Betting market adjusts after Pats return to form

By Jeff Fogle  ( 

October 4, 2018 01:15 AM

It only took a week for the NFL betting market to correct. After pricing the New England Patriots as the equivalent of just 4 points better than the Miami Dolphins on a neutral field, odds now show the perennial AFC power back near the top of the ladder heading into Thursday’s game vs. the Indianapolis Colts. 

Midweek betting patterns suggest New England will be either -10 or -10.5 over Indianapolis. Because Indy and Miami have been priced comparably this season, we can call that a 3- to 3.5-point adjustment off the Patriots’ 38-7 rout of the Dolphins (449-172 in total yardage, 6.0 to 3.8 in yards-per-play).

Here’s this week’s estimate of “market” Power Ratings as evaluated by VSiN. Jonathan Von Tobel and I make a good faith effort to capture a moving target as the season evolves. 

VSiN’s Estimated “Market” Power Ratings

88: LA Rams

85: Kansas City, New England, Jacksonville, Philadelphia 

84: Baltimore, Minnesota, New Orleans

83: Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Green Bay

81: Cincinnati, Tennessee, LA Chargers, Chicago, Carolina 

80: Houston, Washington 

79: Dallas

78: Miami, Cleveland, Indy, Denver, Oakland, Detroit, Tampa Bay, Seattle

77: NY Giants

76: NY Jets

75: San Francisco

74: Buffalo, Arizona

If you weren’t with us last week, we allot 3 points for home-field advantage, then create a couplet in each game based on the point spread. With New England currently -10 at most U.S. and global sports books, we have to place the Pats and Colts seven points apart on the scale. We went with 85 and 78 as the most logical spots. Maybe betting on the Pats at all locales will cause the line to rise to -10.5 or -11. That would necessitate an 8-point distance (either 86 and 78 or 85 and 77). 

Jonathan and I have both the Jets and Giants in the league’s bottom five this week. A true challenge to capture how “the market” sees disappointing 1-3 starts for both. 

Jets are -1 at home vs. Denver, which would mean two points worse on a neutral field than a team that’s been overrated thus far. Giants are 7 at Carolina, which means four points worse than the Panthers. 

Jacksonville was a challenge for us this week. Jags were just -7.5 vs. the Jets this past Sunday, meaning five points better on a game-day scale. They are currently 3 at Kansas City, virtual neutral field equality with an up-and-comer getting serious respect in futures prices. We went with 85 for both. 

We’ll try to update these ratings for you periodically when the market adjusts on contenders. The NFL’s efforts to put league powers on Thursday night TV has allowed us to delve into this approach the past two Thursdays. We strongly encourage each of you to create your own estimates of “the market” based on developing point spreads through the season…and then your own set of numbers based on how you believe the teams rate in terms of quality.

To beat the market, it helps to see the market.

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