I can’t count the hours I have spent pricing home field advantage. As a bookmaker and a gambler, it is an essential quality to have.
Ironically, in my own life, I put zero time or effort into valuing or pricing my own home “field” advantage.
My trip to Las Vegas last week to open the NFL season was the equivalent of a scheduling nightmare.
Just like football teams in bad travel spots, I made uncharacteristic decisions. I spent far too much money and I am hoping that the additional pending charges on my credit cards are ‘debits in’, rather than ‘credits out’…
My first day back from Las Vegas was Monday. I woke up in my bed, I had access to all my resources and worked from my desk.
Coincidence? Maybe not.
In the past two years, I have had two abysmal months of betting.
June 2016: I lost over 13% of my bankroll. June was the same month I lost my lottery business and moved from Colombia to Canada this month.
August 2017: I lost over 14% of my bankroll. In August made two cross country trips and spent weeks debating about moving and taking on a new career.
Perhaps my betting success stems from comfort, clarity, and routine at home?
I sat on my couch Monday night and saw the over under prices open for the weekend. One number stood out above the rest. Cleveland Baltimore Under 41 Points.
I love this bet.
Baltimore impressed me more than any other team in the league. Their defence is frightening. They have more speed and power than any other unit in the league.
The Ravens front abused the Bengals offensive line with relentless pressure in front of Andy Dalton. He had no room to step up in the pocket and spent the game on his back foot.
The pressure allowed the Ravens secondary to take control. The way the defence can sit back and anticipate routes is a nightmare for quarterbacks. The corners and safeties baited experienced Andy Dalton into numerous interceptions.
Cincinnati is a far more capable offence than Cleveland. As good of a coach as Hugh Jackson is, I do not see how he can put together an offensive game plan which can result in success this week.
Sunday will be the second game for rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer, and I do not believe he is capable of reading this Ravens defence nor disguising his throws. The only way the Browns can remain competitive is with very conservative play calling — a plus for the under.
Baltimore is the most traditional offence in the league. Before the season, coach John Harbaugh said he wanted to make the run the primary focus. He held his word and ran the ball 42 times vs. Cincinnati, an incredible number in today’s NFL.
Baltimore will get a lead early and control the game. The constant use of the rush attack by Harbaugh and Mornhinweg will keep the clock moving. The Ravens defence playing from ahead will eliminate any Browns offensive production. I do not see a way these teams find the end zone six times.
The market agrees with me.
Influential money has driven this total down nearly a field goal since open, the biggest move of the week. I expect it to go down more.
A good friend of mine, Christian Pina, is betting the under HEAVY, too. He is a professional bettor in Las Vegas. We are opposites when it comes to betting sports. It is rare we align on the same play. When we do agree, it gives me great confidence.
The under is my first double bet of the NFL season.
Good luck to all this weekend!