NFL Picks for Week 1
My biggest line miss for week 1 was saying Detroit was a 6.5 point favorite against the Giants (Instead of the 4 point favorite that Vegas says they are), otherwise I was within 2 points for each game, and generally just a half point or full point off.
I'll take four underdogs (Each of them to win outright, as well, technically, but I'll just take the points), GB +5.5 (The next time GB is going to be giving 5.5 points.. Is not going to be in this season, that's basically a certainty), Cleveland +6.5 (This is a horrible line, I had it at +5 and I thought I was pushing it), Oakland +4.5 (Better team, but they stink on the East Coast, so this is probably going to end poorly, especially since the starting QB for the Raiders is still unrevealed for Sunday.), Tennessee +4.5 (Better team, but they are on the road in a tough environment, likely a bad play), and three favorites, NE -4.5 (Bad number to lay, but NE is far superior to the Dolphins.. And the other two teams in their division.), Denver -7 (Laying a TD is awful, but there is no way will the Colts be taking this game and it should be a blowout victory for the Broncos.), and Detroit -4 (Laying 4 here is also a bad idea, but it's a bad line, and I am high on Detroit while low on the Giants so I should also be getting some value there.).
Seven of sixteen games in play, obviously a fairly high percentage, at least for picking NFL spreads. Two or three games are probably technically bad plays, but I'm irrationally confident due to this being the first week there are real NFL games.
Results of Picks: GB ended up looking fairly bad, I don't think the process was all that bad, but it would have been better to stay away. Cleveland had some serious struggles, but, overall, they probably should have won their game and ended up semi-easily covering their line. If Oakland had decent QB play they probably would have won, this should have been a definite stay away. Tennessee fairly clearly showed that they were the superior team, as expected, overall though it's hard to tell if this should have been a stay away as well. I'm not certain what difficulties the Patriots were having, but they ended up playing quite poorly. Semi-consequentially, a stay away may have been called for.. But, it's close. Denver should have managed to cover easily, but they took their foot off the gas pedal, so the Colts nearly managed to take the spread. The Lions effectively proved that they are a far superior team to the Giants.
Week 1 Record: 3-3-1
Overall Record: 3-3-1 (.50)
Picks for Week 2
Underdog picks: Falcons +5.5 (This is a joke.) Browns +6.5 (Almost a touchdown in bonus points in a fairly evenly matched game? I'll take it.) Lions +2.5 (I get points to have the far superior team? Horrible line.) Eagles +2.5 (Once again I get the better team and a couple points. Somewhat poor line.)
Favorite pick: Patriots -3.5 (Vikings are nowhere close to as good as they played last week, while the Patriots are going to play angry.)
Game line differential: Denver is actually a 13 point favorite, not 10 like I said. Seattle by 5.5, not 3.5. Gigantic difference: NO by 6, not 1 (Do people still not see that Browns are actually a competent football team?). Washington by 6, not 3.5.
Overall, these five picks are much better than last week's selections, partially because I'm taking more underdogs and because a few of the lines are even poorer than week one.
Results of Picks: So apparently it wasn't a joke that the Falcons were getting 5.5? Maybe the Falcons just leave their offense at home or something.. I still think I made the right pick though. The Browns/Saints game was indeed a very evenly matched game, the Saints were the slightly better team, but the Browns got the breaks and were certainly the right side. The Browns are a competent team? No way. The Lions/Panthers game was rather odd, the Lions leave their offense at home as well apparently, meanwhile the Panthers are somehow 2-0. Finally playing the better team getting points on the road was the right pick.. The Eagles at least came through with a late rally. On the favorites side of things, the Patriots dominated the AP-less Vikings.
Possibly I should just be picking the biggest line differentials that I have with Vegas or something, because the four value picks that I saw versus Vegas all won somewhat convincingly, except for the Broncos' game which was just a solid win. It was another semi-ugly week for me, especially considering that I'm doing pretty well in games that I'm not picking officially... So yeah, possibly I'll be able to turn this around.
Week 2 Record: 3-2
Overall Record: 6-5-1 (.55)
Picks for Week 3
Underdog picks: Chargers +2.5 (Here I try the better team getting points on the road strategy once again..) Browns +1.5 (This is a decent line, I just think that the breaks will continue to go the Browns' way this week) Raiders +14.5 (I don't like picking this.. But I practically have to on principle, and because I slightly think that it is the right play since the Patriots aren't actually extremely good) KC +4.5 (I think I'll just call better team getting points on the road: BTPR) Steelers +3.5 (I don't really like the Steelers, but I don't understand how the Panthers could start 3-0, this will probably end up being correct, however it will also probably be a bad play regardless.) Bears +2.5 (BTPR, the Jests are the favorites? Really?)
Favorite pick: Cowboys -.5 (The Cowboys may not be a good team... But they're playing the Rams) 49ers -2.5 (I lay less than a FG to take the 49ers on the road against some QB such as Carson Palmer or Drew Stanton? Alrighty then.)
