A look, now, at some of the biggest NFL football betting storylines from Week 10:
By now, every sports pundit in North America has weighed in on New England coach Bill Belichick’s decision to go for it on 4th-and-2 from his own 28 yard line against the Colts on Sunday Night Football. From “swagger and arrogance” to “fourth-and-jackass“, Belichick has been called and accused of nearly everything in the book.
The bright side? At least sports betting enthusiasts – ones that backed the Patriots, anyways – didn’t mind.
For all that Belichick’s gutsy playcalling did on Sunday, one thing it didn’t do was affect the spread. The Pats already had +3 covered prior to the call, and in doing so, moved to 5-4 ATS on the season. The Pats have now covered three of their last four and, despite the calls for Belichick’s head, are still a great bet moving forward. If you take away what transpired with two minutes left on Sunday, the Patriots played a pretty solid game. They went into Indianapolis, took on an undefeated Colts team, racked up a ton of points (at one point they had a 24-7 lead) and got big plays from all their offensive stars. Randy Moss had nine catches for 179 yards and two TDs. Wes Welker had nine catches for 94 yards. Tom Brady finished with a 110.7 QB rating and completed 69 percent of his passes.
Yes, Belichick’s call will forever go down in football infamy. But it won’t kill the Pats. They’re still a pretty good team.
Saints in a squeaker
Yes, the Saints are undefeated. And yes, the Saints are probably the best team in the NFL. But these 9-0 Saints are starting to show some holes – it’s almost as if each week weakens them a little bit. Now it’s at the point when you have to start wondering if the bottom will fall out. And by that, we mean losing a game…straight up.
Against the spread, the Saints haven’t been reliable in nearly a month. After rallying in Miami to cover -6 points late in the contest, New Orleans has gone 0-3 ATS. Granted, they were playing as 11-point favourites in Atlanta, 12-point favourites in Carolina and 14-point road faves in St. Louis, so expectations were fairly high. But those big spreads combined with a slew of injuries have made the Saints tough to read. Their secondary is beyond battered – Tracy Porter left the Rams game with what appeared to be a serious knee injury; Darren Sharper is out with a sprained left knee; Jabari Greer has been shelved with a sore groin. This goes a long way in explaining why teams are putting up big points on the New Orleans D – and can make some sense of a putrid Rams passing game going off for nearly 300 yards and two TDs on Sunday.
Eagles low, but scores fly high
Philly’s shoot-’em-out style continues to reward bettors playing the over. The Eagles have hit the over in seven of their nine games this year and did it again against the Chargers on Sunday. While Philly lost 31-23 (O/U: 47), they once again showed the kind of big-play, quick-strike offense that they’ve displayed throughout the season. In a seven-minute span in the fourth quarter, Philly scored 14 quick points, turning a 28-9 washout into a compelling 28-23 contest. And, as per usual, it was big plays that set up the scores: Jason Avant had a 58-yard catch, Jeremy Maclin had a 28-yarder and DeSean Jackson a 22-yarder. Philly will continue to play this style all season, and based on its upcoming schedule – Chicago, Washington, Atlanta, New York Giants – there could be more big scores to come.