Every single fan of the New York Knicks has been extremely disappointed with the play of Amar’e Stoudemire since arriving a few seasons ago. Injury issues and inconsistent play have plagued him during his entire tenure with the team, but he seems to be showing at least a little bit of promise in the preseason so far. It is not out of the question to think that he could good together somewhat of a bounce back season in 2014-2015. If he is able to provide some decent value in fantasy basketball, the New York Knicks could be a surprising team in the Eastern conference.

It is just the preseason, but Stoudemire seems to be saying all the right things. He has been going on record saying that he feels happy and young again on the floor, and that is great news for a guy who has cost only been on the trainer’s table throughout his career. Despite all the wear and tear on his body, he is still just 31 years of age. His body is severely damaged, but it might not be broken just yet. He is never going to be that same highflying act in the paint, but he has talked about changing up his game and contributing in other ways.

The best players in the NBA are able to redefine themselves once they lose a little bit of their athleticism. Stoudemire is no longer able to dunk on the opposition at will, but he is working on his game on the other side of the ball in order to provide value on defense. New York desperately needs some inside defense now that Tyson Chandler is back in Dallas. It is still a work in progress, but he has shown some promise early on in the preseason.

On offense, Stoudemire has worked hard on his jump shot in order to space the floor it little bit more. He should be able to fit in nicely in the triangle offense if he’s able to knock down shots outside of the paint. With his career at a serious crossroads, he sees that this might be his last chance to really show that he still belongs in the NBA. For his team’s sake, hopefully he is able to have a pretty successful campaign.

Two AFC East rivals will square off this Sunday at Metlife Stadium when the New York Jets (1-6) host the Buffalo Bills (4-3). New York has lost six straight games and is coming off a tough 27-25 road loss to the New England Patriots. New York’s offense compiled 217 rushing yards against New England, but its defense could not stop Tom Brady. Running back Chris Ivory had for 107 yards and one touchdown while Geno Smith completed 20-of-34 pass attempts for 226 yards and one touchdown. New York’s defense yielded 261 passing yards and three touchdowns to Tom Brady. Expect Smith and Co. to bounce back at home against a team its had some recent success against.

The Buffalo Bills are coming off a thrilling last second 17-16 home victory over the Minnesota Vikings. Rookie wide receiver Sammy Watkins caught nine passes for 122 yards and two touchdowns. Watkins second touchdown proved to be the game winner. Buffalo lost its top two running backs, CJ Spiller and Fred Jackson to injury and will rely on Anthony Dixon and Bryce Brown to carry the rushing load. New York’s defense has only allowed 88 rushing yards per game, so expect the onus to fall on quarterback Kyle Orton, Watkins, and the rest of Buffalo’s passing attack. 

Current NFL odds list the New York Jets as 2.5 point home favorites against Buffalo. New York has won its last four home games against Buffalo, including a 27-20 win at Metlife Stadium last year. This spot is great for the Jets. Buffalo is coming off an emotional, last second home victory where it lost two of its best play makers while the Jets have been stewing over their lost to New England on Thursday Night Football. Lay the small number and select the New York Jets with your NFL Picks!

Official Pick: NY Jets -2.5 

The New York Jets (1-5), losers of five straight games, will travel to New England to face the Patriots (4-2) on Thursday Night Football. The New York Jets are coming off a rough 31-17 home loss against the Denver Broncos. Geno Smith threw two touchdown passes, but also threw a fourth quarter interception during a potential game tying drive. New York’s running backs could only muster 16 yards on 12 carries as New York’s offensive line struggled to stop Denver defenders from penetrating into the backfield. While New York had trouble running, play calling wasn’t much better. Smith’s average pass attempt traveled just 6.4 yards, which indicates a very conservative offensive approach and an offense where receivers simply cannot get open. Things will be tough when New York travels to face the upstart Patriots.

The Patriots are coming off a convincing 37-22 road victory over the Buffalo Bills. Tom Brady threw for 361 yards and four touchdowns on a bad ankle against one of the league’s better pass rushes. Wide receiver Brandon LaFell led the way with 97 yards and two touchdowns while Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman combined from 16 catches and 185 yards. The Patriots took to the air as they were unable to run the ball against Buffalo’s stout run defense. The Patriots ran for just 50 yards on 27 carries and lost running back Stevan Ridley to a knee injury.

Current NFL odds list the Patriots as 10.5 point favorites after opening as 7.5 point favorites. Expect a similar game plan from the Jets this week. The Jets put pressure on Peyton Manning and tried to make him uncomfortable. Expect them to put pressure on Brady. While 10.5 points is a lot, I expect the Jets to come out and put pressure on Brady. Take the points as the Jets try to pull the upset in New England.

