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Super Contest, week 7: To play or not to play the math…?

Friday, 23 October 2020 20:34 EST

After a washout in week 6, NFLbets got this one started right by taking the New York Giants +4½ against the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday Night football. We were feeling good until giving this week’s My Bookie Super Challenge pick-5 contest card.

In several cases, games pitted like trend against like trend. A few like Detroit Lions +2½ at Atlanta Falcons and San Francisco 49ers +2 at New England Patriots scream “stay away!” while stuff like Cleveland Browns -3 at Cincinnati Bengals feels like a sucker bet whichever way you play.

But in the end, we gotta fill out a card, right? So this is what we came up with…

Buffalo Bills -11 at New York Jets. Mark this down in pen right now: You must bet against the Jets minus whatever points as long as Adam Gase remains head coach. And after he’s fired, stay away from Jets games for a week or two, and then get back to going against them. After the six weeks, the 2020 New York Jets perfectly resemble a 1-15 team.

Green Bay Packers -4½ at Houston Texans. This is a risky pick not because the Packers’ tenuous offense was exposed against Tampa Bay, the first above-average D they’d played thus far. – the Texans D is bottom-5 in points allowed, turnovers forced, most rushing categories, etc. – but because of the numbers. Green Bay’s record thus far is 4-1 SU/ATS; the Texans are 1-5 SU/ATS. This is why it’s called the Super Challenge, NFLbets supposes.

Arizona Cardinals +3½ vs  Seattle Seahawks. At 5-0 SU, the Seahawks aren’t necessarily *due* for a loss, but the numbers are stacking up against them and the Cardinals’ offense is not the sort Seattle wants to face right now. The Seattle D has a reputation for poor play, but the actual results have been intriguing. Yes, they’re no. 1 in allowing yardage, as the average opponent is managing to outduel Russell “I Run Up 400 Yards In My Sleep These Days” Wilson. The Seahawks rank 15th in points allowed, however, and are currently no. 1 in turnovers. The Cardinals offense has committed just 11 turnovers all season and are no. 5 in yardage per game. Arizona could very well win this one outright.

Kansas City Chiefs -9 at Denver Broncos. Guess who suddenly has the best rushing game in the NFL? Yep, the defending champion Kansas City Chiefs. This is a high point spread for sure, but Denver has not yet seen runners like this yet.

Los Angeles Rams -6 vs Chicago Bears. It’s tough to back a team minus-6 with an offense that seems to have trouble scoring 6 points, but the truth is the Rams have ranked top 5 in Football Outsiders’ offensive DVOA metric all season. NFLbets is banking on the mathematics over Nick Foles’s magic – at 5-1, the Bears have already exceeded their Pythagorean Expectation (PE) wins by 1.8. Plus, Aaron Donald.

–written by Os Davis


Washington vs. Cowboys Line and Betting Match-Up Week 7

Thursday, 22 October 2020 15:16 EST

NFL News and Rumors - Cowboys vs Ex-Skins

The NFC East is for any team to win. Although the Dallas Cowboys and the Washington Football Team are having bad seasons, they still have a huge chance of winning the division, which speaks volumes about how hilariously ugly things are going. Oddsmakers project a close one when the Washington Football Team (1-5) battle to halt their five-game losing streak in a pick ’em matchup with the Dallas Cowboys (2-4) on Sunday, October 25, 2020 at FedExField. The over/under is set at 46.0.

Game Info

    Game Day: Sunday, October 25, 2020
    Game Time: 1:00 PM ET
    TV Channel: FOX
    Location: Landover, MD
    Stadium: FedExField


Betting Information

Favorite Spread Favorite Spread Odds Underdog Spread Odds Total Over Total Odds Under Total Odds Favorite Moneyline Underdog Moneyline
PUSH -0.0 -110 -110 46.0 -110 -110 N/A N/A

 

Washington Betting Insights

    -Washington has compiled a losing 2-3-1 record against the spread this season.
    -Half of Washington’s games this year — three out of six — have gone over the point total.
    -Washington racks up 18 points per game, 18.3 fewer than Dallas gives up per outing (36.3).
    -Washington is 2-1 against the spread and 1-2 overall in games when it records at least 18 points.
    -When Dallas allows opponents to score no more than 28.8 points, it has a 0-4 record against the spread and a 2-2 record overall.

