NFL Totals Betting: Week 10 Over and Under Predictions
by Dave Schwab - 11/5/2014
The total slightly favored the "over" play in last week's NFL games, with seven of the 13 games going over the closing total line. I broke even for the week in my top three picks for Doc's Sports at 1-1-1, but I failed to gain any ground on a sub-.500 record of 12-14-1 through the first half of the NFL regular season.
Turning my attention to Week 10 of the season, I uncovered quite a few interesting plays on the total line, but after really digging into all the stats and betting trends, I have narrowed things down to a trio of selections for this Sunday's matchups. All the picks are based on betting odds as provided by BetOnline.
Sunday, Nov. 9
Tennessee Titans vs. Baltimore Ravens (1 p.m. FOX)
Total Line: 43.5
The Titans are one of those teams that have become rather predictable in recent years. They will pull off a few upsets here and there before settling into another six- or seven-win season. So far this year, they are a bit off pace with just two victories against six losses. One of the main reasons for the downturn has been an offense that has completely lost its identity with an average of 321 yards and 17.1 points a game. These numbers are both ranked well into the bottom-third of the league.
Baltimore has been churning along in spurts this season on its way to a 5-4 start. One week the offense looks unstoppable with Joe Flacco throwing the ball all over the field, and the next it reverts back to the form that only managed an average of 19 points a game in the four losses. The one constant has been a shut-down defense that is ranked fourth in the NFL this season in points allowed (19.3)
The total line for this AFC clash opened at 43.5 , and it has held steady throughout the week. The total has stayed under in five of Tennessee's first eight games this year, and it has stayed under in 10 of the Ravens' last 14 home games. Head-to-head in this matchup, the total has stayed under in the last five meetings in Baltimore. Look for another grinder on defense that keeps the scoring low.
Game Pick: UNDER
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. New York Jets (1 p.m. CBS)
Total Line: 45.5
Led by Ben Roethlisberger, the Pittsburgh offense has gone off the past few weeks while rewriting some franchise and NFL records along the way. This unit has racked up a total of 124 points in its current three-game winning streak, with the total easily going over in all three contests. Roethlisberger has thrown 12 touchdown passes in his last two games, and in a 51-34 victory against the Colts two weeks ago, he set a single-game franchise record with 522 yards passing.
The Jets are easily the biggest disappointment through the first half of the season with just one win in nine games. The situation at quarterback has been a complete disaster with Geno Smith now benched for Michael Vick. Despite the fact that New York is ranked 30th in the NFL in scoring with just 17.1 points a game, they might be able to exceed that average just a bit on Sunday against a Steelers' defense that has allowed an average of 26.7 points during this three-game tear.
The total line in this contest opened at 45.5, and there has been no movement one way or the other on BetOnline's current board. I believe in riding the hot hand in the NFL, especially when a particular matchup lies heavily in a team's favor. That is clearly the case with Pittsburgh, which is capable of taking this total "over" on its own. It also helps that the total has gone over in five of the Steelers' last seven games.
Game Pick: OVER
St. Louis Rams vs. Arizona Cardinals (4:25 p.m. FOX)
Total Line: 43
The Rams will probably not go on to make the playoffs this season at 3-5 through the first half of the season, but there is a good chance that they will remain a thorn in the side of the rest of the NFC West after posting upsets over both Seattle and San Francisco. Last Sunday, they held the 49ers to just 10 points after stopping a game-winning run at the goal line with time running out. St. Louis still has some major issues with an offense that is ranked 28 th in the NFL in scoring with just 18.6 points a game.
Arizona has to be considered one of the top three teams in the NFL following a surprising 7-1 start, but many people forget just how strong the Cardinals finished last season on their way to 10 wins. Quarterback Carson Palmer deserves some of the credit ever since he returned from a back injury a few weeks back, but the main reason that Arizona is sitting atop the division at this point in the season is a shut-down defense that is allowing an average of just 19.5 points a game.
The total for this division clash opened at 43, and it has also held steady with the betting public throughout the course of the week. I am banking on some past betting trends in this matchup following suit this Sunday after the total has stayed under in nine of the last 12 meetings overall and in five of the last six games played in Arizona.
Game Pick: UNDER
YTD Record: 12-14-1
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