The results of Week 5 around the NFL are in, and it was a more straightforward week of NFL betting. Good teams won a lot of games. The ones that did lose lost to other good teams. We did have a few upsets, but they were not massive surprises. We had a few almost upsets that only count for morale, but shout out to the Lions, Texans and Colts for putting up a good fight. Check out our FTN Power Rankings to see where all these teams are after five games.
We now have five weeks of data. The pictures are starting to emerge on who is good, who is not, and exactly how good they may or may not be. Books are seeing this too, as they have adjusted their baseline totals down a bit this week after unders have owned the first few weeks of the season. We have also started to see some major adjustments to team’s power rankings as evidenced by the jump in spreads for some teams and the drop for others heading into Week 6. To see these opening lines, check out our first look at he Week 6 NFL spreads here.
Last week we had a perfectly equal 8-8 record against the spread for favorites and underdogs. Underdogs were better ATS for two of the first three weeks of the season. This week favorites edged out the win going 9-7 against the closing line. Favorites won outright in 12 of 16 games, with the Ravens, Patriots and Vikings being the three that won and did not cover. The Packers won by a field goal and that game closed at -2.5, which shows how razor close this was to being another 8-8 week. Favorites were the way to go, which brings the season record to 2-2-1 ATS. Underdogs are ahead on total wins, but again here the margin is razor thin. You can see how every team has performed against the closing line here.
NFL Underdog Record
This was not a good week to blindly bet one unit on underdogs — only four of them ending up winning. The Steelers and Bills both ended up pretty low on the moneyline. The Eagles did too. The Bears were the only real long-shot winner for the underdogs this week, but not by a wide enough margin to make up for the 12 dogs that lost. We had 10 dogs lose the week before, but a flat one-unit bet on every dog would have still returned a profit due to the big moneyline numbers the Jets and Giants had when they won their games. This week, a one-unit bet on every dog would have ended up well short of a profit. It did not work this week, but the flat bet on every dog strategy has turned a profit in three of the first five weeks of the season. It is also profitable year-to-date.
NFL Team Scoring
On the season, 27 of 64 games had gone over through the first four weeks. The unders have been the better bet in the first month, coming in 10 more times (37 of 64). Things finally started to look up for overs in Week 5 though. We had nine of 16 games go over, making it a winning week for over bettors. A flat one-unit bet on every over would have returned a profit of 1.19 units in Week 5. On the season, overs still have a lot of work to do. Overs trail unders by a count of 36 to 44. That means just 45% of games have played to the over this season with unders cashing in 55%. Bettors love to play overs and books do tend to shade that way a bit, so it is not out of the question that unders should cash more, but the gap is probably wider than it will be at the end of the season. As for now, the under has produced a flat rate profit of over five units on the season or just slightly over one unit per week. When in doubt, it pays to be a little more skeptical on the total amount of points scored.