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Matt Youmans

Wild cards ride on icy weather, hot QBs

A chilling wind will sweep across the field in Philadelphia, dropping temperatures into the teens, and history indicates the elements are the best defense against New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.

Playoff bids, big bets change hands

A Week 17 schedule that shaped up as potentially explosive on paper surpassed all expectations. Thirteen of the 16 games had playoff implications. From Chicago to San Diego to Dallas, it was as great as it gets.

Win-total propositions in NFL rife with pitfalls

A sense of impending doom surrounded the Chicago Bears when Jay Cutler, who might or might not be the franchise’s future quarterback, limped off the field with a groin injury. With Cutler, it often appears to be loser’s limp, but this injury was legit.

Sharps rewarded for backing Dolphins

Even when the odds are against Tom Brady, we expect him to succeed. He captains comebacks like no other quarterback in the NFL. So we expect him to succeed especially when the odds are against him.

Giants less of a mess than Redskins, figure to cover

It’s that time when adversity sets in, hope disappears and some NFL teams get torn apart while facing the certainty of a losing year. But coach Tom Coughlin is not going to allow any of that nonsense to wreck the New York Giants, at least not yet.

Bad beats unlucky realities

Learning how to deal with devastating setbacks is an important aspect to the psychology of gambling. Absorbing bad beats is part of betting sports, and it helps to have a bottle of whiskey and a short memory.

Super Bowl hangover hits 49ers hard

After the party, the hangover is due to hit. And the better the party, the worse the headache gets. Right about now, it’s hitting quarterback Colin Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers right between the eyes.

College basketball wagerers flying blind

Without seeing Andrew Wiggins play, most media pundits are assuming the Kansas freshman will be the No. 1 pick in next summer’s NBA Draft. That might turn out to be true, but remember to always wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle and jumping to conclusions.