The curse of the eighteenth letter in season 2018

Considering this is the eighteenth year of the century, it’s no wonder you’ve frequently heard Alice Cooper’s first big hit on local early music stations. Although “Eighteen” is a song about age, it has never been more appropriate this year than in the four and a half decades since it was released on the band’s Love It To Death album.

Year 18 will probably still be good for Alice Cooper and her first Top Twenty single, but that number so far hasn’t looked promising to some of those involved in baseball. In fact, the eighteenth letter of the alphabet has been a veritable curse on Major League Baseball teams whose names begin with R.

More than half of the basement dwellers after the first week and a half are R clubs, whose combined record has been 15-26. Those four teams, according to most predictions in sports publications, will likely finish at the bottom in ’18.

Of the quartet, the Rays have suffered the most. Tampa won its first game against Boston, but has lost every game since. That record currently has them looking to the rest of the American League East.

The Royals have faded only slightly better in the AL Central, where Kansas City has posted just two wins in seven games. Their NL counterparts, the Reds, are also holding up the rest of the Central with just a couple of wins.

Cincinnati provides even more evidence for the curse, a word that cannot be written without the R in the center. The player who almost single-handedly led the Reds to one of their two victories with a five-RBI game against Pittsburgh, third baseman Eugenio Saurez, broke his hand and will likely spend significant time on the disabled list.

Also cursed by the eighteenth letter (and the misfortune of having to open the season against the Astros World Series Champions) are the Rangers. Although Texas has twice as many wins as the Reds and Royals, they still rest in the basement of the AL West.

Defying R’s curse so far in 2018 is Boston, which has won nine in a row after losing its opener. Still, Fenway Park fans may want to refer to their club simply as the Sox, avoiding the colorful adjective that precedes it.


Ten things you never knew about the sport of rugby

While rugby has never had the same level of television exposure as soccer, it seems to have become much more popular in recent years. Many people’s memories of rugby are of shivering in the rain at school and praying the big guy doesn’t come anywhere, but it’s a great game to watch from the comfort of the living room! As rugby seems to be getting a better deal on television these days, for those who may be new to rugby, here are ten things you probably didn’t know about the sport.

1. What is an attempt called?

A try is called a try, because when the game was first played, no points were awarded for touching the ball at your opponent’s end of the field. However, what he did win was an attempt, or an attempt, to score.

2. The game is named after the British school in which it was invented

When soccer was played in English schools in the 19th century, there were no formalized rules for the game and each school produced its own rule book. A boy named William Webb Ellis, who attended rugby school, is believed to have invented the game of rugby when he decided to pick up the ball and run towards the goal during a soccer game. The Rugby Union World Cup is still called the Web Ellis Cup to this day.

3. Rugby balls were first made from pig bladders.

Rugby and soccer balls used to be made using a pig’s bladder for the interior. Unfortunately, the pigs’ bladders did not heal very well and they often rotted. The man’s wife, who made the rugby balls at the Rugby School in the 19th century, died from the effects of the fumes she inhaled from the balls.

4. The reigning Olympic champions are the USA.

By a whim of fate, the current reigning Olympic champions in the sport of rugby are the USA and they have held that title since 1924. The reason is that rugby was eliminated as an Olympic sport in that year.

5. There are two different types of rugby that are played.

To make it even more confusing for non-experts, there are two types of rugby that are played, rugby league and rugby union. The games are very similar but the rules are quite different, including a different scoring system.

6. The big scores

One of the differences between soccer and rugby that anyone new to the sport will notice is the great scores. The largest scoring difference ever recorded in an international match was in a match between Australia and Namibia, when Australia won the match 142 points to zero.

7. The Hundred Year World Cup Whistle

At the beginning of each rugby world cup, the tournament begins when the referee blows a hundred-year-old whistle. It is the same whistle that was used for a 1924 match between England and New Zealand at the Paris Olympics.

