Pigskins and Ponies: Two Live NFL Underdogs, Los Alamitos Play


If you like betting both football and horse racing, you've come to the right place!

Each week in Pigskins and Ponies you'll find analysis and key football bets from Payne Insider and Todd Fuhrman plus racing picks from Jose Contreras.

Professional bettor Payne Insider and former oddsmaker Todd Fuhrman are founders of Bet the Board, a cutting edge sports betting company focused on written and digital content. You can listen to Bet The Board podcast every Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday during football season on iTunes and Soundcloud.

Handicapper Jose Contreras is an analyst for horse racing network TVG and a regular contributor to America's Best Racing.

Get this week's picks below, and be sure to check back for new selections each week. Happy betting!


Oregon vs. Utah Under 21.5 First Half (-110):

This investment is based on multiple factors, but none more vital than the weather at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara Friday night. With winds north of 20 mph and gusts higher, along with the style of play for both offenses (run first); we could see this game start slow. Both defensive units rank inside the Top 20 in overall efficiency, and for those that believe Justin Herbert will have success through the air on this Utes secondary; the Ducks don’t have the talent at receiver like USC has. The full game total dropped from 51 to 45.5, but the first half number above three touchdowns still provides value.

UL Lafayette +7 (-115) @ Appalachian State:

This is a rematch of last year’s Sun Belt championship game, and we think it goes differently than a season ago.  The Ragin’ Cajuns should get back their starting nose tackle, linebacker, and safety for this game, while Appalachian State could be without defensive back Ryan Huff. ULL will also be arriving to the championship game on Thursday, a much different approach from its past two defeats when they left Friday. Coach Billy Napier called the past two trips a “logistical nightmare,” so he smartly adjusted. ULL should keep this close with its running style on offense and the potential for big plays deep. Grab the Ragin’ Cajuns +7.

Cincinnati +8.5 @ Cleveland:

Two teams that had signature games last week but for drastically different reasons. The Bengals, desperate for a win, inserted Andy Dalton back into the lineup and put a “1” in the win column after their home victory over the New York Jets. Cleveland, after jumping out to a 10-0 lead, blew a game in Pittsburgh that all but buried their playoff hopes. QB Baker Mayfield is also dealing with a finger injury on his throwing hand that’s caused him to not throw at practice multiple days this week. Additionally, Cincinnati speedster John Ross is back and the Bengals have been talking about how important his presence is his and how their goal is to pick up the team’s first division win. FoxBet.com opened +10.5, and pro bettors pounced immediately believing the Bengals keep this well within the number.

Tennessee @ Oakland +3:

This number moved out from Tennessee -1 to -3 before Oakland money started to enter the market. There might not be two teams in the playoff picture with drastically different public perception than the Titans and Raiders. Despite Oakland winning the box score battle against the Chiefs (better YPP, more yards), they lost the turnover margin by three and had 12 penalties compared with zero for the Chiefs. Tennessee has been the benefactor of playing a corpse in Jacksonville and Adam Vinatieri last week. While Tennessee is improved with QB Ryan Tannehill, this number at 3 is too much to pass on. Grab the Raiders at +3.

Best Bet: [107] UL Lafayette +7 (-115)


For this series, I will be looking for one key horse to single in a Pick 3 in hopes of cashing a profitable exotic wager. The budget will be in the $20 range and will keep track of ROI each week. This week’s key horse:

Saturday, Dec. 7

Los Alamitos Race Course, Race 7, Grade 1 Starlet Stakes, 6:38 p.m. ET 

#3 Donna Veloce: She did everything but win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies when losing by a neck to the talented British Idiom. That was her first try against winners and her first try at this distance. She proved her debut was no fluke, and I think she’s going to improve off of that race. Her main rival, Bast, should take plenty of support given that she was part of the pace in that race and held on for third. Donna Veloce has been training on this track in her last two workouts, and I think that should benefit her to get more comfortable with her surroundings.

$1 Pick 3 ticket:

Race 7: 3

Race 8: 1,2,3,4,8

Race 9: 4,6,9,10,11

Total: $20

Total Wagered: $260

Total Returned: $44.75

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