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October 2020

Football picksOctober 30, 2020

My Week 8 NFL picks feature a couple of ATS predictions from Sunday’s divisional slate, but I’m also looking at a few divisional totals. Coming into Week 8, divisional home teams were 20-12 ATS (63%). The home side has outscored its guest 28-22, with totals going OVER at a rate of 55%.

  • 11 of 17 (65%) divisional overs in 2020 finished above the mark by 10 points or more

Scoring in divisional matchups historically edges down when teams meet for the second time. Defenders are up to speed and there is more game film to look over. Weather can also impact scoring in cities like Green Bay, Chicago and Philadelphia. Oddsmakers will adjust, but how are bettors supposed to modify their approach given the way rule changes have increased offensive production by 25% in the past 20 years?

  • In 2001, NFL games averaged 40.4 points. Thus far in 2020, the scoring average is 50.7 points per game.

Read on and I’ll show you a way to adjust your settings while looking for value in your Week 8 NFL picks.

Follow @Wunderdog for more NFL trends and winning football picks throughout the week!

Week 8 NFL Picks from Wunderdog Sports

Cincinnati Bengals QB Joe Burrow passed for 406 yards and three touchdowns in a 37-34 loss to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday

The Divisional 10% Rule

Hindsight is always 20-20, but I know more than one football handicapper that was scratching their head on Sunday, wondering why they hadn’t pounded the Bengals vs. Browns rematch to go OVER the total.

In the past seven meetings, Cleveland and Cinci have played OVER six times. The total throughout the week was only 50.5, and the weather was fine. The problem is that 50.5 points was 3.0 points higher than any previous total between these two teams. Remember, the book is only looking for balanced action on a matchup. They are not trying to predict the score, just nail down a number that will fetch an equal amount of money to both the high and low side.

This is one way to identify line value with current Over/Under odds.

Step 1
Take the past 10 meetings between these teams and average the final combined score.

In the case of Cincinnati and Cleveland, their 10 previous games averaged 47.1 points which was +3.45 points over the average posted total of 43.6.

Step 2
Take 10% of their combined average from those 10 games, and add the two figures.

In this example, 47.1 + 4.7 = 51.8 points. Call this the Divisional 10% Total.

Step 3
Compare the Divisional 10% Total with the actual game total. As long as our comparative total is higher than the posted total, we have ourselves an OVER play to consider. If the Divisional 10% total is lower, perhaps the UNDER is worth a closer look.

Visit my Matchups section for more Week 8 NFL trends and betting tips!

Forward Thinking

There are six divisional matchups listed on Sunday’s NFL schedule. I took the liberty of averaging the scores from the past 10 meetings for you. The comparative value is listed against current NFL Over/Under odds.

Minnesota at Green Bay
Line: Packers -6 and O/U 50

Average from past 10 meetings = 42.2
Divisional 10% Total = 46.4
Comparative Value = UNDER by 3.6 points

New England at Buffalo
Line: Bills -4 and O/U 41

Average from past 10 meetings = 40
Divisional 10% Total = 44
Comparative Value = OVER by 3.0 points

Get my Week 8 prediction from the Patriots and Bills here!

San Francisco at Seattle
Line: Seahawks -3 and O/U 53.5
Average from past 10 meetings = 43.2
Divisional 10% Total = 47.5
Comparative Value = UNDER by 6.0 points

Week 8 NFL Picks, 49ers vs. Seahawks – available now!

Los Angeles at Denver
Line: Chargers -3 and O/U 44.5

Average from past 10 meetings = 36.6
Divisional 10% Total = 40.3
Comparative Value = UNDER by 4.2 points

Pittsburgh at Baltimore
Line: Ravens -4.5 and O/U 46.5
Average from past 10 meetings = 45.1
Divisional 10% Total = 49.6
Comparative Value = OVER by 3.1 points

Get my premium selection on this AFC North battle, and get in on the winning!

Dallas at Philadelphia
Line: Eagles -11 and O/U 43
Average from past 10 meetings = 40.6
Divisional 10% Total = 45.2
Comparative Value = OVER by 2.2 points

Checking the weather is ultra important when betting totals, especially at this time of year. Injuries to key personnel such as the starting quarterback also need to be carefully factored. Yeah, I’m looking at you Cowboys. And remember, this is just one of many strategies you can use while making your Week 8 NFL picks. For more on the NFL, check out my trends and tips feature.

Get today’s College Football Picks, and all the rest of my Week 8 NFL Picks including my Max Play, right here!


