Aaron Rodgers adds to his MVP argument | The best Breeders\' Cup betting tips

Create: 2020-11-06
Update: 2020-11-06
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Friday, November 6, 2020
IT'S FRIDAY! Has this week felt particularly long to anyone else? While I'm excited it's almost the weekend, I am sad this will be my last newsletter with you guys for the week before Pete Blackburn crawls out of his hole in Boston and returns. He will make his return after a week of streaming his video game failures on Twitch.
I hope you all have some fun (and safe) plans this weekend. I'll be switching between sports and reality TV all weekend. Yes, I admit I watch that trash, so I see lots of snacks and sitting on the couch in my future. Living the dream right?!
Speaking of sports, that's what this newsletter is all about, so let's jump right in.
📰 What you need to know
1. Packers crush injured 49ers on Thursday Night Football 🏈
It's the Thursday Night Football game that almost wasn't. The now 6-2 Green Bay Packers beat the now 4-5 San Francisco 49ers, 34-17, in an empty Levi's Stadium. Between injuries and players out due to COVID-19 concerns, both squads were a shell of their usual selves. But despite missing pieces, the Packers still made it look easy and QB Aaron Rodgers added to his MVP argument.
Rodgers helped his team bounce back from a surprising loss to the Vikings, going 25-31 for 305 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions.
Meanwhile, the 49ers have struggled with injuries all season and are currently have $80 million tied up with players currently on Injured Reserve, including quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Bosa and Richard Sherman. The absence of stars was apparent in the the team's loss and they just couldn't keep up with the Packers.
Our Tyler Sullivan has a complete breakdown of the game, and here a look at the conclusions he came to:
Why the Packers won
  • Aaron Rodgers
  • Didn't turn the ball over and scored 10 points off San Fran turnovers
  • Committed limited penalties
Why the Niners lost
  • Injuries, injuries and more injuries
  • Red zone struggles
  • Not enough experienced players to go toe-to-toe with Packers
2. Breeders' Cup betting tips 🏇
Horse racing isn't over for the year yet! The Breeders' Cup Classic is scheduled to run on Saturday evening in Kentucky, and the field features some names you've definitely heard of.
Improbable, trained by Bob Baffert, is the 5-2 morning line favorite. Belmont Stakes winner Tiz the Law follows at 3-1 odds, with Maximum Security next at 7-2. Kentucky Derby Winner Authentic (6-1) and Tom's d'Etat (6-1) round out the top 5. 
But enough about who is in the race. What we are really here for is to tell you how to gamble on the event. As always, SportsLine has us covered with their expert picks and best bets:
  • Hammerin' Hank Goldberg says Tiz the Law has his best races behind him and isn't using the horse on any of his tickets. Here are all of Hammerin' Hank's picks.
  • National handicapping champion Jonathon Kinchen's resume is proof of his expertise. He nailed the Pick 6 in last year's Breeders' Cup, which paid almost $56,000 for $1, and took home $90,000 on the day. Kinchen is fading Maximum Security and is not putting the horse on his tickets. Check out the rest of his picks here.
3. The projected best 68 college basketball teams 🏀
The time has come. It is now officially "preview the 2020-21 college basketball season" season, and CBS Sports is of course getting in on the fun.
Our very own Matt Norlander spent countless hours ranking every men's D-I team, narrowing down the top list as he went along. He presents us with his top 68 teams heading into the season, along with countless storylines he sees coming. He also wrote about title contenders, bounce-back stories, feel-good stories, you-don't-know-how-good-they-are-yet stories, too-hard-to-slot stories, Sweet 16 stories and many, many more, for what will no doubt be a unique season.
Here are his top 10 teams:
  1. Villanova
  2. Gonzaga
  3. Baylor
  4. Illinois
  5. Virginia
  6. Kansas
  7. West Virginia
  8. Wisconsin
  9. Iowa
  10. Kentucky
Check out the full rankings here.
4. Breaking down the NFL's new playoff proposal 🏈
So you're telling me there's a chance?! If your team is currently on the cusp of making the NFL playoffs, you might just be in luck. A COVID-19 contingency plan has been proposed by the competition committee to expand the playoffs to 16 teams this season, opposed to the 14-team postseason in place for this year (Jets fans, sorry, there is still no hope for you.)
Now, this is just a proposal at the moment, but the NFL is likely to make this change if they lose games due to COVID-19. Let's take a deeper look at what is on the table
  • Seeding change: Instead of having division winners automatically get to host a playoff game, NFL.com reported the teams would be seeded by winning percentage. This means the "best" teams would be awarded the home game rather than a winner of a weak division. (We're looking at you NFC East). So every division winner would still get a playoff spot, just not a first-round home game.
  • Bye bye, postseason bye: The proposal would also completely get rid of the postseason bye for this season. This year, under the 14-team format, two teams would earn a bye. The playoff format in place from 1990-2019 gave four teams a bye, two from each conference.
📝 Odds & Ends
  • The NBPA has tentatively approved ownership's proposal for the 2020-21 NBA season, with a start date of Dec. 22, according to reports
  • Alex Cora is in the final two for the Red Sox's manager search 
  • Trey Machini is back in the batting cage shortly after finishing treatment for stage 3 colon cancer
  • MLB Silver Slugger Awards 2020Mike Trout wins his eighth honor, Braves tally four winners
📺 What to watch this weekend
🏈 No. 9 BYU vs. No. 21 BSU, 9:45 p.m. | BSU +3.5 | TV: FS1
🏈 No. 23 Michigan vs. Indiana, 12 p.m. | Indiana +3 | TV: FS1
🏈 No. 8 Florida vs. No. 5 Georgia, 3:30 p.m. | Georgia -3.5 | TV: CBS
🏇 Breeders' Cup, 5:13 p.m. | Improbable 5-2 | TV: NBC
🏈 Seahawks vs. Bills, 1 p.m. | BUF +3 | TV: FOX 
🏈 Ravens vs. Colts, 1 p.m. | IND +5 | TV: CBS
🏈 Saints vs. Buccaneers, 8:20 p.m. | TB -4.5 | TV: NBC
📝 Top scores from last night
🏈 Packers 34, 49ers 17
Aaron Rodgers records four touchdowns and helped advance his team to 6-2 with a win over the 49ers.
College Football Playoff hopes are on the line, as No. 8 Florida and No. 5 Georgia square off in a game that carries local, regional and national ramifications. Watch live on CBS and the CBS Sports App on Saturday at 3:30 PM ET!
Learn More
The NFL on CBS returns with a stacked Week 9 slate featuring some of the best AFC teams and most interesting story lines. Stream your local game live on CBS All Access!
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