As Ferris Bueller might say: The world of sports moves pretty fast.
If you don't stop and look around at least once a week, you could miss it. Here we'll review what you might have missed in the past week all in one place. Why spend hours scrolling through Twitter to catch up on the news you want? We've already done that for you, so remember to check back every Monday to get your dose of weekly sports review.
The World Series was decided last Tuesday night and it was the Los Angeles Dodgers who claimed their seventh title, and first in 32 years. After making it to the WS in three of the past four years, LA finally gets a win. Dave Roberts became the first manager of Asian heritage to win a WS.
His dad died last year and was a huge Dodgers fan. With his dad’s hat and shirt in his hand, he watched them win… https://t.co/csUnXty8UB— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter)1604252500.0
Corey Seager won World Series MVP and did it all throughout the postseason including the matchup against the Rays. Seager had a .400 batting average in the WS and hit two home runs, five RBI, scored seven runs, had a stolen base, and played excellent defense.
Seager is only the eighth player in league history to win the MVP award in both their League Championship Series and the World Series.
In 1988, the Lakers and the Dodgers won their respective league titles, making Los Angeles the first city to win a… https://t.co/rrHlfgGcog— Front Office Sports (@Front Office Sports)1603857377.0
In Game 6, Rays manager Kevin Cash made a questionable decision to pull starter Blake Snell in the 6th inning after allowing a single to Austin Barnes with the top of the order coming up. Snell was only at 73 pitches and had gone 5 ⅓ allowing 2 hits, no walks, no runs, and had struck out nine. Six of those strikeouts were against Mookie Betts, Corey Seager, and Justin Turner, who had struck out in every at bat against Snell in Game 6. What ensued was a Betts double, a run scored on a wild pitch, and an RBI infield single to give the Dodgers the lead they would never relinquish.
Cody Bellinger has a chuckle over Kevin Cash lifting Blake Snell in the sixth. https://t.co/JeCgsrg3Wd— Kenny Ducey (@Kenny Ducey)1603858440.0
Randy Arozarena finished with 10 home runs, 29 hits, and 64 total bases during the 2020 postseason. All are MLB records for a single postseason. His 14 extra base hits tied him with David Freese for most ever in a single postseason. Arozarena leads a young core for Tampa Bay who should have a window of opportunity to make it back to the World Series over the next few seasons. Most of their players are either under contract or arbitration eligible through 2023.
RANDY. AROZARENA. AGAIN. Starts off Game 6 with his 10th home run of the postseason 🤯 (via @MLB) https://t.co/C1CwSRLJWF— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter)1603844026.0
Clayton Kershaw had two wins for the Dodgers in the WS. Throughout the playoffs he went 4-1 with a 2.93 ERA .91 WHIP, and struck out 37 over 30 ⅔ IP. This championship cements his legacy as one of the best pitchers of his generation adding the one thing that's eluded him during his illustrious career.
The October stage has been so cruel to Clayton Kershaw. But now … a curtain call. Take a bow, @ClaytonKersh22. 💍 https://t.co/YYoeKE0QwS— The Athletic MLB (@The Athletic MLB)1603856648.0
Week 8 in the NFL saw its fair share of upsets. Most notably Joe Burrow led the Cincinnati Bengals to a win against the Tennessee Titans 31-20. Burrow had 249 passing yards and two touchdown throws. Giovani Bernard had two scores on the day. For the Titans Derrick Henry had 112 yards and a touchdown as Tennessee loses their second game in as many weeks.
Joe Burrow escapes inside pressure & tosses one up for Tee Higgins, goodness what a haul - https://t.co/hkV4gWh2mF— Michael Kist (@Michael Kist)1604326405.0
Tua Tagovailoa earned his first NFL win in his first NFL start against the Los Angeles Rams. The Dolphins defense and special teams helped get the W for Miami as Andrew Van Ginkel scored a touchdown off of a fumble recovery and Jakeem Grant scored on a punt return.
The Vikings upset the Packers 28-22 in a division matchup behind the performance of Dalvin Cook. Cook had 163 yards and three rushing touchdowns, and added 63 yards receiving with another touchdown through the air. Aaron Rodgers finished with 291 yards and three touchdown passes, all of them to Davante Adams. The Packers drop to 5-2 and hold a slim advantage over the Bears for the NFC North.