Official Pick: Jets +10.5

Two teams heading in opposite directions will square off in New York during Week 6. The New York Jets (1-4) head home after a downright embarrassing 31-0 loss in San Diego to the upstart Chargers. Quarterback Geno Smith completed just 4-of-12 passes for 27 yards, no touchdowns, and one interception. San Diego held a convincing 21-0 lead at halftime and out-gained New York’s hapless offense, 303 to 60. Smith was benched in favor of Michael Vick, who wasn’t any better in relief. New York’s offense was complete inept and didn’t cross into San Diego territory until midway through the fourth quarter. Wide receiver, Eric Decker, who is nursing a hamstring injury, didn’t play. Therefore, New York’s receiving core was made up practice squad players that couldn’t win their one-on-one battles. Due to the passing attack’s inability to get going, the running game suffered. Chris Johnson lost a fumble and Ivory only garnered nine carries. New York’s defense gave up 298 yards and three touchdowns to Phil Rivers. Their secondary was once again exposed. This may be a major issue with Peyton Manning coming to town.

The Denver Broncos (3-1) came off of their bye week with a convincing 40-21 home win over the Arizona Cardinals. Peyton Manning threw for a career high 479 yards. Manning tossed two touchdowns to Demaryius Thomas, who had 229 yards, and Julius Thomas, who had 66 yards. Running back Montee Ball ran six times for seven yards and left with an injury. Needless to say, Denver’s offense didn’t miss a beat without him.

Current NFL odds list the Denver Broncos as 8-point road favorites in New York. This number seems a little low given Denver’s strength lies with its passing attack and New York’s secondary has been gashed week after week. It’s easy to overrated or underrated teams after one week, but expect Manning to have his team ready to play. New York’s offense is in complete disarray. Lay the points and take the Broncos for your NFL Picks!

Official Pick: Broncos -8

Fresh off of their 45-14 drubbing of the Washington Redskins on Thursday Night Football, the New York Giants (2-2) will host the (2-2) Atlanta Falcons on Sunday at Metlife Stadium. The much maligned Eli Manning threw for 300 yards and four touchdowns in the win over the Redskins. While Manning’s top two wide receivers, Victor Cruz and Rueben Randle, combined for 14 catches and 198 yards, Manning’s tight ends, Larry Donnell and Daniel Fells secured all four touchdown grabs. Donnell, an undrafted free agent from Grambling State, leads all tight ends with four touchdowns. Given Manning’s success through the air, the running game churned out 154 yards (4.1 YPC) en-route to the win. On defense, the Giants forced Washington QB Kirk Cousins to throw four interceptions and sacked him twice. Cousins was under constant duress and was unable to develop any sort of rhythm. Cousins shredded Philadelphia’s secondary for 427 yards and three touchdowns a week earlier, which makes this performance even more impressive for New York’s defense.

The Giants will host the Atlanta Falcons, who are coming off an embarrassing 41-28 road loss to the young and somewhat inexperienced, Minnesota Vikings. Atlanta yielded 241 rushing yards and gave way to 317 passing yards to QB Teddy Bridgewater, who was making his first career start. Atlanta was able to limited Minnesota’s most dynamic wide receiver, Cordarelle Patterson, to 38 yards, but Jarius Wright (137 yards), Jerrick McKinnon (135 yards), and Matt Asiata (three touchdowns) gashed Atlanta’s lackluster defense. On offense, Matt Ryan tossed for 298 yards and three touchdowns, but threw two interceptions. Julio Jones and Roddy White combined for 22 targets, but only secured 10 catches for 153 yards and one touchdown. 

Current NFL odds list the Giants as 4.5 point home favorites. Many New York fans remember the Giants’s home playoff win over Atlanta in 2012. The Giants utilized their 24-2 victory to jump start their Super Bowl run. Expect another spirited effort from Big Blue and especially running back, Rashad Jennings, who should thrive against Atlanta’s lackluster defense.

Official Pick: NY Giants -4.5

The New York Jets (1-2) are coming off a tough Monday Night Football loss to the Chicago Bears. Geno Smith really struggled, as he threw two interceptions and Eric Decker left early with a hamstring injury. The Detroit Lions (2-1) will look to continue their strong play when they visit New York. Detroit is coming off a home win over the Green Bay Packers. Detroit’s offense struggled, but the defense bailed them out by creating seven points off a Green Bay turnover. Running back Reggie Bush led the way for Detroit’s offense, running for 73 yards and adding one touchdown. 

Despite Smith’s struggles, running back Chris Ivory has been a huge positive for the offense. Ivory is averaging 5.7 yards per carry and adds a whole tough, physical element to New York’s offense. Running back Chris Johnson has struggled over the last two weeks, rushing for just 40 total yards. Detroit’s run defense has been very good, limiting teams to just 63 rushing yards per game. New York is even better, limiting opponents to 55 rushing yards per game.

The key to New York’s game plan will be limiting a somewhat gimpy Calvin Johnson. Historically, Johnson has played through injuries and will likely play this week’s game with a bad ankle. The Jets are unlikely to have their top corner, Dee Milliner, so any limitation to Johnson will be welcome.

Current NFL odds have the Lions listed as a 2.5 point road favorite. Despite playing on a short week, I like the Jets in this spot. Everyone has begun to write-off Geno Smith and Smith has proven he can bounce back. The Lions are a very streaky team and I’m expecting a big Jet effort on Sunday afternoon. Select the Jets with your NFL Picks today!

