NFL Week 6 Pick Recap
To make sure we accurately reflect our record and picks to both our subscribers and potential subscribers, we'll post our write up from the previous weekend each Tuesday. Attached is the NFL analysis and write up from Week 6 that was sent to all our subscribers. If you'd like a free week trial, send us a message on here, firstname.lastname@example.org, or on twitter @ProMathletics.
Another day, another dollar. Last week, we went 5-2 in the GreenZone and were able to tack on another 14.7 Units. We got the party started early again this week (we swear it’s a coincidence we keep being forced to win each Thursday), cashing the Eagles in the GreenZone at 5.9 Units. The season total at this point is nothing short of spectacular at 25-13-1 (65.8%!) for a total of 66.45 Units!
We have seven more GreenZone games tomorrow and there’s nothing new or fancy about it. Last week, there were a lot of key players who got nicked up and we made sure we followed our typical protocol of looking at injury reports as intensely as possible. There were a couple of games we kicked (see: Giants, New York) and several we moved down in our betting order due to a little bit of noise that is outlined in the following write-ups. Make sure you are maintaining disciplined bet sizes as a percentage of bankroll. We are right at 66% and are enjoying pretty consistent performance this year, with only one slightly negative week, but don’t do anything stupid to blow those early season profits in one fell swoop. There are going to be weeks when we absolutely crush it and there are going to be more choppy ones…the long-run returns stack up when you stay the course and don’t overreact to success or struggles.
NOTE: [Units] outlined next to each pick in terms of “to risk” % of bankroll. 5 units = 5% of bankroll or $50 on $1k. Our bet sizing methodology utilizes the Kelly Equation, and more specifically, half-Kelly. The sizes are descending because of “assumed losses” which necessitate dynamically reducing the bankroll because the outcomes are not sequential. We are going to put out a lengthier discussion and explanation of why our unit sizes are what they are, but for now, just trust we know what we are doing or flat-bet if that makes you more comfortable.
[5.9 Units] Houston Texans (-9.5) home with Cleveland
This is an easy one to get behind for our more square subscribers. Cleveland is still winless and this makes it two weeks in a row we are going against them after the Jets took care of biz last Sunday. There is some noise in this one with the loss of Mercilus and JJ Watt for the season for the Texans and the first career start for Kevin Hogan at QB for the Browns. The Texans are deep up front on D and the Browns haven’t been able to block anyone this year, so we aren’t really discounting the numbers much at all. Speaking of the numbers, our models have this between an 11.5 and 14 point game for the Texans. Houston has been putting up some points since Watson took over at QB and we don’t see much in the Browns defense that should stop that trend. The Browns specialize in giving up big pass plays and that’s what Watson likes to do…take deep shots and give his deep wide receiver corp one-on-one opportunities. The Browns are the 2nd worst team in the league against the pass, so unless they get major pressure on Watson, they don’t have much of a shot against that deep skill set group. Barring multiple defensive touchdowns, Houston should waltz to a disrespectful victory.
[5.5 Units] Baltimore Ravens (-6.5) home with Chicago
Here is a quick recap of the Bears season; played well week 1 in a tight loss at home against the Falcons, got DEMOLISHED week two at TB, surprise win at home against Steelers, DESTROYED at GB, close loss at home against Vikings. You see the trend? The Bears have been respectable at home this year, but have got it handed to them on their road trips. They have a short week to prepare after the adrenaline fueled first start for rookie QB, Trubisky, who gets to face a Ravens D accustomed to causing turnovers. The Ravens, by the way, were watching the Monday night game from the team facility game-planning. This Baltimore pass defense is top-3 in the league right now and they will smell blood in the water against Trubisky the same way they did against Kizer when the first year man threw 5 picks during the Week 2 matchup. We’ll back the numbers and the narrative and as long as the Ravens don’t have to fly to London, they should take care of us this time around.
[5.2 Units] New York Jets (+9) home with New England
Welcome to the double-terrifying, 75% of subscribers will ignore, do you trust or not, combo platter. We are breaking two of the cardinal sins for every Joe better…1. Never bet on the Jets and 2. Never bet against New England. Here’s the deal, we’ve done both of these things multiple times this year and we are at an almost 66% win rate, so we will keep trusting and let the stats work for us. History is on our side on this one, as 5 of the last 6 matchups between these two teams have been 1-possession games, with the one exception being late last year when the Jets were in full “tank” mode. As fucking insane as this sounds, we have the Jets as only a 4-point dog and can’t refuse the 5 “free” points we are getting because everyone thinks “the Jets suck” and “the Patriots ALWAYS turn it around”. The one major factor in the data that is causing such a discrepancy is how absolutely shitty the Patriots defense continues to perform. We still believe they will eventually make some adjustments, but we aren’t about trying to time up the market, we are about taking the value as it stands. We have this one in the SuperContest as well as this sizeable bet, so we are just as nervous as you all, but there aren’t any “caveats” that justify kicking this one. Also, Tommy has a wingy that is a little dingy, so the Pats may try to run the ball more to keep heat off of him. They haven’t taken as many sacks as they should have because Brady does a great job of getting it out, but boy, has he been taking some shots this year.