Cowboys Betting Insights

    -Dallas has a losing 0-6 record against the spread.
    -Four Dallas’ six games this year have gone over the point total (66.7% of its outings).
    -Dallas racks up just 1.8 more points per game (28.8) than Washington surrenders (27).
    -Dallas is 0-4 against the spread and 2-2 overall in games when it puts up at least 28.8 points.
    -Washington has a 2-1 record against the spread and a 1-2 record overall in games when it surrenders 18 points or less.

Total Facts Over/Under 46

    -Two of Washington’s games have gone over 46.0 points this season (33.3% of matchups).
    -Five of Dallas’ games have gone over 46.0 points this year (83.3% of matchups).
    -These teams score a combined 46.8 points per game, 0.8 more points than this matchup’s total.
    -Combined, these teams allow 63.3 points per game, 17.3 more points than this matchup’s total.
    -Washington has an average point total of 45 in its contests this year, 1.0 fewer point than this game’s over/under.
    -Dallas has a 65.2-point average over/under in its contests this season, 19.2 more points than this game’s total.

Washington vs Dallas: Last 5 Meetings

Dallas has a 4-1 advantage over Washington in the past five meetings between these two squads. In those games against Washington, Dallas has a 2-0 record against the spread. Dallas outscored Washington 164-94 in those five head-to-head matchups.

Date Favorite Home Team Spread Total Favorite Moneyline Underdog Moneyline Total Yards Result
12/29/2019 Cowboys Cowboys -11.5 46.5 -530 +430 517-271 DAL 47-16 DAL
9/15/2019 Cowboys Washington -6 46.5 -245 +215 474-255 DAL 31-21 DAL
11/22/2018 N/A Cowboys N/A N/A N/A N/A 404-331 DAL 31-23 DAL
10/21/2018 N/A Washington N/A N/A N/A N/A 323-305 DAL 20-17 WAS
11/30/2017 N/A Cowboys N/A N/A N/A N/A 280-275 WAS 38-14 DAL


Betting Insights: Last Three Games (Both Teams)

    -Washington has gone 1-1-1 against the spread and 0-3 overall in the last three contests.
    -The under has been familiar to Washington. They have failed to reach the total two times in the last three contests.
    -Washington and its opponents have combined to score an average of 42.3 points in its last three games, 3.7 less than the 46.0 over/under in this matchup.
    -Dallas has gone 0-3 against the spread and 1-2 overall over the last three contests.
    -Dallas has hit the over two times in their last three contests.
    -Dallas has averaged a total of 68.7 combined points over its last three games, 22.7 greater than this game’s total of 46.0.

Injury Report

Washington: G Michael Liedtke: Out (Shoulder), DT Matt Ioannidis: Out (Bicep), ILB Reuben Foster: Out (Knee), OT David Sharpe: Questionable (Illness), CB Greg Stroman: Out (Foot), WR Emanuel Hall: Out (Torn Achilles), WR Kelvin Harmon: Out (Torn Acl), RB Bryce Love: Out (Knee), WR Steven Sims Jr.: Out (Toe), WR Antonio Gandy-Golden: Questionable (Hamstring), WR Isaiah Wright: Questionable (Undisclosed), TE Thaddeus Moss: Out (Undisclosed), OL Saahdiq Charles: Doubtful (Knee)

Cowboys: OLB Sean Lee: Out (Pelvis), OT Tyron Smith: Out (Neck), C Joe Looney: Out (Knee), G Zack Martin: Questionable (Concussion), OT Cameron Erving: Out (Knee), OT La’el Collins: Out (Hip), QB Dak Prescott: Out (Ankle), CB Chidobe Awuzie: Out (Hamstring), TE Blake Jarwin: Out (Acl), WR Cedrick Wilson: Questionable (Ribs), DT Trysten Hill: Out (Acl), OT Mitch Hyatt: Out (Knee), LB Azur Kamara: Out (Undisclosed)

Who to bet on?

