The 2010 NFL betting campaign wrapped up Week 5 on Monday night. Here at Bang the Book, we’ve got you covered for all of the most important news and notes from Week 5 betting action!
Puppy Power!: After a week in which seven teams pulled outright upsets, the dogs were barking loud and clear once again. The Jacksonville Jaguars, Washington Redskins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, New York Giants, and Chicago Bears opened up the 1:00 ET games with a bang for the pups, but the big dogs were yet to bark! In the late games, the Tennessee Titans, Arizona Cardinals, and Oakland Raiders all cashed, while the night finished up with an upset by the Philadelphia Eagles. That’s right, you aren’t counting incorrectly. Of the 13 games played on Sunday, underdogs went 9-4 not only ATS, but 9-4 SU as well. The NFL hasn’t seen a week like this in years, and it was certainly one in which the books cleaned up, as many of the public favorites were amongst the ones that ended up getting destroyed.
Motor City Mojo: What a day it was for the Detroit Lions on Sunday! Not since 1995 had they put together an offensive effort like this. They scored a whopping 44 points and hit the scoreboard in all four quarters, including a 21 point outburst in the second quarter to dismantle the St. Louis Rams by 38 points. We aren’t so excited, because after all, they’re still the Rams, but after near miss after near miss in the opening weeks, it is good for Detroit to finally flex its offensive muscles and notch a big ‘W’ to get the bagel out of the win column for the season. This team will only get scarier in future weeks, as QB Matt Stafford is soon to return.
Popping the Corks: The 1972 Miami Dolphins can celebrate early this year. There was never any stress about this one, as the Kansas City Chiefs became the last team in the NFL to lose a game, protecting the sacred perfect season in 1972 as the only season of perfection in NFL history. Interestingly enough, just two years later in 1974 was the last time that there wasn’t a team that made it to even 4-0 before the men in white and green were able to pop open their champagne for another year.
‘Over’board!: Whereas the first ten games on the rotation schedule in NFL betting action last week resulted in an even split between ‘overs’ and ‘unders’, it was once again the last four on the Week 5 slate that did the damage to ‘under’ bettors. All four games went past the number in one of the highest scoring weeks in the NFL in quite some time. The Detroit Lions were the highest scoring team in Week 5 with 44 points, while a total of seven teams scored at least 30 points. Only nine were kept under 20. Only three of those nine teams were home teams, and two of the three turned out to be winners. The only losers of the bunch? The winless and seemingly hapless Carolina Panthers.
Pick Parade in Charlotte: Oy vey. If you’re a fan of efficient offense, the duel between the Carolina Panthers and the Chicago Bears wasn’t for you. QB Todd Collins threw four INTs and just six completions before getting pulled in favor of QB Caleb Hanie. Things weren’t any better for the Panthers, as they had three picks combined between the ineffective QB Jimmy Clausen and his equally ineffective backup QB Matt Moore. Good thing that the Bears got two rushing touchdowns from RB Matt Forte in the first quarter, or that game might still be going on without a score… Good news! Jay Cutler should be back next week. You know it’s bad when the Windy City media is begging for Cutler back… By the way, those two Forte rushing TDs were the first two rushing scores for the Bears since Week 13 of last season, a stretch of a whopping ten straight games.
Three for No Money: Amazingly enough, three of the four teams that entered this week winless remain that way in spite of the fact that all four were favorites. The Carolina Panthers, San Francisco 49ers, and Buffalo Bills are all without a win. Though we are confident that at some point, the Niners will beat someone, we aren’t so sure about the Panthers and Bills. Buffalo has near certain losses coming up against Baltimore and Kansas City, and still has to play all three teams in its own division to end the season. The only prospective wins are home dates with the Lions on November 14th and the Browns on December 12th. As for Carolina, the winless Niners are the next team on the slate, while a trip to St. Louis is on tap on Halloween. After that though, the team has a road game in Tampa Bay on November 14th, a road in Cleveland on November 28th, and a home game against Arizona on December 19th. The only good news for NFL betting fans? Both of these dud teams are off next week.
Packers in Pain: The Green Bay Packers didn’t just lose their game on Sunday in our nation’s capitol, but they might have lost some key players to their team as well. Leading sack man LB Clay Matthews left after getting 1.5 sacks with a hamstring injury. TE Jermichael Finley is going to miss the next three weeks with an ankle sprain. But the biggest injury of them all occurred to QB Aaron Rodgers, an MVP candidate and the team’s undisputed leader. Rodgers suffered a concussion and might not be ready to go this week. For a team that is already without RB Ryan Grant, this is absolutely atrocious news.
Top Passers: Just because you threw for 300+ yards on the day doesn’t mean that you were worthy of being a winner. In fact, the only one that was on the day was Donovan McNabb, who only proved to lead his Redskins to victory due to the fact that the Packers missed a pair of field goals. There were four other losers that threw for at least 300 yards on the day, including San Diego’s Philip Rivers (431), Dallas’ Tony Romo (406), Denver’s Kyle Orton (314), and San Fran’s Alex Smith.
Running All Over the Competition: Nine different men reached the 100 yard barrier this week on the ground. We’ve already talked about just how important Matt Forte was to the Bears, as he rumbled for a week high 166 yards and two TDs. Ironically, the next two running backs in line, Cincinnati’s Cedric Benson (144) and Atlanta’s Michael Turner (140) failed to reach the end zone on the day. The other top running backs that we’re keying in on this week included Baltimore’s Ray Rice (133), Tennessee’s Chris Johnson (131), Green Bay’s Brandon Jackson (115), St. Louis’ Steven Jackson (115), Dallas’ Felix Jones (109), and Oakland’s Michael Bush (104).
Receiving the Top Prizes: Nine more receivers made to at least 100 yards through the air as well in Week 5. Unfortunately, only the G-Men’s Hakeem Nicks (130), Washington’s Santana Moss (118), and Atlanta’s Roddy White (101) were on winning teams. A pair of 49ers were on this list as well, as Michael Crabtree (105) and Vernon Davis (104) both cracked the century mark in receiving. Other 100+ yard receivers include San Diego’s Malcom Floyd (213), Dallas’ Miles Austin (166), Denver’s Brandon Lloyd, and Cincinnati’s Terrell Owens (102).