GREG GAMBLE’S 2008-09 PIGSKIN Picks: 63-44 ats...59%
NFL 25-19 - NCAA 20-15 - Teasers 20-10 - Lovely Ladies 69-0
GREG GAMBLE’S 2008-09 HARDWOOD Picks: 46-36 ats…56%
NBA 29-24 - NCAA 11-10 - Teasers 6-2 - Church League 69-0
Last week I gave you three reason why the Cards might suprise some people (TOUCH ME HERE and scroll past Latrell if you need a refresher). While my official Super Bowl Pick will not be up until Sunday Funday, I do have some prop plays that seem too good to be true:
EDGERRIN JAMES OVA 8.5 YARDS RECEIVING
Early in his career at Indy, not many featured backs were more dangerous catching the pill out of the backfield than Edge (4 rec/gm & 30 yrds/gm). While his numbers have declined the past three seasons in Zona, Warner has dumped-off once to the former Hurricane in each of their last five contests (5 rec – 46 yards) and might be more inclined to utilize his abilities with the aggressive blitzing from Dicky LeBeau. Especially with the emphasis Pitt will placing on Larry Fitzgerald & Anquan Boldin, not to mention their ability to stretch the field, and the Cards should find some space to sneak James into the flat.
O-Coordinator Todd Haley is extremely creative in getting his superstars the ball and shown the ability in the postseason to exploit teams that over pursue, and with the extra time to prepare, I can’t see how he doesn’t find a way to utilize James in the passing game. While Edgerrin wasn’t much of an option carrying the rock this season, let alone in passing game, he’s become more prominent in their game-plan, looks fresher than ever, and probably has been leaning on Haley all week to get him going early. The Cards have dropped the ball off plenty to their backs this season (Hightower 34 rec. – Arrington 29 rec.) so you know they have it in the game plan. The biggest difference on this Sunday is 3rd-down specialist J.J. Arrington is banged-up (knee), not to mention you have to believe they’ll be leaning on their vet more than the rookie (Hightower) with a Super Bowl ring at stake.
One last thought on this play, while I may go in the other direction, many experts think the Steelers could turn this into a blow-out (they believe the public is so high on the Cards because they’re hoping this is a close game). If they’re right, I like this prop-play even more as the Cards will be throwing the pigskin around all-night with the Steelers playing somewhat of a prevent leaving the short-shitznit for our Homebody Edge. And the result...
SUNDAY FUNDAY - EDGERRIN JAMES – 3 catches 27 yards
HINES WARD UNDA 69.5 YARDS RECEIVING
Call me a crazy sexy drunk, but I believe the toughest WR since Rod Tidwell is going to be more of decoy than a contributor Sunday. From everything we’ve heard, the sprained-knee is not just a tweak and could be hindered even further after taking a few shots early in the game…and you know the Cards will not shy away from contact, especially when he’s run-blocking. Throw-in a knee brace for an already aging receiver, and if he does contribute in the passing game, it's not going to be cause he's getting separation down the field.
Especially with the emergence of Santonio “I need shoes…do you need a dubbie?" Holmes, the underrated ability of Nate Washington, and the confidence Big Ben has in Health Miller, will they even risk throwing the ball to a player who’s timing is slightly off or unable to cut as sharply as normal. And finally, if the Steelers game-plan is to keep Warner & Co. off the field, obviously the ground attack will be heavily featured and we’ll see plenty of the well-rested Fast Willie Parker. As a result...
SUNDAY FUNDAY – HINES WARD – 3 catches 38 yards
NUMBER OF TIMES THEY SHOW BRENDA WARNER IN HER SUPER-TIGHT SWEATER…OVA 69...and that's a lock!!!
With that, time for some Friday Night ATS Hardwood Action, but make sure to check in all weekend for more Super Bowl magic and plenty of friendly faces from Teasin' T-Bone & yours truly!
