Lots of great action this past weekend, both on the gridiron and on the diamonds.
Let’s kick it off with the NFL.
The Dolphins enjoyed their bye week, unless your name is Derrick Shelby. The defensive end was suspended indefinitely by the team after his arrest in a Fort Lauderdale nightclub. According to the police report, Shelby was touching women without their permission. He appeared intoxicated, and was ordered to leave several times by an officer and he refused, asking “What are you going to do?”. The officers then tried to place Shelby in custody, but he pushed them away and took an aggressive fighting stance. He was placed on the ground and continued to resist arrest. Officers then used a Taser three times before he was subdued.
The rest of the team is busy preparing for Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers this Sunday. Game time at the Seven Names Stadium is 1:00 pm.
How did I do on my picks this past week?
I went 4-2-1. My record now, after five weeks, is a lofty 24-11-1 against the spread, 27-9 overall.
My winners, losers, and pushes for this past weekend are highlighted.:
(HOME TEAM IN CAPS):
PACKERS 42 Vikings 10 (PACKERS -8 over Vikings)
EAGLES 34 Rams 28 (EAGLES -6 over Rams)
SAINTS 37 Bucs 31 (SAINTS -9 over Buccaneers)
COLTS 20 Ravens 13 (COLTS -3 over Ravens)
CHARGERS 31 Jets 0 (CHARGERS -6 over Jets)
PATRIOTS 43 Bengals 17 (Bengals -1 over PATRIOTS)
Seahawks 27 REDSKINS 17 (Seahawks -7 over REDSKINS)
Here are all of last weekend’s game recaps and scores:
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 2
Green Bay 42, Minnesota 10
Aaron Rodgers threw for three touchdowns and Eddie Lacy had a season-high 105 rushing yards and two touchdowns.
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 5
New Orleans 37, Tampa Bay 31 (OT)
Khiry Robinson's 18-yard touchdown run on the first possession of overtime capped the Saints' comeback. Drew Brees overcame a three-interception performance with 371 yards and two touchdowns.
Dallas 20, Houston 17 (OT)
Dan Bailey kicked a 49-yard field goal in overtime. The Texans scored the last 10 points of regulation to force overtime, but were forced to punt on the opening possession of the extra session.
Pittsburgh 17, Jacksonville 9
Ben Roethlisberger threw for a touchdown and Brice McCain returned an interception 22 yards for a touchdown. Antonio Brown caught five catches for 84 yards.
Philadelphia 34, St. Louis 28
Nick Foles threw a pair of touchdown passes but finished with just 207 yards with an interception and a lost fumble. The Rams scored the final 21 points and moved the ball just past midfield in the final minute, but two dropped passes and an incompletion on fourth down spoiled a chance at the miracle comeback.
Buffalo 17, Detroit 14
Former Dolphin Dan Carpenter hit a 58-yard field goal with just four seconds to play. Kyle Orton threw for 308 yards and a touchdown on 30-of-43 passing.
NY Giants 30, Atlanta 20
Odell Beckham Jr.'s 15-yard touchdown catch, his first TD in the NFL, was part of a 20-point swing that brought the G-Men back from a 20-10 third-quarter deficit to post its third consecutive win.
Indianapolis 20, Baltimore 13
Andrew Luck passed for a touchdown and ran for another score.
Cleveland 29, Tennessee 28
Brian Hoyer's second touchdown pass of the fourth quarter to Travis Benjamin was the go-ahead score with 1:09 left in the contest, as the Browns rallied from a 28-3 first-half deficit. Hoyer ended the day 21-of-37 for 292 yards, three TD’s and one interception.
Carolina 31, Chicago 24
Former Cane Greg Olsen had six catches for 72 yards and two TD’s.
Denver 41, Arizona 20
Peyton Manning threw his 500th touchdown pass in the first quarter and finished with four TD tosses. Manning finished 31-of-47 for 479 yards. Demaryius Thomas had eight receptions for a career-high 226 yards and two touchdowns.
San Francisco 22, Kansas City 17
Phil Dawson kicked five field goals.
San Diego 31, NY Jets 0
Philip Rivers completed 20-28 attempts for 288 yards and three touchdowns, two of the TD’s went to Antonio Gates. Jets’ quarterbacks Geno Smith and Michael Vick combined to go 13-of-32 for a measly 74 yards.