Football picksOctober 29, 2020

My Week 8 NFL preview with has all the key trends and betting tips you need for Sunday’s big matchups.

The New York Jets (0-7) are like an accident scene, where everyone that passes by can’t help but look. New York’s points per game (12.1), yards per game (264), yards per play (4.3), third down conversions (29.8%) and red zone scoring (25%) all rank dead last in the league.

But they’re playing the Kansas City Chiefs (6-1) on Sunday, so we HAVE TO look! And here are another two things to consider:

  • Road dogs off a home dog loss where they covered are a 9-0 ATS run the past two seasons.
  • Beyond the first month, when this week’s underdog off the loss is still winless on the year, they are 19-5 ATS (79%), including a current run of eight consecutive covers dating back to 2008.

See? Whether you like it or not, you’re suddenly caught gazing towards the wreckage!

The Jets were infamously held to just four yards in the second half of last week’s loss to Buffalo. On the heels of a 24-0 loss the week prior, you can be excused if a couple of lopsided trends don’t have you rushing onto your favorite betting app for a play. Especially considering that Kansas City has averaged 32.5 points per game since Patrick Mahomes was handed the keys in 2018. This might be more your style:

  • In the past eight years, road teams off pitiful back-to-back showings have played OVER the total 22 of 28 games.

Kansas City and the J-E-T-S were live in this angle in 2017 and the game ended with 69 points.

Follow @wunderdog for more of my NFL trends, tips and free picks!

Week 8 NFL Trends and Betting Tips

Sam Darnold (shoulder) was sacked six times last week and he is listed as ‘doubtful’ for Week 8

Week 8 TNF Tip Pool

Atlanta at Carolina
Line: Panthers -2 and O/U 51

The Atlanta Falcons had won five games in a row against Carolina coming into 2020, but their motto this season is finding ways to lose. In Week 5, the Panthers defeated the Falcons 23-16 to end the streak, and now the books figure they could do it again. This line opened at -3 but has edged off on speculation that RB Christian McCaffrey may not return from Injured Reserve.

Carolina has lost two in a row since beating the Falcons but they opened the season with back-to-back losses, as well. The win in Week 3 improved the Cats to 5-1 ATS off two-straight losses and at this point, they are 1-2 against the division. They’ll host the Bucs in Week 10 and Saints in Week 17. It goes without saying that this win is critical in keeping their divisional hopes alive.

  • Atlanta averages 26.3 points per game. Carolina has played OVER 25 of the past 35 games vs. an explosive offense.

Each team in the above profile averaged 27 points per contest. In home games, the OVER was 8-2 since 2017 and against equal competition, the past 10 also went 8-2 OVER the total.

Get my premium selection on the Falcons vs. Panthers game right here.

Week 8 Trends and Betting Tips

Pittsburgh at Baltimore
Line: Ravens -4 and O/U 46.5

Arguably the biggest matchup of the weekend, Pittsburgh and the UNDER are catching plenty of early action at the window. For the final game of my Week 8 NFL trends, I’ve broken down two coaching angles along with one Over/Under system that is 60% effective with more than 200 plays.

Pittsburgh is off a hard fought win in Tennessee and the Ravens are rested off a bye week. Coach John Harbaugh is 12-3 SU and 10-5 ATS with extra prep, including playoffs. Mike Tomlin, however, has a 11-6 SU/ATS divisional record in the second of back-to-back road games. The Steelers’ vet has also stayed UNDER in this spot six of the past seven times.

  • In the past 30 years, the UNDER is 135-89 (60%) when the total is in this range and a strong road team (.750 or better) rolls in off an underdog win.

The Steelers and Ravens have had 13 of their past 24 meetings (54%) decided by three points or less. With two potent offenses and all the rules protecting quarterbacks and receivers, we could see a shootout on any given Sunday. But with these two powerhouses, it wouldn’t surprise anyone to see this game come down to the final possession.

Visit my Matchups section for more Week 8 NFL trends and betting tips!


Sports picksOctober 23, 2020

Betting on football adds excitement to the game, and when it comes to the first of my Week 7 NFL picks, the Eagles kept everyone in suspense until the final minute. I’ll happily take the win, but it was an ugly game in a lot of ways.

  • New York and Philadelphia were a combined 7 of 23 on third down (30.4%)
  • The Giants turned the ball over three times.