I made eight picks this week.. I should really prune that down, but once again I am somewhat confident in a fair number of these picks. (I forgot to say which games had the greatest line differentials, whoops.) Also I wanted to mention last year's SB matchup, the Seahawks and Broncos. I had the game at Seahawks -5.5 while Vegas has it at Seahawks -5. I think the Broncos are in a very tough spot since they just played the Chiefs in a demoralizing way last weekend while the Seahawks are coming off a double digit loss for the first time in an extremely long time, in terms of the NFL time-frame anyways, thus regression is very likely to kick in, but I would still lean towards a Broncos play since I think the teams are closer to evenly matched this year and therefore the Broncos are getting a point or two fewer than they should.
Results of Picks: The Chargers made the BTPR strategy appear fairly decent in their matchup. The Browns' line was indeed very decent, I just happened to be on the wrong side by half a point. The Raiders laughed themselves to nearly upsetting the Patriots. Yeah, the Patriots are a great team. KC kept the BTPR strategy rolling with a fairly convincing win. The Steelers finally did to the Panthers what most teams should do and came away with the convincing victory. The Bears managed to pull off the trifecta of BTPR victories with their semi-solid win against the Jests. Meanwhile the Cowboys nearly destroyed themselves in the first half against the Rams, but they just managed to come back and grab the victory. Finally, the 49ers allowed Drew Stanton and the (somehow) 3-0 Cardinals to semi-dominate them in most phases of the game.
It was actually my worst week of picks overall, but I managed to have my best week in narrowed down selections.
Week 3 Record: 6-2
Overall Record: 12-7-1 (.63)
Underdog Picks: Dallas +3 (NO isn't a great road team, just in case anyone hasn't noticed..), Tennessee +7.5 (This line is way too high, the Titans aren't getting enough respect. Plus I would consider this a BTPR pick.)
Favorite Picks: Green Bay -1.5 (The Bears are coming off a short week while the Packers are coming off a physical tough loss.. Conflicting signals, but I think A-Rodgers leads a ho-hum 30 point offense this week.) Atlanta -3 (This is only a good pick if Atlanta actually packs an offense this game..) Detroit -1.5 (I am losing a bit of value with this pick, but I'll take the Lions to beat the TO prone Jests.)
Game Line Differentials: Tennessee at +7 instead of +4.5 like I said. Miami -4, +/-0. NO -3, +1. This week I finally did not see too many decent value or good picks to be had.
The Packers gave up a lot of yards, but otherwise had a great day against the Bears. (And the Pack-Attack was indeed back on track) The Falcons offense was available on Sunday, but the defense was not.. I think I should stop picking the Falcons on the road. The Lions semi-easily defeated the Jets and semi-proved that they are clearly the better team.
I didn't know that Locker would be out for Tennessee so I get a pass on that. The Dolphins dominated the Raiders, I don't think that I'll trust the Raiders anymore in my lines. The Saints were giving three points on the road based on what exactly?
I don't understand what the management of various teams thinks sometimes.. Let's throw out Charlie Whitehurst.. Since having him as our starting quarterback will help us... How exactly? Or starting Kyle Orton.. That will totally give us the best chance to win.. Right, because it's not like you couldn't pick up Tim Tebow, Vince Young, or trade for Colt McCoy.. But, I suppose that decisions like that are why some franchises are simply mired in mediocrity.
GL Differential Record in Previous Weeks: 4-0 (I only counted the four differences that I had in week 2 since I was somewhat official about those, from now on I'll try to remember to put up my GL differentials as well. The main criterion for the picks is that my lines have to differentiate from Vegas by at least 2.5 points.)
GL Week 4 Record: 1-2
GL Overall Record: 5-2
Week 4 Record: 3-2 (Another semi-disappointing week, but in my two losses the Titans didn't have Locker and the Falcons didn't pack a defense on the road, while the other three games were either comfortable wins or blowouts.)
Overall Record: 15-9-1 (.63)
Picks for Week 5
Underdog Picks: Chicago BTPR +3. I'll take Atlanta one last time.. +4.5 BTPR. Baltimore +3.5 BTPR. Washington +7.5 (BTPR? No wait, that certainly is not the case here. But, this is indeed a pick since it's hard to lay more than a TD at home, unless your team name is like Jacksonville or something, and Washington happens to have a mediocre team, not the poor one that just played the Giants.)
Favorite Picks: GB -9.5, (It is a horrible play to lay 9.5, but I went ahead and made the pick the day of the game due to the Packers not facing Bridgewater.)
GL Differentials: GB at -9.5, -6 (Despite this being in GB, this line is still inflated.). Detroit -7.5, -5 (Detroit has been really good at home in their two home games, so this makes sense.). Jacksonville +6.5, +4 (I tend to make lines curve too much towards pick-em, so this line is probably about right.). Washington +7.5, +4. (I forgot that Seattle had a BYE in week 4, but still, this line should be closer to a field goal than a touchdown.) (I think it's the same for Vegas, but I had a grand total of two home underdogs for week 5.)
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Picks for Week 6
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