Last week was one of the worst weeks I’ve ever had. I actually went 8-8 ATS somehow (I was shocked when I saw that), but I lost 7 of my top 8 plays. Fortunately I’m doing so well with prop bets that I’m going to end up in the black no matter what happens these last few weeks (well maybe not no matter what), but I feel like some explanations need to be made.
Dallas -3 over Washington 3 units
The Cowboys came into this one just 9-16 ATS as home favorites since 2009, but 2-1 ATS on Thanksgiving. Romo was 4-1 ATS on Thanksgiving and he had never lost a November home game. I thought those latter 3 numbers would nullify their general struggles at home as favorites and I didn’t want to back a publicly backed rookie quarterback on the road as a dog on a short week. Well, Griffin proved me wrong and I may have given up on the Redskins, a preseason sleeper team of mine, way too fast.
Oakland +8 over Cincinnati 4 units
Going into this one, teams were 36-16 ATS since 2002 off back-to-back losses of 21+ and the Bengals were 3-9 ATS in the Marvin Lewis era as touchdown favorites, but none of that mattered because the Raiders appear to have completely quit. By losing by 24, the Raiders became just the 13th team since 1989 to lose by 21+ in 3 straight. In case, you’re wondering, the previous 12 teams were 4-8 ATS in their next game so I will not be making a big play on this bunch of jokers next week.
Pittsburgh -1 over Cleveland 3 units
The Steelers had won 19 of 21 against the Browns since 2002. Dick LeBeau was 17-1 against rookie quarterbacks. Charlie Batch is an underrated backup who was 5-2 with the Steelers heading into this one. I expected the Steelers defense to carry them to victory and they did play well, allowing just 3.7 yards per attempt, getting a return touchdown, and forcing 10 punts to 14 first downs. Of course, none of that matters if you turn the ball over 8 times. Batch wasn’t awful. He had 3 picks, but one wasn’t his fault, but running backs and receivers fumbled a whopping 8 times, losing 5 in 6 point loss after losing 7 in their previous 10 games. There’s no way to handicap for that.
Tampa Bay +105 over Atlanta 4 units
This one pissed me off so much. ATS, I was actually right with this one. When the line is 1.5 or 1, I take the money line instead of the spread. Heading into this one, since 1989, there had been 414 teams who had been favorites of 1.5 or 1. Of those 414 teams, only 7 of those teams won by exactly 1 point, about 1.7%. It’s not worth the extra 15 cents for something that historically will only hurt me about 1.7% of the time. Well, this line was Tampa Bay +1.5. I took the money line. The Buccaneers lost by 1. I may stop doing this. It makes mathematical sense, but it makes you want to throw up when it goes against you and that’s just not worth it.
San Diego +105 over Baltimore 5 units
Speaking of wanting to throw up, the Chargers led 13-3 late. The Ravens got a score, but the Chargers had the ball up 3 with about 4 minutes left. Normally teams go into their 4 minute offense in this situation and run the ball and try to run the clock down as much as possible. Well, Norv Turner went into his 2 minute drill and passed on 2nd and 3rd down, having to punt without taking much time off the clock.
On the Ravens’ drive, they got backed up to 4th and 29 and a stop by the Chargers would have ended the game and won it 13-10 for the Chargers. So what happened? Flacco dropped back, all of his receivers were covered downfield, so he checked down to Ray Rice who broke about 4 tackles and somehow converted for 30 yards. Or did he? Replays showed he was short, but on review, the refs upheld the call. The Ravens drove down for a field goal and then won it late in overtime. PUKE!
Tennessee -3.5 over Jacksonville 4 units
I had this one handicapped perfectly. Divisional road dogs were 22-3 ATS since 2002 off a bye heading into this one, while teams coming off a road loss in overtime were 18-45 ATS (excluding teams that are road dogs). The only problem is that Chad Henne, for all of his faults, is a clear upgrade over Blaine Gabbert and as inconsistent as he is, he had a good game in this one and blew up all those trends.
Green Bay +2.5 over NY Giants 3 units
Don’t bet against the Giants when the public is doubting them. Just don’t do it.
Week 12 Results
ATS: 8-8 -7 units/$-890
Upset Picks: 0-4 -$1100
Over/Under: 1-3 -$230
Public Results ATS*: 8-8 -4 units
2012 results to date
ATS: 86-85-5 +4 units/-$1645
Upset Picks: 28-33 +$225
Over/Under: 8-7-1 +30
Parlays: 1-0 +100
Survivor: 10-2 (HOU, NE, NO, BAL, SF, ATL, CHI, GB, SD, SEA, DAL, DEN)
Public Results ATS*: 84-90-2 -1 unit
*I’m doing this to see how the general public does. Based on percent of bets on each team, if the more popularly bet team covers, it’s a public win, if not, it’s a public loss. If a team that has 50-59% of the action on it covers, the public gets “one unit,” if they don’t cover, they lose one unit, 60-69% is 2, 70-79% is 3, etc.