As expected, the Cowboys are having a hard time dealing with the loss of Dak Prescott for the rest of the season, as evidenced by their 38-10 loss to the Arizona Cardinals at home in Week 6. But even if Prescott was still healthy and playing, the Cowboys would’ve still had a hard time beating the Cardinals because of their horrendous defense. The Cowboys let Kyler Murray and Kenyan Drake run circles around them while Arizona receivers had a field day toying with Dallas’ secondary. Andy Dalton, starting in place of Prescott, went 35-of-54 for a touchdown and two interceptions. It’s still too early to write off Dalton as a possible savior for Dallas’ offense. The upcoming game against Washington could get him more confidence from his team, as the Football Team is unlikely to end up on top in a possible shootout with the Cowboys. Dallas should score more than 10 points this time around against Washington’s defense that has given up at least 30 points to four of its last five opponents. With more time practicing with the starters, Dalton should be able to put up a much better performance this week for Dallas’ offense that tops in the NFL with 259.0 passing yards per game.

The Cowboys are 5-1 against the spread in their last six games against Washington.

Cowboys seems to be able to put up points which is something Washington just can't do.

Expect an Under 26-12 Cowboys is our score prediction
Take the Dallas Cowboys at (+1)


Betting Giants-Eagles on Thursday Night Football: Which team wants it less?

Thursday, 22 October 2020 14:07 EST

After a one-week absence, Thursday Night Football is back – albeit with another mediocre-looking divisional matchup of low-watt offenses. Though the game itself may not be particularly scintillating, the line sure is. So let’s look into betting on…

New York Giants +5 at Philadelphia Eagles

Right. NFLbets is advising that bettors take the New York Giants +5 at Philadelphia. Now admittedly, some fraction of the impetus behind this bet is Costanza Logic, i.e. always do the opposite; if every betting instinct you have is wrong, than the opposite would be right. NFLbets’ instinct on following the math has resulted in two oh-fers in the past three weeks, thus opposite time temporarily.

Here’s the other minus for the Giants: Offensive coordinator Jason Gerrett. As Dallas Cowboys head coach, Garrett was an incredibly lucrative 6-16 SU/4-18 ATS in all games in which his team had less than seven days to prepare. To his “credit”, Garrett wasn’t even calling plays for the last few years of his tenure for either of his coordinators but this nearly unbelievable career mark must reflect on Garrett somehow. Giants bettors will have to hope that Joe Judge knows what he’s doing on just his second short week as head coach – hey, he’s 1-0 ATS in the stat so far, right…?

(And if you find NFLbets unfair for judging Garrett as incompetent based on one demonstrative stat, well, there’s a reason his offense is statistically bottom-3 in points scored, total yards, passing TDs, passing yards, rushing TDs, rushing yards, first downs, etc.)

Nevertheless, the truth is that these New York Giants are all about the defense. In three games of six has the opposition scored over 19 against the G-men in 2020 and at Dallas in week 5, one Daniel Jones fumble was returned for a TD while another set the Cowboys up on the 17. Statistically, the NY D is average in most areas except getting past the offensive line: The Giants are top-10 in tackles for loss and QB sacks – good enough to go with an injury-riddled OL which has somehow allowed more sacks than even the Cincinnati Bengals.

Speaking (writing?) of injuries, the Eagles’ subtraction is the Giants’ addition. With RB Miles Sanders and TE Zach Ertz out, the Eagles offense loses nearly 33% of its total yardage thus far.

Finally, there’s Doug Pedersen’s career mark. NFLbets typically doesn’t like using statistics such as “record against the division” – There’s just too much movement of players, coaches and coordinators to render such statistics meaningless. However, the NFC East is worthy of exception because this division has been a hallmark of disastrous incompetence since Eli Manning was considered a viable quarterback. The situation has been akin to that of the AFC East since 2003, but without the Patriots.

These numbers say that Pedersen’s Eagles are a respectable (I guess) 18-11 SU against the NFC East since 2016 – but just 13-16 ATS against teams which know the Eagles best, including a 3-5 SU/ATS record against Garrett’s Cowboys.

All in all, this game feels like confirmation that the 2020 Philadelphia Eagles simply aren’t playoff contenders; the Giants ML of +200 looks really good right about now…

 



Week 6 NFL Betting: Time to take advantage of inexplicable hype

Saturday, 17 October 2020 17:51 EST

Most of the NFL point spreads, individually speaking, are logical at the sportsbooks for week 6; however, at least two stick out like broken ribs. And if you think NFLbets is going to take advantage of the hype on a certain prospective Hall of Fame quarterback and a certain NFC North team known most for a Saturday Night Live skit about its fans, you’re absolutely correct. So let’s get to betting on…

Green Bay Packers -1½ at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

NFLbets has scoured the history and statistics on this one but has found nothing significant enough to dissuade us from goggling at this spread, which has shifted 2½ points since release and is still far too long.