The Raiders embarrassed the Browns 16-6 in a snoozer. Coming off a five touchdown performance in Week 7, Baker Mayfield was unable to find anything downfield, and the explosive offense we've come to expect from Cleveland was nowhere to be found on Sunday. With the Bengals looking to be trending up, the Browns will need to get back on track quickly if they want to avoid a collapse that could find them at the bottom of the division by year's end.
UEFA Champions League Group Stage Matchday 2 (10/27 and 10/28)
The UEFA Champions League held its second matchday in the group stage on Tuesday and Wednesday. Bayern Munich defeated Lokomotiv Moscow 2-1 and lead Group A with six points. Manchester City dominated Marseille behind goals from Ferran Torres, İlkay Gündoğan, and Raheem Sterling. Man City leads Group C with six points.
Caption this! #UCL https://t.co/kjgbcgDwRS— UEFA Champions League (@UEFA Champions League)1604325293.0
A much anticipated fixture between Juventus and Barcelona didn't yield as exciting of a result as hoped. Barcelona saw Ousmane Dembélé score in the 14th minute and Lionel Messi added a goal off a penalty kick in extra time to seal the win. Juventus was unable to score and Barcelona now has a three point advantage in Group G over Juventus.
Messi said goodbye to Bonucci 👋 https://t.co/vMMDI8dqZw— Goal (@Goal)1604323740.0
Other notable wins from Matchday 2 included Manchester United with a resounding 5-0 win over RB Leipzig, Dortmund defeated Zenit 2-0, Chelsea beat Krasnodar 4-0, and Liverpool over Midtjylland 2-0. Matchday 3 continues this week beginning Tuesday 11/3 and continues into Wednesday 11/4.
Deontay Wilder has accused Tyson Fury of loading his gloves with "Something the size and shape of an egg weight".
Deontay Wilder releases a video accusing Tyson Fury of cheating. (via @BronzeBomber) https://t.co/NFJULVNtHJ— DAZN Boxing (@DAZN Boxing)1604172742.0
Furthermore Wilder is accusing his former coach Mark Breland and the training staff of putting a "muscle relaxer" in his water from that fight. Wilder's actions and statements of late have been erratic and not helping his cause in getting the rematch he wants with Tyson Fury.
Gervonta Davis (24-0, 23 KOs) and Leo Santa Cruz (37-2-1, 19 KOs) fought in a highly anticipated matchup between the young prodigy and the veteran champion. "Tank" Davis delivered a Knockout of the Year contender Saturday night on his way to winning the WBA World Super Featherweight and the WBA World Lightweight championships.
Gervonta Davis (-600 ML) puts Leo Santa Cruz to sleep in the sixth round #DavisSantaCruz https://t.co/LelZWUImpu— Barstool Sportsbook (@Barstool Sportsbook)1604202530.0
Davis fights for Mayweather Promotions and is the protégé of the former champ, Floyd Mayweather. With this win he has justified his rise to stardom and put two divisions on notice. Whatever is next for Davis, it's sure to be in the main event.
Dana White believes there's a strong possibility that Khabib Nurmagomedov will return to attempt to finish his career with an even 30 wins. Currently, Khabib is 29-0-0, and his early retirement was focused around the loss of his father and coach and not a decline in ability. White feels strong enough about the potential for one more fight that Nurmagomedov will remain lightweight champion rather than vacating it in lieu of his retirement announcement.
Dana White also told me Khabib Nurmagomedov is still the lightweight champion. He's not SURE Nurmagomedov will retu… https://t.co/o8u0z8AUVW— Brett Okamoto (@Brett Okamoto)1604198299.0
White also announced that Israel Adesanya will be moving up to compete for the light heavyweight championship against Jan Blachowicz. A win for Adesanya would make him a two-division champion.
I have heard that Israel Adesanya wants to face me next. No problem, If you are ready to fight in March, let's do t… https://t.co/8VxSRtu35v— Jan Blachowicz (@Jan Blachowicz)1603991515.0
Anderson Silva took a loss in what was billed to be his final fight inside a UFC octagon. Uriah Hall won by TKO in the fourth-round, but Dana White spoke about how disappointing the performance was for both fighters. Noting that Hall only threw 11 punches in the second round and seemed to be allowing Silva to stay in the fight. White flat out stated he doesn't believe that Silva should fight again. Even though Silva was hesitant to confirm his retirement in his post fight interview, it appears unlikely he would be offered the opportunity by the UFC.
It's another eventful week in the NFL.