CHICAGO BULLS (pick) @ SACTOWN KINGS
As I told you in their 20-point win against the Clippers, with all the criticism and backlash in Chicago over their awful start, I truly believe the Bulls were looking forward to playing outside of the United Center. The media has been all over how they’ve meshed with Coach Vinny Del Scott Baio and heavily scrutinized for every single comment about the situation at practice and on game day. Now, after a victory and playing against a bottom-feeder that nobody cares about, I expect to see another impressive performance from a team that has been extremely streaky in terms of confidence.
On the Kings side, they’ve lost seven straight and just returned home from a four-game road-trip that concluded on the other coast Wednesday. While most casual betters would believe they’d be thrilled to be home, that may be case for sleeping in their own bed, but when it comes to having the right frame of mind for basketball…trust me, it’s a bad thing! From my experiences and talking with other long-time degenerates, the first game after returning from groupie paradise is usually a debacle. Players return home and have to explain to the wife/warden why they didn’t answer their cell-phone late night and/or are excited to be home playing with their kids. On the flipside, the young single-guys haven’t figured-out how to delegate their responsibilities and have stacks of bills/mail, laundry to be done, and girlfriends desperate to have a seed planted so their set for life. Throw-in a return to hearing the city gossip on how horrible they are, and I’d be shocked if the Kings came out looking sharp tonight.
As for the specific match-ups, Derrick Rose continues to run circles around opponents and tonight he faces the slow-footed Beno Udrih. With Kirk Hinrich back, the Bulls actually have somebody that can contain Kevin Martin. The combination of Deng, Nocioni, & Sefolosha should give John Salmons all he can handle. Up front, the usually overmatched Bulls frontcourt has played much better of late (Thomas, Noah, & Gray combined for 35 pts, 19 reb, 6 blks against LA) and will be facing a strange combination of slow vets (Brad Miller & Mikki Moore) and unproven youngsters (Spencer Hawes & Ryan Thompson). And considering I’ve won my last four NBA plays, why would you doubt me? BULLS JUMP OUT EARLY AND WIN BY DOUBLE-DIGITS
LOS ANGELES LAKERS (-5.5) @ MINNY T-WOLVES
While it's not the Timberwolves fault, Krabby Kobe fouling out and losing at home to the Bobcats might mean Big Al & Mr. Luv are in trouble tonight. And to tell you the truth, I'm actually glad this game is in Minny and the Wolves are playing so well...it just gets us a nicer spread! KOBE SCORES 40 AND LAKERS WIN BY 20!
With that, it's now time for your Friday Special...
DREW'S MFin DISH...by: Drew Donkulous
The Inevitable Death of American Pro Soccer
I have always felt that soccer was a great sport for young girls to play to show them early on in life there is a possibility they can get along for short periods of time before they start their backstabbing and cat claw ways they will inevitably pick up as teenagers. Other than that, I really could live without hearing anything about the "sport" ever again.
You may be wondering why in the hell I would be talking about soccer just days before Super Bowl Sunday, the greatest single day in all of sports. It is so I can re-enforce the domination of all American sports over soccer. This is all being played out right now in Italy as it looks like David Beckham the saviour of American soccer, brought here from Europe to show us all the "way" is furiously trying to jump ship from the LA Galaxy back to Europe. American soccer will always be seen as 3rd rate to all the skilled European players and will only be seen as a "money grab" for a very famous player in the declining years of his life. I don't see any other player having the commercial appeal that Beckham has here in the U.S., not that I have looked.
Pele was the best mainstream attempt with the NY Cosmos in the 70's and that has been thirty years ago. If the US wants soccer to compete could they at least try to win a World Cup game instead of losing in a preliminary round to some island country with a population of 17,550. So for all you people who tell me how great soccer is, and that it is the number on sport in the world and I need to get on board...I will be watching the Super Bowl on Sunday, with the rest of my countrymen!
Luv Always...Drew D