In games following a bye week, Rodgers's Packers are a respectable 7-5 SU and a nice 8-3-1 ATS. A bit concerning, however, is his 1-4 SU/1-2-1 ATS run. Equally as concerning is the Packers’ current 4-0 SU/ATS record; NFL bettors should always seek the end of such streaks to take advantage. Could this be the reason the Packers started the week as underdogs in this game…?

While neither team has taken on many serious contenders through 4 or 5 games, the Packers have played at the proper level in running up 38.0 points per game with a statistically no. 1 offense in points, yardage, turnovers lost and time of possession. The Buccaneers looked great in betting up the “Los Angeles” Chargers in week 4 but couldn’t score three TDs at Chicago.

As we’re all well aware, opposing Aaron Rodgers at QB is Tom Brady. Since 2009, Brady has an impressive personal mark of 26-8 SU/25-7 ATS in games following a loss. Perhaps it is for this that Tampa Bay started as 1-point favorites last Monday.

But – and this is a bold statement, for sure – the 2020 Tampa Bay Buccaneers are no Belichick ‘n’ Brady Patriots. The Bucs are dead last in penalties accrued (OK, technically Tampa Bay is tied in 31st with the Arizona Cardinals, who are apparently still stamped with the Bruce Arians laissez-faire attitude) while guess which team is tops in least penalties. Meanwhile, Bucs’ rushing D has faced the least number of passing attempts all season: Great news for Aaron Jones, who gets to build on his 509 total yards and 6 touchdowns after Green Bay builds up a, likesay, 17-3 lead after two quarters.

NFLbets just isn’t seeing the Buccaneers keeping the score to within 2 points; only a peak Brady drive might save them in this game, and that Maserati left the showroom a while ago. Take the Packers -1½ at Tampa Bay.

Chicago Bears +1 at Carolina Panthers

Soooooo, is it Nick Foles…?

Seriously, NFLbets is even more baffled by this line than the Green Bay-Tampa Bay spread – and at least that one’s normalizing back in the correct team’s favor.

Through five games, the Panthers are among the NFL’s most pleasant surprises, right up there with Odell Beckham not having yet popped off about some shit. After losing fantasy master Christian McCaffrey and the first two games to open the season, the Panthers are on a 3-0 SU/ATS run. Sure, said run of at Chargers, vs Cardinals at Falcons-with-exiting-coach isn’t exactly running the gauntlet but three consecutive Ws is an impressive feat for an ostensibly rebuilding team.

NFLbets supposes the hype is keeping this point spread low; after all, the Bears are 4-1 SU/3-2 ATS and are hanging with the Packers for first place in the NFC North! Well, as the man says, curb your enthusiasm. The Bears faced (maybe) the first playoff contender yet in 2020 last week, the Buccaneers, and yet still rank a lowly 27th in offensive scoring.

On top of this is the pendular nature of luck. Already in 2020, the Bears are playing 1.6 wins above their Pythagorean Expectation (PE) wins, a metric that seeks to measure luck and other random factors assisting in a team’s fortunes. To understand what an outlier this is, consider that the 2018 “Los Angeles” Chargers went 12-4 SU based on a 7-1 away record; that team went +1.6 PE *for the season*.

Prepare for some serious exposure: We believe the Bears’ shortcomings will be bared by a surprisingly hungry Carolina side. Take the Carolina Panthers -1 vs Chicago.

NFLbets’ current record in 2020: 8-7-2.

–written by Os Davis


Super Contest, week 6: What’s up with some of these pointspreads?

Saturday, 17 October 2020 13:24 EST

Onto week 6 in My Bookie’s pick-5 Super Contest and finally can NFLbets report a decent showing, going 4-1 with the sole losing pick the SU-winning Seattle Seahawks. Sadly, week 6 appears a bit more challenging, with a half-dozen pointspreads set within the 3½-4½ range, two games which are basically “pick ´ems” and a bunch at a touchdown or more.

So after the dust settled – with Covid concerns cancelling Thursday Night Football, we got an extra day to fill this sucker out – this is what NFLbets’ card for week 6 of the Super Contest looks like.

