NFL Simulations – Week 8 2012

14 games on the NFL schedule. 6 system plays: Vikings -6, Chargers -2.5, Falcons +2.5, Rams +7, Broncos -6, 49ers/Cardinals Under 37.5. NFL system plays are 9-6-0 season to date.

CLICK HERE for today’s NFL simulations.

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NFL Simulations – Week 6 2012

14 games on the NFL schedule. 6 system plays: CIN/CLE Over 43.5, Lions +4, BUF/ARI Over 43, 49ers -6.5, NYG/SF Over 45.5, and Broncos +1.5. NFL system plays are 3-2-0 season to date.

CLICK HERE for today’s NFL simulations.

Follow me on Twitter for all my simulations. Good Luck!

Bet of the Day – Virginia Tech Hokies at Stanford Cardinals

Virginia Tech Hokies (+3.5) vs. Stanford Cardinals (-3.5), Over/Under 58.5

Yesterday’s bet, Steelers at Browns, was a winner.  Virginia Tech was supposed to be a good team.  Is their 11 game win streak that surprising?  No and Yes.  It isn’t surprising they won 11 games; it is surprising they won 11 games after losing their first 2 games.  Stanford has steadily improved over the last few years.  Their only loss this year came at Oregon.  These are physical teams that play good defense.

The Hokies (11-2) rolled through the ACC.  Following their opening 2 losses, they won each of the next 11 games by 7 or more points.  They average 5.4 yards per play (YPP) and 11.6 yards per point scored (YPPT) on offense.  On defense, they allow 5.4 YPP and 18.3 YPPT.  The Hokies are very efficient.  Senior QB Tyrod Taylor averages 8.88 yards per attempt (YPA) with 23 TDs and 4 INTs for a 159.04 QB rating.  Taylor has been excellent throughout  the year.   He and the Hokies don’t turn the ball over and convert points well.  Will their defense be able to slow down Stanford?

Stanford (11-1) won by an average of 22.5 points per game.  Like Virginia Tech, they played a difficult schedule and won most games convincingly.  The Cardinals average 6.5 YPP and 11.6 YPPT on offense.  On defense, they allow 5.2 YPP and 18.4 YPPT.  Junior QB Andrew Luck averages 8.74 YPA with 28 TDs and 7 INTs for a 166.10 QB rating.  Stanford is the better team on paper and Harbaugh should have the team motivated (could be his last game at Stanford).

The Sagarin Ratings have Stanford 94.51 and Virginia Tech 85.76.  With no home advantage, the fair line is Stanford -8.75.

My football model predicts Stanford 46.58 over Virginia Tech 34.05 for 80.63 total points.  These teams are similar in offensive efficiency.  Stanford gains more yards through the air.  Stanford gives up fewer rushing yards but the teams are almost identical in defensive efficiency.  The key variance contributor is Virginia Tech’s offensive yards gained.  The Hokies must move the ball near their offensive average to keep this game close.

Tonight I am taking Stanford minus the points.  Here’s why.  Stanford is the better team on paper.  Virginia Tech’s run defense is vulnerable; Stanford has a strong running game.  I modeled the game at Stanford -12.54.  Bet the Stanford Cardinals -3.5.  (shop around for Stanford -3)

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Bet of the Day – Dallas Cowboys at Arizona Cardinals, Dec. 25, 2010

Dallas Cowboys (-7) at Arizona Cardinals (+7), Over/Under 45

There was no bet of the day yesterday.  The Cowboys and Cardinals are nowhere near the playoff picture.  This isn’t the match up we expected before the season.  With the game being televised on Christmas day, hopefully we will get a decent showing from both teams.

Dallas (5-9) won 4 of their last 6 games (since Jason Garrett took over).  They squeaked out a win last week but enter this game off of two straight division games.  Will they be deflated?  They average 5.9 yards per play (YPP) and 14.6 yards per point scored (YPPT) on offense.  On defense, they allow 6.1 YPP and 12.9 YPPT.  QB Jon Kitna averages 7.55 yards per attempt (YPA) with 15 TDs and 10 INTs for a 91.4 QB rating.  Dallas has a good run defense, but is vulnerable against the pass. Lucky for the Cowboys, the Cardinals are starting a rookie QB.

Arizona (4-10) has only won once in their last 9 games.  Their offense has sputtered along the last 4 weeks.  They average 4.9 YPP and 14.7 YPPT on offense.  On defense, they allow 5.6 YPP and 14.2 YPPT.  QB John Skelton will be making his 3rd start today.  He averages 5.09 YPA with 0 TDs and 1 INTs for a 56.2 QB rating.  Like Dallas, the Cardinals give up too many yards.  They will need Skelton and the offense to do more than just manage the game if they expect to win today.

The Sagarin Ratings have Dallas 17.73 and Arizona 10.16.  With the 2.06 home advantage, the fair line is Dallas -5.51.

My NFL model predicts Dallas 28.20 over Arizona 21.04 for 49.24 total points.  Dallas is more productive on offense.  They are similar in offensive efficiency.  Both teams give up too many yards and aren’t very efficient on defense.  The key variance contributor is Arizona’s defensive passing yards allowed.  If Dallas is able to move the ball to their average, they will win and cover.  It is interesting to note that most of the variance in the model is in both teams defensive yards allowed.

Tonight I am taking the over.  Here’s why. Both teams are weak on defense.  Dallas hasn’t scored less than 27 points in their last 6 games; Dallas’ offense will be able to move the ball and score points.  I modeled the game at 49 points.  Bet Dallas/Arizona Over 45.

Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

Bet of the Day – Stanford Cardinals at Oregon Ducks, Oct. 2, 2010

Stanford Cardinals (+6.5) at Oregon Ducks (-6.5), Over/Under 66

We covered yesterday on the BYU Cougars and Utah State Aggies game.  Yeah.  Several big games today.  I am playing the Cardinals and Ducks game (played the Alabama game last week, so mixing it up).  Tonight’s game features two undefeated, much-hyped PAC 10 teams.  Both teams have good defenses and put points on the board.  Two top 10 ranked teams playing on Saturday night primetime.  Both teams will be amped so expect an exciting game tonight.

The Stanford Cardinals (4-0) are a strong and aggressive team.  They are averaging 6.6 yards per play (YPP) and 9.5 yards per point scored (YPPT) while only allowing 4.1 YPP and 18.8 YPPT on defense.  Very efficient on offense and defense; that is what good teams do.  They are also +4 in turnovers and don’t get penalized too much. Starting QB Andrew Luck is averaging 8.94 yards per attempt (YPA) for 11 TDs and 2 INTs with a 169.52 QB rating.  Luck has also only been sacked once in four games.  Stanford is facing a very fast team and will need to find ways to slow Oregon down and cut of their space.  Hitting Oregon in the mouth may be the remedy for success.

The Oregon Ducks (4-0) are fast and athletic with defense that causes problems and scores points.  The Ducks are averaging 6.9 YPP and 9.7 YPPT on offense while allowing 4.0 YPP and 26.7 YPPT on defense.  Oregon is clearly very efficient too, but note their offensive YPPT is lower as much because of their defense and special teams as their offense.  Sophomore QB Darron Thomas is averaging 7.76 YPA for 10 TDs and 3 INTs with a 145.33 QB rating.  The complaint is that he doesn’t stretch the field yet; but he does manage the game and doesn’t turn the ball over very much.  Clearly Oregon is a very good team but they are coming off a very physical game at Arizona State to face another very physical team (and go to USC next week).  Can they survive this three-week stretch?

The Sagarin Ratings have Oregon 89.85 and Stanford 86.62.  With the 3.01 home advantage, the fair point spread is 6.24.  This is right on the point spread. shows 66% of the bets are on Stanford but the line has moved from Oregon -4.5 to -6.5.  Are the ‘Sharps’ on Oregon?

My football model projects Oregon 30.6 over Stanford 26.7 for 57.3 total points.  Digging into the data, both teams are very similar on paper.  Both teams move the ball very effectively averaging over 200 yards per game on the ground (Oregon over 300 yards).  They are also both holding teams under 300 yards on defense.  The controlling variance contributor is the Stanford offense.  This is the best offense Oregon has faced; Stanford must perform up to their average offensive production to win this game.

This is another difficult game to pick…but that is the point of this blog.  I am taking Oregon.  Here’s why.  First, SPEED (enough said).  Oregon is playing at home on Saturday prime time.  I think Stanford’s schedule to date  is somewhat overrated (before UCLA beating a depleted Texas team, that win wasn’t considered much).  Oregon has the intangibles; special teams and defensive scoring.  Stanford will hang around most of the game but space will eventually eat them up.  Bet on the Oregon Ducks -6.5.  Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

Bet of the Day – St. Louis Cardinals at Atlanta Braves, Sept 10, 2010 7:35 ET

St. Louis Cardinals (-125) at Atlanta Braves (+115), Over/Under 7.5 runs

As predicted, yesterday’s bet was a very tough line and ended up as a push.  Today, we will look at two desperate playoff teams.  With three weeks to go, both the St. Louis Cardinals (73-65) and Atlanta Braves (80-61) are trailing in their divisions.  The Cardinals roughed up the Braves last night, and tonight send staff ace Chris Carpenter (15-5, 1.158 WHIP) to the mound to face rookie Mark Minor (3-0, 1.481 WHIP).  Every game is critical for both teams.

The Cardinals hit a rough patch in mid-August, but are turning it around.  They have taken 4 of their last 7.  Last night was the first time they had more than 10 hits in the last 13 games.  The Cardinals are 5-0 against the Braves in 2010 outscoring them 36-18.  Starting pitcher Chris Carpenter is rounding back into form.  Carpenter went 7.3 innings allowing 6 hits and 2 runs last time out.  Carpenter doesn’t give up many walks and the Braves’ bats aren’t hot now.  Expect a solid outing from Carpenter.

The Braves have been a strong home team (49-20) this year.  But the Braves have only averaged 3.3 runs per game over their last 7 while allowing 5 runs per game against mediocre competition.  They are slumping but haven’t lost 2 consecutive home games since mid-July.  After his last appearance, starting pitcher Mark Minor doesn’t seem to help the Braves cause.  Minor gave up 6 earned runs on 9 hits last time out.  He hasn’t pitched more than 6 innings in any of his 5 starts.  Can the rookie rebound against the Cardinals ace?

Simulating the game with my baseball model predicted the Cardinals 4.39 over the Braves 3.94 for 8.33 total runs.  The teams have some similarities on paper.  The Braves draw more walks while the Cardinals are a better hitting team.  They are almost identical in scoring efficiency.  The clear difference is starting pitchers.  If Carpenter and Minor both pitch to their average, the Cardinals should win.

Is today’s bet that simple?  Yes and no.  The Braves are tough at home and the Cards haven’t seen Minor before.  But the Cards are playing better now, Carpenter is pitching back into form, the Cardinals have owned the Braves this year, and the Cards have a simulated advantage.  The line is close at -125 and the Cards have enough of an advantage to offer betting value.  Bet on the St. Louis Cardinals on the Money Line -125. Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

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