Four teams -- the Jets, Falcons, Saints, and 49ers -- are the first teams to get a bye week. After Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers narrowly escaped Thursday Night Football with a 28-22 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles, the reigning Super Bowl champs are the first team with five wins in the league. Who will join them on Sunday? We know that we'll get at least a second five-win team since the 4-1 Ravens are hosting the 4-1 Chargers. That is going to be an epic battle, so let's start with that clash of AFC contenders. Welcome to our Week 6 NFL Best Bets.
Playing on the road is a difficult task for any team, but if any team can escape with a victory, it's Justin Herbert and the Chargers. This isn't the Chargers of the last decade. This team is winning the close battles. Herbert is playing at an MVP level this season and already has led this team to big-time wins over the Kansas City Chiefs and Cleveland Browns -- two of the top teams in the AFC. This L.A. team is deep at the skill positions, can rush the passer, has an improved offensive line and a great young coach. What's not to like?
All that said, Lamar Jackson seems to be playing as he did during his 2019 MVP campaign. Not to mention, Marquise "Hollywood" Brown is actually catching passes. He eclipsed 100 yards last week and scored two touchdowns (including the game-winning catch in overtime). Simply put, this is a tough team to bet against. It did take last-second heroics for the Ravens to beat the winless Lions and a pretty pedestrian Colts team. Overall, Baltimore hasn't faced a test like this yet this season. Take the points and the better overall squad. Chargers may win this game, but if they don't, they are not going to lose by more than a field goal.
PICK: Chargers +3.5
It's been a tough start to the season for the Chiefs. They had great odds to return to the Super Bowl and are now last in the AFC West heading into Week 16 with a 2-3 record. They desperately need this game. This is a great opportunity for the Chiefs to prove they are still elite by defeating a team that made the postseason last year on the road. The Chiefs are going to turn it around against a Washington defense that is allowing the sixth-most passing yards and second-most passing touchdowns this season. Patrick Mahomes is going to blow up. Tyreek Hill is going to dominate. Travis Kelce is going to continue to provide a steady source of receptions down the middle of the field. As long as the Chiefs' offensive line holds against Chase Young, it's going to be a long day for Washington's defense. Betting on Mahomes to right the ship isn't a really difficult choice.
PICK: Chiefs -6.5
Yes, the Texans are one of the worst teams in the league. Betting on them on the road against a divisional rival might seem crazy at first. However, the Texans are 7-3 against the spread as underdogs in their last 10 games. Plus, the Colts are emotional after completely giving away the game against the Ravens in which they blew a 22-3 lead late in the game. This is going to cause a bit of a hangover in that locker room. When New England suffered a terrible loss against Tom Brady and the Bucs, the Texans managed to cover the spread the following week. Look for history to repeat itself. Texans coach David Culley has Houston playing hard in spite of its lack of talent and quarterback Davis Mills appeared to take a step forward last week against the Pats. Houston has played pretty good pass defense, too. The Texans have allowed only seven passing TDs this season.
PICK: Texans +9
Sunday night will be an interesting matchup to watch as Geno Smith will make his first start in four years as the Seahawks travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers. I hate betting on Ben Roethlisberger, but it's hard to envision the Seahawks covering the spread without the services of Russell Wilson. And as much as I think Big Ben should hang up his cleats, you have to give him credit for the way he dominated a solid Broncos defense last week. Roethlisberger looked better than he did earlier in the season and was able to get the ball to his playmakers -- Diontae Johnson, Chase Claypool, and running back Najee Harris. Seattle's defense is one of the worst in the league and their secondary is even worse than their front seven. Look for the Steelers to light up Seattle in the passing game.
PICK: Steelers -5
Both of these offenses can put up a lot of points, though they go about it very differently. The Browns are a run-heavy team, and even though they will be without the services of Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt is more than capable of getting the job done. Meanwhile, Arizona's offense runs through electric quarterback Kyler Murray. Murray is able to move the chains with his legs but he isn't afraid to toss the ball either. He loves getting his guys involved and his weapons are elite in DeAndre Hopkins, Rondale Moore, and Christian Kirk.
The Browns are coming off an 89-point slugest with the Chargers and hit the OVER in their other game against a high-end offense in a 33-29 loss to the Chiefs. Meanwhile, the Cardinals have scored 30-plus points in four of five games this year. Smash the OVER.
