Thursday, November 28, 2013

Nurse the Hate: Hate Thanksgiving Football

There are many Thanksgiving traditions that help make this the greatest of all holidays.  An enormous turkey roasting to a perfect golden brown.  Generations of family and friends crunching in the fallen leaves during the annual Turkey Bowl football game.  A rich slice of pumpkin pie.  Family gathered for no other reason than to give thanks for all their tidings.  And of course, the annual Thanksgiving "Galaxy of Wagers" ill-advised teaser bets on football...

Normally my brother Ken and I assemble a ludicrous multi-team teaser to white knuckle through during the holiday.  This year I have gone it alone.  I haven't heard from Ken in weeks with the exception of shadowy social media posts reporting on his taco consumption or appearances in dive bars in the Greater Austin TX area.  That is probably for the best as he would try to talk me into getting involved in the Texas v Texas Tech game.  As far as I can recall, Ken has not given me the right side on a Texas game since moving to Austin.  I would hate to see my well conceived plan go down the drain late when some borderline mentally retarded Longhorn receiver named either D'Tavius or Colt drops a sure thing touchdown for a loss.

I will once again be gathering up all my resources for this three team teaser bet.  The beauty of the teaser bet is that it is the very definition of the "sucker bet".  It appears on the surface to be so airtight, so heavily weighted to the bettor's favor that it is inconceivable that it could lose.  Meanwhile, with so many moving parts, it is in reality almost guaranteed to lose.  I am essentially gathering a pile of money and lighting it on fire on top of the Thanksgiving turkey.  By even announcing that I am making a three team teaser bet, I have stood up in a crowded room and admitted that I am a fool.  I have no chance of winning.  None.  This does not matter in the slightest, as it has become tradition, and as we all know, one does not mess with tradition.

I am going to be betting the NFL games.  The hope is that I win the first game no matter what, as to be out by 3:00pm would be really disappointing.  To refresh your memory, the three team teaser allows me to move the line in either direction by ten points on each of the three games with the caveat that all three have to win for the wager to pay off.  If even one of the three games is a loser, I have lost the wager in its entirety.  Unfortunately, I have the greatest concern for the early game.  The Detroit Lions have a completely unfounded reputation for "always winning on Thanksgiving".  This is complete horseshit.  The Lions have not won on Thanksgiving since 2003.  They are 2-7 against the spread during that near decade long run.  This is mainly due to the fact that the Lions have traditionally sucked.  However, if the Lions are going to win a Thanksgiving game, it should be today.  The Packers without Aaron Rodgers have little in common with the "good" Packers that you immediately think of when thinking of Green Bay.  They are 0-3-1 without Rodgers, and today will roll out with big contract bust Matt Flynn at QB.  The Lions have been losing games, but that has primarily been due to turnovers.  They should win today.  Here's the question...  Can the Packers keep it close?  I think they will not be able to run the ball at all, and will rely on Flynn to throw short and intermediate passes.  That concerns me.  It concerns me greatly, but I'm taking Green Bay with the inflated 17 teaser points assuming the Lions continue their decade long run of Lionish football.  The Lions aren't beating anyone by 17, are they?

The next game has Oakland going to Dallas.  Oakland has sucked since they lost that last Super Bowl appearance in 1982 or whenever the hell that was.  I remember lots of guys with Fu Manchu mustaches.  It was a long time ago.  Today they will have yet another shitty QB handing the ball off to some semi injured running back that will rip off a 17 yard run against a horrific Dallas defense that will then be called back due to a penalty because some lineman bit some Dallas DT in the nutsack.  It's how every Raider game goes.  Dallas is 4-1 at home, with the only loss being a nailbiter to a vastly superior Denver team.  They are 10-2 to losing teams on Thanksgiving.  I'll take my chances with Dallas +1.  If they don't win this game, the people of Texas will burn that $300 billion dollar stadium to the ground, and they would be justified for doing so.  That stadium is an affront to God.

The night game is Pittsburgh and Baltimore.  I see two teams going in opposite directions.  Pittsburgh, as usual, is getting better late in the year.  Don't get me wrong, they kind of suck, but they appear to suck less than Baltimore.  They are the bizarro world Cleveland Browns.  When the Browns face adversity they wither.  When the Steelers do, they break the other teams ribs and win close games in the snow.  This game is usually a street fight.  It's one of those rare pro games where the teams really seem to dislike each other.  It's always close and very hard fought.  Since 2009 only one time has this game been decided by more than three points.  Since Pittsburgh is already getting points, I'll take the extra points and assume that Baltimore can't possibly win by more than 12.5.  

Thanksgiving Day Bonehead Teaser

Green Bay +17
Dallas +1
Pittsburgh +12.5

P.S.  Take Mississippi over Mississippi State tonight.  Mississippi State is starting a third string freshman at QB, and the Mississippi coach is 16-2 ATS against losing teams.  Plus, the game is called "The Egg Bowl".  How can you not have action on The Egg Bowl?  


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