Thursday’s Den: Football trends, and other stuff……..

— NFL divisional trends………
NFC East
Divisional home favorites 4-2 ATS
Non-divisional road underdogs 7-9 ATS
Non-divisional road favorites 5-4 ATS

NFC North
Divisional home teams 1-8 ATS (0-4 F, 1-3 U)
Non-divisional home favorites 7-4 ATS
Non-divisional home underdogs 5-2 ATS

NFC South
Underdogs 6-3 ATS in divisional games.
Non-divisional home favorites 3-6 ATS
Non-divisional home underdogs 3-6 ATS

NFC West
Divisional home underdogs 0-3-1 ATS
Non-divisional home underdogs 5-2 ATS
Non-divisional road teams 12-8-1 ATS

AFC East
Divisional favorites 7-2 ATS, 4-0 at home
Non-divisional home favorites 6-8 ATS
Non-divisional underdogs 7-13-1 ATS

AFC North
Divisional favorites 3-7 ATS, 1-4 on road
Non-divisional home favorites 13-6 ATS
Non-divisional road underdogs 5-3-1 ATS

AFC South
Divisional road teams 6-3 ATS
Non-divisional favorites 8-6 ATS
Non-divisional road underdogs 6-7 ATS

AFC West
Divisional home favorites 4-3 ATS
Non-divisional home favorites 6-8 ATS
Non-divisional road teams 8-12 ATS

— starting QB decisions for this week:
Washington will start Jacoby Brissett (18-30 as a starter) vs San Francisco

Giants will start Tyrod Taylor (27-28-1 as a starter) against the Rams

Broncos will start Jarrett Stidham (0-2 as a starter) against the Chargers.

— So Denver is benching Russell Wilson for the last two games; are they trying to get out of his contract?

Wilson is 35; he is currently signed through 2028, but he’s only guaranteed money through 2024. His entire 2025 salary ($37M) is guaranteed if he is still on the Broncos’ roster at the start of the next league year (March 17, 2024).

Put it this way; Denver’s options (trades) remain open, as long as Wilson stays healthy, which is probably why they’re sitting him out the last two games, since their playoff chances for this year are almost nil.

— Movie of the Day- One More Time (2015)- An aging New York City crooner plots his comeback. Christopher Walken plays the singer, Amber Heard is one of his daughters, Oliver Platt is his manager.

— current head coaches/managers who played in the big leagues:

19 of 30 major league managers played in the majors.
8 of 32 NFL head coaches played in the NFL
12 of 30 NBA head coaches played in the NBA.

— USC 42, Louisville 28
3rd-string QB Moss threw for 372 yards, 6 TD’s in his first college start.
First two drives, Trojans punted/missed FG.
On their next seven drives, they scored six touchdowns.
For the game, USC averaged 8.6 yards per play.

— Virginia Tech 41, Tulane 20
Hokies led 17-10 at halftime.
Tulane’s only first half touchdown was scored by their defense.
Tech was 7-14 on third down, Tulane 2-10 on a rainy day.
Hokies ran ball 50 times for 362 yards, 7.2 yards/carry.

— West Virginia 30, North Carolina 10
West Virginia threw a 75-yard TD pass on first play of the game.
West Virginia ran for 164 yards, were +2 in turnovers.
WVU outscored the Tar Heels 13-0 in second half.
Mountaineers won five of last six games, after a 4-3 start.

— Oklahoma State 31, Texas A&M 23
Cowboys led 24-6 at halftime, gaining 345 yards.
QB Bowman threw for 402 yards, two TD’s.
Oklahoma State was 5-2 ATS as an underdog this year.
Texas A&M finishes season 7-6.

— When Kansas beat UNLV 49-36 Tuesday night, they did something I’m not sure I’ve seen before; Jayhawks scored 49 points alright, averaging 16 yards/pass attempt, but they also had 18 penalties for 216 yards. 

216 penalty yards in one game; not sure I’ve seen that before.

— Tennessee QB Joe Milton isn’t playing in the Vols’ bowl game: freshman Nico Iamaleava will get his first college start, against the staunch Iowa defense.

— NBA’s Atlanta Hawks are 7-30 against the spread this year, the worst ATS start by any NBA team in the last thirty years. 

— Denver Nuggets F Aaron Gordon needed 21 stitches after his face and right (shooting) hand were cut while being bitten by a family dog on Christmas. Gordon is averaging 13.6 points and 6.9 rebounds this season.

— Hitting in the major leagues is harder than it used to be, in large part because hitters don’t see pitchers as many times as they used to. 

Victor Martinez played 16 years in the major leagues, hit .295 with an .815 OPS; the most times he faced one pitcher? He faced James Shields 62 times in his career. There are three pitchers that he faced 50+ times, not a lot.

Joe Torre played 18 years in the major leagues, hit .297 with an .817 OPS; he faced 15 different pitchers a minimum of 75 times each. You see the same pitcher over and over, hitting is easier.

— How college football conferences are doing in the bowls:
AAC- 2-2 in bowls; all four games were decided by 18+ points.
ACC- 3-3 SU in bowls; underdogs covered four of the six games.
Big 14- 2-0 SU/ATS in first two bowls, winning 14-7/30-24.
Big X- 4-1 SU/ATS in first five bowls, scoring 32.2 ppg.
C-USA- 2-1 SU/ATS in first three bowls, with both wins in OT.

MAC- 2-3 SU/3-2 ATS in first five bowls- they were underdog in all five.
Mountain West- 2-4 SU/ATS in first six bowls (over 4-2).
Pac-12- 2-2 SU/ATS in first four bowls (over 2-2).
SEC- Texas A&M’s 31-23 (-2.5) loss is only SEC bowl so far.

Sun Belt- They had 12 bowls, the most of any league:
Sun Belt teams went 1-7 SU/0-8 ATS in first eight bowls.
Sun Belt teams won/covered their last four bowls. 

Author: Armadillo Sports

I've been involved in sports my whole life, now just write about them. I like to travel, mostly to Las Vegas- they have gambling there.