PICK: OVER 49.5
Week 2 of the NFL was full of breakout performances, thrilling finishes and potentially the start of the Justin Fields era in the NFC North as the Bears' win over the Bengals finds them in first place in the division.
We cap off the week with a Monday Night Football showdown between the Packers and the Lions with the winner finding themselves tied for first in the North. The Packers put up an absolute dud of a performance last week against the Saints in Week 1 while the Lions looked surprisingly effective while playing catch-up against the West-leading 49ers. The expectations for these two teams couldn't have been further apart coming into the season but with matching 0-1 starts on the books, I think there are a couple of interesting props and roster construction angles to exploit.
NFL DFS Showdown Picks
*Prices are from DraftKings
Captain: TE T.J. Hockenson, Detroit Lions ($9,600) ($14,400)
I'm normally not a fan of playing a tight end in the captain spot, but T.J. Hockenson is not your average tight end. He finished 2020 with an elite 18% target share in the Lions' offense and picked up right where he left off in Week 1, finishing with an 18.2% share on 50 routes run last week. Hockenson has always carried premium TD upside as a red-zone target but what was most encouraging about last week was that he ran nearly 55% of his routes out of the slot, leaving him a matchup against Chandon Sullivan, who's allowing a 67% catch rate in his coverage. In a game where the Lions are projected to be down early, expect Hockenson to get fed once again. His red-zone utilization gives him enough juice to take the captain's chair in my builds.
Core Consideration: QB Jared Goff, Detroit Lions ($10,000)
Two principles I take into Showdown slates apply to this play. Generally speaking, if I have a pass-catcher as my captain, I'm finding a way to get their QB into a flex spot. The second is that your build needs to tell a story. Mine is that the Packers come out with something to prove after getting embarrassed in Week 1 and that we'll likely see upwards of 50 pass attempts from Jared Goff as he attempts to mount a comeback. Goff is a surprisingly effective passer when getting good protection and this unit gave him a clean pocket on 86.7% of snaps last week. Expect that to continue tonight as Goff will continue to feast in garbage time.
Contrarian Play: WR Randall Cobb, Green Bay Packers ($2,000)
I still chuckle at the thought of the return of Randall Cobb being on the short-list of demands from Aaron Rodgers in the midst of his holdout. I do, however, think there is something to be said about the importance of chemistry between a quarterback and his receiver and I expect that in a typical game (which Week 1 was not), Aaron Rodgers is going to find his spots to get Cobb involved. In a game script that figures to have the Packers up by a healthy margin, not many are going to look at the tertiary passing options for Green Bay and I think a $2,000 Randall Cobb could sneak in a handful of receptions at single-digit ownership..
Salary Relief: WR Amon-Ra St. Brown, Detroit Lions ($2,400)
This one fits perfectly into my narrative for the game as well. In a game where the Lions are likely to flirt with 50+ pass attempts and coming off a week where St. Brown ran routes on 75% of the team's passing plays, I will be overweight on Amon-Ra tonight. Lining up in the slot on 74.5% of plays means St. Brown will primarily see coverage from Chandon Sullivan, the most favorable of the options GB lines up in their defensive secondary. Expect St. Brown to see his target volume increase tonight. If Detroit can be more effective in getting to the red zone, he carries decent scoring upside with the way he's utilized in this offense. Plus, who doesn't love the extra motivation of playing against their big bro?
Monday Night Football Best Bets
Taking a look at the wagering side of this game; before we determine anything else we must ask ourselves what we think of these Green Bay Packers. I tend to look at last week's performance as the exception and not the rule. With that being the case, I am laying the 11.5 points and taking GB tonight. Over the past six seasons, oddsmakers have been fairly sharp when it comes to these larger spreads and NFL teams cover double-digit spreads more than 55% of the time. The total for tonight is sitting at 48.5 and given the somewhat surprising ability of the Lions to make up ground last week, I am confidently on the "over" side of that line.
Picks: Packers -11.5, OVER 48.5 points
Taking a look at the prop market, I am again mainly investing in the "GB Blowout" narrative:
D'Andre Swift: OVER 28.5 Receiving Yard
Coming off a 65-yard performance in a very similar game script, this one feels like a no-brainer. Swift averages nearly 8 yards per reception so this really boils down to whether you think he catches more than 3 passes. I certainly do and I'm confidently on the OVER for this prop. FanDuel is currently carrying the best odds at -110.