8. The rugby world cup has never been retained by a team.

The New Zealand team is the favorite to win the 2015 rugby world cup and if it succeeds, it will enter a rugby world cup first, because the title has never been retained by a team, since the tournament started. in 1987.

9. A rugby coach invented basketball.

James Naismith, a New England rugby coach, is credited with inventing basketball. It is said that he invented basketball so that his rugby team could train indoors when the weather was too bad for training outdoors.

10. The singing of the national anthem on sporting occasions began with rugby.

The traditional singing of national anthems before an international sporting event began in rugby. It began when Welsh rugby fans responded to the New Zealand team’s Maori war dance with their own national anthem in 1905. The singing of national anthems before a match was officially adopted.


Fifteen baseball stars continue to look to the Mendoza line in 2018

Few people would have predicted that the Philadelphia Phillies would be eight games over .500, and just half a game behind the Washington Nationals, heading into June. Those optimists were probably relying on the fact that the last place Phils made a couple of key acquisitions over the winter, and therefore surely would be better.

A warning that last season’s sensational rookie Rhys Hoskins would be hitting just .220 with a scant six home runs would likely have made even those devoted fans see Philadelphia eight games under .500 instead of over, and That prediction would be even worse if he had. He told them that free agent All-Star Carlos Santana would be hitting just above the .200 mark.

Believe it or not, Santana’s low batting average is nowhere near the worst we’ve seen in 2018, a season that looks like it could have record low batting averages. They are fifteen star players who have batting averages below .200, a brand that has become known as the Mendoza Line.

Nick Ahmed. 199

The Arizona Diamondbacks managed to hold onto first place in the National League West for much of the season, despite offense being below average from their regular shortstop.

Jackie Bradley Jr. 199

Boston announcers refer to the star outfielder as JBJ, whose Red Sox have the best record in all of baseball.

Carlos Gomez 194

Now with Tampa Bay, the former MVP runner-up has struggled so far in the outfield for Days.

Logan Morrison. 198

After setting a career-high for home runs in 2017, the left-handed slugger is off to a rocky start with his new team in Minnesota.

Jason Kipnis. 199

Their struggles somewhat symbolize those of the Cleveland Indians, who have managed to stay at .500 solely because of their outstanding pitching rotation.

Matt Joyce. 1999

Oakland has had its ups and downs for the first two months, while still waiting for Joyce’s bat to regain prominence.

Ian Desmond 190

The Colorado Rockies’ first baseman didn’t show a lot of power, but every other hit has been rare.

Adam Duvall 184

The odd four-player rotation in the Cincinnati outfield may have negatively affected the former All-Star, who has had to be absent every three games or so.

Dexter Fowler. 180

Now that catcher Yadier Molina is on the disabled list, the St. Louis Cardinals may need this star outfielder to return to the form he was when they signed him to a great free agent contract last year.

Kolten Wong. 180

Unlike his previously mentioned teammate, Wong’s struggles have lasted much longer than this season.

Chris Davis. 160

Baltimore’s first baseman has never hit a real high average, but now he’s too low and so is his power.

Lewis Brinson. 155

Miami is in for a rebuild, but they need this youngster to really step up to be even close to replacing Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yellich and Marvel Ozuna in the Marlins outfield.

Kole Calhoun. 145

While he often finds himself alongside MVP Mike Trout in the Los Angeles outfield, he is hardly in the same ballpark when it comes to batting averages.

Russell Martin. 174

His catching skills will keep him in the lineup, but the Blue Jays need Russell to raise his average by fifty points if Toronto is to compete in 2018.

Kendrys Morales 194

He’s been plagued with injuries, but if he can bounce back, he can offer much-needed protection to the rest of the guys in the Blue Jays’ lineup.


A closer look at Ghana boxing

With the attention of the boxing world focused on American, Mexican and British fighters, it is easy to dismiss the scenes of boxing in other nations. I’m going to take a look at boxers in different countries and take a look at their featured boxers.

