Tuesday, 16 January 2018

NFL - Fly Bird Teams Fly

The NFL Division Round this past weekend wasn't the most successful for followers of the road teams.

In the first game of the weekend, the Atlanta Falcons, giving 2.5 points to the Philadelphia Eagles, were only the third road team to be favourite in this round, and lost the game, with the Overs also a loser. It shouldn't have been a surprise really, given that...
Tuck that little gem away for next season.  

13.5 point underdogs in Game Two, the Tennessee Titans lost by 21 points to the New England Patriots, but at least the Overs came in, even if only by one point.

The third game was a double winner with the Overs winning as well as the Jacksonville Jaguars who not only covered the spread (7 points) but won straight up at the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Finally, the New Orleans Saints were beaten on the final play of the game by the Minnesota Vikings. The 'official' spread was 5 points, and the game ended 24-29, so when the Vikings took a knee rather than attempt the extra point, (with no time left, the game was already won), anyone getting 5 or 5.5 (as many books had the line) got very lucky. Quite possibly the only time in NFL history that there were two punters on the field for a play. Overs was again the winner. 

For the Championship round next Sunday, the Patriots are currently 9 point favourites at home to the Jaguars, while the Eagles are again home underdogs (their starting QB was injured late in the season), this time getting 3.5 points versus the Vikings who are attempting to become the first team to play a Superbowl in their home stadium.

History favours the home team in this round overall, but road teams have the edge when favourites. The Overs are the totals play, but beware the small sample size.

For those who like trivia, two NFL teams have previously played a Superbowl in their home city. In 1980, the Los Angeles Rams played at the Rose Bowl, and in 1985, the San Francisco 49ers played at Stanford Stadium.

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