New England 43, Cincinnati 17
Bottom line - - - - never count out Tom Brady and the Patriots. Brady completed 23-of-35 passes for 292 yards and two touchdowns. Stevan Ridley and Shane Vereen ran for 113 and 90 yards, respectively.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 6
Seattle 27, Washington 17
Here is another bulletin for you - - - Russell Wilson is really good and a lot of fun to watch, unless he is playing against the team you root for. Wilson set a career high for rushing yards with 122 yards and a TD on 11 carries. He also completed 18-of-24 passes for 201 yards and two touchdowns. Incredibly, the Seahawks had three touchdowns called back due to penalties.
Here are this week’s NFL games and early point spreads:
Thursday, October 9th
Colts @ TEXANS +3 8:30 pm CBS
Sunday, October 12th
Patriots @ BILLS -3 1:00 pm CBS
Steelers @ BROWNS -2 1:00 pm CBS
Jaguars @ TITANS -7 1:00 pm CBS
Broncos @ JETS +9 1:00 pm CBS
Panthers @ BENGALS -8 1:00 pm FOX
Packers @ DOLPHINS +3 1:00 pm FOX
Lions @ VIKINGS +2 1:00 pm FOX
Ravens @ BUCS +3 1:00 pm FOX
Chargers @ RAIDERS +7 4:05 pm CBS
Redskins @ CARDINALS -3 ½ 4:25 pm FOX
Bears @ FALCONS -3 4:25 pm FOX
Cowboys @ SEAHAWKS -8 4:25 pm FOX
Giants @ EAGLES -2 ½ 8:30 pm NBC
Monday, October 13th
49ers @ RAMS +3 8:30 pm ESPN
The bye teams this week:
New Orleans Saints
Kansas City Chiefs
If you play fantasy football, make sure you remember to take the bye weeks into consideration when setting your lineups.
What else are the Dolphins up to?
Miami Dolphins blog from Armando Salguero:
Chris Perkins and Omar Kelly bring us their Dolphin blog:
For more news from around the NFL, here is NFL NATION:
In my college football picks last week, only the Hurricanes kept me from a perfect week:
Central Florida 17 HOUSTON 12
FIU 38 Florida Atlantic 10
Florida 10 TENNESSEE 9
FSU 43 Wake Forest 3
GEORGIA TECH 28 Miami 17
BTW - - - I did warn you and tell you to keep an eye on Alabama - Ole Miss and Oklahoma -TCU last Saturday. What a pair of huge upsets.
Here are this week’s games involving the state of Florida teams:
BYU @ CENTRAL FLORIDA 7:30 pm ESPN
Cincinnati @ MIAMI 12 noon ESPN Game Plan
Florida State @ SYRACUSE 12 noon ESPN
E. Carolina @ SOUTH FLORIDA 7:00 pm ESPN-U
Louisiana State @ FLORIDA 7:30 pm SEC Network
Florida Int’l @ UTSA 7:00 pm Fox College Sports
The college games to keep your eyes on this coming Saturday:
(2) Auburn @ (3) MISSISSIPPI STATE 3:30 pm CBS
(3) Ole Miss @ (14) TEXAS A&M 9:00 pm ESPN
(9) Texas Christian @ (5) BAYLOR 3:30 pm ABC
I will, once again, bring you all my picks, both in the NFL and the Florida College games, on Thursday.
Manny Navarro and Susan Miller Degnan have all the latest news from the University of Miami.
From FIU, David J. Neal of the Herald, who is, once again, allowed to see FIU play and practice, has the latest from the University of Westchester in his blog.
Here’s the latest from Tallahassee and the Seminoles:
From Gainesville and the University of Florida:
The Central Florida Knights are in the house:
Every week, celebrating the fact that we will now have a four-team playoff to determine the national championship, I will bring you my TOP FOUR teams in college football, indicating what teams will end up in the four-team playoff. This list will probably change every week, and trust me . . . . . the teams that fell out of the “TOP FOUR” will probably be back before the playoffs begin. For now, here are this week’s “TOP FOUR”:
1. Florida State
3. Ole Miss
4. Mississippi State
Another reminder . . . . I’ll have my picks, both NFL and College, in Thursday’s blog.
Let’s shift gears, and head out to the baseball diamonds.
Be honest . . . Did ANYONE really expect both the Kansas City Royals and the Baltimore Orioles to sweep their American League Divisional Series? Personally, I did not see that one coming at all, especially the Orioles beating the Tigers and the last three AL Cy Young winners in three games in a row. That was surreal. Congrats to both teams. The ALCS begins Friday at Baltimore.