And what was worse, Danny Dimes tackling himself right before a sure touchdown, or Carson Wentz’ indecision about when to get rid of the football? Granted, Wentz was scrambling behind his sixth different O-Line combination of the season. In the end, he made a perfect throw to an even better catch, and Philadelphia got the win. But the lack of execution on that team is exactly why I opted to play the Eagles on the moneyline, rather than lay the points.

My Thursday Night Football record in 2020 is 4-1 (80%) for +$2,100!

Week 7 NFL Picks, trends, and handicapping tips.

The NFC East has the worst home ATS record in football since 2009

Continue reading


Football picksOctober 22, 2020

My Week 7 NFL preview has the key trends, and betting tips you need to get your head in the game for Sunday’s big matchups.

Week 7 NFL Schedule, Spreads, Trends and Betting Tips
The betting record for October road favorites in the past three seasons is 31-20 (61%) ATS . Green Bay is -3.5 at Houston

Week 7 TNF Tip Pool

New York Giants at Philadelphia
Line: Eagles -4 and O/U 44.5

The New York Giants (1-5 SU) are coming off their first win. Philadelphia is only a half-game better at 1-4-1 SU, but these Eagles have won seven-straight games against the G-Men. The streak began on a Thursday night home game in 2016, and that 24-19 final is almost like a template for tonight’s spread.

Coach Doug Pederson has also won five in a row against the NFC East. Bragging about wins in this sorry division, however, won’t get you much love in Hall of Fame balloting.

  • The Eagles margin of victory in their past five divisional games was 3-15-5-6-8 points. The Eagles did not allow a single third-quarter point in any of those five wins.

New York is averaging 27:42 time of possession, 88 rushing yards and 188 passing yards per game. They are scoring 16.8 points per game and the record for Thursday divisional games with a total in the low 40’s is 22 overs and 11 unders (67% OVER).

Philadelphia’s point tally increased through each of their first five weeks. It edged back a single point in the 30-28 loss to Baltimore, for a current average of 23.5. The Eagles also allow 29.2 points per contest and New York’s road record since 2000 vs. weaker defenses is 17-3 ATS.

New York barely won a sloppy game last Sunday, 20-19. Now on a short week, they travel as divisional road dogs against another underachieving NFC East squad. The history for dogs like this isn’t great. Get my premium selection on the Giants vs. Eagles game here.

Week 7 NFL Preview

Dallas at Washington
Line: Pick em and O/U 46

The ’T’ in Texas may just as well stand for turnovers, as far as the Cowboys are concerned. Dallas has averaged a ridiculously high 2.5 giveaways while stumbling to their 2-4 SU start, including four during the loss to Arizona.

  • Any divisional road team the past five years that turned the ball over 3-plus times last week, has a 29-47 ATS (38%) record.
  • If the line is within +/- 3 points of Pick em, that win percentage sinks to 24% ATS (5-16).

Visit my Matchups section for more Week 7 NFL trends and betting tips!

Mike McCarthy has a career record of 48-30 ATS (62%) when facing a division rival, but it seems like his biggest challenge right now is keeping the locker room together.

At home off a road loss, coach Ron Rivera posted 15 overs and 7 unders with Carolina. And in his first chance with Washington, he kept the trend alive with a Week 4 OVER against Baltimore. The forecast is calling for seasonal weather, light winds and only 10% chance of rain. With so little to lose, could this be the darkhorse shootout of the Week 7 schedule?

Follow @wunderdog for more of my NFL trends, tips and free picks!

Working Overtime

Carolina at New Orleans
Line: Saints -7 and O/U 51

The New Orleans Saints and Los Angeles Chargers, played to overtime in a primetime game prior to their bye week. Analytics junkies read that sentence and think, OMG, I’m about to crack the most unique trend set of all-time! But let me save you the trip, there is nothing that playing into overtime before a bye week does to impact this week’s matchup. You want an example?

  • Faves off a bye that won prior to their break are 55% ATS. Meanwhile, faves that did so in overtime, are 54% ATS.

There is one trend worth nothing, though. It applies to the Saints, and it’s only 5-0 ATS but the margin of victory for those five favorites was more than 20 points per game. We are looking at home faves on turf that won in overtime before their bye week. New Orleans was “live” in this angle once in 2011, and they polished off the Giants 49-24.

Something juicier?

Carolina ranks 3rd in the NFL with 32:14 average minutes of possession. The Panthers are 11th in first downs with 22.8 per game.

  • Sean Payton’s record against high possession teams that can move the chains is 24-9 ATS (73%).

Before Thanksgiving, Payton’s home record in this spot with at least five days prep time is 10-1 ATS. And the last I heard, WR Michael Thomas (ankle) is on pace to dress for this one.