This week I have chosen Ghana. Why? Because I saw the fight between Joseph Agbeko and Abner Mares and despite his defeat, the Ghanaian Agbeko was very impressive. Ghana is a rich source of tough and technically competent fighters, with several boxers competing at the highest level. Let’s take a look at some of its best:

Azumah Nelson – National Hero of Ghana

39 Wins

6 defeats

2 draws

28 KOs

Azumah “The Professor” Nelson struggled from 1979 to 2008 when he made an ill-advised comeback. In his career he won three WBC world title belts, two at super featherweight and one at featherweight. He beat some of the best fighters of the time and was known for having a punch that could knock out an elephant (although an experiment was never conducted to prove this).

Nelson retired in 1998 after a loss to former American world champion Jesse James Leija, the man who beat Mickey Ward, among others. In 1998, Nelson was 39 years old and on a two-game losing streak. He was slowing down and many felt it was a good time for him to quit. He heeded her advice and hung up his gloves, but no one could have seen what he would do ten years later.

In 2008, forty-nine years and ten years after his last match, Azumah Nelson announced to the world that he was ready to fight again. Many scoffed at the idea, after all, he was too old to gain anything of importance. But Nelson was undaunted and fought longtime rival Jeff Fenech in a 10-round majority decision loss. He didn’t win the fight, but he went the distance, and Nelson could retire having given a good account of himself. Today, he is one of Ghana’s most famous heroes.

Joseph Agbeko – The Best of Ghana Today

28 Wins

2 losses

0 draws

22 KOs

Thirty-one-year-old Joseph Agbeko (28-2 22KOs) is the best boxer fighting under Ghanaian nationality today. Nicknamed King Kong, he packs a punch for someone at bantamweight and is ranked No. 3 on The Ring’s bantamweight rankings. In Sogakope, Ghana, he was named Chief Warrior in honor of his exploits in boxing.

Agbeko has held the IBF bantamweight title twice in his career, only losing it on August 13 to Mexican bantamweight Abner Mares. It was a controversial decision, with Mares landing and getting away with several low blows, but the night Agbeko was eliminated.

Throughout his career, Agbeko has consistently shown up to fight the best. He has beaten Yonnhy Pérez in a rivalry that has also seen him lose a fight, and in 2009 he scored a victory over former undisputed WBA, WBC and IBF super flyweight world champion Vic Darchinyan.

What’s next for Joseph Agbeko?

Having lost his IBF belt to Abner Mares, Agbeko will have to overcome the injustice of the decision, recover and move on. He’s making sounds that he would like a rematch with Mares, and in turn, Mares has indicated that he would be willing. This is a rematch no one will miss, with Agbeko seeking revenge and Mares wanting to prove that he is the worthy winner.

Osumanu Adama – Current IBO International Middleweight Champion

19 Wins

2 losses

0 draws

14 KOs

Osumanu (19-2-0) is Agbeko’s main contender for the throne of Ghana’s best fighter. The thirty-year-old middleweight has a classic boxing style and has a good KO record, having recently defeated Marcus Upshaw by technical knockout.

Adama is still relatively young, so much more is expected to come from him, and he needs to fight better quality opposition to really progress up the ladder. However, in case the whole boxing thing doesn’t work out, he has a Diploma in Mechanical Engineering that he earned from Kotobabi Technical College.

Joshua Clottey – The Batter

35 Wins

4 Losses

0 draws

20 KOs

Former welterweight champion Joshua Clottey is perhaps most famous for his loss to Manny Pacquiao in 2010 in what was dubbed “The Event.” The fight was for the WBO World Welterweight Championship and Clottey was only used as a replacement when the Pacquiao Mayweather fight fell through. Clottey lost by decision after twelve rounds.

Clottey has fought with some big names and has some great victories under his belt, including a win over former undisputed welterweight champion Zab Judah in 2008. His style relies on speed and power to win his fights, twenty of them per knock out. He is also a tough man to take down himself, as he never lost by knockout.

What’s next for Clottey?

