November 01, 2019
Each Friday for PhillyVoice, Steve Maltepes, known as “The Philly Godfather,” will impart his gambling wisdom on the Eagles and where the smart money is going on various pro football games this weekend. Maltepes is one of the nation’s hottest sports betting experts who appears weekly on national radio and has his own website, www.thephillygodfather.com.
What is the line telling you: Bookmakers offshore opened this line up with the Eagles being a 3-point favorite over the Bears with the combined total set at 45, and within 24 hours we witnessed the points spread catapult a full two points on the home favorite. The total has also seen a massive three-point drop down to 42. As of right now, the 4-4 Eagles are laying 5 points to a hungry 3-4 Chicago Bears team that has lost three straight games.
There's a bunch of things we don't like about this game if you're looking to invest in Philly here. The bet splits are heavily titled on the Eagles on almost 70% of all tickets punched so far offshore and in Vegas, and even more heavily tilted in surrounding betting houses.
Then, when you read between the lines, the sportsbooks initially implemented the Birds as only 3-point favorites at home vs. a team that hasn't won a game in a month. So, what they're telling us is that as bad as Chicago has played against their last three opponents, and as good as the Eagles looked last week vs. what was a 5-1 Buffalo Bills team, that if these teams played on a neutral field on Sunday this game would be a pick'em.
The other angle that should scare you off of laying that dead number (minus-5) on the Eagles is that the Bears are starving right now for a win.
Bottom line: Regardless of the fact that the Eagles get stronger on offense with DeSean Jackson coming back this week, we just can't back the home team here vs. Chicago, which ranks three spots better than the Eagles in overall defensive efficiency, that’s seven spots better in the pass rush department, and 13 notches higher in opponent yards-per-play. After crunching all the numbers, this game looks like a 20-17 type of a game. Bet the Bears plus-5 right now and if you're patient you might get a better number come kickoff.
What is the line telling you: The soft opener on this game had the Seahawks as 6-point favorites early in the week and the line reached as high as 6.5 for a New York second, and that's when we got involved in the market. We bought the hook to 7 and took 6.5 and purchased the plus-6 as well on the road dog here.
Even though Seattle's record is 6-2 this year and Tampa is a lousy 2-5 straight up, the Buccaneers rank seven spots better in net-yards-per-play, while playing the better opposing defensive units, and rank five spots better in opponent yards-per-pass attempt, only giving up one more point on the road this year than the Seahawks give up at home. Tampa also ranks 16 notches better in opponent yards-per-play. Add the fact that Tampa is still the number No. 1 defense against the run and the Seattle defense has one of the worst pass rushes in the NFL.
Bottom line: Take the Buccaneers plus-6 or 5.5. We made the game 3/3.5 so taking plus-5.5 should still cash you a ticket. To be honest, Russell Wilson is the only reason we didn't bury this number.
What is the line telling you: Oddsmakers made this game a pick’em early in the week and since then we've seen some early money attack the screen on the Colts, which forced oddsmakers to make Indianapolis a small 1-point road favorite over Pittsburgh. The total has also seen a small one-point down tick in the market from 43 to 42 across your screens.
We love Pittsburgh here in this spot as a home dog. The Steelers nucleus is one of the best in the NFL, which has become evident by just glancing at their turnover differential. The Steelers have the second best turnover differential in the NFL only behind the Patriots. The reason being is the strength of their offensive and defensive lines.
The Steelers offensive line is ranked No. 1 in protecting their quarterback, giving up only seven sacks on the year, and on the defensive side, they boast one of the best pass rushes in football, ranked third overall in adjusted sack rate.
Sure, the Colts are 5-2 and the Steelers are one game below .500 on the year, but Indianapolis has a plus 7-point differential, which is only two points better than the Steelers. On offense, these teams yards-per-play metric is almost identical.
Bottom line: Bet Pittsburgh plus-1. The Steelers rank 15 spots better than the Colts in net-yards-per-play, and on the defensive side, they also rank 15 notches higher in opponent yards-per -play.
(Betting lines are subject to change.)
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