October 30, 2013

Week 9 NFL Odds Analysis

We’re all set to get going with the Week 9 odds for NFL this week at Bang the Book, as there are a plethora of games that we are going to be focusing in on that are going to have some huge impacts on the entire season.

There are really only two types of game this week in NFL betting action. There are the big time favorites at home, and the favorites on the road, and there is very little in the middle.

Right off the bat, the Cincinnati Bengals are taking on the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. The Fins have been in a funk, as they have been beaten in four straight games both from an SU and an ATS perspective. They’re taking on a team that has won four straight and has covered three of the four. The Bengals are going to be one of the many public teams on the board in Week 9 for sure, and the fact that they are playing on Thursday Night Football is only going to make them all the more public. They’re only laying 2.5 though, and this is one of the trickier lines to watch out for.

The New Orleans Saints are the biggest of the road favorites this week at -6 at MetLife Stadium against the New York Jets. The hopes are there that this isn’t the only time this season that New Orleans will pay a visit to East Rutherford, as this is where the Super Bowl is going to be held. The Jets are coming off of that demoralizing 49-9 loss to the Bengals last week on the road, and they don’t have much in the way of expectations even though they are a .500 team.

SportsBookSpeaking of demoralizing, that’s the case for the St. Louis Rams as well. St. Louis had the Seahawks dead to rights last week on Monday Night Football, but it blew the game at the end and couldn’t figure out how to get the ball into the end zone in four trips to the red zone, two of which featured goal-to-go situations. This week, the Rams are staying at home, but they are having a homecoming of sorts for Head Coach Jeff Fisher. Fisher is taking on his former team, the Tennessee Titans in a crucial tilt of three-win teams. St. Louis is getting a field goal at home.

The still perfect Kansas City Chiefs are -3 on the road against the Buffalo Bills in what seems to be one of the squarer lines of Week 9, while the San Diego Chargers are giving one to the Washington Redskins. The Baltimore Ravens are on the road as well, as they are taking on the Cleveland Browns in what is shaping up to be a big AFC North battle at the Dawg Pound. The New Browns are +2.5 at home against the Old Browns. The Philadelphia Eagles are also going on the road to take on the Oakland Raiders. With the quarterback position still up in the air, many sportsbooks still don’t have this game on the board. However, with the likelihood there that QB Matt Barkley is going to make his first career start, the Eagles are still laying three at the few books that have lines up on the game.

Maybe the most important of these games with short road favorites is the Sunday Night Football clash between the Indianapolis Colts and the Houston Texans. If Houston has any shot whatsoever to get the job done this year and get back in the AFC South race, it absolutely has to win this game at home. The hometown crowd wants QB Matt Schaub out, and that’s exactly what is happening. QB Case Keenum has the job now, and that has caused this line to move. Houston was a two-point favorite earlier this week, but now, it is down to +2.5.

Six teams are on bye again this week, and there are two games on the shortened slate that feature games home teams favored by less than double digits. The Atlanta Falcons of course, were expected to be short favorites on the road at the start of the season against the Carolina Panthers, but my, how things have changed! The Panthers are now whopping 7.5-point favorites, as they go in search of their fourth straight win to get back into the race in the NFC South.

Over in the AFC, the New England Patriots are -6.5 at home against the Pittsburgh Steelers, who are running out of games to lose if they want to play a factor in the playoff chase this year.

Three games feature double-digit point spreads this week. The Dallas Cowboys are giving 10 to the Minnesota Vikings, while the Green Bay Packers are -10.5 against the Chicago Bears on Monday Night Football. The latter game looked like one that could have been big at the start of the season, but now that QB Jay Cutler is out for the next month with a groin injury, Chicago doesn’t seem to have much of a chance to go on the road and bounce the Pack.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the one winless team in action this week, as the Jacksonville Jaguars are coming back from London and are probably a field goal underdog to the bye week. The Bucs are in far worse shape, as they have to take one of the longest road trips possible in the NFL all the way up to CenturyLink Field, where the Seattle Seahawks are waiting. This is an interesting spot, knowing that Seattle is coming off of a Monday Night Football game in which they played poorly against the Rams but still managed to win, while the Bucs lost on Thursday Night Football against the Panthers. From that standpoint the ATS trends suggest that Tampa Bay should have a fighting chance. Unfortunately, we all know better. The Bucs are +16.5.

‘Totals’ this week are relatively low. The highest on the board are the 50.5 in the San Diego/Washington game and the 50 on the board in the Monday Night Football duel at Lambeau Field. We’ve only got one ‘total’ under 40 this week, and that is the Fisher Bowl between the Rams and the Titans. However, the median ‘total’ this week is just 44, which is as low as we have seen all season long.

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Adam Markowitz

is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.

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