Gambling State University: Week Four

The masses wildly await the next suggestion from Luke Ryan…
Photo Credit: drewzhrodague

$1,040.00. That’s what you’re up right now if you’ve taken my recommended wagers this season. My record? Five wins, one loss, one tie. I’m not bragging, Those are the facts. But who cares about what I’ve done for you. Why do I say this? Because it’s not about what I’ve done for you, it’s about what I will continue to do for you (which is win).

Okay, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I’ve got a confession. I don’t just want to win for you. I want to do it with some panache. I want to impress you. But for you to be impressed, for you tell more people about me, for you to tell more people about this site, I’ve got to stay hotter than a stove burning in an oven. And that’s what I intend to do.

If you’ve been betting with me, you’ve been able to have your cake and eat it too. What does that mean in terms of the context of gambling? Well, until now I’ve been giving you some of the best teams to bet on week-to-week. Whether you’ve had the foresight to see that these teams were of the highest of quality is between you and your savings account. Either you made money on my picks or you bet on teams that weren’t the best. Last week I gave you the Falcons and the Texans. I knew they were the two best teams at the time; that’s why I gave them to you. Whether you actually knew this… I can’t say. I did. So what do I know this week? This week, I don’t like the supposed power teams. Why? Every week in the NFL is different. A team that was hot last week might not be this week. This week, I like one game and one game only. And it’s not a team you would expect.

Find out my pick of the week after the jump:

The Pick: Jacksonville Jaguars +1 vs. CIN
Now if you’re like my friend Francis Ryan Smith, you won’t like the Jaguars this week. But guess what? Your name isn’t Francis Ryan Smith. So, let me get to the point and tell you why you should bet the Jags and why my friend Francis R. Smith would take the Bengals. First, the latter. My friend Francis would take the Bengals because he gets shaved for the wool that grows on his body every few months. That’s right. My friend Francis is a sheep. And sheep get slaughtered. Unfortunately, he doesn’t know that he sometimes says “Baa” in the middle of his sentences or that sometimes I count him in my sleep. Why? Because Francis is also what some may call a mark. There’s a saying in the world of gambling that goes… if you can’t spot the mark within ten minutes… you are the mark. Hopefully you’re not left wondering about what I’m trying to communicate to you right now. If you are, listen up, because you’re about to learn something that has made me thousands of dollars. I subscribe to the law of contrary public opinion. That means if everyone thinks one thing, then it’s my opinion that you either don’t bet, or you bet the other way. Now usually when everyone bets a certain team, I usually just stay away. But this is not a stay away game. This is a “take the team that everyone’s avoiding” game. People, for whatever reason, are so excited about the Bengals this week that they have grandma and grandpa cashing out their government bonds to back the black and orange.

Well, save your grandparents their retirement coin and have them cash out those government bonds to back the Jags. I’ve done my due diligence here. Checked countless gambling sites. Called up the director of the Wynn Casino and asked, where’s the action at? Well, the director of the Wynn Casino has divulged to me what I’ve already communicated. Hundreds of thousands of dollars are being wagered on the Bengals. Guess what people? Vegas doesn’t lose money on football and I don’t either.

So why go against the consensus? Why not join the crowd and take the Bengals? Why bet the Jaguars? I’ll tell you why. The Bengals couldn’t stop Earl Campbell. And I’m talking about today. Two hip replacements later and at the tender age of 57. You want stats? The Bengals defense is giving up a whopping 5.5 YPC and an incredible 34 points a game. What’s more, that bowling ball I affectionately refer to as Maurice Jones-Drew is in shape. He absolutely shredded the Colts last week. Granted it was the Colts, but 177 yards on the ground is 177 yards on the ground. Expect more of the same this week. MJD will be spinning, cutting, dodging and trucking his way to well over 100 yards against the Bengals’ anemic defense.

What really has me excited about the game is Blaine Gabbert’s progression. From year one to year two, Gabbert has transformed into something that resembles a legitimate NFL quarterback. Granted, he’s not Aaron Rodgers, but if you have a keen eye for the game you can see that he’s developing. The Jaguars at the moment might be a six-win team. So what can you expect? Expect the Jaguars to get one of their six wins here against the Bengals. Expect MJD to rip off six, seven, eight yards per clip. Expect the Jaguars to control the clock. Expect the Jaguars defense to play better then you expect them to. Expect NFL savant Matty Opisso to like the weekly wisdom I drop on him. And expect Blaine Gabbert to throw for a couple of touchdowns and 250 yards.

Let me finish off by saying this. My hope is that you believe in what I’m selling. If my analysis doesn’t sell you, hopefully my record will. But I can’t force your hand and I won’t hold it either. If you want to be a sheep and bet the Bengals, fine. But don’t you dare say that a good shepherd didn’t steer you away from that shady shed where sheep go to get slaughtered. Special shout out to Larry Opisso and his elegant wife. Here’s to my wagers financing that certain golf membership at a certain country club. Now I don’t know what you’re doing with your winnings, but I think I’ll go and do something ignorant this week like buy my dogs two pound lobsters, boil em, cover them in butter, and feed it to them in their bowls. Yeah, that sounds about right.
The Prediction: Jaguars 24, Bengals 20
The Wager: $260 (I want us at an even $1,300.00 on the season)



About Starbonell

Starbonell is the co-founder of Sons of Roto and one of the most insightful and colorful fantasy analysts in the game. Mixing intelligent and well-researched advice with an entertaining style of writing that is easy to digest, Starbonell is the king of info-tainment.