Best Bet: Carolina Panthers -1 vs Chicago Bears. By the Pythagorean Expectation (PE) metric, the Bears are easily the most overachieving (read: lucky) team in the NFL thus far by far in 2020, with an expected 2.6 wins somehow translating into a 4-1 SU record. Meanwhile, clever NFL bettors have adjusted their takes on the upstart Panthers, who just might make the playoffs – wacky!

Green Bay Packers -1½ at Tampa Bay Buccaneers. What are we missing about the 2020 Buccaneers that the esteem from pre-game shows and bookmakers alike apparently see? Are they not tied for last in penalties, including 28 in the past three games? Is not the Bucs’ passing game average and the running game nearly non-existent? And finally, isn’t this the team that went 4-of-14 on third down last week in losing to the Bears? A long week won’t be enough for Tampa Bay against potentially the top team in the league right now.

Los Angeles Rams -3½ at San Francisco 49ers. True enough, it’s tough to bet on the inconsistently-scoring Rams offense, but the Niners are a complete mess. Forget the Super Bowl Hangover: The 2020 San Francisco 49ers have full-on Super Bowl Ebola. The defending NFC champs are 2-3 SU against a schedule that may not include any .500-or-better teams by the end of the season, and Kyle Shanahan apparently has zero confidence in any of his three quarterbacks. So what if Jimmy Garoppolo assures he’s completely recovered from an ankle injury? We’re convinced Shanahan lost his playbook sometime before last season’s playoffs and has been improvising ever since – and ad libs are no match for Aaron Donald right now.

Cincinnati Bengals +8 at Indianapolis Colts. The Colts defense has run up impressive numbers in their first five games – though, like the 49ers, the competition had been suspect until last week’s against Cleveland: Depending on how you feel about Baker Mayfield, Joe Burrow may be the best QB that Indianapolis has faced this season. Whether Burrow can work miracles enough to make up for the Bengals’ shoddy offensive line is a serious question, but we believe he’ll keep his Bengals in the game.

Pittsburgh Steelers -4 vs Cleveland Browns. Six games this week are, as of Saturday, looking to kick off with pointspreads between 3½ and 4½; this is the only possible justification for NFLbets covering two on a single Super Contest card. We’re applying some reverse logic here in guessing the Steelers finish with a better record SU/ATS than the Browns; therefore, Pittsburgh should therefore defend home field in what might be a crucial game for the AFC North.

–written by Os Davis


NFL Week 5 ATS results: Head coaches come, head coaches go…

Thursday, 15 October 2020 16:18 EST

Not even coronavirus could slow the interesting results of week 5: Both of last year’s Super Bowl participants got 40-burgers run up on ’em, Tom Brady forgot how many downs NFL football plays with, Romeo Crennel coached a team to a win for the first time since 2013 and the Titans reemerged to swamp the 2020 media darlings and get to 4-0.

The following are the results for the week 4 games of the 2020 NFL season, adjusted for the point spread. Game results listed in italics are those for which the SU and ATS result differed.

Chicago Bears 20 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 15½. Perhaps most shocking of all shocks about the ostensibly shocking Chicago Bears is that NFLbets has yet to hear any talking head on tv or podcast proclaim that the Bears are The Worst 4-1 Team of All-Time. The more rational explanation is that maybe the Lions, Giants, Falcons and, yes, Buccaneers just aren’t that good; neither is Indianapolis, to whom the Bears lost SU/ATS in week 4. Chicago gets Carolina this week, so we’ll tell you in advance that we’re letting it ride on the Panthers.

Carolina Panthers 23 at Atlanta Falcons 13½. Speaking of the Falcons, the Game That Got Dan Quinn And Thomas Dimitroff Fired will one from the 2020 schedule that will be looked upon with much WTF.

Arizona Cardinals 23 at New York Jets 10. Repeat after NFLbets: Do note overestimate the Cardinals … do not overestimate the Cardinals. Remember that the Jets’ sole purpose in the 2020 season appears to be to make the league’s 31 other teams look better. (Must remember, must remember…)

Las Vegas Raiders 40 at Kansas City Chiefs 21
Miami Dolphins 43 at San Francisco 49ers 8½
. This is just about the point in the season when we realize that a) repeating as Super Bowl champions is really difficult (the back-to-back hasn’t happened in 15 years) and b) the Super Bowl hangover really does cripple teams (of the past 18 Super Bowl-losing teams, just 8 made the playoffs the following season and the only such team that improved year-on-year in the regular season after losing the Super Bowl were Kurt Warner’s Cardinals.).

