We followed up our worst week of the season and worst week in a couple of years in Week 13 with our best week in Week 14. Betting the NFL is weird man.
Game 1: Mia +3.5 @ NYG
Bet% Mia 72% NYG 35%
The 2 win Giants losers of 9 in a row, should not be favorites of 3 over any team in the league. The Giants should definitely not be favorites of more than 3. That’s it, that is everything this bet is baed on. Miami has the better record, the better QB and are getting more than a FG? Win or lose, this is what line value looks like and you have to take Miami here.
Game 2: Den +10 @ KC
Bet% Den 60% KC 40%
Under the radar, the Broncos have been playing quite well in the last month and are ending the season playing their best football winning 3 of their last 5. I also think that even though it is early and only 2 games in there is a case that with Drew Lock they have their best QB play this season. The Chiefs quietly have put together a very good year on defense vs the pass, they are 6th in DVOA vs pass, tied for 9th in yards per pass att at 6.4 but they are still at the bottom vs the run. Chiefs are 30th in DVOA vs the run, giving up 5.1 yards per rush att which is also 30th, Denver’s offense goes through their run game with Lindsay and Freeman so as long as they can stay close early they should be able to have success with the run game. The Chiefs have been dealing with injuries in their backfield, Tyreke Hill and of course Mahomes and as a result haven’t been the type of explosive offense they were last year where they could just pick a number to put up. In the last 3 games they put up 23 vs NE, 24 vs the Chargers at home. I think we should expect a similar number for KC in this game and then we need Denver to get around 14-17 which I think is very likely.
Game 3: Chi+ 4.5 @ GB
Bet% Chi 47% 53%
It feels like have been against he Packers every week the last month or so and the streak continues here, in the end I just don’t think this team is as good as their record and getting 4.5 points in a game expected to be low scoring with a total around 40 is too much value here. The Bears got bad news with the injury of LB Roquan Smith but that will be made up with the activation of Akiem Hicks, their star defensive lineman, from the IR. The Bears are 7th in defense by DVOA, 7th vs the pass and 11th vs the run, there is no question Hicks makes them a dramatically better run defense. I think that’s key in his game vs the Packers are the #4 rush offense by DVOA and really Aaron Rodgers pass game builds off of the run now. We have seen the Bears offense look much better the last 2 weeks vs the Lions and Cowboys, 2 defenses nobody would consider elite but the Packers defense is not much better. By DVOA Detroit was 24th, Dallas 22 and the Packers are 20th, by Weighted DVOA the Packers defense is worse than Dallas ranking 24th while Dallas is 21st. Regardless of how you rank them, the point is that the Packers defense is a problem and one that Trubisky should continue to play ok against.
Game 4: Atl +11 @ SF
Bet% 54% SF 46%
The 49ers are coming off of 2 of the biggest games of the year after playing in Baltimore and losing a very close game and then winning in New Orleans in the game of the year. 2 straight weeks on the road ( they stayed in Florida), 2 classic games where they played about as well s they could have and cemented themselves as a clear Superbowl favorite. Now SF comes back home after 2 weeks and plays a Falcons team that has been out of the playoffs for a month and needs to cover this game by double digits. Oh by the way, next week SF play the Rams in a primetime division game on Sat night. This game vs Atlanata is the ultimate flat spot and we have seen SF in these schedule flat spots play to expectation before. In the follow up to the MNF classic vs Seattle, the following week the 49ers trailed Arizona late in that game before pulling it out and then getting a crazy fluke TD off a fumble at end to win by 10.
Atlanta since the bye has actually played very well and you could argue has looked a lot like the team we expected in the start of the season, the Falcons have won 3 of the 5 games since their bye including going 1-1 against the Saints. Getting 11 with a QB like Matt Ryan and a team that came into the season with high expectations they failed to live up to but has clearly not quit on their coach or season is great value here especially when we consider the terrible schedule spot this is for the 49ers.
Game 5: Cle -2.5 (-115) @ Ari
Bet% Cle 69% Ari 31%
The Baker Mayfield revenge game vs Kliff Kingsbery, yes I know they have already played in college nd both guys said they are past the falling out at Texas Tech but to Mayfield is a guy who thrives on slights and Im sure he will be fully ready to go in this game. The Browns have been one of the biggest disappointments of 2019 but they have been better in the second half winning 4 of their last 5. They struggled out of the gate and if you look at the games they have lost this year, 5 of the 7 losses came to top 10 defenses (LAR, SF, Den, NE, Pit) the other 2 were to the Titans and Seahawks. Arizona is 28th in defense, 29th vs the pass, this is a game that Mayfield should be able to have a very good game and get all his weapons involved. Cleveland on defense is much better vs the pass than the run which could be an issue because the Cards are #2 in run DVOA though they don’t run that much, they are 25th in run attempts per game and 26th in rush attempts percentage. To me the Browns are a team of front runners and this is exactly the type of game you can see them having big days by getting up early and then trying to run up the score.
Game 6: Buf +2.5 @ Pit
Bet% Buf 72% Pit 28%
The Steelers are another team I find myself betting against a lot, they are a very good defense #3 by DVOA and one of the worst offenses, #30 yet they end up winning and covering week after week with defensive TDs or special teams TDs like last week, Steelers have won 7 of their last 8, all 7 wins were by 7 points or less. I think in this game both defenses are comparable, 2 top 5 defenses that have to carry less than average offenses but the big difference is the Steelers lead the league in takeaways with 33, more than double the Bills have at 16, we know there is a lot of randomness involved with turnovers so in many ways the Bills performance on defense is more sustainable. In the end I think this game comes down to which offense you trust more and for me it’s clear that he Bills have much more upside on offense and the fact that the big plays the Steelers have been relying on are not sustainable.
Game 7: Ind (+10) @ NO
Bet% Ind 33% NO 67%
*I have not bet this game yet and am waiting to see if it gets to +10 which I think there is a good chance it will get to by Monday.
The Saints are the other side of that game of the year from last week with the 49ers and like SF I am going to fade the Saints. For New Orleans not only is there a huge emotional drop off going from the game between the top 2 NFC teams to a non divisional, non conference opponent but the Saints came out of that game very banged up. New Orleans lost Marcus Davenport and Sheldon Rankins for the season, Cam Jordan has been limited in practice, Patrick Robinson is out, Kiko Alonso didn’t practice and offense Terron Armstead has been limited and guard Andrus Peat has not practiced. That is a lengthy list of injuries and you wonder how much the team will push guys to play in a game that means almost nothing. The Colts still are trying to make the playoffs and are not a team that is usually out of games so I like them in this spot even though it is the second straight road game.