Moneyline Monday: Best Bets for January 2

2023 got off to a fantastic start for us, thanks to the New York Giants. With the comically inept Colts providing the opposition in New York, I made the Giants the centerpiece of my plays. They didn’t disappoint, dominating in every aspect and locking up their playoff bid. With the Jaguars and Lions doing their part, that three-game parlay was the easiest win I’ve had in a while.

The Giants were far from the only stars on Sunday. The Steelers again put themselves in the playoff mix entering the season’s final week, making them an intriguing play in Week 18. At just -3 next week at home to Cleveland, Pittsburgh offers lots of value.

But we’ll think about Week 18 later. For now, we’ve got four more bowl games and some college hoops action, plus a critical NFL Monday night play. I’ll even throw in some Premier League action. Here are my plays for January 2.


On the podcast, I initially picked Illinois in this game. But after looking at it deeper, I think the defensive opt-outs for Illinois will ruin the Illini’s chances. Mississippi State wants to honor Mike Leach’s memory by airing it out and having fun, and the Illini’s secondary comes in depleted. With the Bulldogs slinging it around, Illinois likely won’t keep up.


The window of opportunity shrunk as Utah’s opt-outs took hold. The Utes will miss tight end Dalton Kincaid, and that’s going to make it difficult to get traction against a stout Penn State defense. Throw in the talented Nittany Lion backfield and Penn State’s history on Jan. 2 in Pasadena (the Nittany Lions are 2-0 ATS in the Rose on Jan. 2 and 0-2 ATS on Jan. 1), and there’s more to like with the navy and white.


During bowl season, motivation matters. That’s why betting the Group of 5 team almost always proves profitable in the New Year’s Six bowls. The G5 school usually gets a shot at a Power 5 team that doesn’t want to be there, and it often takes full advantage. In seven previous non-CFP NY6 games, the G5 team has gone 5-2 ATS and won outright three times. Only Memphis in 2019 failed to cover by more than a point, and USC’s lacking for motivation. With no Jordan Addison, the Wave have a shot.


The pressure’s on for Liverpool. The Reds dug themselves a nice hole before the World Cup, and now they’ve got work to do to return to the Champions League. They come in having won four straight, and I think they’ll be too much for what’s been a cagey Brentford side. The Bees should have value for a goal, and I think Liverpool and BTTS holds plenty of promise at +190. But for the moneyline play, taking Liverpool alone makes sense.


Until someone goes to Swisher Gym and beats them, we know what to do when the Dolphins play at home. Jacksonville has won 19 straight at home, a streak that dates back to Feb. 13, 2021. In fact, Jacksonville coach Jordan Mincy has never lost at Swisher Gym, as he was hired in the spring of 2021. Jacksonville State faces the toughest two-game trip in the ASUN this week, as the Gamecocks go from Jacksonville to visiting league power Liberty. With Jacksonville State reeling from a home loss to North Alabama, this isn’t the time to expect the Dolphins to trip at home.


There are two ways to beat the Buffalo Bills. The first blueprint belongs to the New York Jets, who smothered the Bills’ passing lanes and forced Josh Allen to find a Plan B. Option 2 belongs to the Kansas City Chiefs, who have simply outgunned the Bills with their high-powered attack. Expect Cincinnati to lean toward following the Chiefs. The Bengals don’t have the pass defense of the Jets, but they can defend the run and they can air it out. Cincinnati is the hottest team in the NFL right now, and the Bengals want to lock up the AFC North. They can do it here.


Click to comment

Leave a Reply

To Top
%d bloggers like this: