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Best of Howard Schwartz

Gaming Guru

 

Pro FB Guide Reviews '05; Fact Book Covers All-Time Results

3 August 2005

Annually, bettors love to read the Pro Football Guide (published by Sporting News) because it contains the week-by-week scoring summaries of all games played last season plus the box scores. The 347-page paperbound ($18.95) is a solid reference for those who missed games or are keen on factors such as time of possession or penalty yards. It has arrived at Gambler's Book Shop along with the ever-popular NFL Record & Fact Book (784 pages, paperbound ($16.95), which gives the scores (no spreads or totals) of every game ever played in the NFL since the 1930s.

The guide is also valuable in offering a quick look at top individual point producers by team; for the league (comparing kickers to non-kickers); who the best on defense were, including sack leaders; which teams fumbled the most. One can isolate how the NFL standings changed week by week.

An interesting section, for those who must have this type of information, examines Red-Zone Statistics (Inside Opponents' 20-Yard Line). For example, Indianapolis had 67 opportunities to score inside the 20 and had a scoring efficiency of 85 percent; while Baltimore had 40 opportunities and had a 92 perent scoring efficiency.

Should you want to see a stadium diagram for every pro team, that¹s here too, along with ticket information phone numbers; the team web site; where to write to each team; and the name of the team's flagship radio station.

The NFL Record & Fact Book informs you what the important dates are for the 2005 season. For example, roster cut down dates; when the playoffs begin; then the reference lists key internet sites including one which tells you revised team depth charts; injuries; roster changes.

For those interested in looking ahead, the book lists the scheduling formula for all 32 teams for the next two years; coaching records; which players are nearing career; team or league records; what the tie-breaking procedures are for post season play; what the criteria is for instant replay. This book also shows stadium diagrams, and tells you where North is in stadium configuration, for those who like to factor in wind or other weather.

For trivia buffs, the book contains a list and details about all the overtime games ever played, including records (including how many games ended by a field goal, touchdown, safety, etc.).

There are post-season records; Super Bowl records; who drafted who in the first round; who won what awards; a roster of officials and their uniform numbers; a section describing the penalties and the signals officials give for each; plus a digest of major NFL rules.

Both football books are excellent choices as a gift for someone who is learning the game; for a football maven who loves to come up with trivia questions or settle arguments (a bartender, sports talk show host) or for a fantasy football junkie.

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