by Bob Gaughan, Buffalo Sports Page
Weekly Record 10-5-2, Overall Record 60-38-3
MR. OVER/UNDER: Indianapolis +1.5 over Houston
I can’t recall a more challenging (for betting) and exciting NFL Wild Card Weekend ever. When it comes to point spreads, a home team advantage is usually considered to be 3 points. Yet 3 of the 4 home teams are less than 3-point favorites. So let me share some more stats with you. EVERY home team this weekend has a 7-9 over/under record. Saturday games are indoors, Sunday game are outdoors, and weather shouldn’t affect the outdoor games. Chicago covered the spread 12 times this year, more than any team. The Chargers are tied with New Orleans for the best road record at 7-1.
Earlier this year Houston won at Indy by 3 and Indy won at Houston by 3. Houston and Baltimore are 6-2 at home. Dallas and Chicago are 7-1 at home. The Philly/Chicago game has total points at 41. That’s lower than any Philly game this year. Chicago has had 2 games where the betting total was under 41. With all this information, I put 12 pieces of paper in a hat, 8 of which represented each team with the spread, and the other 4 which represented the O/U for each game. I pulled out Indianapolis plus one-and-a-half. Good Luck
Man in Stripes: Chargers +3 over Ravens
This is the rematch of the game only two weeks ago in LA. It’s tough to beat a good team twice in the same season let alone in 15 days. Comes down to who do you trust? Phillip Rivers or Lamar Jackson? I’ll take the guy that might have his best chance to get to the Super Bowl ever!!LA is 7-1 ATS on the road and 7-1 straight up on the road. The Ravens are only 3-5 ATS at home. Chargers seem to thrive on the road, and will be the underdog as a 12-4 team. Step one to the Super Bowl, Chargers +3.
Mono: Eagles +6 over Chicago
This is a tough week. I’ll take the Eagles to cap off wild card weekend. Nick Foles is showing that same magic that he showed last year en route to the Super Bowl. Chicago is a great team with a great defense. This will be a battle at Soldier Field. Both defenses show up. Interested to see Trubisky in his first playoff game. Eagles could win outright but I expect a close game decided by a field goal.
Slick: Chargers +3 over Ravens (Double Down)
Last time the chargers played the Ravens I was on LA as -4 at home. It didn’t work out well. However I still feel the chargers are the better team. They have more advantages this week. Ravens might have the better defense but the Chargers are the better team. Getting points in a game with the better team. Chargers love being the underdog on the road too. If Rivers doesn’t win this game I think he better think about being time to retire.
Mr. Brutal: Eastern Washington +16.5 over North Dakota St (FCS Final)
North Dakota State usually wins but they play in a dome. This game is outdoors in Frisco, Texas. North Dakota State will try to run all over you. But Eastern Washington went 12-2. They clobbered Maine 50-19. Some thought Maine was better North Dakota State. One of Eastern Washington losses was to Washington State. There other loss was to Weber State in a driving rainstorm. Eastern Washington defense has been turning the ball over the last two weeks. We think it’s too many points for the team with the red turf.
Bob Gaughan: Miami-Ohio over Central Michigan College Hoops Saturday 2pm
The MAC is a funny conference when it comes to non-conference schedule. Some teams like UB and Miami-Ohio play a challenging schedule. Others like Central Michigan play literally no one. Miami is 8-5 but has played Butler, Xavier, Evansville and a good Northern Kentucky team. This is a team that was young last year but handed UB one of their three conference losses. Nike Sibande is a first class guard and Bam Bowman is a beast inside. Central is 11-2 but only played one good team in TCU. They lost by 27. I see value because the team with the worse record is actually the better team.