HOME DAWGS: One thing’s for certain, this game is difficult

By BRANDON HURLEY

Sports Editor
sports@beeherald,com
@DawgsHome

Sometimes, I’m just flat out wrong. I’m man enough to admit it. I can whiff with the best of them.
The biggest thing I’ve learned about sports gambling these last few weeks is how hard it is to predict the playoffs. Of course, it’s always been difficult to envision the outright winners and losers, but add in spreads and it’s an even more gigantic game of chance.
I saw a tweet somewhere from a professional gambler (the name is escaping me), but he said in his 20 years of gambling experience, the NFL has always been the most difficult. I’m attempting to keep myself even keeled because of that exact sentiment, but it’s for sure hard.
Take last weekend’s games for example, at one point, I was mere moments away from a 4-1 run. The underdog Texans had a 24 point lead while the underdog Clemson Tigers held a 10 lead. Both teams ended up losing by double digits... what the heck, how’s that even possible?
Gambling ain’t easy, yo.
I never have the answers, nor does anyone else. As I discussed with Ken Miller on the Home Dawgs podcast a few months back, sports gambling is our entertainment fee, or fun tax, if you will. You don’t want to make a living on it, but it gives us a little something extra to root for. Why else would I watch a regular season matchup between the Jaguars and Titans?
With that being said, I never saw the Titans blowing out the Ravens, a 9-7 team dismantling a squad riding a 12-game winning, nor did I see the Texans not only blowing a 24-point lead, but to end up losing by 20. These NFL playoffs have been down right nutty. My advice is, if you don’t have the cash flow to put money on the games, don’t do it and just enjoy the ride.
But if you want to join me on my roller coaster of pain, keep reading for some more spicy hot picks.
As I alluded to earlier, I was 2-3 with my picks last week. But I’m still sitting pretty overall.
Are you ready for championship weekend? I know I am.

• BHURL’S SEASON RECORD: 39-31-1
    Last week: 2-3
        - Lines courtesy of Draftkings Sportsbook (Jan. 15)
    Winners are in bold

1. Titans (+7.5) at Chiefs
Here we are, the Tennessee Titans are in the AFC title game and still getting absolutely no respect. Derrick Henry, as we’ve witnessed over the last few weeks, is definitely the best running back in the league. He absolutely gouged two of the best defensives in back-to-back weeks, putting up ridiculous numbers along the way. So far during the 2019 playoffs, Henry has rushed for 377 yards and a touchdown, including 195 yards in the Titans win over the Ravens. I see the Titans keeping this within a score, but with the Chiefs hosting an AFC championship game at Arrowhead Stadium for the first time in ages with a Super Bowl on the line, I don’t see them winning. KC hasn’t been to the Super Bowl in 50 years, and now is their time.

2. Packers (+ 7.5) at 49ers
There’s a quick, common theme here this week: The dogs are barking. I’m heavy on the road underdogs, if you couldn’t tell. The road ‘dogs were big throughout the regular season, and I need them again this week. This telling stat from the Dan Patrick Show the other day really stuck out: Aaron Rodgers has covered every time he’s been a seven point underdog or more. And look where the Packers are at right now, they are 7.5 point underdogs against the red-hot San Francisco 49ers. I know it’s a tough road game for Green Bay, all the way out on the West Coast, and they were absolutely dismantled earlier this season by the same Niners squad, but I still feel things will be different.
As a matter of fact, I put some money down on the Packers to win it all at 10-to-1 odds before the playoffs began. So I have to ride with them, even if I am not the biggest fan of the franchise. I’m excited for this game, personally. I think it has a chance to be incredible. Two great quarterbacks, a pair of exceptional rush offenses, and though you may not always be inclined to think of it, they both have pretty solid defenses.
I wouldn’t be surprised if the Packers pull the upset and win outright. We are talking about Aaron Rodgers, and once that offense gets rolling they can be pretty scary. So, I encourage you to take a look at that Green Bay moneyline, which is sitting nicely at +290.

Just a heads up, The Home Dawgs will take next week off since the Super Bowl will still be a full seven or so days away, but we will be back with some heat after that. The Super Bowl is my favorite game to bet every year, there are so many delicious props to weed through. So, enjoy the festivities this weekend, we don’t have many left.

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