NFL Week 6 Betting Takeaways: Road Underdogs Show Teeth Again
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Bookies.com NFL betting expert Adam Thompson looks back every Monday at the key betting trends that emerged from the weekend and flags some enticing early lines that NFL bettors might want to jump on.
The Baltimore Ravens continue to get it done -- on the field, anyway. They’re not helping pad wallets.
With Sunday’s 23-17 victory over the Bengals, Baltimore is 4-2 on the season. But it’s only 1-5 against the spread. The only time the Ravens have covered was Week 1, a 59-10 rout of the Dolphins.
When it comes to covering the spread, Week 6 was another good one for the underdog. On the season, the underdog is 51-36-2 ATS. Road underdogs have dominated, going 39-20-1 including 5-3 in Week 6.
Here’s a look back at Week 6 and a quick look ahead to Week 7:
Streaks Live On …
Road Team Success
Houston went into Kansas City as a four-point underdog and emerged as a seven-point straight up winner, stunning the Chiefs 31-24. The road team has now covered the spread in nine of the last 11 meetings between the teams.
The road team is also successful in Seahawks games, regardless of where location of kickoff. With Seattle’s 32-28 victory at Cleveland, the road team has covered eight straight Seahawks games.
The Saints have had no dropoff in terms of team success with Teddy Bridgewater at QB. But October has been a good time to back the team regardless of who’s under center. New Orleans has covered the spread in nine straight games played in October. The Saints play the Bears in Chicago on Sunday Night Football – New Orleans is currently +3.5.
Bengals Not Overachievers
The Bengals covered the 10.5-point spread against the Ravens on Sunday with a late touchdown. Ultimately Cincinnati lost 23-17. Avoid the moneyline when Cincy isn’t favored – the Bengals have lost 12 in a row straight-up when they’re the underdog.
… And Streaks End
Under No More
The Under had hit in six of seven when the Panthers and Buccaneers played. But in London, both teams found the end zone with regularity in a 37-26 victory, crushing the O/U of 48 by 15 points.
Under No More II
The Under was also 8-0 when the Vikings took on an NFC opponents. But they nearly hit the 44.5-point total by themselves in a 38-20 thrashing of the Eagles on Sunday. The 38 points was the most the Vikings have scored this season, and the 20 by the Eagles were the most Minnesota’s allowed.
Stefon Diggs had a lot to do with the Over being hit with ease.
Fire up the Stove
The Broncos hadn’t come through much at home lately. They were in the midst of an 0-8 ATS run when favored at home. But that streak was snapped in a 16-0 win over the Titans.
The score also snapped a five-game streak of the underdog winning outright in five Tennessee games in a row. Denver was -2 at kickoff and cruised.
Best Pick of Week 6
49ers (+3) at Rams
Jimmy Garoppolo doesn’t take many chances, but the Rams are one of the poorest tackling teams in the NFL. Get the ball into pass-catching hands and let the talent do the rest. That’s pretty much what he did, going 24 of 33 for 243 yards, no TDs and one INT (in the end zone). Fifteen of those 24 completions went to TEs and RBs.
Meanwhile, I noted how the Niners allow the fewest receptions per game to wideouts, and that plays well against Rams QB Jared Goff, who targets WRs more than anyone. Goff managed just 78 passing yards.
Worst Pick of Week 6
Chargers (-6) vs. Steelers
Over his 16 years as QB of the Chargers, Philip Rivers had gone head-to-head with QBs making their first-ever start seven times. Philip and the Chargers have feasted in those situations.
.@Chargers QB Philip Rivers has faced 7 QBs making their 1st NFL start in his 16-year career.— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) October 14, 2019
In those games, Rivers is 7-0 with 17 passing touchdowns and a 119.6 passer rating.@DevlinHodges10 will have his work cut out for him on #SundayNightFootball.
Devlin Hodges, the Steelers’ third-string QB, made Rivers 7-1. Rivers passed for 320 yards and two TDs, but also tossed two INTs and fumbled a ball that was returned for a TD. Thanks to Rivers’ blunders, the Steelers were up 14-0 before Hodges had to do anything. A missed tackle – and by missed, I mean, run over – led to a James Conner easy score to put Pittsburgh up 21-0.
Rivers and the Chargers had a dreadful start against, but did outscore them 17-3 to end the game. That put a cap on a paltry 1-4 record on Week 6 best bets, definitely the most-dismal of the season.
A Quick Look Ahead
Lines change throughout the week. Here are three to consider for Week 7 before they move:
Chiefs (-3.5) at Broncos
Kansas City has lost two in a row, both at home, but this line seems a little too pushed out. The Chiefs have won all three of their road games, averaging 34 ppg in the process. And WR Sammy Watkins may be back on the field.
Rams-Falcons Over 54
This is a high number, but Atlanta has given up 87 points the last two weeks, against the Texans and Cardinals. The Falcons have also scored 65 points. The Rams’ offense is in a funk, but prior to Sunday’s loss to the Niners their last two games had averaged 77 total points. Each team has a real chance to hit 30 points – and give up 30.
Chargers (+1) at Titans
The Titans have managed just seven points the last two weeks combined and now have a QB controversy to deal with after Marcus Mariota was benched mid-game in Denver. For all of L.A.’s issues, it still ranks seventh in total defense and fourth in passing. The run game with Austin Ekeler and Melvin Gordon need to get on track against a Titans D that allows 105 ypg on the ground.