Houston Texans 23½, Jacksonville Jaguars 14. Get this: If the Texans cover the 3½ points at the Tennessee Titans this Sunday, their interim head coach Romeo Crennel (career record SU 29-55) would be lifted to a career record of 42-42-2 ATS? The man is living proof that bookmakers know their business.

Minnesota Vikings 26 at Seattle Seahawks 20½. Unless the Seahawks are peaking early, NFLbets is absolutely considering Seattle the team to beat in the NFC – though should the season play out on relatively the current note, a Seahwaks-Packers NFC conference championship would probably come down to the final drive…

Cleveland Browns 31, Indianapolis Colts 23. not sure when to start believing in the 2020 Cleveland Browns, but this is one bandwagon that NFLbets won’t mind joining late.

New York Giants 34 at Dallas Cowboys 29½
Pittsburgh Steelers 30½, Philadelphia Eagles 29
Los Angeles Rams 23 at Washington FT 10
. Could the luckiest team in football be the 1-3-1 SU/1-4 ATS Philadelphia Eagles? As the Eagles are being torn apart by injuries, age and the magically disappearing Carson Wentz, their 1-3-1 is good enough to keep them in playoff contention: The Giants’ OL is as bad as ever and Saquon Barkley is out; the Football Team likewise has no offense and will continue to lose despite a couple of badasses on the defense; and the Cowboys just lost the QB on the best statistical run in franchise history. All jokes and kidding aside, Philly’s 6-9-1 could be enough to take this infuriating NFC Least…

Los Angeles Chargers 27 at New Orleans Saints 23. Trade Michael Thomas!

Baltimore Ravens 14½, Cincinnati Bengals 3. NFLbets hasn’t broken down the numbers yet, but we believe there is a direct correlation between the number of points the Ravens beat a given team by and that team’s overall quality. And Cincinnati is just not very good.

Tennessee Titans 42, Buffalo Bills 13. So much for breaking up the outlier’s numbers: The Titans are now 4-0 SU/1-3 ATS and NFLbets is just blaming it all on the havoc wreaked by Covid…

–written by Os Davis.


Super-quick, brief, last-minute wacky bet for Tuesday Night Football

Tuesday, 13 October 2020 18:34 EST

Tuesday Night Football – what a concept! Before this week, a total of one Tuesday night game has ever been played: That was in 2010, when a December snowstorm cancelled a Sunday game in Philadelphia between the Eagles and Vikings, with the game subsequently rescheduled for the Tuesday night following.

But what else would you expect from 2020?

Adding a level of difficulty to the betting equation for this game is the surprise bye week given to the Tennessee Titans thanks to coronavirus. The relevant stat in just a situation is, naturally, useless: All-time, teams getting the Covid bye are 1-0 thus far with the Steelers’ win over the Eagles on Sunday.

On the other hand, NFLbets has been waiting to wager on a 2020 Titans game since they squeaked past the Minnesota Vikings 31-30 in week 3 to increase their SU record to 3-0 and their ATS record to 0-3. Whereas we weren’t especially enthusiastic about having to consider their odds against Pittsburgh (who would have entered a week 4 game against the Titans at 3-0 SU/2-1 ATS), but with the Buffalo Bills coming to town? We’re in.

Giving the outlier marks set by the Titans thus far, NFLbets is reverse-engineering our bets on

Buffalo Bills -4 at Tennessee Titans

The bet we’ve been waiting to make for two weeks is a crossover. Based simply on trends – and with the unknowns that covidball adds to the situation, we’re sticking with basic football-betting factors – we’re starting with the advice to take the Tennessee Titans +4 and take the Buffalo Bills ML. Unfortunately, most sportsbooks disallow parlaying a point spread and ML bet on the same game, and payouts on these bets are just -115 and -165, respectively.

Luckily, My Bookie has an out: A proposition offering called “Bills vs Titans – Game Result.” The table on this prop looks like so:

•  Bills by 6 or more: +100
•  Titans by 6 or more: +260
•  Any other result: +200

You see where we’re going with this. If NFLbets could parlay Titans +4 and Bills ML, the payout would be +200. If you take “Any other result” in the “Bills vs Titans – Game Result” prop, not only do you get the same odds, you’ve also gotten the Titans an extra 1½ points and you’re hedging against the Bills ML bet. In fact, as long as the game stays within 5 points, this 3-bet combination wins a profit.

