The public are marks. The Wiseguys have the info. It’s written in the Dead Sea Scrolls. The NFL season is rapidly approaching and the wagers are flying in on season win totals and Super Bowl futures. So, why throw darts at a board when you can at least look like you know what you’re talking about while you explain to your wife how you lost your shirt.
RJ Bell from Pregame.com joined The Herd and gave his preseason report to Colin on who the boys in the desert like this year in the NFL.
Which teams does Vegas like to breakout this year and why?
Every year in the NFL, teams breakthrough to make a playoff run after missing out the year before. Last year the Panthers went from 7-8 to 15-1 seemingly out of nowhere. The main factors that the experts use to predict a turnaround like the Panthers are simple:
1. Turnover margin – Turnovers are basically a fluke. If a team has a ton of takeaways one year, the following year is usually the statistical correction. Fumbles lost, bad deflections. Vegas says these things work themselves out.
This year the two teams that fit the bill are the Jaguars and the Buccaneers. The Bucs were 22nd in the NFL i turnover margin, the Jags were 29th. With improving quarterbacks, offensive turnovers should go down. Add a couple of takeaways and it adds up to wins.
2. Quarterback play – Who has the up and coming, breakout quarterback? Last year it was Cam Newton, this year it Vegas likes Blake Bortles and Jameis Winston to take big steps on improving teams.
RJ says one respected odds maker would take Winston over Andrew Luck if he had ot pick one qurterback to start a franchise for the next 10 years.
3. Close games – Teams can’t win every close game. They can’t lose every close game either. The Panthers were 6 – 1 in games decided by a touchdown or less last year. That can’t happen all the time, regardless of the quality of the team winning them. The Bucs and Jags have taken some tough L’s, but with steady QB’s, they should start turning some of the tough losses into wins.
The surprise teams Vegas loves this year are the Jags and the Bucs. Tampa Bay has an over/under season win total of 7, VEGAS LOVES THE OVER. Jacksonville has Jacksonville at 7.5 wins. TAKE THE OVER.
Vegas is down on.
The Rams. Too much hype and attention around the move from St. Louis to LA create unrealistic expecations for a roster that isn’t equipped ot meet them. Rookie QB’s don’t start strong, even if rookie first pick Jared Goff exceeds expectations, he’ll still struggle. They also only have 7 home games this season. It all adds up to UNDER 7.5 wins.
Who is the public heavy on this season?
The public loves Dallas. It’s something about the star. Sharks bet wins, the Public bets the super bowl futures. The ‘Boys are currently at 24/1 to win the Super Bowl. rafting stud rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott increases the hype and the public is gobbling it up. Sharps don’t like Dallas defensive talent and depth and think the public is overly optimistic as usual.
Another tidbit showing the public doesn’t know what the hell it’s doing is that the Patriots have better odds now to win the AFC than before the Brady’s Deflategate suspension. Because they’re better without him, right?
Colin loves the Raiders, what does Vegas think about the Silver and Black?
Vegas doesn’t entirely agree with Colin’s optimism. They have the Raiders third in the AFC West at 3/1.
Kansas City +180
San Diego +700
There is excitement about the Raiders, though. CG technologies, the biggest bookmaker in Vegas, has taken more bets on the Raiders to win the division than any other team . The Raiders also wont play an away game from Oct 30 to December 8. A 40 day home stand should help the cause.
The NFL is finally here. Every gambler is still undefeated. Don’t be a mark.