Webb Simpson, a two-time winner last year, carded a six-under 65 and is alone in second place. Harrison Frazar, Kevin Na, Chez Reavie, Derek Lamely and Jarrod Lyle are tied for third after posting five-under 66s.
The start of the first round at TPC Scottsdale was delayed one hour by frost. The round was suspended by darkness at 8:05 p.m. (et) and will resume Friday 9:30 a.m. (et). The second round will start as scheduled at 9:30 a.m.
Palmer and Simpson both started their rounds on the back nine. Palmer poured in a 14-footer for birdie on the 10th. He birdied both par-fives, 13 and 15, to move to minus-three.
That run of three straight birdies gave Palmer a two-stroke lead. His run ended on the seventh, where he tripped to a bogey to cut his margin to one. Palmer two-putted for par on the final two holes to cap his round.
"I had two great days preparing on Tuesday and Wednesday," said Palmer, who missed the cut in his first two events this year. "Getting the old putter back out, and getting the old feelings I've had in the past, the way the swing feels and the way the body feels, it was set up for a good day today."
Around the turn, Simpson sank a 12-footer for birdie on one and moved atop the leaderboard as he stuffed his approach inside a foot on the second.
"I really didn't feel like I hit a bad shot. I hit a chip that released a lot more than I thought it would, but other than that it was solid," Simpson said. "I think the thing that kind of held me in there all day was my putting. I made a bunch of putts, so I'm excited about that."
Two-time winner Phil Mickelson posted a three-under 68 and is tied for 19th. That was his first sub-par opening round of the year.
Doha, Qatar (Sportsbook Betting Lines) - The heavy wind that sent scores soaring in round one, became too much in round two. The second round of the Qatar Masters was suspended on Friday due to high winds and unplayable conditions at Doha Golf Club. Officials shortened the championship to 54 holes.
“You play to win the game!”
Those are the words of notoriously intense head coach Herman Edwards. Unfortunately, from a bettors’ perspective, most coaches don’t feel that way about the NFL preseason. August is a time to evaluate young players, finalize the depth chart and pray your star players stay healthy.
The trick to making money during the exhibition schedule is identifying coaches – like Edwards – who can’t stand losing even when there's nothing on the line.
The New York Jets betting won 15 of 21 preseason games and went 14-7 against the spread (ATS) during Edwards’s five-year tenure with the club. In his first season as the Kansas City Chiefs field boss, the team improved from 0-4 to 2-2.
Identifying win-a-holics like Edwards is a good start if you plan betting the preseason – even though most say you shouldn’t ... but what the hell do they know anyway?
Here’s a brief rundown of two teams that have a habit of winning during the second-stringers’ season, and another club that has a good chance of exceeding this year.
Playing in the media hub of North America can be stressful but the press can’t write anything negative about the way Tom Coughlin’s boys play in the preseason. The Giants won and covered all four games last summer, improving their record to 7-1 both straight up (SU) and against the spread over the last two years.
Coughlin has shown he’s not afraid to give his starters more time in the second preseason game than most of his colleagues, no doubt one of the reasons his team has been so dominant.
Bettors can count on America’s team early on. The Cowboys are 14-6 both SU and ATS since 2002 in warm-up contests. Former coach Bill Parcells, the coach of the team the last four years, has an intimidating, in-your-face presence – surely a reason Dallas has had so much early success.
The Big Tuna won’t be strolling the sidelines with looks of disgust, but new coach Wade Phillips will be anxious to make a good first impression for owner Jerry Jones.
Dallas plays the Indianapolis Colts and the Denver Broncos before things get serious. They then face the Houston Texans in their third contest (the game starters see most game time) and finish off with the Minnesota Vikings.
Expect a Dallas team able to walk away with another 3-1 preseason record.
This team scored a league-worst 12 offensive touchdowns last season, so the rookies and veterans each have something to prove. There’s a bounty of first-unit jobs up for grabs and plenty of bodies competing for those slots.
First-time head coach Lane Kiffin will be eager to impress an owner who employs the philosophy, “Just win, baby!”
The 32-year-old Kiffin has to command respect from a locker room full of players older than him. All of these factors should lead to purpose in preseason.
Don’t forget: before playing like a team that belonged in NFL Europe, Oakland went 4-1 (both SU and ATS) in exhibition games.
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LaDainian Tomlinson Favorite to be 2007 NFL MVP
With the first NFL preseason game less than two weeks away, it is time to start thinking about football once again at MySportsbook.com. Reigning NFL MVP LaDainian Tomlinson is currently the 5-1 co-favorite to win the award again alongside Super Bowl MVP Peyton Manning.
This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone after his all out assault on the record books last season. For those suffering from amnesia or were under a rock last football season, all L.T. did last season was set the NFL record for rushing touchdowns (28), total touchdowns (31) and total points scored (186) to go along with his 1815 rushing yards and 508 receiving yards. At 6-1, Tom Brady is next in line which isn’t surprising considering all of the firepower the Pats added over the off-season. With the addition of Randy Moss, Donte Stallworth and Wes Welker; it would be quite difficult for Brady’s numbers not to improve from last years 3529 yards and 24 touchdowns. There appears to be some decent value in Drew Bees at 10-1 considering he probably would have won the award last year if it wasn’t for L.T.’s record breaking season.
There is no reason to think the Saints will come back to earth this season and playing in a weak NFC, they should have as good a shot as any to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. At 15-1, Donovan McNabb could also be worth a look. Remember, many felt he was the MVP of the first half of the season before going down with a season ending injury. Reportedly, he is in great shape and well ahead of schedule to return to form. Also, he could have some added motivation to put up big numbers this season with the Eagles using their first pick in the draft on McNabb’s future successor Kevin Kolb.
Be sure to log on to MySportsbook.com to check out the complete odds for NFL MVP as well as all of the new football related futures. With the popularity of NFL futures, these betting lines will be sure to change as the money comes in; get the early sports lines now.
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