NFL Betting: Best and Worst ATS Records Heading into Week 10
by George Monroy - 11/3/2014
The NFL season has finally reached the halfway point, and with the Denver Broncos getting destroyed at Foxboro on Sunday night, both conferences seem to be wide open for the taking. There must be eight teams with a legitimate shot at making a deep playoff run with chance of playing in the Super Bowl, and fans still have the possibility of the host team (Arizona Cardinals) appearing in the big game for the first time since San Francisco played in Palo Alto in Super Bowl XIX.
Arizona my be the best team in the league over the first half of the year, especially after Week 9's domination over the Tony Romo-less Dallas Cowboys, where it was still a one-point underdog heading into the game. The Cardinals have also been tearing up the ATS rankings and currently sit at the top of the betting standings with the best mark in the NFL. Let's take a closer look at the best and worst ATS record through the first nine weeks of the season and figure out which squads might be the best bets going forward.
Best: Kansas City (6-2), Arizona (6-2), Indianapolis (6-2)
Kansas City is tied for the best ATS mark in the NFL, but the team has the largest ATS differential of the bunch and has been the safest bet through the first half of the season. The Chiefs are covering their spreads by an average of 8.9 points, while the Cardinals and Colts have a 4.6- and 5.2-point differential, respectively. Kansas City has covered three straight, and the last game it did not was by a half-point differential Week 5 against San Francisco.
Week 10 Lines: Kansas City -1.5 at Buffalo; Arizona -7 versus St. Louis; Indianapolis bye
Worst: New York Jets (1-7-1)
The Jets, not surprisingly, have been the worst ATS team in the league. Even the 0-8 Oakland Raiders have managed to cover four spreads and reach the .500 mark. New York has failed to cover the spread by an average of 7.6 points, and it has three tough matchups against Pittsburgh, Buffalo and Miami coming up on its schedule. The squad could conceivably end up 1-10-1.
Week 10 Line: New York +2 versus Pittsburgh
Best as a Favorite: Houston (4-0)
Houston may be flying under the radar with bettors because of its 4-5 overall record after starting the season 3-1. The squad's image of being a bottom-feeder may also be a turn off for bettors, but Houston has been the best team as a favorite thus far this season with a perfect 4-0 record and two covers on the road. The Texans have covered by an average of 8.6 points per game, and they are good enough to beat the teams they are supposed to beat even if they do not have the firepower to hang with footballs elite teams.
Week 10 Line: bye
Best as an Underdog: New England (3-0)
The Patriots have been an underdog three times this season and have covered those spreads by an average of 23 points per game. The team destroyed the Broncos on Sunday night as a three-point underdog and continues to play its best football when the media begins to underestimate them. New England has three tough road matchups, where they will probably be the underdog, left on its schedule and could conceivably go 5-0 as an underdog this season. Bettors should keep a close eye on the Patriots when receiving points.
Week 10 Line: bye
Worst as an Underdog : Houston (1-4)
Houston is a team of extremes. It has the best ATS record in the entire NFL as a favorite and the worst as an underdog, and that record is not a case of those games being played at home or away. The Texans fail to cover the spread by an average of five points per game and have fallen into a position where they are clearly better than the teams they are favored against and clearly worse than the teams they are not. This is an interesting trend that could continue.
Worst as a Favorite : New York Jets (0-4)
The Jets are obviously horrendous and could be looking at a three-win season at best. The squad has matchups against Minnesota and Tennessee left on the schedule and may be favored two more times before the season ends. The oddsmakers must believe New York is better than it actually is because the team was a three-point favorite against a solid Buffalo squad two weeks ago. If New York gives away points at any time during the rest of the season, wagering against them could be an excellent play.
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Read more articles by George Monroy
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