--written by Os Davis


Week 5 NFL betting: Eagles still overrated, Panthers still underrated

Saturday, 10 October 2020 15:36 EST

Week 4 sent NFLbets plummeting back down to even on the season and while some may find the erasure of profit the end result of a Sisyphean task, NFLbets is excited to be restarting the season at 0-0 (well, technically 5-5-2, but you get the idea).

In fact, covid-cancelled games aside, week 5 is typically an ideal time to start turning a profit: Most teams are locked into their seasonal identity but the sportsbooks and/or NFL bettors may not have caught up to the season’s realities. This week, NFLbets is focusing on two games which each feature, as far as general NFL fandom is concerned, a team whose preseason forecast will likely turn out significantly incorrect.

For week 5 and a comeback, we started out ticket with…

Philadelphia Eagles +7 at Pittsburgh Steelers

Are the sportsbooks finally done living in Philadelphia’s past when making 2020 point spreads? The Eagles haven’t been a 7-point underdog at home since the last game of the ’05 season – this after going 1-2-1 SU/1-3 ATS thus far.

It’s a logical line that hasn’t budged at most sportsbooks since Monday: Virtually anywhere the bettor looks statistically, Pittsburgh appears to be a near shoo-in for the SU win at very least. For example, Carson Wentz leads the league with 7 interceptions through four games and the Eagles are second-worst in turnovers; in 2019, the Steelers defense ranked no. 1 overall in turnovers generated and no. 2 in interceptions.

As for the battle of minds on the sidelines, Doug Pederson has done well enough coaching against AFC teams in his 4-plus seasons with the Eagles – and the following statistics are cited here as a reflection of performance against teams one usually doesn’t face often – to run up a record of 10-6-1 SU/9-8 ATS. Note, however, that Pederson’s Eagles are 0-2-1 SU/0-3 ATS in their last three such games. For the Steelers, Mike Tomlin has led his guys to a nice 35-18 SU (23-20 ATS) record against NFC teams.

Throwing in, you know, actual eye test results makes this feel like a slam dunk for Steelers -7 – and we’d certainly call betting the Steelers ML within a parlay a solid investment – except for what could be Tomlin’s kryptonite: The bye week. Tomlin’s Steelers have been fine for football results following a regular-season bye week at 9-4 SU, but have disappointed NFL bettors with a 5-8 ATS mark, including the current 1-5 ATS run.

Going into week 5, of course, every NFL team has a 0-0 SU/ATS mark in games following a surprise bye week due to coronavirus, with the Steelers and Tennessee Titans acting as guinea pigs for this weirdness. But WTF can NFLbets do with this unprecedented factor? That’s right, we’re ignoring it. Take the Pittsburgh Steelers -7 at Philadelphia.

Carolina Panthers +1 at Atlanta Falcons

Even without the dominant force that is Christian McCaffrey, the 2-2 SU/ATS Panthers have got to like their chances to eke into the postseason, thanks to the existence of the brand-new no. 7 seed combined with several NFC teams playing below general expectation (e.g. Dallas, San Francisco, Arizona, New Orleans). The timing is also negative for the Falcons: With their inability to score late (the Falcons have been outscored 84-46 in second halves this season), Atlanta doesn’t want to face an offense that’s beaten their last two opponents 39-14 in the final 30 minutes – especially not with the league’s second-worst defense in points allowed and yardage allowed.

This may be the last chance to get the Panthers as an underdog, so get on the bandwagon for this Sunday at least. And with the point spread at +1, the only reason to cover Carolina plus the point is if you fervently believe the game will end in a tie – a 0.33% probability going back to 2010. At the typical sportsbook, Carolina +1 will get odds of 20/21 whereas a Carolina money-line bet will net winners 21/20 odds.

At one sportsbook, the odds are 20/21 on Panthers +1 but 21/20 on the Panthers ML: a 10% swing! So, yeah, take the Carolina Panthers ML at Atlanta.

NFLbets’ current record in 2020: 5-5-2.