Well not much. His last fight was his loss to Pacquiao in 2010 and he still has no other scheduled. Assuming he fights in early 2012, that leaves a two-year gap between his last fight. He will definitely need a tune-up fight and assuming he wins, who knows. He is young enough to get in shape and compete for the belts again. Don’t trust that though, you got paid so much for the Pacquiao fight that you probably won’t need to fight anymore.

Raymond Narh – current USNBC WBC Light Welterweight Champion

25 Wins

2 losses

0 draws

21 KOs

Raymond “Sugar Ray” Narh (25-2 21KO’s) is a heavy hitter coming out of the Light Welterweight Division. He is a capable fighter and one of the top three boxers in Ghana. At thirty-three he has never won a world title and it is safe to say that that kind of success surpasses him now. The best you can hope for is to climb the leaderboard and challenge for some lesser belts.

A recent loss to Mike Alvarado pushed him back on this scoreboard, and on top of that, there are better fighters than him in his division. Fighters like Timothy Bradley and Amir Khan are completely beyond him, making a move to lightweight, his best hope of success.

Narh has a fight on August 27 for the WBC international light welterweight title against Thai Prawet Singwancha. Narh is looking forward to winning against Singwancha, 34, and hopes that will put him back on track to a world title. His hopes may be in vain, however, in May 2011 he said:

“I’m still the WBC USNBC Champion and bigger things are ahead, like the Zion train.”


4 of the greatest rivalries in NCAA Division I soccer history

What would college football be without rivalries? Rivalries can make regular season games look like playoff games. Fighting another school across the state line or within the state may be the biggest game of the season. The players get excited. The players get excited. The community is excited! Here are some of the most notable rivalries in NCAA soccer:

1. Florida Gators and Florida State Seminoles

These two teams have been fighting in their intrastate rivalry since 1958. Florida leads the series, 31-19-2. People sometimes refer to this competition as the “Sunshine Showdown” (referring to Florida’s nickname as the Sunshine State) or the “Governor’s Cup.” In addition to the excitement of the game, one or both school football teams have had high national rankings the week of their reunion, since 1990. In fact, since Bobby Bowden began coaching Florida State in 1976, the series has been practically stagnant. .

2. UCLA Bruins and USC Trojan

How intense is the intrastate rivalry between UCLA and USC? It even has a name. The Lexus Gauntlet refers to the competition between USC and UCLA, which involves head-to-head competition in 18 college sports. Both universities have participatory events during the week prior to the clash of the two soccer teams. USC refers to the week as “Conquest” or “Trojan Week.” On the other hand, UCLA calls that week “Beat SC Week” (the less combative official title is “Blue and Gold Week”).

By the way, what exactly are Bruins and Trojans? A Bruin is a huge and ferocious bear in Europe and Asia. Meanwhile, the Trojans were citizens of Troy, an ancient city in present-day Turkey.

3. Texas Longhorns and Texas A&M Aggies

This rivalry is as big as the state of Texas. The teams’ soccer teams fight each other annually the day after Thanksgiving. Teams do this to give the rivalry a national spotlight. Here are some interesting tidbits about the rivalry:

o Started in 1900, the team rivalry is the third longest in college football.

o Activities like “Hex Rally” from Texas and “Aggie Bonfire” from Texas A&M precede the game.

o The Aggies “honor” Texas in their fight song “Aggie War Hymn”, while the Longhorns wish their rivals a “goodbye” in their fight song “Texas Fight.”

4. Western Michigan Broncos and Central Michigan Chippewas

The Broncos were actually Hilltoppers. That was referring to his East Hall located atop Prospect Hill. However, in 1939 Western Michigan changed the name of its athletic teams to Broncos. At that time, other Hilltoppers existed, such as Western Kentucky Hilltoppers.

Meanwhile, the Chippewas or “Chips” represent Central Michigan University. The team represents the Native American Saginaw Chippewa tribe, who live in the region. Ironically, while the university maintains a constructive relationship with American Indians, in 2005 the NCAA included the name “Chippewas” on its list of “hostile” or “abusive” nicknames. However, Central Michigan successfully appealed the sentence.

