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Initially built by NASA to set lines for the Las Vegas casinos in the late 50’s (who do you think funded the Apollo missions? The government? It was the mob…), The Sin City Betbot 6000 calculated lines for over 30 years. The Betbot was given various upgrades through the years, not always with the best equipment, but he was very good at setting lines, and living the good life.

The Betbot was de-commissioned in 1990 after San Francisco destroyed Denver in the Super Bowl. The 45 point spread simply fried a number of the Betbot’s wires and he retired. The Betbot was discovered by Fantasysharks.com and retooled to give fantasy advice. He lives now to help your team with deeper sleepers to start each week.

The Betbot’s column is transcribed each week by Chris Dolfi, Joe Petrizzi and Tom Walls, because, “Typing is a dame’s BZZZT job.”

QB
Eli Manning – NYG – Look, I don’t like to tout this whiny chump any more than you like hearing about it, but sometimes you have to overlook your personal feelings for the sake of your fantasy team. Let’s examine the best Eli has to offer – he’s young, he has a strong arm, some great weapons like Plaxico Burress, Amani Toomer, and Jeremy Shockey, and he has Tiki Barber to keep defenses honest. No, he doesn’t make the best decisions and of course you have to come to grips with the idea of starting the poster child for smarmy, spoiled brats. But the Giants’ upcoming schedule features …BZZZT… several defenses that simply do not contain the passing game – St. Louis, Dallas, San Francisco, Minnesota… It’s tough to ignore tasty matchups like that if you need QB help.

RB
Tatum Bell – DEN – Sometimes you have to take chances in life. As a robot built specifically to gamble, I’m a bit more aggressive than most fantasy pundits out there. Bell may end up on the waiver wire in leagues where owners fall in love with Mike Anderson. Don’t fall for it. If there’s two people that you shouldn’t get too excited about, it’s a 32 year old RB with a nagging rib injury and a middle aged dye job in a cocktail dress. Sure, Anderson busted a 44 yard TD in prime time against the Chiefs, but other than that he’s done a whole lotta nuthin’ this season. Meanwhile, Bell keeps getting his carries and making the most of them – he sports a 5.2 ypc on 18 attempts this year. Last season Mike Shanahan toyed with Bell all season long until it was clear that …BZZZT… Rueben Droughns couldn’t handle the load – Bell started to see more action as the season went on. This is a good time to stash Bell away on the roster and lay in wait.

Najeh Davenport – GB – Ahman Green’s struggles have been well documented. Not only has Green not crossed the 100 yard barrier since last year, Green has also never gone #2 in someone’s laundry. Davenport may not have run for 100 yards in a game yet, either, but his ability to befoul other people’s clothing is above reproach. The Packers will soon be out of contention this season, and when that time comes expect Davenport to see a lot more carries – Green Bay will want to see what he can do since he’ll be a free agent after this year. I’m specifically looking at the …BZZZT… Detroit Lions game on December 11th in prime time. Also, Ahman Green spent a lot of time last year nursing injuries – if he gets nicked up this year expect GB to urge him to sit on the bench and give Najeh a shot. Seriously, he can’t do any worse than Green right now.

WR
Chris Henry – CIN – He’s a rookie in an explosive offense, which is enough for you to know to put him on your radar after consecutive games with 4 receptions. As far as I can tell, the whole Travis Henry suspension was because Travis violated the league’s …BZZZT… drug policy, not because his last name was Henry. That’s good news for Chris because the Bengals schedule is so ridiculously easy there will be more than enough balls to go around. Texans, Titans, Packers – Cincy is looking ripe for some yummy fantasy production going forward. At 6-4, 200 lbs. he has pretty good size. He’s a third receiver so don’t get too crazy just yet, but …BZZZT… Carson Palmer will be sure to give him lots of chances if he continues to make plays in the end zone like he did against the Bears last week.

TE
Ernie Conwell – NO – If I can go off on a tangent here, how many times do we have to hear the same rehashed lines from Chris Berman already? “Ernie Conwell and the young rumblers”? Just mix it up a bit man. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of Mr. Berman, he just needs to turn off the cruise control. How about the Ernie Gordon-Conwell Seminary or the Ernie Russell Conwell Society? If Conwell continues to post decent fantasy numbers I’ll consider starting a society in his name – there’s a lot to like about a TE who can bring 3-6 receptions and 60-80 yards to the table every week with the occasional touchdown. Besides, I’ve scored …BZZZT… plenty of rich dames that hang out with these “society” types and the whole thing is a big sham. It’s just an excuse for rich people to play dress up every other week and pat themselves on the back in December for being such great humanitarians. Of course, rich folks have to figure out something to do with their time. The alternative is spending $4000 on a set of rims for their Cadillac Escalade, and really only …BZZZT… rap stars and athletes need that kind of bling.