[4.9 Units] Detroit Lions (+5) at New Orleans
At some point this season we won’t be betting on the Lions. We thought for sure after that subpar performance against the Panthers last Sunday that the systems would finally be anti-Detroit, but once again, they are undervalued. We have New Orleans as a 1-point favorite and we can’t refuse the 4-free points unless there is something major out there to dissuade us. Reports early in the week that Matthew Stafford was banged up and may not play would have been our way out, but he has been practicing all week without any limp or noticeable limitations, so we gotta ride with the Detroit Cardiac Kittens one more time. Thankfully, they have a bye next week, so we can avoid the Honolulu Blue for at least one weekend. So how do our systems get to a neutral game here? New Orleans top 5ish offense vs. Lions top 10ish defense, Lions league average O vs. New Orleans last 5ish defense, and Detroit’s top 3 special teams vs. average-ish for New Orleans….throw it all in the blender and you get Detroit being a better team on a neutral field. New Orleans isn’t the easiest place to play, but take solace in the fact that Detroit is 2-0 in New Orleans the last 2 years and 3-0 over the last 3 in general. The real question is: how do these two teams in different divisions play each other 4 years in a row?!
[4.6 Units] Minnesota Vikings (+3) home with Green Bay
This is undoubtedly the first time in our life we’ve ever thought, “thank God Case Keenum is getting the start this week.” Sam Bradford looked like a wounded duck on Monday Night Football and Keenum came in relief and guided the Vikings to their 3rd win of the year. Keenum is actually sitting on a 97.6 traditional QB rating, completing 65% of his passes with 4 touchdowns and 0 int. We don’t need him to be a world beater with the Vikings defense and a strong set of playmakers on offense. We mentioned it a couple weeks ago and it still holds true today, the Vikings have been a top-10 unit on offense in 2017! The models have them as a 1-point favorite and that’s all we need to see to take the divisional home team getting points. Did Aaron Rodgers look terrifying last week? No doubt about it. Is the Vikings defense better than the Dallas Cowgirls Cheerleaders that Jerry Jones throws out there while Dak is on the sidelines? Absolutely. This one is obviously still scary any time you are taking Keenum against Rodgers, but one way we have been able to find comfort on this one has been asking friends who they like. 100% of square bettors are backing the Pack this week…that usually doesn’t turn out well for the Joes when they all line up against the book.
[4.3 Units] Kansas City Chiefs (-4.5) home with Pittsburgh
The models like the Chiefs pretty handedly against the Steelers in Arrowhead, but we had to move it down due to all the injury concerns with KC. In the final injury report of the week, it was announced Kelce, Hill, Albert Wilson, Dee Ford, and Justin Houston will all actually play with no game-time decisions. Even though they are all going as of now, who knows how much the lack of practice time is going to hurt and what percentage of full ability they are. On top of that, KC is going to be without two of their starting offensive lineman again this week, down starting center, Morse, and guard Duvernay-Tardif. We are still betting it based on how spicy red hot the Chiefs have been this year and the model data telling the same story, but don’t think it should be a higher wagered amount game just because of all the banged up key players for the Chiefers.
[4.0 Units] Miami Dolphins (+11.5) at Atlanta
System, system, system…that’s the only explanation here for taking this one that has jumped up to +12.5 at most books as of time of writing. The Dolphins have looked pretty sad all year, not quite as sad as that pathetic O-line coach trying to turn on his former Vegas stripper/girlfriend, but still pretty sad. Atlanta is coming off a bye and appears to be starting to click a bit. We moved this one down as far as we could, but with our models all lining up and having it at about an 8.5-point game, we will take a small bite on the Fins getting a free 4 points (if you can get it at 12.5, that is). Once you get over double digits it’s pretty much top-3 vs. bottom-3 type matchup. Us and the models don’t have the Falcons that good or the Dolphins that bad, so let’s root for a couple dumb turnovers and a backdoor cover!