Get ready for week 2 of the NFL season, fetus faces! This is your weekly NFL betting guide written by the rubiest rube of all rubes, Nonpopulist. As previously posted, I have been making my own NFL lines for around 5 years, and while I am no expert I would rate myself as an above average prognosticator/ handicapper. The Rubetastic post will be a mixture of picking against Vegas lines, insight into why I think a line was set a certain way, what my own lines are and how I came to those lines, overall NFL betting trends I notice, apologies about being completely wrong the prior week, and a disclaimer that the post is all for fun and you assume all risk when betting on the advice of some jackhole on the internet.
With all that being said, let’s review last week’s picks. O wait, do we have to? Yes, because sports betting is a marathon, not a sprint, and I want to be accountable for my picks over the long-term since I know there will be bad weeks. Other caveats include me telling you how I dislike week 1 betting. I don’t even make my own lines. I didn’t make my own lines this week either. I plan on starting with the week 3 NFL games. I need to see more. I also have an idea that I am beginning to work on. I’m going to do an NFL power ranking (yes, groan, I know many dislike these, but mine will be useful) using only 2 stats (so far)- 3rd down conversion success rate and turnover differential. Those are the two most important football team stats in my mind. If I am having trouble deciding an outright winner for a game I will often consult those two statistics. Look for that coming up next week.
Looking back at last week I went 1-1-1. One bet would have won, one would have pushed (the betting line was the actual scoring differential outcome), and one bet would have lost. The one winning bet was one I said I would have put an above average bet on so I still would have come out ahead for the week if I had bet those lines.
Lions @ Bears -6: This was a winning bet since the Lions only lost by 5 and the Bears were favored to win by 6. I actually thought the Lions were going to win outright. Many contend they should have because of the catch controversy at the end of the game.
Browns @ Buccaneers -3: The Bucs won by 3, so that’s a push, no action. The Browns should have won that game. The Bucs QB Freeman played better than I thought he would. He did not seem slowed by his broken thumb at all. That factored greatly in my decision to advise betting on the Browns.
Broncos @ Jaguars -2.5: I didn’t catch a lot of this game, but I am still shocked the Jaguars beat the Broncos by a full touchdown. I still look forward to cashing in on Garrard’s inconsistency down the road this season.
Enough about last week. How about a sexy cheerleader picture and we move on to next week?
This week’s lines are pretty tight. I don’t see much wiggle room in these lines. Of course, this is Friday. Did you know that if betting is heavy enough on one team that oddsmakers will move the line to accommodate the betting. I have no idea what the record is, but I know I have seen the line move by several points from Monday to Friday. I think the Bills-Packers game is a trap. The Packers are at home and favored by 13 points. I think Vegas is trying to confuse us and induce betting on the underdog Bills. I think the Packers will probably beat that spread handily (win by more than 13 points), but Buffalo showed enough flashes last week I am hesitant to bet on Green Bay. I am staying away from betting this game because just when you think you have Vegas figured out they punch you in the gut. Tennessee is at home and favored by 5 points against the Steelers. In a surprise to me the Steelers actually won last week so they are tougher than I thought they would be without Roethlisberger. Here’s another important rule I follow in betting.
Never bet on your favorite team.
Sure, I have way above average knowledge on my favorite team (The Titans), but I have learned the hard way to not bet on them. The emotional swings are tough when you bet big (which I have before), and your knowledge clouds your thinking. I don’t know if that’s a hard and fast rule that serious gamblers all live by, but I think it should be. The problem is, the casual fan will usually only bet their favorite team. This comes into play with the bigger fan bases like the Steelers, Patriots, and Cowboys. Those idiots make Vegas and their local bookies a lot of money each year. Here’s my picks:
Jaguars @ Chargers -7: To me the Chargers looked like a team who was unprepared for the Chief’s rookies (who would have been, no one’s seen them play in the NFL yet) and needed more time to win on Monday night. I expect the Chargers offense to be night and day better this week, and the team is at home. The Chargers will beat that 7 point spread.
Chiefs +2 @ Browns: Did Vegas see the same game I saw Monday night? You can attribute 3 points to the Chiefs each week based solely on the Chiefs return game. That’s a long return putting them in field goal position fairly easily or an out and out return touchdown. There is no way the Browns should be favored by two points in this game. The passing game for the Chiefs will be bad, but no worse than it would be at home. You can run the ball even with the crowd noise at Cleveland Brown Stadium. They’re all dead inside anyway. How much noise can they make? I like this line, but remember what I said earlier. Anytime you think you have something figured out is when Vegas punches you in the gut. With that said I think this is a situation where Vegas has some inside info about who will play QB Sunday for the Browns. If they are thinking Delhomme doesn’t go and Seneca Wallace gets the start I have a message for whoever set this line: crappy quarterbacks don’t usually get better with age.
Texans -3 @ Redskins: I’m not in love with this bet, and I didn’t pick because I’m ready to crown Arian Foster the king of life either. Two factors show me value in this bet. One, the Texans had stellar line play last week on both sides of the ball. Remember all those rushing yards and how many hits Peyton Manning had on him? Two, the Redskins beat a Cowboys team who played like it was a playoff game. The Cowboys beat themselves. I can’t remember when I saw a team who beat themselves as bad as the Cowboys beat themselves. The Redskins only beat them by 6 at home.
Two games I would not touch with a 10 foot pole this week: Patriots -3 @ Jets and Giants @ Colts -5. These matchups are too early in the season for me to get a read on. I will say I think the reasons the Jets lost to the Ravens on Monday night are primarily scheme related. I don’t think we’ll see the Jets get gamed like they did in that game again this season. These seem like trap games. Another betting tip: if you don’t like a game, don’t bet it. That seems super easy, but some people do parlays (sucker bets) or feel they have to have money on every game. That’s what 800 numbers are for. No one should need that much action after they get a taste of the breaks betting every game causes. That’s the way to the poor house quick. I think people new to betting fall into that trap. You are not better than Vegas at handicapping games ever. You see some value sometimes. A gambler finds value every week, not knows nothing is for sure. Also, I found it odd that at Sportsbook.com (where I get my lines from) that 90% of the action was on the Patriots. Hmmm… A lot of people swallowing every NFL commentator bailing on the Jets bandwagon faster than they got on it in the first place. If I was an individual who had a lot of gamble in me I would probably bet on the Jets.
Sexy Disclaimer: This post is intended for entertainment purposes only. You assume all of your own risk when placing a bet either legal or illegal. Neither The Gally Blog nor the author assume any risk for any bets placed on advice or content contained in this post or on this blog.