Over in the National League, the San Francisco Giants lead their NLDS series against the Washington Nationals 2-1, and the St. Louis Cardinals also have a 2 games to 1 advantage over the LA Dodgers. The probable pitchers for game 4 and game 5 (if needed):
5:00 pm Dodgers @ Cards Clayton Kershaw vs Shelby Miller
9:00 pm Nats @ Giants Gio Gonzalez vs Ryan Vogelsong
THURSDAY (IF NEEDED)
5:00 pm Giants @ Nats Jake Peavy vs Steven Strasburg
9:00 pm Cards @ Dodgers Adam Wainwright vs Zack Greinke
By the way, the Dodgers are benching Yasiel Puig for Tuesday’s game 4, and he will be replaced by Andre Ethier. Puig has struck out eight times in his 12 at-bats so far in the ALDS.
Dodgers’ manager Don Mattingly is gambling as well in starting Clayton Kershaw on just three-days' rest. Here’s a number for you: teams using a starter on three-day’s rest against a team using a starter with four-days’ rest have a W-L record of 18-35. In my opinion, you have to take that chance, especially as good as Kershaw is.
The Cardinals, on the other hand, are going with Shelby Miller, instead of pitching Adam Wainwright on short rest. In his last five starts during the regular season, Miller was 3-0, a 1.48 ERA, and 26 strikeouts vs only 5 walks. Good move, as well, by Cards' manager Mike Matheny.
In the other series, the Nationals are hoping that winning game three gives them a little momentum for tonight’s game 4. It helps that they have Gio Gonzalez on the mound. The Hialeah-product went 4-1 with a 2.36 ERA in his last seven starts of the regular season. The Nats hope that this is enough to erase the bad memories of Gio in the 2012 playoffs, when he walked 11 batters in 10 innings to go with a 4.50 ERA.
On the other hand, Ryan Vogelsong has been anything but good for the Giants. In September, Vogelsong went 0-4 with a 5.53 ERA. The Nationals are licking their chops as they get ready to go against Vogelsong on Tuesday night. Ian Desmond, Adam LaRoche, Wilson Ramos, Anthony Rendon, Denard Span and Jayson Werth are hitting a combined .362 against Vogelsong in their careers.
TODAY’S TRIVIA QUESTION: The Panda, Pablo Sandoval, has hit in 14 consecutive post-season games. Two part question: Who holds the NL record for longest hitting streak (15 games) in the post-season and ho has the major league record (17 games)? The answer comes later, alligator.
For the latest Marlins news and stories, as well as Dolphin news, you need to make sure you follow my good friend Larry Walansky on nbcmiami.com.
Here is Joe Frisaro’s MLB Marlins Blog:
The Yankees’ blog is here, thanks to Mark Feinsand of the NY Daily News:
Here are the final regular season standings in MLB:
Here are the individual leaders in the majors in 2014:
THE ANSWER TO TODAY’S TRIVIA QUESTION: TODAY’S TRIVIA QUESTION: The Panda, Pablo Sandoval, has hit in 14 consecutive post-season games. Two part question: Who holds the NL record for longest hitting streak (15 games) in the post-season and who has the major league record (17 games)?
The National league record is held by Marquis Grissom. The Major League record for consecutive post-season games hitting streak is 18 and is shared by Hank Bauer (World Series 1956-1958), Derek Jeter (1998-1999), and Manny Ramirez (2003-2004).
NOTE TO THE NEW COMMISSIONER: BASEBALL NEEDS TO DIFFERENTIATE AND SEPARATE WORLD SERIES RECORDS FROM POST-SEASON RECORDS. THE WORLD SERIES RECORDS SHOULD REMAIN SEPARATE AND STAND ALONE.
Let’s go to the hardwood. The Heat are just starting their preseason slate of exhibition games. The regular season opens on Wednesday, October 29, at home at the AAA, against the Washington Wizards. Here is the Herald’s Miami Heat Blog:
Let’s shift gears and hit the ice. The Florida Panthers will drop the puck for their regular season on Thursday, October 9th, in Tampa, against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Here is George Richard’s Florida Panthers Blog:
Santos Perez’ “Spotlight on Boxing” column is back this week. The Herald can’t just make up their mind.
REMEMBER TO PLEASE CALL ME FOR ALL YOUR REAL ESTATE NEEDS IN CENTRAL FLORIDA, OCALA, AND ESPECIALLY, THE VILLAGES.
Behave yourselves, and always remember that tomorrow will bring us a brand new day.