Rivalries are essential to the excitement of NCAA football. Regardless of which team you cheer on, wear NCAA merchandise to show your support!


Simple Super Bowl Recipes

The NFL playoffs are in full swing and the Super Bowl is not too far off! The second most important place for the game at any Super Bowl party is, of course, the food. Whether you are organizing or attending, you will need to be prepared to prepare a plate for a crowd. I’d like to share with you some recipes that are sure to please any hungry soccer fan!

Guacamole made simple

This has to be the most important food at any Super Bowl party. It is so easy to do!


  • 3 ripe avocados, peeled, pitted and mashed
  • 1 tablespoon. lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped red or white onion
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 roma (plum) tomatoes, diced
  • 1 garlic clove minced or grated
  • 1 pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 habanero pepper (or jalapeño) seeded, minced


  1. In a medium bowl, combine the avocados, lemon juice, and salt.
  2. Add the onion, cilantro, tomatoes, and garlic.
  3. Add the cayenne pepper and potentially more salt if desired.
  4. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving for more flavor!

Buffalo Chicken Dip

The best dip for parties! It is huge and delicious!


  • 1 bottle buffalo sauce (I like to use Frank’s red hot buffalo sauce)
  • 3-4 cooked and shredded skinless chicken breasts
  • 16 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 cups jack cheese, grated
  • 1 cup blue cheese or ranch dressing


  1. Rub a saucepan with cooking spray or cooking oil.
  2. In a saucepan, melt the cream cheese over low heat and toss with the salad dressing.
  3. Keep away from heat.
  4. Layer chicken, drizzle 3/4 of the hot sauce over the chicken, then the cream cheese mixture over that.
  5. The next layer is the grated cheese, topped with the remaining hot sauce!
  6. Bake in 375 degree F oven for 25-30 minutes or until bubbly.
  7. Serve with celery sticks, tortilla chips, or you could even make some buffalo chicken tortilla rolls with some lettuce and tomato!

The easiest meatballs ever!

These meatballs are super simple and ready in 30 minutes! Great appetizer, pasta topper, or even sandwich!


  • 1 pound. ground beef or chicken
  • 1 tablespoon. Chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed or grated


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  3. Mix with your hands until well mixed.
  4. Divide the mixture in half. Then in the middle again.
  5. Form equal-sized meatballs and place on a greased baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway.

Get ready to party! The NHL playoffs are about to begin

The NHL Playoffs are about to begin, the second season is ready to begin.

The 2009-2010 NHL season started with 30 teams, we are up to the 16 finalists.

Eight will represent the Western Conference and eight will represent the Eastern Conference.

The Eastern Conference Representatives are as follows: Capitals, Devils, Sabers, Penguins, Canadians, Flying, Bruins, and Ottawa.

The Western Conference features Black Hawks, Sharks, Canucks, Predators, Redwings, Avalanche, Kings, and Coyotes.

The matches are as follows in the East: The big favorites, number one, Washington Capitals vs the eight Canadians from Montreal, the New Jersey Devils, number two, the New Jersey Devils, the Philadelphia Flyers, number seven, the Buffalo Sabers, number three, Buffalo Sabers, six, Boston. Bruins and number four Pittsburgh Penguins against Ottawa Senators number five.

Puck Video predictions in the first round. Washington Capitals in five games, Philadelphia Flyers in seven games, Buffalo Sabers in six games and the Pittsburgh Penguins in six games as well.

Heading west, the number one repeat San Jose Sharks will face the Colorado Avalanche, the number two Chicago Black Hawks and number seven Nashville Predators will tangle, the number three Vancouver Cancuks and the Los Angles Kings seeded sixth and No. The four seeds of the Phoenix Coyotes will face the defending champion of the Western Conference, number five, the Detroit Redwings.

