Everyone attempts to make smart bets and yet few sports bettors win consistently. We – as a sports betting community – are constantly striving for knowledge so we can make “smart picks”.
Let’s say you bet 2 NFL spreads this weekend – winning one and losing the other. How do you tell whether they were smart picks?
Was the winning pick automatically smart or did you just get lucky? Was the losing wager a dumb pick or “dumb luck”?
Most sports bettors are unable to differentiate their skill from random chance. Are you on a winning streak because you found an edge against the books or because your opponents keep fumbling? Did you lose 6-straight bets because your handicapping is off or because a blown call turned your sure victory into a crushing loss?
To help answer these questions, we need to bring in Mr. Data. Data is so useful in situations like this because it removes emotion from the picture. For example, I took one on the chin when I bet Miami +23 earlier this season – only to watch them lose 31-6.
I was so darn positive that I was making the correct bet at the time. I cited plenty of data to reassure myself. It just didn’t work out.
I didn’t make the correct bet, obviously, but I believe I made the smart bet. All of the data indicated that Miami had value. I would make this bet again if a similar situation arose.
This is what constitutes a smart bet. If the data backed you up and you would make the pick again – it was smart.
2019 NFL Trends
We are through one-fourth of the NFL schedule and I feel now is an appropriate time to look at some early-season 2019 NFL trends.
Hopping on a strong trend is the epitome of a smart bet. Our Wagerbop betting systems pinpoint the best trends and show you exactly what to look for in a matchup.
I want to examine the top 2019 NFL trend along with my thoughts on if it can be trusted to continue:
Trend – Visiting Teams are Cleaning Up
Despite an average line of +1.9 through the first 4 weeks of 2019, road teams have beaten up on their home counterparts. Visiting teams are 35-27-1 (56.5%) SU this year and an even better 41-20-2 (67.2%) ATS!
I guess that settles it, huh? We should bet the farm on a road team this Sunday? … Hold up.
We need to do a little sniffing around to determine if there is a simple explanation for this road team explosion. The first thing I want to check is how home underdogs are doing. Maybe this is more a favorite/underdog thing than a home/road thing.
Killersports tells me that home dogs are an awful bet so far in 2019 – winning just 23.8% SU and 38.1% ATS. Okay … that hypothesis was dismissed quickly.
I also want to check how road teams have begun the season in previous years. Do road teams always start hot and then fade down the stretch? Let’s see.
I figure 5 years is a good window so I pulled data from 2014-2018 to check for a pattern in road team play. Here is what I found, broken down week-by-week.
|Week||ATS Win%||SU Win%||Avg Line|
Not strong correlation here. If anything, road teams actually become better bets later in the season. Strong performances from road teams early in the NFL season is definitely a departure from the norm.
Verdict: Use the trend against them.
We have something here. Road teams are playing out of their minds … but there is nothing indicating this pattern will remain.
Here’s how I am going to tackle this weekend – I am going to give the benefit of the doubt to home teams.
Think about it. Road teams are mysteriously winning tons of games with no discernible underlying cause. I am surely not the only one to realize this anomaly. The public will probably be all over the road teams – shifting the lines slightly in favor of the home teams.
The teams I currently have my eye on are Bengals -3 (-120), Steelers +3.5 (-115), and Saints -3 (-120).
See you on top!