Trends watchers took a beating in Week 1, with their Vegas wagers and office pick 'em pool selections going sideways if they handicapped exclusively on trends.
The two worst Week 1 bets over the past 13 seasons both covered the spread. Predictably, the Rams and Browns still lost, but at least bettors took solace in the ATS win.
The biggest OVER trend failed when the Patriots won in Tennessee, but the 31-13 total stayed under 47 points. And the Lions, Jaguars and Bills, three of the better teams to bet on in season openers all failed to cover.
Bears at Packers – UNDER (51.5 as of Thursday) | Matchup
Green Bay has dominated Chicago 7-2 ATS in nine meetings but the UNDER has been even more lopsided (8-1 past nine meetings, with the 2011 Christmas Day game the lone OVER).
Buccaneers at Giants – UNDER (44.5 as of Thursday) | Matchup
These teams have met 12 times since 1984, and there has never been a successful OVER bet. There was one push and 11 UNDERS. An accompanying trend is the Giants 6-1 favoring the UNDER in seven home games. And Buc bettors beware — they have lost seven straight road games (1-6 ATS).
Titans at Chargers - UNDER (43 as of Thursday) and San Diego -7 | Matchup
The Titans have lost seven straight to the Chargers since 1998 and they have never covered the spread during that time. And betting the UNDER when the Chargers are a home favorite has been a winner 10 straight times.
Lions at 49ers – SF (-8 as of Thursday) and UNDER 46 | Matchup
Detroit has lost 10 straight SU at San Francisco since 1981. And when these teams meet on the West coast, it’s almost always an UNDER play ( 9-0-1 past 10).
Cardinals at Patriots -15 – OVER (48 as of Thursday) | Matchup
New England has outscored Arizona 128-33 in the last four meetings, all OVERs. The Pats have also thoroughly dominated the NFC West at 12-2 ATS in the past 14 games. But beware the Cardinals, who have been on a roll dating back to last season and who are 8-3 ATS in 11 recent games as a double-digit underdog.
Saints at Panthers +2.5 – UNDER (51 as of Thursday) | Matchup
The last nine times these teams played at Carolina, the UNDER prevailed eight times. And while it is a straight-up trend and not against the spread, the Panthers are 1-18 SU in their past 19 games as underdogs.
Raiders -2.5 at Dolphins – Miami +2.5 | Matchup
Oakland has not been a road favorite since Week 14 of the 2005 season (they lost) but they get that responsibility in Week 2 at Miami. But Oakland backers are not rejoicing yet. The Raiders are 2-9 SU, 3-8 ATS in their past 11 vs Dolphins since 1996 and are one of the worst bets as a favorite (3-16-1 ATS past 20 games in that role).
Browns at Bengals – Cleveland +8 | Matchup
Neither team played well in Week 1 and the Bengals historically handle the Browns (7-1 SU past 8). But when it comes to the role of large favorite, Cincinnati is 0-6 ATS when favored by 8 or more points. Meanwhile the Browns are accustomed to losing as big underdogs, but also to covering the spread in that role (8-3 ATS past 11 times).
See the latest football odds at NBCSports.com.
CSN: Brian Urlacher, who played 13 seasons for the Bears, announced his retirement from football Wenesday on his personal twitter account.
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