Some good matchups in the West, but expect the San Jose Sharks to come their early exit from last season with a sweep over Avalanche, Black Hawks will outplay the Predators in five games, and now the good guys. The Kings and Cancuks will go to seven games with home-court advantage on the Cancuks road. The Redwings have been the league’s most popular team since winter break, expected to beat the optimistic Coyotes in six games.

So there you have it the 2009-2010 Stanley Cup playoff first round match with the predictions. We’ll see it in round two, but you’ll see us sooner as we’ll have all of the game’s highlights posted in a puck video.


Sailor Starlight

Starlight Sailor is a wonderful story for children that I found through Barefoot Books Publishing Company. The story is about a boy (and his dog) who goes on an adventurous journey through the water in his paper boat to a distant land.

Jackie Morris, the author lives by the sea in a little house and has illustrated The Barefoot Book of Classic Poems, one of my favorite collections. James Mayhew, the other author, works in a gardening studio and has illustrated The Barefoot Book of Opera Stories and can be found in the collection of my piano study library.

My three grandchildren love participating in pirate stories, fishing, sailing and everything related to the sea. So this story is a delight, especially when the island’s children pretend to be kings and knights and explore a cave.

I found this beautiful hardcover children’s book the perfect bedtime book. I would rate this book with ***** stars. The soft rhyme tells a charming and dreamy tale and begins with:

“Starlight, bright star,
First star I see tonight
I wish I could, I wish I could
Have the wish I wish tonight. “

The advantages of the book are that it is easy to read and if you love fantasy and ethereal illustrations, you will find a dreamy tale within these colorful pages. This beautiful children’s book is a real novelty for ages 2-6. You will find instructions for making your own paper boat at the end of the book.

The only drawback I can find with the book is that it is a large hardcover. It would be nice to have a different format available, like a paperback for children to read and take to bed.

Also, the action unfolds when the reader is introduced to a large red and gold dragon, but it’s a nice (not too scary) dragon that takes kids for a walk at night. For most children, it will be a sweet dragon.

The illustrations are magical, a timeless classic! You will see blue whales, blue birds, knights and kings throughout this journey of fantasy and simulation. Even the red and gold dragon is a kind and pleasant dragon, flying here and there, taking children everywhere!

The starfish and mermaids singing their lullaby are sure to put any little child to sleep quickly. So dream of the little magic games with flying fish dancing in the sky!


9 building blocks of a pre-employment background check

Today, many organizations are doing all kinds of pre-employment background checks. However, as this is a fairly new industry in most parts of the world, many still have no idea what a pre-employment background check is all about. In this article, I’ll discuss some of the common pre-employment assessment components along with a brief overview:

1. Criminal Background Check: Check if the job candidate has committed any crime in the past.

2. Civil Litigation Background Check: Check if the candidate for the position has been sued in any civil case.

3. Benchmark Check – Talk to previous supervisors to learn more about the job candidate’s job performance.

4. Employment Verification: Verify with the Human Resources department on the details of the previous employment history.

5. Education Verification: Verify whether the certificate, diploma, title and professional designation list on the resume is true or not.

6. Bankruptcy History Check: Check to see if he or she has filed for bankruptcy in the past.

7. Credit History Report – View the credit history report to assess the current financial status of the job candidate. You can see if you have a history of loan defaults.

8. Verification of management history: Verify if he or she is a director of a competing company.

9. Media Search: Check if the job candidate’s name appears in the media.

A different position or industry requires a different level of due diligence. Pick and choose the components that fit your pre-employment background check process.


