November 3, 2010

NFL Week 8 Recap, News, and Notes

The 2010 NFL betting campaign wrapped up Week 8 on Monday night. Here at Bang the Book, we’ve got you covered for all of the most important news and notes from Week 8 betting action!

Powerful Pack Post Shutout in the Meadowlands: The New York Jets have only lost two games this year, and in those two games, they have only combined to score nine points. The Green Bay Packers had the perfect game plan for taking care of New York at New Meadowlands Stadium on Sunday, and though very few gave them a chance of walking out of the Big Apple with a victory, they won 9-0. This was notable on a few fronts. It was the first game of the season that didn’t featured a single touchdown. It was also the first time in which the Packers pitched a shutout on the road since 1991. New York also became the team in the league to get shutout this year.

McNabb Benched in Crucial Spot: We are still trying to figure out what in the heck the Washington Redskins and their head coach Mike Shanahan were trying to do on Sunday in the Motor City. Needing a TD to take the lead with less than two minutes to play, Shanahan decided to pull QB Donovan McNabb, who led the team in passing and rushing on the day, in favor of QB Rex Grossman to run the two minute drill. We see very little good that could have come out of this, especially with a bye week coming up next. Had Grossman led the touchdown drive, there would be quarterback controversy to discuss. However, he failed, failed miserably, and failed right away. It only took one play for Grossman, not really out of his own fault, to get sacked, to fumble, and to ultimately watch as DT Ndamukong Suh scored his first career touchdown. Now, McNabb is rightfully upset at his new team, and for good reason. The ‘Skins dropped to 4-4 on the season and fortunately do have a week to sort all of this out. The bad news for McNabb is that he might not have much of a leg to stand on, especially since he still has yet to throw for multiple TD passes in a game this season.

Bills Create New Way to Lose: The poor Buffalo Bills still have to be kicking themselves for how these last two weeks went down. This was the second straight overtime game they lost on the road to a team which is probably going to end up making the playoffs. However, this one, Buffalo knows should have gone the other way. K Rian Lindell had a chance to really make a huge difference in the season of the Bills, and it looked like his 53 yard field goal in overtime had sent them to victory. However, HC Todd Haley iced the kicker, made him boot it again, and the end result was a clank off the uprights. K Ryan Succop missed a 39 yard field goal later in the OT period as well, which gave Buffalo one last chance. It failed, and gave the Chiefs the ball back with a quite a ways to go to win the game with less than two minutes to play and no timeouts. Instead of settling for what would have been the first tie in the NFL since 2008, the Chiefs went for glory. This time, as the clock struck 0:00, Succop connected and sent Kansas City to a 13-10 victory. The Bills were the only underdog this week to cover the NFL odds without winning the game.

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Finally, a Week Where We Were ‘Under’ the Weather!: Sure, there was another 70+ point explosion this week, but the scores in the NFL finally came down just a tad. We had more ‘unders’ than ‘overs’ for the first time since Week 2, with eight encounters failing to reach the number. The lowest scoring game of the season was this week when the Green Bay Packers won 9-0 against the New York Jets, but there were a whopping eight teams across the league in Week 8 that didn’t end up scoring a touchdown in the first three quarters. Two of them, the San Francisco 49ers and Miami Dolphins ended up winning the game with TDs in the fourth, while the Packers never needed to find the Jets’ end zone to pick up the victory. The mean score for the weekend came down almost two TDs from the big offensive week in Week 7. Games averaged reaching 41.7 points per game, while the median was just 40. This is the first time since Week 2 that the mean posted on the board (43.2) and median on the board (44) were both lower than the actual numbers scored by week’s end.

Moss No Mas in Minnesota: The Minnesota Vikings probably need to pull the plug on a lot of things right now. WR Randy Moss has already been purged after just four games, as he was released just four weeks after he was acquired. Perhaps it is time for HC Brad Childress to tell QB Brett Favre that it’s time for him to sit as well, if for no other reason, for his own health. Favre has been knocked out of games three times this season, and there can’t possibly be that much more his body can take, especially knowing that this whole saga with Jenn Sterger is still going on in the background. Childress has some bigger problems, though. He could face the wrath of owner Zygi Wilf, who is awfully upset that he wasn’t consulted when his head coach put one of the team’s top wide receivers on waivers. To be honest, if we gave up a third round draft choice to rent a receiver for four weeks, we’d be pretty upset too, especially when the team is just 2-5 on the season.

Jones Apologizes to Cowboys Fans: And as he should! The Dallas Cowboys are 0-4 at home this year both SU and ATS after getting whacked by the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday in Big D. It’s pretty clear that QB Jon Kitna isn’t turning things around, and with one of the league’s worst records at 1-6, it only seems like Dallas is playing for draft picks right now, not the playoffs. This is the only team in the league that doesn’t have at least one cover at home, and it is the only one with just one cover on the year as well.

Top Passers: We’ve already mentioned that Jon Kitna can’t get the job done in Dallas, and we’re standing by that. Though Kitna might have thrown four picks on the day and been booed in his own stadium, he was the leading passer of the week with 379 yards. There were only four other 300+ yard passers on the week, and in a strange twist, three of the other four actually proved to be victorious. Those men include Denver’s Kyle Orton (369), Oakland’s Jason Campbell (310), San Diego’s Philip Rivers (305), and New Orleans’ Drew Brees (305).

Running All Over the Competition: There were seven rushers that reached the century mark in Week 8, and this is clearly a list of some unexpected names. It appears as though the career of Tampa Bay’s LeGarrette Blount has come full circle at this point. Blount led the Bucs to a 38-35 win on Sunday, and he rushed for 120 yards and two TDs in the best game of his career. Many thought that the former Oregon Duck would be a prime rusher already in the NFL, but the punch he threw against Boise State to start last season really wrecked any chances he had in the pros. However, it was good to see that he started his transformation in Tampa Bay, and now he has a chance to be a primary running back for an up and coming team. Other 100+ yard rushers for the week include Kansas City’s Jamaal Charles (177), Jacksonville’s Maurice Jones-Drew (135), San Francisco’s Frank Gore (118), New England’s BenJarvus Green-Ellis (112), Oakland’s Darren McFadden (111), and Houston’s Arian Foster (102).

Receiving the Top Prizes: You’d better believe that Calvin Johnson is thrilled to have his quarterback, Matt Stafford back in Motown. The two young guns hooked up nine times on the day for 101 yards and three scores to help bury the ‘Skins on Sunday for just the Lions’ second win of the season. There were 11 others that had at least 100 receiving yards on the day as well. They include Denver’s Brandon Lloyd (169), Jacksonville’s Mike Sims-Walker (153), Arizona’s Steve Breaston (147), San Diego’s Antonio Gates (123), Dallas’ Miles Austin (117), Tennessee’s Nate Washington (117), Houston’s Andre Johnson (106), Oakland’s Darrius Heyward-Bey (105), Tampa Bay’s Mike Williams (105), Minnesota’s Percy Harvin (104), and New England’s Brandon Tate (101).

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