5-at-10: Fat Friday mailbag with Super Bowl props, trade deadline talk, unbreakable sports records

AP photo by Ross D. Franklin / NFL quarterbacks Jalen Hurts of the Philadelphia Eagles, left, and Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs speak to the media during "Super Bowl LVII Opening Night" on Monday in Phoenix. The teams will play Sunday in nearby Glendale.

Happy Super Friday, friends. Let's get to some business.

You still have the rest of today to enter our Super Duper Props Drop, our Super Bowl contest, and entering is easy. And free. Just email you answer to the following 10 actual NFL prop bets for the Super Bowl between Kansas City and Philadelphia. The player with the most right out of the first nine with the 10th question serving as a tie-breaker with Price is Right rules in effect.

Winner gets lunch on me. Deal? Deal.

1. Super Bowl MVP.

2. First player to score a TD.

3. Over/under 49.5 total points.

4. Longest TD play over/under 40.5 yards.

5. Chris Stapleton's National Anthem over/under 125 seconds.

6. Coin toss heads or tails.

7. Rihanna's first song in the halftime performance.

8. Last player to score a TD.

9. Color of Gatorade used on the victorious coach.

10. Patrick Mahomes total rushing yards in the Super Bowl.


(Side note: The deadline is today because there's no telling how much attention my email will receive this weekend. Deal? Deal.)

Let's roll some Rushmores:

Rushmore of Joe Pesci -- "Goodfellas" (which is much better than "Casino" in my book), "Home Alone," "My Cousin Vinny" and "Raging Bull." Visor tip, Joe. That's a sound career, and he turned in one of the better acting jobs in the overrated "JFK," as well.

Rushmore of best all-time draft picks -- First, I love the draft, you know this. But the more I got to thinking about this, the more I questioned "best" here. For example, was Tom Brady at 199 overall the best draft pick of all time or the luckiest draft pick of all time? Conversely, taking Peyton Manning 1 overall, which seems like a no brainer now, was anything but because more than a few folks were hyping Ryan Leaf to the nth degree. So let's do best first-round picks and best late-round value. Deal? Deal. Best first-round picks -- Manning, LT, Barry Sanders and Aaron Donald. Best value picks -- Brady at 199, Drew Brees at 33, Montana at 82 and Staubach at 129. (There are others, like Favre in round 2 or Unitas in round 10, but they were drafted by teams that gave up on them and starred elsewhere. Side question for the group: In a sports world that loves the "what if" game, what if the Falcons had not bailed on Brett Favre after one booze-filled rookie season in the ATL?)

Rushmore of Brooks -- Brooks Robinson, Mel Brooks, Garth Brooks and Herb Brooks.

Rushmore of Spencer -- Spencer's the freaky store we'd all stop in at the mall (ask your parents) back in the day, Spencer for Hire, Spencer Williams (he played Andy in the comedy duo "Amos & Andy") and Spencer Tracy, who edged out Spencer Paschall, David Paschall's youngest.

To the bag.

From DougDyer

Jay- question for your mailbag : With the new 12 team playoff around the corner. What SEC schools, due to program, resources, tradition, fan expectation and fan "unreal" expectation are going to feel like if their school does NOT make the playoff will consider it a failure for that season? My guess would be Bama, LSU, Texas, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Auburn, Georgia and Florida. And do you think this could lead to a lot of fired coaches and these schools either turning down lesser bowls, mass opt outs of lesser bowls, and what other unintended consequences? And what will be acceptable? Going every year, every other year, once every three years ?


Hard to know what to project in terms of expectations, since as you noted, a lot of times those expectations are not based in reality of the moment as much as they are anchored in the wants of the fan base.

Because, unless Arch Manning is a bona fide dude (or more his uncles than his daddy in the Manning realm), the only three programs on the list above that have true playoff hopes in my view for the next handful of years are Bama, Georgia and LSU next year.

Tennessee's huge step in 2022 was because of Hendon Hooker's magic in a lot of ways. Can Heupel and Milton and the new crew replicate that? Maybe, but realistic expectations point to a step or two backward before putting the playoff-or-bust tag on each season in August.

I think the money at stake will make coaches come and go quickly, and that's as much about the fiscal as it is the feelings.

Auburn can more afford to pay well into eight figures for Bryan Harsin to go away than it can afford half-empty Saturdays at Jordan-Hare. And that's the town as well as the school.

Auburn proper's main industry is Auburn football. Period. So the expenditures are as critical as the expectations.

I'd bet the leaders at the SEC office have already held a couple of off-the-record conversations about teams skipping bowls and how that would be frowned upon, and could even result in losing parts of the annual bowl share, which is the collection of all the SEC bowl revenue (minus expenses) that is divided 15 ways currently (one to each program and one to the league office).