NFL Week 5 Points Difference Handicapped Picks


2. TENNESSEE TITANS (-8) VS. Atlanta Falcons: The Falcons came on the board last week with a beautiful home win over Houston. Now they head to Tennessee to face the retiring Titans who impressively defeated the Saints in New Orleans at MNF. The Titans have now covered their last 8 games and they always put in a good effort that shouldn’t be any different against Atlanta. If the Titans hadn’t come off a break, they might have been susceptible to disappointment, but the bye only strengthens their chances against a still-weak Falcons squad. The Falcons are also in bed, as they rate in a disappointing 53-104-4 situation on the road here. The Titans defense is playing very well and they should suppress resurgent Joey Harrington, who did most of his damage in the past two weeks against poor secondaries. THE CHOICE: Tennessee Titans (-8)

3. WASHINGTON RED SKINS (-3.5) VS. Detroit Lions: The Lions are heading to Washington to take on a Redskins team that is still struggling to score points, but has been playing well defense outside of the second-half collapse against the Giants. Meanwhile, the Lions are coming off a tough home win against the Bears and will likely be susceptible to disappointment here against a non-division opponent. The Redskins have had bye-week advantage to jump-start their offense and this team has guns on Clinton Portis and RB’s Ladell Betts to go with wide receivers Santana Moss and Antwan Randle-El. The Lions are terrible on defense and that will help the ‘Skins even more in their effort to get going offensively. This one is still difficult to call, as these teams have close capacity, but they go with the home team who have had the extra week to prepare. THE CHOICE: Washington Redskins (-3.5)

4. Arizona Cardinals (-3.5) VS. S T. LOUIS RAMS ******* WE HAVE A STRONG OPINION ON THIS GAME.

5. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (-16.5) VS. Cleveland Browns: Another big difference for the unstoppable Patriots here and the only thing that could prevent them from covering is the fact that they are in a disappointing situation after a dominant MNF win over the Bengals. The Patriots are clearly the elite of the NFL right now and the talent disparity between these two teams is huge. The Patriots have already covered such a high margin this year when they beat the Bills in Week 2, so so far they have shown no mercy to anyone. The Browns also apply a 53-104-4 negative ATS road disappointment situation and at this point you really shouldn’t be betting against the Patriots under any circumstances. THE CHOICE: New England Patriots (-16.5)


7. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (-3.5) VS. Carolina Panthers: The Saints must hold out and do it fast because their season is out of control after they were embarrassed by the MNF at home against Tennessee. The Panthers are in a similar situation as they are coming off a terrible loss at home to the Bucs and will play again without QB Jake Delhomme. It would be hard to see the Saints lose back-to-back home games, but the extra half point is the problem with this one. The Panthers seem to play better on the road and are a well-trained group that should respond with their season on the brink. The Panthers are in a good spot here as well, qualifying in a 40-9-3 ATS recovery scenario. The Saints should win the game, but it will be for only 3, so score the points. THE CHOICE: Carolina Panthers (+3.5)



10. INDIANAPOLIS FOALS (-10) VS. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: The Colts remain at home after an impressive kill from the Denver Broncos on Sunday, while the Bucs maintained their status as the biggest upset of 2007 by beating the Carolina Panthers on the road. Back-to-back road games are always tough, but QB Jeff Garcia has this team believing they can win against any opponent. The Buc defense has also played very well and they look like the robust units that dominated the league from 1998-2003. The Colts are clicking all cylinders offensively as usual, but will come to this hit hard with RB Joseph Addai and WR Marvin Harrison dealing with injuries. While both should play, this could serve to slow down Indy’s machine-like offense. However, the Bucs are in a bad position as they are classified in a negative 67-132-3 ATS situation on the road. This is a difficult one to call in here due to injuries on both sides, so better stay away if you can do it without choosing this game. THE CHOICE: Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+10)



13. GREEN BAY PACKERS (-3.5) VS. Chicago Bears: The Bears are a mess and now they have to go to Green Bay to face the Packers 4-0. Green Bay is behind the great play of quarterback Brett Favre and a strong defense that has played better than many could have expected from this young group. The Bears will stick with Brien Griese at QB, but no matter who plays, this offense can’t seem to get out of its way. The Bears qualify in a very profitable 47-10-4 ATS road scenario, but the Packers will be encouraged to kick a big division rival while they are in the dumps. The Bears are also in the negative situation of playing back-to-back games on the road, so this is a draw where you want to stay away from gambling. THE CHOICE: PASS