The conclusion of Week Seven marked three straight losing weeks for Vegas and three straight in the green weeks for the general public. After being on the losing side in Week Six, I bounced back to another one-loss week in Week Seven; I went 4-1 +8.6U on my best bets. I added a fifth play on my Twitter last week, @slimeaction, so make sure you follow me there to stay up to date with all my picks each week.
After another winning week, I improved to 18-14 +20.1U on the NFL season. Week Eight signifies the almost halfway point of the season, and while it’s nice to currently be in the green, there is still a long, long way to go.
As the season progresses, the bookmakers are gaining more and more information on every team. Just like sharp bettors need to stay ahead of the curve, so do the books, and I expect nothing else besides razor-sharp lines for the rest of the season.
In sports betting, any perceived edge you have should be short-lived. If there is a team or a player is consistently being mispriced, eventually, the rest of the market will catch on to it just like you have. So, how do you maintain an edge in sports betting? If the answer to this question was simple, everyone would do so and have profitable seasons.
The key is to try to stay one step ahead while frequently refining your process as the season marches along. Trust me, this is much easier said than done, but for the rest of the year, this is exactly what I will be trying to do. And, truthfully, this is what I’ve been doing all along – noting my best bets, tracking my picks, and reflecting on the decisions I made. I trust my process.
Let’s reflect on last week before we look at my picks for Week Eight. My one loss was another ugly one – I took the Chiefs to cover four points on the road, and the Titans blew their doors off for a 27-3 victory. I completely misread this game, and while I am kicking myself for betting on this game, it is a learning experience moving forward.
I reinforced some things I already knew like Mike Vrable is a solid coach, the Chiefs can’t cover anyone, and the Titans are explosive on offense. I also learned new things like the Chiefs offense is broke, Mahomes’ struggles are legit, and the Titans are a serious contender in the AFC despite their mounting injuries. Before taking either of these teams next week, I will need to take into account what I learned the week before.
The good news is I did a much better job picking winners in Week Seven than losers. I love the Washington Football Team, but man does it make it less painful to watch when I know I am making money off their losses. I doubled down on the Patriots since I knew their coaching mismatches were their edge, and it paid off mightily. I also predicted the offensive struggles in New York as the Panthers took on the Giants at Metlife. I called the 49ers being overrated, and my Twitter pick, which included the Patriots for the third time, hit when the Buccaneers beat the brakes off the Bears.
While I am impressed with myself, I need to remember the learning process never stops. The market I am betting in is too sharp and consists of too many bettors that know much more than I do. All I can do is continue to trust my process and make my picks. Let’s take a look at my best bets for Week Eight of the 2021 NFL season.
NFL Week Eight Bets I am Playing:
5U Washington Football Team +4 @ Denver Broncos -110
After a two-week hiatus on taking Washington games against the spread, I am going back to my squad with a five-unit bet for Week Eight. I am currently 2-3 betting Washington games against the spread this season and I am 2-1 betting on Washington games in teasers.
I did not like the numbers I was seeing these last two weeks – the opening lines were much higher than the closing lines and I did not want to lose CLV. However, Washington would not have even covered the opening line number in either game. While I am happy to get some positive CLV here with the game sitting at 3 points all week, I know this does not mean I am definitely on the right side of this bet.
However, I do believe I am on the right side of this bet and the CLV I achieved is an indicator that this may be the case. I watch every snap of every Washington game. The Football Team, despite the final score, played their best game in 2021 last week against the Packers. Washington tackled better, defended better, moved the ball better, and still lost by 14 points. So why am I so confident they cover this week? Because this game is a must-win for the Washington Football Team.
Jack Del Rio deserves every ounce of criticism he has received this season so far. Last year, Washington boasted a top 10 defense and looked like they improved on paper this off-season. As we know now, this could not be less of the case – Washington now has the 31st ranked defense. However, for the first time this season, Del Rio finally had all of his players playing to their strengths – Landon Collins played in the box, the defensive line ran stunts, and our cornerbacks weren’t playing as soft on the outside. The final score will not tell you this, but from watching the game, this was the most inspired this unit has played all year.
After a tough stretch of games against quality opponents, Washington takes on Teddy Bridgewater and the struggling Broncos. The Broncos are similar to Washington – they have no real QB and their defense is swiss cheese. Vic Fangio is not a good NFL coach, and while I question Rivera at times, Washington has the edge here. Our defensive line will give Teddy fits and we should be able to push the ball all game long. While I am *hopefully* not going to sprinkle .25 units on the Moneyline, I think Washington takes home this must-win game on the road Sunday.
3U 2 Team 6 Pt Teaser Washington Football Team +9/Carolina Panthers +8.5
As you’ve read above, I’m bullish on Washington this week and will be doubling down on them. I am 2-1 betting Washington teasers this season, and while my wins were teasing down the other team, I think Washington is the right side this week.
The second half of this teaser covers an NFC South battle – the Panthers have been struggling and the Falcons are looking to win their third game in a row. I am taking the points here since I do not think the Falcons’ last wins were impressive, and I think the Panthers have a ton to prove.
3U Melvin Gordon U 47.5 Rush Yards vs Washington Football Team -110
While there isn’t a lot to flaunt about the Washington Football Team’s defense, one thing they have been solid with this season is defending the run. Washington has a great advantage this week – their defensive line should give the Broncos offensive line fits.
If that’s the case, Gordon should have nowhere to go. Gordon splits time with rookie RB Javonte Williams, who is the better of the two, so I do not see Gordon hitting over 48 rushing yards. I am 3-0 on Washington props this season.
3U New England Patriots +4.5 @ Los Angeles Chargers -110
While I am disappointed I missed the +5.5 that was available all week, I am settling for the 4.5 since I only see this number coming down more. If any bet this week will fit my recent streak of misreading games completely, this would be my pick.
However, I am taking this side for two reasons; coaching and the run game. While Brandon Staley is certainly a bright young coach with a ton of potential, Bill Belicheck is one of the best to ever live. I think Belicheck studied how the Ravens kept Herbert under wraps and will deploy a similar style of defense. Also, the Patriots run the ball well, while the Chargers defend it awfully, so I am all for taking the points here.
Week 7: 4-1 +8.6U
Season Total: 18-14 +20.1U
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