As for the opt outs, sure that will happen more and more frequently because first- or second-day draft picks have too much at stake to blow out a knee in Shreveport.

As far as acceptable in terms of playoff appearances, well, the big dogs in the room -- Bama and Georgia will be expecting at least every other year.

I think the rest would be reasonable considering the expenses being bandied about to be contending for the field every other year or every third year, extended circumstances notwithstanding.

Great question.

From EM

Jumping on UNLV and WestVa, but lines on Fan Duel are always changed by the time I read you.

UNLV -3.5 and WVa -3.5.

Who do you use?



You make a fair point, and I will try to make sure to include the service I am using when posting the lines.

Sometimes though, since my picks and copy have to be in around 2 p.m. and they don't find your inbox until 5, there will be some fluctuation.

That said, both of those landed safely, as did Purdue rolling Iowa last night. We missed on Morehead State, however. So we split Thursday. It was a 6-3 though, which we'll assuredly take.

Thanks for playing along EM, and glad the emails are finding you.

From Mike

Who is your money on Sunday? Who are you cheering for?


My picks will be in today's afternoon Plays of the Day email, but I've already said I'm on the under in the anthem and like Mahomes for MVP. In fact, here's my Super Duper Prop Drop entry:

1. Super Bowl MVP -- Mahomes

2. First player to score a TD -- Travis Kelce

3. Over/under 49.5 total points -- over

4. Longest TD play over/under 40.5 yards -- over

5. Chris Stapleton's National Anthem over/under 125 seconds -- under

6. Coin toss heads or tails -- tails never fails

7. Rihanna's first song in the halftime performance -- "Work" (and yes, Hamp, I had to look that up, too.)

8. Last player to score a TD -- DeVonta Smith

9. Color of Gatorade used on the victorious coach -- Red

10. Patrick Mahomes total rushing yards in the Super Bowl -- 13.

As for cheering, I am rooting for my bets first and foremost.

But as for a side, I am backing the Eagles because my buddy Kevin is a huge Philly sports fan and he's had a rough go of it lately, so an Eagles win would make his Sunday.

I think both these teams are likable to be honest.

From Justin

The NBA moves at the deadline were crazy. What trade deadline move had the most impact in your opinion?


Great question Justin, and in this cycle, it has to be Kevin Durant.

While I hope it's Kyrie and that he and Luka can make a deep run, the Suns added the game's most unguardable one-on-one player and now has a Big Four -- KD, Chris Paul, Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton -- that makes them the favorite in the West.

Big picture, though, while a lot of us remember the boost Fred McGriff gave the Braves at the trading deadline in the 1990s, the biggest trade deadline acquisition for me was when the Cubs added Rick Sutcliffe from Cleveland in 1984.

All Sutcliffe did was go 16-1 down the stretch as the Cubs made an improbable run to the NLCS.

From FS

So your boy LeBron is now the all-time scoring king and if he plays two more years, he will go north of 40,000 like you said (Wednesday).

Would that be the most unbreakable record in sports in your opinion?

Thanks and I love the 5@10.


LeBron getting to 40,000 -- and beyond -- will be a tall, tall order for someone to top.

So, if a player played every game of his career and averaged 25 per night, he'd get to 40,000 midway through his 19th NBA season.

That does not seem all that feasible to me.

But in terms of all-time unbreakable, well, that seems way more doable than so many other longevity records that will never be touched because of the different styles of play in the modern games we watch.

Think of every baseball pitching record, from Cy Young's 511 wins to his 300-plus losses to Nolan Ryan's seven career no-hitters (heck, I'm not sure many of today's young starting pitchers will ever get seven career complete games, never mind no-hitters) or Wilbur Wood throwing a live-ball era record 376.2 innings in 1972.

And if you want to really talk about unbreakable, well, the all-time mark for innings pitched in a single season belongs to Will White, who at the tender age of 24 tossed 680 innings in 1879. Sandy Alcantara (228.2), Aaron Noles (205) and Miles Mikola (202.1) ranked 1-2-3 in the MLB in 2022 in innings pitched. Those three cats combined were 44 innings short of what Will White handled in 1879.

Style of play notwithstanding, there really are three dudes in the history of team sports that have a collection of records that seem downright unbreakable.

Tom Brady in football, Babe Ruth in baseball and Wilt Chamberlain in hoops.

And maybe my favorite one came in the season that Wilt the Stilt averaged more than 50 points per game. Because that was not the most amazing mark he set that year.

In 1961-62, as Wilt was scoring at will -- on the floor and off by all reports -- he set a playing time record that may be as unbreakable as any.

Wilt played every minute. Every single minute of every game, and a few of his team's games went into overtime.

So for that season, Wilt Chamberlain averaged 48.5 minutes per game. An army of folks will score 40,000 NBA points before someone does that again.

Have a Super weekend, friends.