NOTE: Each week of the season FootballNation.com founder and Cold, Hard Football Facts partner Andrew Miller will look at the three games he is personally playing each week, using the disciplined system he has followed over years of analytics research as both an entrepreneur and football fan. Read more about Miller below.
Week 7 is in the rear view mirror, and while we did not hit the 3-0 trifecta, we hopefully got started on a winning streak as we approach the halfway point of the season.
The 49ers and Giants cruised to victory, providing that rare, relaxing feeling that occurs when a game seems in control for the bettor from box to wire.
While it is “never over with the over,” the Steelers vs. Ravens game lacked big plays and fast scores, and never had that big special teams or defensive touchdown that carries the over. The game had seven field goals, a kiss of death for the over.
As we enter Week 8, the teams that are winning are also having success ATS. The 49ers, Seahawks, Saints, and Chiefs are winning their games and covering, with all three sporting 5-2 ATS records.
The Cowboys are a league best 6-1 ATS and the Chargers and (5-1-1) Bills (5-2) are exceeding expectations and have been good teams to ride.
Surprisingly, the Broncos and Patriots are both 3-4 ATS. Denver continues to give too many points and the Patriots are not yet the 2001-2012 version of the team, something that the betting public hasn’t figured out.
However, the Broncos are a perfect 7-0 covering the over-under total.
As we outline each week, the key to long-term success is a disciplined system. We will stick to the system outlined below and work our way back, hoping for a couple of winning weeks back to back before the halfway point of the season. If we can get to a breakeven or slightly better record by week 9, the Trifecta will be poised to make you money from week 10 through the playoffs, when the data and information on teams makes it easier to pinpoint mismatches.
We will refer to units bet for each game. A unit can differ for each of you but the key is to stick to the system. You will notice this system is very consistent: we play the same amount of units per each of the three games, avoiding the temptation of stepping it up until playing with house money.
The rest of the Trifecta system is outlined below.
On to the Picks:
New Orleans Saints -11.5 vs. Buffalo Bills
Pick: New Orleans Saints -11.5 for 100 Units
The Saints are a perfect 4-0 ATS at home this season, 7-2 ATS at home in their last nine games, and an awesome 18-4 ATS in their last 22 games when they were home favorites. The Saints are coming off the brutal last second loss at NE and a bye week and will be fired up to resume their strong season at home.
The Bills are banged up with EJ Manuel and CJ Spiller both out, and Fred Jackson and Stevie Johnson banged up. QB Thad Lewis will be mistake prone and the Saint, should be able to score 30+, enough to cover the large line, even if star TE Jimmy Graham, a game-time decision, sits this one out.
Atlanta Falcons +2 at Arizona Cardinals
Pick: Falcons +2 for 100 Units
The Falcons are winless ATS on the road and are without their best player, Julio Jones. But they are the better team and betteroffense. Last week, without Jones, Steven Jackson, or Roddy White, they put up 31 points.
The Cardinals have a tougher defense than the dismal Tampa Bay Bucs, and have that World Series karma going for them, but if the Falcons are to remain a playoff contender in 2013, they must win this game. The Cardinals also sport a 3-8 ATS record in their last 11 as home favorites. The Trifecta is banking on the better offense and better QB in this one.
New England Patriots -6.5 vs. the Miami Dolphins
Pick: Patriots -6.5 for 100 Units
The Patriots lost a divisional game vs. the Jets last weekend. Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are not happy losers in games like this.
The Dolphins are an important divisional match up for the Patriots and you can rest assure the Patriots had a hard, serious week of practice.
The Pats have several offensive weapons back from injury and the young receivers are starting to make plays. The Patriots are dominant in October at home, winning 15 straight games with a 10-4-1 ATS record.
The Dolphins stink in Foxboro, with a 2-10 straight up record in the last 12 meetings. This line continues to move, starting the week at -4.5 and now -6.5. If the Patriots cannot win this game handily, they are likely not a Super Bowl contender. We are not sure if they are going to be able to beat the Broncos or Colts when it counts but they should win this one handily.
Trifecta Week 7 record: 2-1
Trifecta Season record: 6-13-2
The Trifecta system: We will refer to units bet for each game. A unit can differ for each of you but the key is to stick to the system. You will notice this system is very consistent: we play the same amount of units per each of the three games, avoiding the temptation of stepping it up until playing with house money. If we step it up and end up back at point zero, we will start the system all over again. It is essential to stick to your system: so many people get on a losing streak and try to make it all up in one game, only to dig deeper in a hole.
Deep holes are, of course, tough to come out of. Be smart. Be sensible. Have fun. Why three picks? Betting on football is hard. For those who are very good, we have just a slight edge and margin over Vegas. The most successful football bettors play one or three games each week.
My system of three: you need to bat 66 percent (2/3) to win, where with one pick you need to bat 100 percent to win; with four picks, 75 percent.
Yes, the math gets more favorable the more games you play, so if you play all 16 games in a 16-game week, and you go 9-7, you will have only needed to succeed at 57 percent which is easier than 66 percent. However, there are never or rarely nine clear-cut advantages to identify out there every week. So while the percentage you need to win is higher, the odds of doing so with more or every game decreases.
The picks in this Trifecta column are not necessarily the same as those of the official CHFF "Real and Spectacular" Picks based upon our Quality Stats. Our goal is to provide you as much information as possible to make educated picks based upon a variety of stats, methods and strategies.
Andrew Miller is the founder of Football Nation.com and an entrepreneur focusing on analytics-driven online businesses. The Wall Street veteran worked for Michael Milken’s Drexel Burnham, and was a senior vice president at Bear Stearns and Smith Barney. Miller then founded CreditCards.com and InsuranceQuotes.com, both sites that used analytics to drive leads in the respective industries. Both businesses were successfully sold within 3 years of their inception. Miller gathered a team of experts who live and breathe football, including Cold, Hard Football Facts, and in 2011 they founded FootballNation.com. He is now all football, all the time: playing high stakes fantasy football and betting on games, using deep analysis through CHFF Insider, trends research, and years of intuition.