Griffin’s confidence doesn’t make Washington a safe bet with its win total

Posted: June 3, 2013 in NFL
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A little less than a month ago I was here talking about NFL win futures, and at the time, the Washington Redskins sported an over/under number of 9. As of Monday afternoon, the Redskins were down to 8.5 wins at Sportbook.com with the under being a -150 favorite, and the comeback price on the over at +120.

It doesn’t surprise me one bit, as I think the Under is a solid play.

I’m pretty sure players, coaches and the media have noticed somewhat of a different atmosphere around camp this offseason, after last year’s playoff run, but I’m skeptical about the expectations being a bit too high with this team, and that 2013-14 will be more of a letdown.

As I said last month, I believe one of the biggest question marks of this coming season would be with the Redskins, because of Robert Griffin III’s knee surgery. And while all the reports have been positive, and he seems to be enjoying a positive-spin campaign with his endorsements, I’m not convinced we have another Adrian Peterson situation on our hands. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Griffin takes a step backward this year.

I spoke to one of the leading physical therapists in Las Vegas for perspective on Griffin’s injury, and according to him the second time an athlete has an injury like this you’re looking at a longer recovery time.

“I think the first year he comes back is a tough year,” said Joe Rainone, of Tim Soder Physical Therapy, home to many Las Vegas-based pro athletes. “He’s going to have a hard time with that knee. He’s got to get used to a brand new knee, and not being able to cut on that knee as much as he (used to).

“I think the second surgery definitely has an effect on his longevity.”

Rainone did say it’s realistic we could see Griffin ready to roll by opening week of the regular season, as Griffin should be running at four months, into functional training at five months and six months pretty much good enough to do whatever you want to do for a full recovery.

“Because of the LCL it may be delayed marginally; usually the LCL will heal quicker than the ACL,” Rainone said. “The ACL is usually 6-to-8 month’s recovery.”

Rainone explained that Griffin is going to have to get used to working on virtually an entirely different knee.

“Mechanically there’s a different feel to the knee when they get it done, and that’s the thing you worry about,” said Rainone, who has worked with several MLB players who reside in Las Vegas during the off-season. “Adrian Peterson is unusual. AP came back and had the best year of his life. You usually don’t see that. Athletes at that level are pretty confident, but there’s always that self-consciousness they get when they cut on that. Mentally, up front, they think ‘I feel fine’ But in the back of the brain, they’re saying: ‘there’s something a little different feeling than there was before.’

“(Griffin) may be apprehensive, and he may lose a little something the second time around.”

Obviously, his upper body strength won’t suffer, nor will his ability to throw the football. It’s all about cutting on his knee, and putting stress on it each time on the field. Will he be able to cut? Yes. But will he be as effective? I say probably not. At least not this coming season.

And because so much has been put into him as the franchise player, I’m taking the Redskins Under.

EARLY SUPER BOWL LINE – As of June 3, the early line on Super Bowl XLVIII has the AFC -1 over the NFC with a total of 50.5 points. AFC Favorites are 12-8 ATS all time in the Super Bowl. But after last February’s setback by the 49ers, favorites are 22-21-2 ATS in the Super Bowl, and are mired in a 3-8 ATS run. Also, make note that when the line is ranges from even to -3 points, the favorites in the game are just 3-7 ATS.

TIM TEBOW – Back in May I scoured the Internet for interesting NFL-related wagers, and I found Sportsbook.com was offering lines on whether or not – and where – the devout Christian will play football. The lines (back on May 10) were: signs with an NFC team +120, signs with an AFC team +100, signs with a CFL +500, signs with an Arena Football team +1000, and, doesn’t sign a pro contract to play the 2013 season +200.

As of June 3, those props have disappeared and the only one I can find related to Tebow were how many Twitter followers he would have on June 30, 2013 at Noon eastern. The number is set at 2,305,200, with the Under a -140 favorite, and the Over bringing back even money.

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