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Preseason Trends and Tips
Preseason Trends and Tips
by Tony Stoffo
Let me start off by saying that I feel the NFL preseason is a great opportunity to start and build a nice bankroll for the upcoming regular season. Many handicappers have the opinion that the preseason games should be left alone and not bet on. I feel just the opposite. If you do your home work the preseason games offer the betting public a tremendous chance to make a ton of money.
In the preseason many head coaches have a track record of wanting to win and some just don’t care and are just preparing for the regular season. You can find many games this preseason where you can get a definite edge. Below I have put together a list of all 32 teams with a breakdown of things to look for this preseason that will give you that winning advantage.
Arizona – With Dennis Green taking over as head coach last year the Cardinals played .500 ball both in sides and totals going 2-2 against the spread. The ‘over’ and ‘under’ split at 2-2. I’ll pass on Arizona this preseason with no apparent edge at the present time.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Josh McCown, Kurt Warner, John Navarre, Chris Lewis
Atlanta – Same exact situation here with Jim Mora taking over as head coach in 2004. The Falcons went 2-2 ATS, with the ‘over/under’ going 2-2, but in their dress rehearsal for the season in Week No. 3 of the preseason, the Falcons blew away the Bengals 37-10. That’s something to keep a look at for when Atlanta plays Jacksonville on August 25th.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Michael Vick, Matt Schaub, Ty Detmer, Bryan Randall
Baltimore – After going 1-3 ATS in 2003 the Ravens turned things around last year and went 3-1. Trend to watch for this preseason is that Baltimore has seen the ‘under’ cash three straight when they play their regulars in Week 3 of the preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Kyle Boller, Anthony Wright, Derek Anderson
Buffalo – New Head coach Mike Mularkey showed no trends that can give us an edge splitting his four preseason games, with the totals going 2-2.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: J.P. Losman, Kelly Holcomb, Shane Matthews
Carolina - The Panthers are a perfect 8-0 ATS in the preseason the last two years, which includes a 6-0 mark as an underdog.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Jake Delhomme, Chris Weinke, Stefan LeFors
Chicago – In Lovie Smith’s first year as head coach the Bears played very conservatively producing four straight ‘under’ tickets in the preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Rex Grossman, Chad Hutchinson, Craig Krenzel, Kyle Orton
Cincinnati – Since Marvin Lewis took over as the Bengals head coach back in 2003. Cincinnati is only 3-5 ATS losing their first and third games of the preseason in both years.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Carson Palmer, Jon Kitna, Casey Bramlet, Josh Haldi
Cleveland – With this being Romeo Corennel’s first year as head coach we don’t have any information to go on. As the New England defensive coordinator last year every preseason game the Patriots played went ‘under’ the total. Also the Browns saw the ‘under’ go 4-0 last preaseason. Another trend to keep an eye on come August.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Trent Dilfer, Josh Howard, Charlie Frye
Dallas – Bill Parcells has shown in the past that he likes to win preseason games. Since he has taken over as head coach for Dallas in 2003 the Cowboys are 5-3 ATS. But the Cowboys have not started fast losing their first game of the preseason the last two years.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Drew Bledsoe, Drew Henson, Tony Romo
Denver – Even though the Broncos had a losing record last year going 2-3 ATS. Head coach Mike Shanahan loves to win preseason games. In 2002 and ‘03 the Broncos produced a 6-2 mark ATS, with seven of the eight going ‘under’ the total.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Jake Plummer, Danny Kanell, Bradlee Van Pelt, Matt Mauck
Detroit – Since Steve Mariucci took over as the Lions head coach back in 2003. The Lions have produced a losing mark against the spread going 3-5. But it should be mentioned that Detroit has won and covered their first preseason game the last two years under Mariucci.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Joey Harrington, Jeff Garcia, Dan Orlovsky
Green Bay – We all know the Packers are one of the worst defensive teams in the entire league. However, the Packers have seen the ‘under’ go 6-0 in the last six preseason games. A very strong trend to watch for this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Brett Favre, J.T. Sullivan, Aaron Rogers
Houston – Don Caper the Texans head coach definitely does not care about winning preseason games. Since Houston entered the league back in 2002 they are a dismal 3-10 ATS. It is also worth mentioning that Capers also had a losing preseason record when he coached the Panthers. Houston has also not faired well in their dress rehearsal game going 0-3.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: David Carr, Tony Banks, Dave Ragone
Indianapolis – The Colts have been a money maker the last two years, going 6-2 against the spread. Also something to watch is that the Colts are a perfect 3-0 in week number 3 when they play the majority of their regulars.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Peyton Manning, Cory Sauter, Jim Sorgi
Jacksonville - Since Jack Del Rio has taken over as the Jaguars head coach back in 2003. Defense is what has been stressed in the preseason. The ‘under’ is 7-1 in Jacksonville’s last eight preseason games.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Byron Leftwich, Quinn Gray, David Garrard