T.J. Hockenson: Anytime TD
I'm not the biggest fan of these "to score" props, but I'll break from the norm with this one. I am projecting the Lions to at least have a go at it in this game and there simply isn't a scenario where that doesn't involve a score for Hockenson. +220 odds at FanDuel sort of feels like stealing given that I see this game going over the 48.5 total.
AJ Dillon | UNDER 8.5 Rushing Attempts
I know that the betting public is forecasting a fairly comfortable win for the Packers, but let's not get carried away. AJ Dillon would have to nearly double his career average for carries to get to this number. Plus, it's a bit unlikely that this game gets so far out of reach that Green Bay brings in their backups. Even last week when they did bring in the second-stringers, Dillon only saw 4 carries. I'm expecting Aaron Jones to have a monster day on the ground, as evidenced by my Saturday article.
Week 1 is in the books and it's time to move on to the best bets in Week 2.
If you listened to my article earlier this week, you would have started 1-0 for taking the Giants with the points against Washington in that thriller of a matchup Thursday night. Now, let's dive into Week 2's best NFL bets.
Tennessee Titans/Seattle Seahawks Over 54
The Seahawks' offense was high-flying in the first half last week. Because the Colts never really threatened the outcome of the game, the Seahawks were able to take the air out of the ball and finish the game with an easy win while only scoring seven in the second half. While both the Titans' defense and offense looked atrocious, expect Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry to have big bounce-back weeks and make this an epic high-scoring game. This has all the makings for a shootout in which both teams put up 30-plus points.
Cincinnati Bengals +2.5 @ Chicago Bears
Until that Monday night game, the Bengals had the honor of winning the craziest Week 1 game over the Vikings in overtime. The Bears' defense, which is supposed to be their strength, looked awful against the Rams, including one of the most blown coverages you'll ever see on Cooper Kupp's long touchdown. It was simply an awful week for the Bears. I don't think it gets any better until they remove Dalton and promote Justin Fields. If they don't do that prior to game time, the Bengals will run away with this one.
Los Angeles Rams -3.5 @ Indianapolis Colts
Coming out of Week 1 the Rams looked great on both sides of the ball. Matthew Stafford had a great first game, going 20 for 26 with three touchdowns. The Colts... They didn't look that great on either side of the ball. While Carson Wentz's overall numbers didn't look bad, most of the yardage and one of his two TDs came in the fourth quarter as they were chasing from two or more scores back, never actually threatening to win the game. I'm leaning towards the Rams winning this in a blowout and would consider alternate spreads.
Arizona Cardinals -3.5 vs. Minnesota Vikings
Kyler Murray appears to be a man on a mission to avenge last season's bitter ending after absolutely torching the Tennesee Titans in Nashville. The Vikings' defense, who hasn't been as formidable as years past, is going to have their hands full with Kyler. Last week they allowed Joe Burrow to complete nearly 80% of his passes, and Burrow isn't a threat to run nor has a receiver as talented as DeAndre Hopkins. If the Vikings offense doesn't step up and make this a shootout, things could get ugly in Phoenix.
Dallas Cowboys + 3.5 @ Los Angeles Chargers
Dak Prescott looked great in Week 1 and if there were any issues with his shoulder after throwing 58 times, he had 10 days to get healed up again and ready for the Chargers. I can almost guarantee, whenever the Cowboys go to play either Los Angeles team in their stadium, that there will be more Cowboys fans than LA fans. So while they aren't playing in Jerry World, they'll have more fan support. My concern for Justin Herbert and the Chargers is their efficiency in the red zone. His most potent weapons in Keenan Allen and Austin Ekeler become less effective as they get closer to the goal line. That leaves Jared Cook and Mike Williams as your bigger bodies in the red zone, which isn't ideal. The Cowboys have a decent chance to win this one outright, but you can take the points for some cushion.
- Cowboys ML (+160)
- Titans +6.5 (-105)
- Steelers ML (-225)
- Rams -3.5 (-110)
Five Props To Consider
- Calvin Ridley OVER 6.5 receptions (+115)
- Tyrod Taylor OVER 34.5 Pass Attempts (-105)
- Aaron Jones OVER 88.5 combined yards (-115)
- Nick Chubb OVER 17.5 carries (-120)
- James Robinson OVER 9.5 carries (-125)
All five of these props have an excellent chance at hitting. I like the idea of wagering a three-leg prop parlay with the last three props listed (Jones, Chubb and J-Rob). Thanks me on Monday.