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Tuley's Takes on NFL divisional-round games

By Dave Tuley  (VSiN.com senior reporter) 

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Wild-card weekend wasn’t as wild as we wanted here in the Tuley’s Takes home office as form held with favorites dominating at 5-1 SU and ATS with very few chances for the underdogs to get backdoor covers.

As is usually the case with weekends like this, I received some sympathetic and not-so-sympathetic comments from friends and readers that ranged from “sorry your dogs had such a weekend” to “see, the dog-or-pass approach sucks.” However, I had to assure everyone that I was actually doing fine despite the chalk-fest. The key part of “dog-or-pass” for me is the “pass” part as we don’t want to be backing overmatched dogs or betting when we’re not getting enough points.

I passed on the Raiders vs. the Bengals and went with the Under 49 instead, so that worked out perfectly. I also passed on the Eagles against the Buccaneers and made a best bet of a two-team, 6-point teaser with the Bucs teased down from -8.5 to -2.5 (able to get -1.5 by game day) and the 49ers teased up from + 3 to + 9. Even though I went just 1-2 on the VSiN NFL Best Bets page in last week’s Point Spread Weekly, I made the point in this column that I liked the 49ers + 3 at the time but wasn’t considering it a best bet until I was able to get + 3.5, which we did by the weekend.

I did lose my bets on the Patriots, Steelers and Cardinals, but I feel “dog or pass” showed its worth as we made money on three of the six games despite dogs going 1-5 SU and ATS.

Now, we turn our attention to this weekend’s divisional playoff round. While a lot of people are seeing last weekend’s results as some kind of proof that favorites are going to dominate this year’s playoffs, I’m going to continue to go contrarian where I feel there’s value on the dogs, and I believe we have it in three of the four games.

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