Well, it’s Monday, and that means another week of football betting action has come and gone. Let’s take a quick look back on some of the bigger storylines coming out of this weekend in gambling including some last-second heroics, massive injury news and other notable happenings.
Action in the NFL this weekend was hard and fast and brought with it one real bad beat with the Chargers failing to cover a +2.5-point underdog spread against the Titans. This became either a nauseating loss, as it was for me, or a miracle win for NFL bettors this weekend.
With the game on the line, Los Angeles was stuffed at the goal line twice before Melvin Gordon fumbled on 3rd down and pretty much lost the game for the Bolts. Add to that my need for Gordon to have a good fantasy week, and you can imagine my demeanor watching Ryan Tannehill kneel down to run the clock out on a 23-20 Titans victory.
The Falcons also left a bad taste in my mouth after getting dismantled 37-10 by the Los Angeles Rams. Atlanta looked lost on both sides of the ball and maybe without their starting quarterback Matt Ryan for some time after he left with an injury and was spotted with a walking boot after the game. I did say this game would define the rest of the season for the Falcons, just wasn’t the way I expected things to tilt.
Another tough loss for a number of underdog bettors was in the Jaguars and Bengals game. A game that saw a lot of the public action for Cincinnati getting +4.5 points at home against Jacksonville. And things were looking good with the Bengals holding a slim 10-9 lead heading into the fourth quarter. But alas, it was not to be as Mr. Reliable Andy Dalton threw three picks in the fourth quarter alone, including a pick-six which was all the Jaguars needed to win and cover on the road. Still nowhere near as painful as the Chargers loss, but this one had to sting after the Bengals played such a good game up until that point.
Some notable injuries coming out of yesterday’s games? As mentioned, Matt Ryan left in the fourth quarter with what we now know to be a high ankle sprain. Great news for the 1-6 Falcons as they head into week 8 with Matt Schaub in line to start. Adam Thielen also exited from a game on Sunday after pulling up with a hamstring injury after scoring a first-quarter TD. Keep an eye on his availability with the Lions on a short week, playing Thursday against the Redskins. Delanie Walker also was forced from action this weekend, re-aggravating an ankle injury that had him questionable to start at all.
Turning our attention to College Football, we also saw some serious injuries this weekend to go along with a few major upsets.
Perhaps the biggest upset so far this year came this weekend when the No. 6 Wisconsin Badgers, championship contenders, got beat by Illinois 24-23 at Memorial Stadium off a walk-off 39-yard field goal. This had to have been one of the worst beats of the weekend for anyone banking on the ‘easy’ big favorite play. The Badgers were -10000 on the moneyline with a spread of 30.5 on the game. Rough stuff for the five-time Big Ten Championship game-winners who had yet to even trail in a game so far this season. This marks the first Top-25 win for the Illini since 2011 in what looks to be a revitalized program after playing close games with Michigan and Nebraska in previous weeks.
More News out of the Big Ten as Penn State wins a big statement game against rival Michigan. KJ Hamler led the Nittany Lions to a 28-21 victory over No. 16 Michigan and adding to the Wolverines bad beats under Coach Harbaugh. Hamler had six catches for 108 yards and a pair of receiving touchdowns, including the game-winning 53-yard catch in the 4th quarter. Penn State might be for real this year, currently ranked 7th and with a 7-0 record, they can do some damage in the second half of the season if their offense continues to grow in skill.
On to perhaps the biggest news of the weekend with huge National Championship implications. Tua Tagovailoa, quarterback for No. 1 ranked Alabama, left in the second quarter of their game against Tennessee on Saturday with a high ankle sprain. It is the exact same injury which robbed him of time last season, lucky for him its the opposite ankle. Tua subsequently underwent a minor procedure to repair the damage and will keep Tua sidelined for at least a couple of weeks. Next week’s game vs Tuscaloosa will be a cakewalk, no matter who is under center. They get Arkansas next, which should be a tougher game, but still very winnable without Tua.
Things turn bleak however if Tagovailoa is forced to miss any more action because on November 9th they have a showdown vs No. 2 ranked LSU and most certainly will need their star quarterback to win that one. All eyes will be on the news updates in the coming weeks about this story and I’ll keep you updated here as well on what to expect from him and when.