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Best of Howard Schwartz

Gaming Guru

 

Iskoe's teaser, totals study; Lawrence's FB playbook hot

9 July 2009

Two of the most popular proposition bets for football handicappers are teasers and totals, and each year Andy Iskoe of Logical Approach produces the finest computer analysis ever for these props, showing how each NFL team and all teams do, year by year, for three years or six years. This is a tremendous time-saver for every level player looking for an angle, an edge, a future spot play.

Iskoe's NFL Teasers & Totals (73 pages, 8x11 plastic spiralbound, $29.95) has arrived along with another valuable resource, Marc Lawrence's Playbook Football Handicapper's Yearbook (247 pages, magazine format, $9.95).

NFL Teasers & Totals shows, for example, that road dogs teased with six-pointers won 68 percent of the time (117-53-3) last year; that the Arizona Cardinals were 5-1 as a home favorite in '08 and Minnesota was 7-1 as a dog overall with the six-point teaser. Nice to know certain trends have occurred in the past — and history may repeat — we just have to know why. Knowing a team's opponent (whether there's a lack of defense or inability to protect against the pass, for example) may impact how you bet totals (also known as the over-under bet). Weather could be a factor, as could injuries or inexperience. Looking at unusual totals results for last season we see Kansas City going over six out of seven opportunities in a home dog situation and Tennessee going over six out of eight times at home.

The book does an excellent job of showing why certain numbers (like 37) are considered "key" (most popular) figures posted by sportsbooks. How often does that number show up in a season (311 times since 1981, nine times in each of the last two seasons)? Not far behind in repeat mode are 41, 43 and 44.

Marc Lawrence's magazine lets you do plenty of preparation for both college and pro football. It contains more than 5,000 trends (in the good, bad and ugly category), by the month, by the week, in a division and keyed to the coach. It gives you room to keep records for both the pros and colleges, 10 years of spreads (totals only for the pros), information about how many returnees a college team has (offense, defense, lettermen), key statistics from each game played last season and how teams did off a win or loss or after a week off or on Monday nights for the pros only. Also available are weather phones and types of playing surfaces for both college and pro teams. For the players who need pre-season schedules and trends, it's here, including schedules (first game is Aug. 9, Bills-Titans in the Hall of Fame).

Howard Schwartz
Howard Schwartz, the "librarian for gamblers," was the marketing director for Gambler's Book Club in Las Vegas, a position he held from 1979 to 2010, when he retired. Author of hundreds of articles on gambling, his weekly book reviews appear in numerous publications throughout the gaming industry.

Howard Schwartz Websites:

www.gamblersbook.com
Howard Schwartz
Howard Schwartz, the "librarian for gamblers," was the marketing director for Gambler's Book Club in Las Vegas, a position he held from 1979 to 2010, when he retired. Author of hundreds of articles on gambling, his weekly book reviews appear in numerous publications throughout the gaming industry.

Howard Schwartz Websites:

www.gamblersbook.com