NFL Odds Preview: Cincinnati Bengals +13 at Baltimore Ravens

Friday, 09 October 2020 13:29 EST

    When: Sunday, 1 PM ET
    Where: M&T Bank Stadium
    TV: CBS
    Radio: Siriusxm.com/nfl
    Stream Option: TV
    Opening NFL Lines: Cincinnati Ravens +13 at Baltimore Ravens (over/under 51)

Last season
Baltimore had the best record in the NFL in 2019 and Cincinnati the worst, so no surprise that the Ravens swept the season series. The game in Baltimore was close, though, a 23-17 final. Lamar Jackson threw for 236 yards and rushed 19 times for 152 yards and a score. The Ravens had 269 yards and two scores on the ground. Andy Dalton was the Cincinnati QB then and wasn’t good. Cincinnati also rushed for just 33 yards.

The Ravens lead the all-time series with Cincinnati, 25-23. Baltimore has won five of the past eight meetings (including three straight). Under Coach John Harbaugh, the Ravens are 12-12 vs. the Bengals. Since 2010, 14 of the teams’ 19 meetings have been one-score decisions, by eight or fewer points.

Why Bet on Cincinnati? | 2020 NFL Expert Analysis
Heisman winner Joe Burrow comes off his first NFL victory last week, 33-25 over Jacksonville. Burrow completed 25-of-36 passes for 300 yards with a touchdown and an interception – Burrow became the first rookie QB to ever throw for 300 yards in three straight games. His touchdown was a checkdown to Joe Mixon, who scored all three of the Bengals’ TDs. Through four games, Burrow is on pace for 4,484 yards with a 24:8 TD/INT ratio.

Burrow and the Bengals’ offense stole the show against Jacksonville by posting 500 yards of offense, including 205 on the ground and 300 through the air. It was just the fourth time in team history, and the first since the 1988 season, that the Bengals recorded at least 200 rushing yards and 300 passing yards in a game. However, the Bengals need to care for the franchise guy much better, given Burrow has been sacked 15 times. Only the Texans’ Deshaun Watson has been dropped more after four games (16).

Mixon became the first Bengal since Giovani Bernard in 2013 to score both a rushing and receiving TD in the same game. He also posted a season-high 181 yards from scrimmage against the Jaguars, including 151 on the ground and 30 through the air.

This will be Burrow’s first-ever start against fellow Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson, last year’s NFL MVP.

It will mark the fifth instance in NFL history in which the reigning league MVP and the most recent No. 1 overall pick meet as starting quarterbacks. The reigning MVP has won three of the previous four meetings.​

Why Bet on Baltimore? | 2020 NFL Expert Analysis
The Ravens had little trouble winning 31-17 at Washington last week. Lamar Jackson completed 14-of-21 passes for 193 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception, adding seven rushes for 53 yards and a touchdown. His day was highlighted by a career-long 50-yard rushing score. Jackson, with the Ravens up big, watched the final few drives from the bench.

Both of Jackson’s TD passes last week were to tight end Mark Andrews. Dating to the start of last season, he has an NFL-best 14 receiving TDs. He has tallied 4 this season, tying (four players) for the NFL’s second most, entering Week 5.

Jackson was held out of practice Wednesday and Thursday this week with a knee injury, only the third and fourth missed practices of his NFL career, but he will play. The team is simply being cautious. As noted above, Jackson and Burrow were both Class of 2015 recruits but not considered sure-fire stars. Burrow barely cracked the ESPN 300 ranking that year at No. 298 and Jackson didn’t make it at all.

Even though Jackson has been in the league for three years, he’s about a month younger than Burrow. The two have never met personally, much less in a game. Jackson is 3-0 vs. Cincinnati. In those games, these games, Jackson is 49-of-69 passing (71.0%) for 609 yards, 3 TDs and 1 INT (106.5 rating). He has also rushed for 336 yards and 2 TDs.

Since Jackson became Baltimore’s starter on 11/18/18 vs. Cincinnati, the Ravens have rushed for at least 200 yards in 15 games. This output triples the NFL’s next best figure. Two of Baltimore’s 200-yard games have come vs. the Bengals.

For the eighth time (2009-12, 2014, 2016 & 2018) in head coach John Harbaugh’s 13 seasons, the Ravens are off to a 3-1 start. Baltimore is 26-11 vs. the AFC North under Harbaugh.
Game Trends

    Underdogs are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games.
    Cincinnati is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games.
    The over is 4-1 in the last 5 games.
    The road team is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games.
    Cincinnati is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games in Baltimore.

Expert Prediction
Baltimore Ravens 33, Cincinnati Bengals 23.