Welcome to the recap blog. Weekly results are a silly thing to track -- the small sample and high variance nature of the NFL makes them totally irrelevant. However, it's always fun looking back at how the games went, and I like to see where we had closing line value. For a more technical overview of our results, check the results page.
LA Rams (+1.5) @ Indianapolis
Line closed: LAR -1.5, line moved toward the model
This seemed like it was going to be an easy cover, with the Rams jumping out to a 20-0 lead at the half, which included a missed 46 yard field goal from Brett Maher. After a Rams field goal in the 3rd to bring them up 23, the Colts then scored touchdowns on 3 of their next 4 drives, including two successful 2-point conversions, in-between which Matt Stafford threw an interception and Maher missed another field goal. All of the sudden it was tied up at 23.
The game ended up going into OT. Fortunately for us, the Rams won the toss, took the ball, then drove it 75 yards, capped off with a game winning touchdown by Puka Nacua.
P.S. How about that closing line value? Taking an underdog who closes as a favorite is a wonderful feeling.
Final score: LA Rams 29, Indy 23
Pittsburgh (-3.0) @ Houston
Line closed: PIT -3.0, line stayed the same
We were never remotely close on this one. The Steelers offense was stagnate - totally a whopping 6 points the entire game. Meanwhile, Texans QB CJ Stroud put together another solid performance, gaining 10.2 yards per attempt through the air without putting the ball in harm's way. The Steelers did a decent job putting pressure on Stroud - he ended up being under pressure on 31.3% of dropbacks - but they had no answer for Nico Collins, who caught 7 balls for 168 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Final score: Houston 30, Pittsburgh 6
Cincinnati (-2.5) @ Tennessee
Line closed: CIN -2.5, line stayed the same
The Bengals offense remained problematic. While we expect things to turn around for the Bengals, Joe Burrow clearly isn't himself, and neither is Tee Higgins, who left the game with a rib injury. Meanwhile, the Titans offense gained 9.3 yards per play threw the air and 5.2 yards per play on the ground. It was ugly.
Final score: Tennessee 27, Cincinnati 3
Arizona (+14.0) @ San Francisco
Line closed: SF -14.5, line moved away from the model
Arizona scored a touchdown in the 3rd quarter, brining them within 5 (21-16). Things were looking up, but then came a San Francisco touchdown, an Arizona punt, and then another San Francisco touchdown. That made the score 35-16, but Arizona still had time for one last drive, and a touchdown would have put the game within 5.
Arizona drove the ball 60 yards to the San Francisco 15. On 3rd and 6, they had two shots for a touchdown. Here's how those went down:
And that's how we lost.
It was still an important lesson in spread betting. The Cardinals had no shot to win, but they were still doing everything they could do put as many points on the board, making our interests aligned. That's not always the case when you bet large favorites, as you'll see in the next game..
Kansas City @ NY Jets (+9.5)
Line closed: KC -8.0, line moved toward the model
Zach Wilson had one of the better games of his career, completing 71.8% of his passes and gaining 6.3 yards per attempt. He had 2 touchdowns, and PFF did not ding him with any turnover worthy plays. Wilson's true weak point has been pressure, and he was under pressure on a third of his dropbacks, but he still performed well there - gaining 7.3 yards per attempt.
Even still, Kansas City had jumped out to a 17-0 lead, and it took a heroic Wilson effort to get New York back into it. After finally tying things at 20, Kansas City was able to kick a field goal in the 4th, giving them a 3 point lead. Wilson then fumbled at the KC 49, giving the Chiefs the ball back with 7:24 to go in the 4th. The Jets wouldn't see the ball again.
Kansas City methodologically drove down the field, killing every single second of clock in the process. It was then 3rd and 8 at the Jets 11 where Mahomes took a scramble 9 yards, sliding right before the goal line rather than taking an easy touchdown. The reasoning was fairly straight forward: the first down gave the Chiefs the opportunity to take a knee, which ended the game.
Was that fortunate for us that Mahomes didn't score? Absolutely. But it's also partially why the model continues to hammer underdogs. Situations like this happen, and it results in an underdog cover.
Final score: Kansas City 23, NY Jets 20
Seattle (+1.5) @ NY Giants
Line closed: SEA -2.5, line moved toward the model
We bet another underdog that closed as a favorite - this truly gives me more joy than winning. I know, I hate myself for writing that.
The Giants offensive line - especially without Andrew Thomas - is a problem. Seattle has far from the scariest pass rush in the league, and they were still able to put Daniel Jones under pressure on 46% of dropbacks. As you can imagine, the Giants had nothing offensively. Seattle did more than enough to put them away, making this a Monday Night snooze fest.
Spread recap: We went 3-3 this week, but for the 4th week in a row, I remain encouraged by our closing line value.
Evan Engram u4.5 receptions +125 (Bet365): Engram caught 7 passes. LOSS -1 unit
Ryan Tannehill o196.5 passing yards -110 (Bet365): Tannehill threw for 240 yards. WIN +0.91 units
Kenneth Gainwell u35.5 rushing yards -115 (PointBet): Gainwell ran for 14 yards. WIN 0.87 units
Kyren Williams u3.5 receptions +120 (Bet365): Williams had 3 receptions. WIN +1.2 units
Tyreek Hill o7.5 receptions -120 (BetMGM): Hill had 3 catches. LOSS -1 unit
Baker Mayfield o1.5 passing TDs +200 (DraftKings): Mayfield threw for 3 touchdowns. WIN +2 units
Keenan Allen o7.5 receptions +104 (Caesars): Allen had 3 catches. LOSS -1 unit
Jake Ferguson u30.5 receiving yards -110 (Bet365): Ferguson had 77 receiving yards. LOSS -1 unit
Brock Purdy u20.5 completions +105 (DraftKings): Purdy had 20 completions. WIN +1.05 units
Zach Wilson o173.5 passing yards -110 (Bet365): Wilson threw for 245 yards. WIN +0.91 units
Props results: 6-4, +2.94 units
Week 1: 5-3, +1.43 units
Week 2: 5-5, -0.29 units
Week 3: 4-5, -0.52 units
Week 4: 6-4, +2.94 units
Total: 20-17, +3.56 units