Wednesday, March 27, 2013

NFL 2012 Betting Trends Against the Spread

It was bad enough that the Eagles only won four games last season, but given the high expectations for the team heading into the regular season, they were absolute murder to wager on. The Birds had the worst record in the league last season against the spread at 3-12-1. Things were even worse at home where they failed to cover in seven of eight games with the other one ending as a PUSH. You could have made a fortune fading the Birds last season to the tune of $870 for every $100 wagered assuming that you went against them in all 16 games.

The following is an analysis of the NFL's 2012 ATS results in terms of a few betting trends that remained consistent throughout the entire regular season. It also points out some basic handicapping tips that you can easily incorporate into your wagering strategy for next season. This article was originally posted on Bang the Book as part of my ongoing series 'NFL Betting Trends'.

NFL 2012 ATS Results by the Numbers

Thursday, March 21, 2013

2013 NFL Draft - Top Offensive Value Picks

When this year's NFL College Draft rolls around later this April, the Eagles wait for their turn to officially be 'on the clock' will unfortunately be one of the shortest since the dawn of the new millennium.

Chip Kelly will have a golden opportunity to put his stamp on the team as its new head coach by landing one of the top five players in the country in this year’s class. This could be a blessing or a curse depending on how that pick fares in his career with the team. Many of the experts have Philadelphia addressing its need at offensive line with Luke Joeckel or Eric Fisher, but if both of those players go in the top three picks, then cornerback Dee Milliner could a logical choice to address its other pressing need in the defensive secondary.

Regardless of which player the Eagles take in the first round, Kelly and the Birds’ front office will be under the gun to add a number of potential starters with the rest of their picks. This team is not in need of a complete overhaul, but could use an injection of a couple of young studs who want nothing more than to fly around the field and make plays.

The true measure of a successful draft is the ability to sniff out those types of players in all seven rounds. Somewhere in this year’s draft class there could be another Brian Dawkins that is chomping at the bit to make his mark on the NFL.

In a two-part series for Sporting Charts, I dig a bit deeper into the list of prospects on both sides of the ball to find a couple of players that might fit the bill. Below is a link to this week’s article covering the value players on offense.

2013 NFL Draft - Top Offensive Value Picks

Thursday, March 14, 2013

2013 NFC Championship Futures

The 2013 NFL free agent market is open for business as all 32 teams embark on the mission of adding the missing pieces that they believe will be the key to earning a trip to the playoffs and possibly the conference championship game. The way that parity has gripped the NFL over the past decade or so, it is very conceivable that a team could go from worst to first next season if it adds the right pieces over the next few weeks.

Two years ago the Eagles proved that the free agent process is not all what it is cracked up to be. As a result of a prolonged labor dispute, the free agent signing period was delayed to August and reduced to two weeks. Like a drunken sailor on leave, they went out and spent everything they had in their pocket in an effort to buy a NFC championship and possible Vince Lombardi Trophy. The results were a complete disaster as all this high-priced talent never gelled. It also marked the beginning of the end for the Andy Reid era in Philadelphia with an 8-8 record that year.

Heading into this season’s free agent frenzy, the new boss in town, Chip Kelly brought this tragic chapter in franchise history to a close by parting ways with a number of those free agents including Cullen Jenkins and Nnamdi Asomugha, who just so happened to be two of the biggest names signed back in 2011.

So far, the Eagles have taken a pretty conservative approach to this year’s free agent market by adding a piece here and there that is hopefully the first step towards a return to a winning season. Overall, the Birds remain a mild longshot at best to win the NFC next season, but that is actually a good thing. With players like Jenkins and Asomugha on the roster, they were opened as one of the top three or four favorites to win a conference title and proceeded to prove the Oddsmakers completely wrong by crashing and burning in grand fashion.

A few weeks back I wrote a piece for Bang the Book covering the opening futures odds for winning the NFC in 2013. While it may be a bit outdated considering some of the player movement over the past few days, it should still paint a pretty good picture of the legitimate contenders for next season’s conference crown.

2013 NFC Championship Futures Odds

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

2013 AFC Championship Futures

Next Tuesday the NFL free agent market opens up and later in April the league will conduct its annual college draft making it an excellent time for teams to try and fill some of the holes in their current roster. It is also a great time to take a closer look at the futures odds for a team's chances to win its conference as these are always subject to change depending on what happens from now until the start of the first mini-camps later this spring.

The teams at the top of these lists rarely fluctuate with New England usually leading the way in the AFC and Green Bay the perennial favorite to win the NFC. This year, Denver and San Francisco are in the mix based on their recent performances but the odds start to drop off pretty fast from there.

As part of my ongoing NFL Betting Trends series for Bang the Book, I took a deeper look at the odds for the top contenders both conferences starting with the AFC. Below is the link to the original article as posted on the site.

NFL Betting Trends- 2013 AFC Championship Futures

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Top 2012 NFL Quarterbacks by the Stats

In the final installment of a four-part series for Sporting Charts, I breakdown the vital statistics for the top five NFL quarterbacks this past season in terms of total passing yards. There are a number of ways you can rank a quarterback's performance including his passer rating or total QBR (quarterback rating) but since this position's primary role (besides running the entire offense) is throwing the ball I went with total passing yards as my top-five qualifier.

However, the primary flaw with using total passing yards as the main qualifier is that quarterbacks such as Peyton Manning and Aaron Rodgers did not rank in the top five, but Matthew Stafford and Tony Romo did. All four quarterbacks are more than capable of airing it out, but in terms of winning games, I would much rather have Manning and Rodgers on my team. While watching a quarterback throw for four to five thousand yards a season often times leads to very entertaining games, it does not always translate to winning championships.

So the list is what it is, but still an interesting exercise in how the top five passers ranked in the other four categories; completion percentage, average yards per attempt, interceptions and touchdown throws.

Below is the link to the article that was originally posted on Sporting Charts

Best Quarterbacks of the 2012 NFL Season