K
Jay Feely – NYG – Wow, what a great name. I bet Jay takes a lot of teasing from his friends when they hit the strip clubs. You can tell a lot from a name – for example as my name is BetBot you know that I’m a robot with knowledge of gambling. Along the same lines, you know Jay Feely is obviously a …BZZZT… dangerous man who needs to stay away from your wife or girlfriend because he can’t keep his hands to himself. But I digress. Sometimes the best fantasy kickers don’t enjoy working for great offenses. As you know, it’s also valuable if a team can move the ball into FG range regularly but fail to score a TD. The Giants‘ offense isn’t exactly a juggernaut, but as I mentioned in the Eli Manning blurb, they have some talent and some …BZZZT… nice matchups on the horizon. Feely has converted 5 of 5 field goals on the year and 11 of 11 extra points. Remember also that Feely had a monster 32 FG year in 2002 with Atlanta, although that was aided by the favorable dome situation.

D/ST
San Francisco 49ers – I’m not going to spend too much time on the Niners defense except to say this: they have an underrated defensive line that can generate pressure and they’ll be playing Josh McCown in …BZZZT… prime time this Sunday in Mexico City. Look for the Niners to add to their 11 sacks on the season as the pitiful ‘Zona offensive line practices their Spanish. Ole!

Tecmo Super Bowl Tip of the Week
Blocking Field Goals – One of the interesting mini-games people play in TSB is trying to block the computer’s extra points. Because defensive players also line up to block the FG, the only players with a real chance to shoot the gap and block the FG are just over the center. An outside linebacker takes this position, you’ll need a speedy guy in EXCELLENT condition – the only two who really have a consistent chance are Lawrence Taylor and Derrick Thomas. The trick is to run …BZZZT… diagonal into the center-guard gap right at the snap and then run directly at the kicker. Do not bother jumping - with LT you can actually get to the FG holder before the kicker does. I’ve seen fools try coming around the top with a speedy DB but it doesn’t work. Lots of people claim to have done it but those are the same chumps who claim to have knocked a goalie off his feet in Sega Genesis Hockey. Lying sacks – the goalies don’t actually have feet, they’re floating boulders of …BZZZT… destruction. They can’t be knocked down.

Feedback Loop
I can’t believe you actually have a forum for this nonsense! All you do is pick a bunch of obscure players and hope they get lucky and score some playing time. Deeper sleepers? Sounds to me like you’re just guessing. I don’t know why Tony wastes his server space with this junk.

-Carl J., Lubbock, TX

There are two ways I can answer this question.

Answer #1: Luck has a lot to do with having a good fantasy football season, Carl. But it’s not just good fortune when you put your team in position to benefit from a lucky break – stocking a fantasy roster with backup players who have potential is what smart fantasy players do. There’s a …BZZZT… big difference between wasting a roster spot on Aaron Stecker instead of a useful player like Kevin Curtis. I was telling you about Curtis two weeks ago, and looky here – now everyone wants a piece of the action. Loyal BetBot readers won’t have a waiver wire fight for Curtis this week since he’s already on the roster waiting to step into the starting lineup. Did I get lucky because Isaac Bruce went down? Sure. All I’m doing here is finding players who are in the best position to make an impact and letting you know about them. I wouldn’t call that guessing.

Answer #2: You’re right, Carl, you figured it out. It’s all luck. But consider that I’m the robot who set betting lines for over 30 years and has since been blacklisted from playing video poker at pretty much every casino on the Vegas strip. Just two weeks ago I found a $100 chip under some old bar receipts, and four hours later I turned it into a couple G’s playing craps down at Bally’s. So I figure those nerds at NASA built me to be pretty lucky. I stopped …BZZZT… trying to explain it years ago after Frank opened his set at the Sands with his cover “Luck Be a BetBot Tonight”. I’ve always been lucky by design. This is why I spend evenings in my comped luxury suite, sipping Martinis in the company of leggy showgirls - and you pass out alone on the couch in your mother’s basement. Now which of us do you want finding hidden gems to make your starting lineup?