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Malott’s Believe It or Not Week 18

A Weekly DFS, Fantasy Football and Sports Betting Blog

Indianapolis Colts v New York Giants Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

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Call 1-800-GAMBLER.

If you’ve read every one of these so far, I appreciate you. I learned a long time ago to ignore the comments. A lot of people in my industry associate comments with success. I chose to instead look inward, find ways I can improve as a person and then how can I return the favor by sharing my expertise. I sat and thought about how football has been the only constant in my life outside my parents. For those of you that don’t know, I started playing padded, full-contact football when I was in 3rd grade, roughly 30 years ago. This past year, I lost 75 pounds and got in shape enough to put on pads once again.

All the while, I’ve worked a day job helping the elderly and the poor with their healthcare. My contributions here include this blog and a post-game wrap video. I imagine should my coaching career reach the heights I intend to climb, I’ll probably have to give up writing about this stuff and that’s okay. I’ve learned to accept the things I cannot change and change what I can if necessary. COVID-19 has changed everything. I’ll no longer accept the limitations that normal employment offers. I will seek to fulfill myself by doing what I love or I won’t do it. There, how about that, world?

I like to travel. In fact, I am comfortable in the sky. My dad was in the Navy and an air traffic controller, so my childhood was filled with flights, airshows and museum/base visits. You all know I was in the Marine Corps and on a boat, and it feels good knowing the hardest thing in football is playing well on the road in uncomfortable conditions. I like staying in new hotels, but the beds are terribly uncomfortable so it’s nothing like home. I love to sleep and hotel beds are great for naps (basically only good for a couple of hours at a time). Road trips are great if you’re looking for downtime to read. I’m trying to read more myself! I tell you all this because I’m flying American direct from Indianapolis to Charlotte this weekend to attend the AFCA (American Football Coaches Association) annual conference to start my professional coaching career.

As I understand it, most great coaches start out as a volunteer for a nearby program. Through Soldiers to Sidelines, a 501c3 aimed at putting Veterans like me on the sidelines, I’ve come to expect to attend a dinner or two this weekend with the intent to introduce myself to a college football coaching staff from within 30 minutes of my house that just went 9-2 at the Division II level. I’d love to be a fly on the wall there for the start of my career because they’re winning right now and while the game is ever-changing, starting with a program that’s winning right now is going to confirm a lot of suspicions right away, right? Winning programs tend to have the habits of winners. We’ll cross our fingers it goes half as well as we plan, right?

Sports Betting


It’s the last week of the regular season, and there are two NFL football games today. The Kansas City Chiefs -9 are on the road against the Las Vegas Raiders +9 and I expect the Chiefs will win this game going away. A spicy pick is if you think the Raiders have some extra mojo to not get humiliated at home to close their season, they’ll keep it close, but I actually think you could take both QBs away for both teams and the Chiefs are still winning this game. Right?

The Tennessee Titans +6.5 are on the road against the Jacksonville Jaguars -6.5 and while Vegas and I think the Jags are clearly the better team and should win today, I wouldn’t put it past Mike Vrabel to tell his guys to get physical with Trevor Lawrence to try to rattle his cage. Again, this is a situation if you took the QBs away from both teams, I would still expect Jacksonville to come away a winner in this game. I am less likely to pick the Jags because of Mike Vrabel and would actually pick the Titans to keep it interesting.


Look I’ll be up front with you in that these spreads are ridiculous and I’m thinking we take the underdog to keep it close a bunch. Check this out.

- The Minnesota Vikings -6 are frauds. You didn’t just read it here first.

- The New England Patriots +7.5 is disrespectful to Bill Belichick but I’ll allow it because it’s the Bills.

- The Tampa Bay Buccaneers +4 (in Atlanta) and Los Angeles Chargers +3 (in Denver) are two road underdogs I fully expect would their games were they not already locked for Playoff spots.

- The New York Jets +3 are underdogs on the road in Miami against a Dolphins team without Tua at QB. Weird, right?

- The New York Giants +14.5 are huge road underdogs against Philadelphia. I would expect this game to be closer than that if the Giants hadn’t already clinched a Wild Card spot, right?

- The Detroit Lions +5 are big road underdogs against Green Bay and I wonder — is Aaron Rodgers’ role and subsequently, the Packers’ role in the league as gatekeepers from the NFC North? Once we know there’s a troll...

Fantasy Football

All year long, I was sad because my fantasy football teams were medium-to-bad at best except for one. Now I’m in the fantasy football championship finals! I’m only mildly bummed that Saquon Barkley will most likely not play much if at all today because the Giants are locked in to the #6 seed in the NFC and have no reason to risk an injury to him. I could say the same about Lamar Jackson except he has a knee injury. Of course I’d love to have him healthy to start in the last week of the season because it suits me. Not because it’s what’s best for him. I can separate the two.

Here’s a question for you. Jerrick McKinnon or AJ Dillon at Flex?

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS)

You can get Geno Smith $6,000, Amari Cooper $6,000, Deebo Samuel $6,000, TJ Hockenson $5,700 and the Cowboys $3,900 all for good value and then build your fantasy roster out from there. Keep in mind, some teams are already locked up for Playoff spots and especially after the Damar Hamlin injury, a lot of teams aren’t going to risk injury to star players in meaningless games. These are people, after all.

Speaking of people, my wife and I record a YouTube video once a week where we try to pick the winners of each of the NFL games. Through 17 weeks this season, we are tied! Here’s this week’s video:

Additionally, our friend Mateo Caliz and I have been recording a podcast going on a year now called The Coltist where we talk about the Colts and as of about a month ago, we also talk about the Indiana Pacers. It’s a fast hour if you’re into those things. I love you all. Be well! Here: