Best Bets, NFL week 11: Judging the relative mediocrity of certain teams

Wednesday, 13 November 2019 18:08 EST

Sentimentality and hype have no place in proper NFL betting. If bettors were really worried about the aesthetics of the game being played, half the week’s slate would be no-goes right off the bat. Seriously, do you realize how many bad and/or disappointing teams are “playing” this season?

Depending on how you feel about the 2019 Miami Dolphins, NFLbets counts at least three other teams which, in any other season, would unquestionably be the NFL’s worst: Washington, the Jets and the Cincinnati Bengals – and by the time this season is over, the New York Giants just might join this bunch. Disappointments? You bet – How about the L.A. Rams, Cleveland Browns, Chicago Bears plus the Atlanta Falcons and “Los Angeles” Chargers (if you believed; NFLbets didn’t).

Thus it is in the spirit of exploiting all resources available – in this case, the bottom-feeders and all-but-eliminated from playoff contention – are this week’s NFLbets Best Bets offered.

Arizona Cardinals +11 at San Francisco 49ers, over/under 45½ points

Sheesh, you’d think that after the 49ers finally took a loss, these lines would come down a bit, but nope. The truth is that lines on San Francisco have been way too high these past four games, a run in which they’re 1-3 ATS against lines of -10, -4½, 10½ and -5½ (last week vs the now 8-2 Seahawks) – shouldn’t we be a tad suspicious of another double-digit spread?

The truth is the Cardinals are a league-best 7-3 ATS, including 3-1 in away games, 5-1 in their last six and 2-2 against prospective playoff teams. Three of their six SU losses were within 6 points, and they’ve managed to score an average of 23.0 points in the last six games, including the 25 they hung on these 49ers two weeks previous.

The sole chink in the armor an awesome San Francisco defense is the run – though, as Kyler Murray learned in the week 9 game, not necessarily the running quarterback. Instead, newly aquired Kenyon Drake ripped the Niners for 110 yards on 15 carries.

See, this is what NFLbets just doesn’t get. The Cardinals have been playing above their level all year, they’re ready for a 49ers team on a short week after an overtime MNF game. Sure, the Niners will likely win – but these Cards will not be pushed aside so easily. We’re saying take the Cardinals +11 vs San Francisco and what the hell, take the over on an O/U of 45½ points.

Cincinnati Bengals +10½ at Oakland(/Las Vegas) Raiders, over/under 48½ points

Just in case you need numerical quantification to define just how bad the 0-9 SU (3-6 ATS) Bengals are, NFLbets reminds that Cincy is dead last in total and rushing yards allowed, and they rank no. 31 in rushing TDs allowed and yards per rush attempt. The Raiders have Josh Jacobs. In this case, things are that simple. Take the Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders -10½ vs Cincinnati.

New York Jets +1 at Washington, over/under 37½

Some might call anyone who bets on this game a true degenerate gambler. Heck, NFLbets might call you that, too – but we’d mean it in the positive sense. Besiders, NFL bettors should rarely be looking at a team’s SU record at all. Geez, Miami has won five straight ATS and is defying expectations in favor of gamblers well more than, likesay, the Kansas City Chiefs at 4-6 ATS.

Unfortunately, ATS records aren’t too informational for our purposes in betting this game – both teams are an identical 3-6. Besides, betting on either side essentially amounts to a “pick ‘em” bet unless you’re betting on a tie. (Wait a minute … that might not be such a bad idea…)

So, yeah, NFLbets has been thinking about the over/under here for quite some time; 37½ is one seriously low line: Only 20 games since 2014 have gone off with over/unders of 37½ points or less, and only two have posted lines smaller than 37. Naturally, the over in all games with an O/U of 37 or 37½ is … 8-8. Overs in the 10 games with an O/U of exactly 37½ are slightly better at 6-4.

Given the point spread of Jets +1, the 37½-point over/under would imply a final score prediction of about 19-19. Washington topped this twice – in weeks 1 and 2. The Jets have also done so twice, including last week against the Giants, meaning that the highest-scoring games by either the Jets or Washington have all come against NFC East teams – Ugly!

So can the 31st- and 32nd-most prolific scoring offenses in the NFL hit a very low over? This game’s got “outlier” written all over it. Take the over on an O/U of 37½.

NFLbets’ Best Bets last week: 1-1.
NFLbets’ Best Bets this season: 10-13.

–written by Os Davis

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