After 17 weeks of regular season, the real NFL season is finally here. From 32 teams to 12 – the search for the Lombardi Trophy has officially started.
Post season bets are a completely different tier than in the regular season. We only have a handful of games. As a result, every game is bet incredibly heavily and flooded with recreational funds. Lots of bettors who may not have been on a mission throughout the season are now entering the arena and participating in the playoff games just for fun. This gives an advantage to brave opponents who are willing to go against the grain, turn their backs on unpopular teams and bet against the public.
The odds makers know that from now until the Super Bowl, public action will increase exponentially. They also know that the vast majority of casual weather will be based on favorites, home teams, and teams with better records and more star players. Average Joe's will also be interested in overs because he has a psychological tendency to look for points and want to watch exciting high-score games. Simply put, sweating an under is just not fun. Oddsmakers will take advantage of these public prejudices and shadow lines towards favorites and overs, forcing bettors to take overpriced numbers while also giving opponents inflated or overpriced numbers.
One of the easiest ways to do Contrarian is to rely on outsiders. Since 2003, playoff outsiders have lost 95-76 ATS (55.6 percent) according to Bet Labs Sports. This doesn't seem to be a very impressive record. However, it is important to remember that bettors must win 52.38 percent of their games to overcome the standard -110 strength. So everything about it means that you are making a profit. In order to be considered harsh weather, you have to consistently win between 55 and 60 percent of your bets. A 55.6 percent coverage for playoff dogs is actually pretty impressive.
Here is the breakdown of dog performance in the playoffs since 2003
- Placeholder: 32-29 ATS (52.5 percent)
- Divisions 38-24 ATS (61.3 percent)
- Conference championship: 15-17 ATS (46.9 percent)
- Super Bowl: 10-6 ATS (62.5 percent)
While playing contrarian and betting on dogs is a clever strategy after the season, you also want to make sure that you are on the right side of every game. This means being with professional bettors who win at high speed and have a long track record. Professional bettors, also known as Sharps or Wiseguys, have decades of experience, put large sums of money on games and respect the books. Sharps are the ones who move the lines, not the public. Sharps money is referred to as "smart money". You always want to be with smart money, never against it.
An easy way to spot sharp actions is to look for situations where the line moves towards the unpopular outsider (also known as backward movement). This would mean, for example, that a dog moves from +3 to + 2¹ / ₂ or from +6 to +5. If the line moves at least half a point towards a playoff dog, these teams have achieved an ATS value of 36-12 (75 percent) since 2003.
While betting outsiders on the spread has proven profitable in the past, it is also a case of trying dogs to win directly on the money line. The playoff dogs have been 64-111 since 2003. This is only a 36.6 percent win rate, but due to the positive payouts (around +150, +200, +500), these teams produced +19.61 units. This means that $ 100 weather would have earned $ 1,961.
Experience is also important. The teams that played in the playoffs last season have lost 99-85 ATS (53.8 percent) since 2003. When faced with a team that missed the playoffs last year, they improve to ATS 48-34 (58.5 percent).
In the playoffs, the under has been between 87 and 85 (50.6 percent) since 2003 – almost balanced. However, we see an enormous discrepancy depending on the round.
In the wild card round, the participants were large money earners, who have been between 40 and 24 (62.5 percent) since 2003. In all other playoff rounds, however, the overs were either balanced or profitable:
- Department: 35-28 over (55.6 percent)
- Conference championship: 18-11 years (62.1 percent)
- Super Bowl: 8-8 (50 percent)
If you like to bet overs, focus on games played in a dome or closed-roof stadium. Playoff overs in the hall have increased from 29 to 13 (69 percent) since 2003. This is due to the fast lane and the perfect conditions from which the offensive benefits, especially kicker.