For line moves, let’s talk NBA, college basketball and yes, NFL playoffs this weekend. Take a minute to review all the betting trends and our free picks (61-52-2 run) to see what we are thinking this week. See you back here next week.
NBA – (813) GOLDEN STATE at (814) MILWAUKEE 8:05 ET ESPN
Even with Steph Curry listed as ‘doubtful’, the total in this ESPN clash is rising like the heat on Missouri’s governor from 222 to 224.5. Neither Golden State or Milwaukee have shown much defensive intensity of late. Besides both teams allowing quite a few points over their last five games, opposing teams are connecting on 47.4 percent against the Warriors and 50.1 percent against the Bucks. While this really sounds like too many points, Golden State is 8-1 OVER in road games versus teams allowing 106+ points a game (231.8 average) and Milwaukee is 14-4 OVER versus teams scoring 110+ PPG (225.2 average).
Betting Trend – 91% backing Over
Doug’s VPID Take – Lean Over
CBB – (835) MILWAUKEE U. at (836) UI-CHICAGO 8:00 ET ESPN3 (side and total)
In the Horizon League, we have rising total and a home team as a falling favorite. The total has gone from 133.5 to 136 and UIC is down from -3 to -1. The Flames, like many teams, score more points at home and are 10-2 OVER after a game where they made 55% of their shots or better. Milwaukee also chips in with 11-3 OVER record in road games after playing away contest. The side is tougher call, but I’ll back UIC because of better defense and ranked 4th nationally in blocked shots.
Trend – 74% backing Under, 90% on Milwaukee
Doug’s VPID Take – Play Over, lean UI-Chicago
NFL – (301) ATLANTA at (302) PHILADELPHIA 4:35 ET NBC
The total on the weekend’s first playoff game has changed the most, moved from 43.5 to 41.5 or 41, depending on the sportsbook. The most obvious reason for falling number is the lack of faith bettors have in Philadelphia quarterback Nick Foles, which makes sense. The other rationale is the ever-improving Atlanta defense, which has quietly given up on 16.3 points a game in their last half dozen outings. This has led to six straight UNDER’s for the Falcons. One can surmise the role the Eagles defense will have to play to limit Atlanta from scoring to keep Philly in the game as underdogs. On the surface, the lower score looks to be the correct side, with turnovers the one aspect that is unpredictable. Nonetheless, the Dirty Birds are 10-0 UNDER off four or more consecutive UNDER’s the last three seasons.
Betting Trend – 58% backing Over
Doug’s VPID Take – Lean Under
NFL – (303) TENNESSEE at (304) NEW ENGLAND 8:15 ET CBS
After being quiet all week, we have our first bit of real line movement on this Saturday AFC affair. The total is up a digit to 48, with the belief either the New England offense will be a little stronger or the Tennessee defense a little weaker. There is a working internet theory that with all the negative talk surrounding Tom Brady and the Patriots organization as a whole, the Pats might by pissed and want to hang 40+ points on the scoreboard. No conspiracy theories for me knowing New England is 8-1 UNDER vs. teams with a completion percentage of 61% or better this season.
Betting Trend – 61% backing Over
Doug’s VPID Take – Lean Under
NFL – (307) NEW ORLEANS at (308) MINNESOTA 4:40 ET FOX (side and total)
Oddsmakers released an intriguing number on this NFC contest, making Minnesota a 3.5-point home favorite. In the traditional sense, they are saying that Minnesota is ever so slightly better than New Orleans, since the Vikings would normally give three points at home. The Sunday night line release has given way to Minnesota being raised to -5. This is really tough call with the Vikings 18-6 ATS as home favorites and the Saints 12-3 ATS revenging a same season loss (wining by 1.8 PPG). As we have gotten closer to game time, the total has bubbled up from 44.5 to 46.5. Though the two teams have sharp contrasts angles on totals, I agree with higher score. I’ll lean with Vikes because of Saints offensive line injuries. (Though I might change my mind)
Betting Trend – 59% backing New Orleans, 61% on Over
Doug’s VPID Take – Leans Minnesota and Over
Public Consensus Record (Since 12/1/17) – 51% to 79% – 30-28-2 ATS
Public Consensus Record (Since 12/1/17) – 80% or Higher – 18-17 ATS
Line Movement Direction Record (Since 12/1/17) – 51-42-2 ATS