Last week, much to my dismay, I watched as home dawg regression took place at an alarming rate. While favorites and underdogs split (7-7), we saw home dawgs finish the week 1-5 ATS, with only the Redskins coming through. Needless to say, that was rough on my wallet, with only a last-minute wager on Kansas City -6 saving me from significant losses.
After coming out on top five consecutive weeks, I, like the home dawgs, was due for some regression. That being said, I am going to stick to my principles and continue to find value in games where the numbers are just flat out wrong. It just so happens that you often see said value in games where a) there’s a significant home underdog, b) there’s a short home favorite or c) in double digit underdogs. There’s a reason why you still see me betting road favorites such as New England last week and Baltimore this week. In those cases, the number is skewed due to public interference.
To summarize, you’re looking for games where a significant amount of the action is coming in on one side and seeing how much if affects the number. Numbers change in Vegas based on the amount of the action and where the action is coming from. If the number is changing due to public bias, that often means it’s wrong and warrants consideration.
Week 8 Picks
As always, my picks will be listed from most to least confident. However, I must note that I won’t be finalizing most of the picks on my end until Sunday morning (unless I really feel good about the number I’m seeing, which does happen from time to time). For reference, I will have the team I’m picking in bold font next to the point spread.
Season Record: 34-21-1
Season Point Differential: +140.5
Bye Weeks: Tennessee, LA Chargers, Dallas, Atlanta
Last Week: 3-5
- New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings (pk)
This is the second week in a row traveling for New Orleans, which got lucky last week against Baltimore and is getting too much credit for a borderline fluky performance. The public is on New Orleans, and the Vikings could easily be a home dawg by kick-off.
The Vikings, while not quite meeting the expectations placed on them by many at the beginning of the season, are still a legitimate playoff contender and have real home field advantage. I like Minnesota in what might be a trap game for New Orleans (Rams at home next week). This line should be higher.
- Seattle Seahawks at Detroit Lions (-3)
Although my home dawg philosophy took a hit last week, I’m looking to stand firm moving forward. I still believe in short home favorites. The public still sees value in Russell Wilson and Co., but I’m taking the home team that handled the New England Patriots in the same stadium not too long ago.
With the amount of action on Seattle as of Thursday morning, I anticipate a better number before kick-off.
- Denver Broncos (+10) at Kansas City Chiefs
I love me some double-digit underdogs, as you’ve witnessed by my either a) brilliant bets of Bills and Cardinals +10 or more against Minnesota and b) dumb dumb dummy bets of Cardinals and 49ers +10 or more against Los Angeles.
The Broncos were able to cover a 4.5-point spread at home against Kansas City’s juggernaut earlier in the season. I’m not convinced that Kansas City’s homefield advantage is worth another 5.5 points. I like this number and I like Denver getting a little extra time to prepare.
More: Pick-Up Lines: Week 7
- Green Bay Packers (+10) at Los Angeles Rams
This line opened at 10 and I jumped on it. It’s down to 9 or 9.5 on most sites, so I feel like I’m getting the best of the number. The Rams have failed to cover three of the past four weeks, so put yourself in position to capitalize on that trend. I should note that I’m 2-3 betting on Rams’ games this season, as they have covered twice as double-digit favorites against Arizona and San Francisco.
I’m sure you’ve heard by now, this is the largest number of points Aaron Rodgers has been spotted in his career. I’m banking on A-A-Ron making Rams’ bettors pay this week.
- Miami Dolphins at Houston Texans (-7)
Simply put, this line is too low. I believe this line will jump up to 8 or 8.5 before kick-off. The Texans are hitting their stride, and I do not believe Miami has the stones to compete on the road with a short week.
- Baltimore Ravens (-1) at Carolina Panthers
As stated earlier, road favorites went 5-1 ATS last week, crippling my wallet and filling me with sadness.
The Ravens, who also hurt my wallet when Justin Tucker missed that extra point in the fourth quarter (Sad!), are better than this line would indicate. The Panthers put together a stunning comeback against the Eagles last week, but they’re getting too much credit. I like Baltimore on the short number, but I’d stay away if this number jumps to 3.
- San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals (pk)
Even after the Cardinals ripped my heart out last week, I’m back on the train. The Cardinals, who had covered four weeks in a row, were humbled last week by my Broncos on Thursday. The Cardinals have some extra time to prepare for a team they beat on the road earlier this season. I’m not sure why Arizona isn’t favored by 3 in this one, but I’ll take the value despite watching them get dragged through the mud sporting a 32nd-ranked offense. God help us all.
Gun-to-my-head season record: 25-24-2
Philadelphia Eagles (-3) at Jacksonville Jaguars
New York Jets at Chicago Bears (-7) *
Indianapolis Colts at Oakland Raiders (+3) *
Cleveland Browns (+8) at Pittsburgh Steelers *
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Cincinnati Bengals (-4)
Washington Redskins at New York Giants (+1)
New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills (+14) **
*I like this number, but I’m hoping for better come game time
**I might have to hold my nose and bet this game later