Official Pick: NY Jets +2.5

 

The New York Giants (0-2) are facing a must win situation in Week 3 when they host the upstart Houston Texans (2-0). The New York Giants fell apart in the second half against the Arizona Cardinals. Arizona utilized a special team touchdown to propel them to a 25-14 victory. Arizona’s starting QB, Carson Palmer, missed the game with an injury, so journeyman quarterback, Drew Stanton, started and guided Arizona to victory. Stanton hasn’t started a game in three years, but played well enough to win. Eli Manning played well, but he was plagued by numerous drops by his wide receivers. Victor Cruz dropped at least three first down throws and Rueben Randle dropped a deep post route that would have put New York in the red zone. Through their first two games, New York’s offense is averaging just 14 points while the defense is yielding 30 points per game.

New York may have a tough time scoring points on Houston’s upstart defense. Houston’s defense has allowed just ten points per game and are coming off a 30-14 drubbing of the Oakland Raiders, which was more lopsided than the final score indicates. Arian Foster rumbled for 138 yards on 28 carries while Ryan Fitzpatrick only needed complete 14 passes for 139 yards to secure the win. Through two games, Houston is the NFL’s most run-heavy team. Houston has called 43 passes and 78 runs. 

Current NFL odds have Houston slotted as a two-point favorite. While Houston has been very impressive, New York is in a must win situation. To beat Houston, New York must get out to an early lead and force Houston to throw. Houston has a dynamic pair of wide receivers in Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins, but New York’s restocked secondary should keep them at bay. Take a Big Blue for your NFL picks!

Official Pick: NY Giants +2

Fresh off their 19-14 Week 1 victory, the New York Jets will head to Green Bay to face the Packers. The Packers were embarrassed by Seattle, 36-16, on opening night. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers completed 22 of 32 passes for 189 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. Running back Ed Lacy suffered a concussion and his status is in question for this match-up. Seattle ran for 150 yards in their Week 1 over Green Bay so look for the Jets to run the ball to keep Rodgers and Co. off the field. The Jets ran for 175 yards in their Week 1 victory over the Raiders. Chris Ivory turned in the play of the day by taking a hand-off off left tackle for a 71-yard touchdown.

Oakland’s rookie quarterback, Derek Carr, completed 20-of-32 passes for 151 yards and two touchdowns against the Jets. Carr does not have Randall Cobb or Nelson at his disposal nor does he have the ability of Aaron Rodgers. Look for Rodgers and Co. to come out throwing during their home opener.

Current NFL odds list the Packers as 9.5-point home favorites. This spread seems a little light, but underdogs went 10-3 against the spread during Week 1. In addition, the Jets showed the ability  to control the clock with their run game. Expect a heavy dosage of New York’s ‘Chris Backfield’ and a cover at the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field!

Official Pick: NY Jets +9.5

The New York Jets will host the Oakland Raiders to start the 2014 NFL season. Oakland will start their rookie quarterback, Derek Carr on the road against a Rex Ryan defense. The Raiders added Maurice Jones Drew in the off-season, so he’ll likely help in the run and pass game. The Jets are dealing with a plethora of injuries to their secondary. Top cornerback Dee Millner will not play, so that should help Carr. Carr’s WR options are not great, but expect a strong first effort in his first start. 

A lot of analysts are expecting a Jet route, which I don’t see. I think the Jets win a close game by 3-5 points. Since the Jets are laying 5.5 points, I’ll take the Raiders.

NFL Pick: Raiders +5.5

If the New York Yankees (72-66) want to stay alive in the race for the second American League Wild Card berth, they’ll need to beat teams ahead of them. That task starts on Friday night when the Kansas City Royals (77-61) head to the Bronx for a three-game set. The Yankees are coming off a dramatic walk-off win yesterday against the Red Sox. The Yankees scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to pick up the series win. They’ll hand the ball to their burly RHP to keep up their momentum. RHP Michael Pineda (3-3, 2.09 ERA) will look to extend the Yankee win streak to three. Over his last four starts, Pineda has allowed two runs or fewer in each of his starts. Pineda was a ‘hard luck’ loser on Saturday, dropping a 2-0 decision to Toronto. Pineda won an earlier start against the Royals, tossing 6 1/3 innings and striking out five. Pineda is unbeaten at home this season, boasting a 2-0 record with a 1.50 ERA over three starts. 

Pineda will be opposed by RHP James Shields (12-7, 3.38 ERA). Alike Pineda, Shields was a tough luck loser last Saturday against Cleveland. Shields allowed just one run over seven innings as his team dropped a 3-2 decision. Two weeks ago, the Yankees tagged Shields for six runs and ten hits over 6 2/3 innings. Knowing how compeitive Shields is, he’ll want revenge.

Current MLB odds list the Yankees as a home favorite (-125). Despite being favored, I like Kansas City in this spot. The Yankees are coming off an emotional walk off win over the Red Sox and Derek Jeter’s number will be retired on Sunday. Expect Shields to have a big outing to propel his team to victory.

MLB Pick: KC Royals -ML