2007 Season NFL Football Past Picks
October 01, 2007
New England at Cincinnati
Monday 10/01 08:30 PM Eastern
3 units on Cincinnati +9 (-105) (risk 3 to return 3) RESULT: loss
3 units on Game Total UNDER 54.5 -110 (risk 3 to return 3) RESULT: win
The Patroits in early 2007 look like they are headed for another Superbowl. They have yet to even be involved in a close game and they have been great on both sides of the ball. The Bengals, meanwhile have been a dissapointment. They come in at 1-2 and look like the Bungles from several years ago. How can this terrible Bengals defense, that gave up 51 points to Cleveland, hope to contain Tom Brady and Randy Moss? Looks like New England can name their score here, right? The public thinks so. Nearly 70% of the bets are coming in on New England and the line on the Pats has moved off of -7 to -7.5, on the road! We don't think it's such a slam-dunk. The novelty of Monday Night Football has for the most part worn off in the NFL. Whereas in years past, Monday Night home dogs were dominant spread winners, in recent years, it has become well known that taking Monday Night dogs hasn't been a profitable endeavor. The Monday game, for the most part, has become like every other game. It has been around for so long, it simply doesn't provide the same home-field advantage as it once did. But (you knew this was coming), while that may be true in most NFL cities, it still represents a "special" game in others. One of those cities is Cincinnati. Why? Hosting "the big game" is still new and novel to them! The Bengals have hosted a Monday night game just four times since 1983. They hosted a powerful Denver team in 2004, after a 15 year absence. They were a +6 dog as a 1-4 team that was being outscored 30-16 on average. Denver came in at 5-1, giving up just 14 points per game. The crowd was in a frenzy and Cincinnati rose above their ability, winning easily 23-10! The point is that emotion plays a huge factor in these games, and when you have a team that has not hosted MNF very often, expect the crowd and players to be at their emotional height. Last year we saw Arizona, who has only hosted three games since 1983, give the Bears fits as an 11 point MNF home dog, losing by one point. The story is the same with all these infrequent hosts. Teams that have hosted a MNF game fewer than 10 times in the last 23 years are 15-6 ATS as a home dog. Of those 15 wins, 12 of them have won straight up! That means they don't only cover, these underdogs are 12-9 SU (57%). On top of that, one of the worst bets in the NFL is to back a road favorite of 7+ points. Over the last eight seasons, road favorites of a TD or more have gone 29-47 (38%) ATS. New England has been dominant thus far, but its damage so far has come against very soft teams. They have not played against a team this season that ranks above #25 in either offense or defense! Meanwhile Cincinnati has faced offenses which average in the top 9 in the league and defenses that average 19th. The Pats are 24-8 on the road the last four years, but they have won by 8+ in only 13 of those 32 games. Teams that have scored 30+ in back to back home games, and then head on the road are 16-27-1 (37%) ATS since 1997. More proof that the value in this game lies with Cincinnati in this must-win game? Last year Cincinnati was a 6 point favorite hosting New England. Now they are getting 7.5? Ask yourself: is New England really 14 points better than Cincinnati this year compared to last year? The oddsmakers are taking advantage of the public who is in a frenzy about New England this year. The value lies with the underdog. We like the UNDER in this one as well. Let's get back to teams that have scored 30+ in back to back home games who then head on the road... They have reached 30 points that next game just 37.5% of the time. These games have gone UNDER 54 total points 64% of the time. The Patriots have gone UNDER 14 out of the last 16 times they have faced bad defenses (those allowing 27+ points per game). In the Belichick era, they are 11-3 UNDER vs. bad pass defenses (those allowing 235+ passing yards per game). And, under Belichick, the Pats are 10-2 UNDER vs. elite offenses (teams averaging 29+ points per game). The public loves New England and the OVER, but we have information otherwise for this one.