview from Zack Cimini on Vimeo.

Hollis Barnhart and Zack Cimini discuss the NFC North from a sports handicapping perspective.

NFC East Handicapping Division Preview

Tuesday, 28 July, 2015

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Zack Cimini and Hollis Barnhart have previewed the NFC South and now the NFC East divisions from a win totals perspective. See where they project the Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, and Washington Redskins for the 2015 NFL season.

NFC East Handicapping Preview from Zack Cimini on Vimeo.

Hollis Barnhart and Zack Cimini discuss the NFC East from a sports handicapping perspective.

NFC South Handicapping Preview

Tuesday, 28 July, 2015

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Zack Cimini and Hollis Barnhart continue their coverage of each NFL division in terms of win totals for the 2015 season. How will the Carolina Panthers, Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers fare in the NFC South division this upcoming season.

NFC South Handicapping Preview from Zack Cimini on Vimeo.

Hollis Barnhart and Zack Cimini discuss the NFC South from a sports handicapping perspective.

Handicapping the NFL Preseason

Wednesday, 22 July, 2015

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Preseason football is a mere two weeks away. The month of August will feature a gamut of games. With that comes the lure of point spreads. The NFL is probably the toughest to handicap on a week to week basis. But some find the preseason easier to handicap. I find that odd as playing time is unpredictable and point spreads can often come down to third stringers.

The best comparison of this would be the NBA Summer League. Point spreads have been available for the summer league for a good three years now. Often times the point spreads are set with a low variance between -1 to -5. Rosters shuffle each game whether it’s profiled rookies or second year players seeing reduced playing time, or proper evaluation by the coaching staff.

In preseason football you obviously have a higher job security basement for on field players. Besides the third preseason game, playing time from the 1st quarter onward is for players vying for backup or roster depth positions.

My advice in handicapping preseason football is similar to the regular season. Avoid the “easy” plays. People tend to believe a line movement in football indicates sharp money. Often times it’s the trap play that ends with a fourth quarter backdoor situation. Instead latch onto games where you’ve seen backup players perform well before.

Backup quarterbacks have typically seen the field as starters or in preseason situations before. Key in on if they know the playbook well or are turnover prone. Turnover prone quarterbacks and running backs do not tend to have a preseason flurry of greatness. The same tendencies usually carry over and that can be detrimental to protecting a lead or keeping the chains moving.

Leads are going to evaporate even more in preseason football. Defenses have vanilla blitzes and game plans that expose third and fourth units.

If you’re planning on wagering on preseason football set yourself a layout. In that layout I’d have the amount of games total you’d plan on wagering on. A safe number would be between a handful and low double-digits in my opinion. Keep your wagering limits also set. Whatever your regular season weekly game wagers are maybe decrease that in half.

Don’t start the regular season off on a sour-note by digging yourself an unmanageable hole from preseason. On the field coaches are evaluating all phases of their football team. Do the same be having proper discipline with preseason wagers that you can evaluate on a game to game basis.

Fantasy football enthusiasts vs. Sports Handicappers

Saturday, 27 June, 2015

The line between fantasy and reality is being blurred by the rapidly-growing Daily Fantasy Sports market, offering fans a chance to not only build the team of their dreams and test their football knowledge but earn big money by playing fantasy sports against other passionate pigskin aficionados. In fact, fantasy footballers are more like sports handicappers than ever before.

Fantasy sports are nothing new to the mainstream, stemming from those hallowed Rotisserie League days in the 1980s and booming in popularity at the turn of the century. Much like sports betting, fantasy football gets fans to not just tune into their favorite NFL teams each Sunday but also watch games involving different players on their fantasy rosters.

And, again like sports betting, managing your fantasy team – daily or season-long – takes a keen eye to spot value in certain matchups that may not be visible to the average fan. Fantasy football is one of the most underrated places to find sports betting tips, and vice versa.

For example, sports handicappers may look to play the Under in a contest in which a team’s passing game is facing a stingy secondary that ranks among the top pass defenses in the NFL, knowing that the offense won’t be able to pick up big gains and will likely have to run the ball more than usual – keeping the gains short and the clock ticking.

The fantasy football player sees this matchup in a similar light, spotting added value in the offense’s running back, knowing the team won’t be passing as much and giving the rusher extra carries to try and move the chains while taking pressure off the receivers and forcing the defense to loosen up on the pass coverage.

One of the biggest trends in fantasy football in recent years is the shift away from the rushing game, with most teams using a multi-back run attack, and the boom in passing. Since defenses are all but handcuffed when defending receivers, more importance is being put on quarterbacks and wideouts – but also running backs who can make plays after the catch. Finding a hybrid running back, that can run the ball and also make catches, is a smart way to win your weekly or daily fantasy football matchup.