Five-straight years of success — Get all of my top Week 7 NFL picks right here!


Football picksOctober 15, 2020

When sorting through the list of Week 6 NFL trends, there is a definite theme. Scoring was up in a handful of last week’s games, and it triggered a few high-percentage angles worth sharing.

The Week 6 NFL schedule is serving up a healthy portion of divisional matchups, revenge games, and even some coaching scenarios worth keeping an eye on. We’ll get a chance to see how the Chiefs respond to a loss, how Buffalo works off a short week, and what the Rams can do against some actual competition.

So let’s not waste anymore of your time. Here is my list of Week 6 NFL trends, tips and news you can use.

Week 6 NFL trends including the Texans at Titans and Chiefs at Bills

The Titans are just the 11th team since realignment to convert six of six red zone opportunities

Week 6 NFL Trends: 40 Burgers

As both a coach and analyst, Steve Mariucci has had some great quotes over the years. The one that really stirs my appetite on a Sunday afternoon is when he talks about ’40 Burgers’, and in Week 5 there were enough to feed the whole family.

Here are some scenarios involving games from last week where at least one team scored 40 points. And like any grill master will tell you — with 40 Burgers, it’s better to give than to receive.

New York Jets at Miami
Line: Dolphins -9.5 and O/U 47

The Dolphins (2-3 SU) won only five games in 2019 but three of them were in December. During those wins, Miami scored 37, 38 and 27 points, an average of 34 per game. This season they started with back-to-back divisional matchups vs. the Patriots and Bills, and nobody was shocked when they fell to 0-2. Miami also lost to Seattle in Week 4, but against the Jaguars (1-4 SU) and Niners (2-3 SU), these Fish have looked like Pro Bowlers.

Indeed, the Jets (0-5 SU) are a divisional foe but that’s where the similarities end. Even comparing them to the Jaguars is flattering. And here is the first of our Week 6 NFL trends worth noting:

  • After scoring 40-plus points, the OVER is 10-3 (77%) for a divisional favorite that’s facing a winless team.

Visit my Matchups section for more Week 6 NFL trends and betting tips!

Fire up the Grill

Houston at Tennessee
Line: Texans -3 and O/U 53

Tennessee (4-0 SU) put on a show Tuesday night, going 6-for-6 in the red zone during a 42-16 win over the Bills. The Texans (1-4 SU) have scored more points in four consecutive games (16-21-23-30), and finally earned a win Sunday over the beleaguered Jaguars. Interim coach Romeo Crennel has a career .345 win percentage (29-55 SU), and he has been in charge of some horrible offenses. So would the real Houston Texans please stand-up?

Divisional road dogs have been outscored 26-17 when facing a team that scored 40-plus points the previous week. When their coach has a losing record, divisional dogs reduce that margin to just 3.0 points (22.4-19.4). But here’s one from the Week 6 NFL trends that really stands out:

  • The OVER is 22-8 (73%) the past 30 times a team with a winning record was coming off a home dog win.

Follow @Wunderdog for instant updates on my Max Plays!

Primetime NFL Trends, Week 6

The Raiders are off this week following their huge upset win over Kansas City. Of the remaining 40-burger units, all three are playing under the lights in Week 6.

Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco
Line: Rams -3.5 and O/U 51.5

The Rams (4-1 SU) have padded their stats against all four NFC East teams to start the season, averaging 27.2 points.

  • When a potent offense meets a divisional foe that just allowed 40-plus points, the UNDER is 17-6 (74%).

Kansas City at Buffalo
Line: Chiefs -3.5 and O/U 57.5

The Chiefs (4-1 SU) saw their 13-game winning streak come to an end on Sunday, but oddsmakers still had no choice but to make them a road favorite at the Ralph. Buffalo (4-1 SU) didn’t help their cause, getting lit on Tuesday, but coach Sean McDermott’s recent record as an underdog is a healthy 9-3-1 ATS. I should also note that the UNDER in those 13 games is 10-3 (77%).

Any road fave that saw their win streak unceremoniously ended at home by allowing 40-plus points, has a 1-6 ATS record. Countering that, however, is coach Andy Reid’s 21-10-2 ATS (68%) record on Monday Night Football. Included with that nugget is Reid’s 6-1-2 ATS (86%) MNF record with the Chiefs.

The forecast for Buffalo is cloudy, light winds, with temperatures in the 60’s. In other words, I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for this total to drop.

Get the Dog’s premium, Week 6 NFL Picks here!