Kansas City - The Chiefs have not faired well the last two preseason’s, going 3-5 ATS. It is also worth noting that the Chiefs have lost their first and third games of the preseason the last two years.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Trent Green, Todd Collins, Casey Clausen, James Killian
Miami – With new head coach Nick Saban taking over in Miami this season. Look for the Dolphins to be a much improved team this preseason especially at home.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: A.J. Feeley, Gus Frerotte, Sage Rosenfels
Minnesota – The Vikings have been a very erratic team in the preseason under head coach Mike Tice. In 2003 they went 3-1 and last year 1-3. Plus with the loss of offensive coordinator Lineham the Vikings are definitely a team to stay away from this preseason.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Daunte Culpepper, Brad Johnson, Shaun Hill, Jason Fife
New England – Just like in the regular season, head coach Bill Belichick stresses defense in the preseason. In the last three years, the ‘under’ is an impressive 10-2 in the Patriots last 12 preseason games.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Tom Brady, Doug Flutie, Rohan Davey
New Orleans – The Saints are another team to stay away from in the preseason going 6-6 the last three years. No positive trends at the present time.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Aaron Brooks, Todd Bouman, Chris Finlin
New York Giants – New head coach Tom Coughlin did not get off to a fast start in his first year with the Giants producing a 1-3 ATS record. But it should be noted that three of the four Giants games easily went over the total.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Eli Manning, Jesse Palmer, Tim Hasselbeck
New York Jets – The Jets are another team that shows no positive trends over the last two seasons going 4-5 against the spread. Head coach Herm Edwards started out strong in the preseason when he took over the Jets four years ago. But his recent results have been just average.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Chad Pennington, Jay Fiedler, Brooks Bollinger
Oakland – Head coach Norv Turner just produced a .500 record when he was head coach of the Redskins fro 1994 to 2000. This trend continued last year in his first year as head coach of the Raiders producing a 2-2 record against the spread. It should be noted that three of the four Oakland games last year went ‘over’ the total.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Kerry Collins, Marques Tuiasosopo, Andrew Walter
Philadelphia – The Eagles have been just a .500 team over the past three training camps. But it should be noted that in Week 3 when most of the regulars play the Eagles are 0-3 against the spread.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Donovan McNabb, Koy Detmer, Mike McMahon
Pittsburgh – The Steelers are only 2-6 ATS in the last two years during the preseason. But where money can be made this preseason is in the totals. The ‘over’ is 6-2 in the last eight Pittsburgh preseason games and a perfect 4-0 in their first two preseason games the last two years.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Ben Roethlisberger, Tommy Maddox, Charlie Batch, Brian St. Pierre
St Louis – The last two years head coach Mike Martz has taken a more conservative approach to these preseason games, with four of the last five games going ‘under’ the total. The odds makers and public will always see the Rams as a wide open offensive team. The totals posted are always a few points too high. With Martz slowing things down in the preseason all the value will be with the ‘under’ this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Marc Bulger, Jamie Martin, Jeff Smoker
San Diego – Strong trend developed last year with all four Chargers’ preseason games going ‘over’ the total. Look for this trend to continue with Brees and Rivers fighting it out to see who will be the starting quarterback this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Drew Brees, Phillip Rivers, Cleo Lemon
San Francisco – The 49’ers were dreadful last year going 0-4 ATS in the preseason. With what he has to work with can’t see new head coach Mike Nolan doing any better. San Francisco is a definite play against until further notice.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Tim Rattay, Alex Smith, Ken Dorsey
Seattle – The Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren doesn’t put much emphasize in preseason games going 4-8 ATS the last three years. One game that Holmgren really doesn’t care about is the last preseason game of the year where the Seahawks are 0-3 against the spread.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Matt Hasselbeck, David Greene, Seneca Wallace
Tampa Bay – In his third year as head coach John Gruden showed some strong trends in the preseason going 3-1 ATS and the ‘under’ was a perfect 4-0. Look for both of these trends to continue this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Brian Griese, Luke McCown, Chris Simms, Akili Smith
Tennessee – Two very strong trends have developed for the Titans over the past two preseasons. Tennessee has gone 7-0-1 ATS and seven of their eight games have gone ‘under’ the total. Watch for these strong trends especially when playing a team that compliments these situations.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Steve McNair, Billy Volek, Jason White, Gino Guidugli
Washington – Joe Gibbs and the Redskins went 3-2 against the spread in Gibbs first preseason in over a decade. Gibbs always took these preseason games seriously and had a winning record in his previous 12-year stint with the Redskins. With a year under his belt look for the Redskins to have another winning preseason this year.
Probable preseason quarterback rotations: Patrick Ramsey, Jason Campbell, Mark Brunell