Sunday Night Football odds have Texans as field-goal favorites vs. Cowboys

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The mark of a franchise quarterback is that he can do something about a team’s historically horrid betting trend.

The Houston Texans, led by quarterback Deshaun Watson, are 3-point betting favorites against the Dallas Cowboys with a 45.5-point total for their Sunday Night Football matchup at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

The contrast in the teams’ track records in prime time is stark: the Texans are 4-22-1 against the spread in their last 27 games at night, whereas the Cowboys are 7-1 straight-up in their last eight prime-time contests. The Cowboys are also 9-2 ATS in their last 11 road games in October, according to the OddsShark NFL Database.

Whether those trends hold up for another week or the law of averages rears up might come down to whether the Cowboys offense and quarterback Dak Prescott, ranked 27th in the NFL in yards-per-pass, can keep pace with the Texans, who are sixth but have struggled to protect Watson.

The Cowboys, who are 2-2 SU and 1-3 ATS, are facing perhaps the best offense they have seen yet this season, while also going up against a J.J. Watt-led defense that leads the NFL in quarterback hits.

Thanks in part to running back Ezekiel Elliott and an offensive line led by left tackle Tyron Smith, the Cowboys lead the NFL in yards per rush, so there is a strong possibility of putting together some long drives that keep the clock rolling and keep Watson and Co. on the sidelines. That might be a factor for totals bettors.

Whether Dallas can put up points on the road will come down to who breaks first in the passing phase. While the Cowboys are struggling to throw and lack an identifiable red-zone target for Prescott, the Texans are 25th in yards per pass allowed and have only one interception in four games.

For the Texans, who are 1-3 both SU and ATS, the big question is whether Watson will have time to cycle through his reads. The second-year passer has acquitted himself well in prime time, with a 5-to-0 touchdown/interception ratio in two starts where the Texans are 1-1 SU.

Watson has a scary wide-receiver combo of DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller facing a Cowboys secondary that has zero interceptions and is right at the median in yards per pass, at 17th in the NFL. However, it’s glaring that Houston has allowed 17 sacks, second-most in the league, especially when Dallas has a strong pass rush built around left end Demarcus Lawrence.

While interconference home games only come up twice per season, the Texans are 6-3 SU and ATS against NFC opponents under head coach Bill O’Brien.

The total has gone UNDER in the Cowboys’ last six road games, with an average combined score of 29.67. The total has also gone UNDER in the Cowboys’ last four games against the Texans, with an average combined score of 36.5. The total has gone UNDER in eight of the Texans’ last 10 home games as a favorite of 3.0 or fewer points.

However, the total has gone OVER in 10 of the Texans’ last 11 home games in October.

For more odds information, betting picks and a breakdown of this week’s top sports betting news check out the OddsShark podcast with Jon Campbell and Andrew Avery. Subscribe on iTunes or Spotify or listen to it at OddsShark.libsyn.com.

 

Patriots settle as small favorites on Super Bowl odds 2019

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For all the narratives that can hang off the great Tom Brady and Super Bowl first-timer Jared Goff, two of the big moving parts in the matchup on Super Sunday involve the rushing phase.

The New England Patriots have settled as 2.5-point favorites on the Super Bowl odds 2019 against the Los Angeles Rams with a 56.5-point total at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com in the Super Bowl 53 matchup slated for Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on Sunday.

The Bill Belichick- and Brady-led Patriots are 6-2 against the spread in their last eight games as a favorite of 3.0 or fewer points, according to the OddsShark NFL Database, while the Rams are 4-3 straight-up and ATS in their last seven games as an underdog. Interestingly enough, underdogs are 13-4 ATS in the last 17 Super Bowl games.

As so often happens, the last two teams standings are in good health. The biggest exception for New England, whose run defense has been league-average much of the season, is that defensive tackle Malcom Brown (calf) was limited in practice. The Rams claim leading rusher Todd Gurley (left knee inflammation) is 100 per cent after he had only five touches during the NFC championship game two weeks ago.

Backing the Patriots, who are 13-5 SU and 11-7 ATS on the year, involves putting stock in Brady and cohorts’ abundant Super Bowl experience, along with the fact the offense has been at peak form, averaging 38.7 points and 465.7 yards per game over its last three outings.

The Patriots’ offensive line will arguably be the unofficial playoff MVP, collectively, if it contains the Rams’ front four anchored by Aaron Donald, the best defensive lineman in football. If Brady, the subject of many Super Bowl props for Sunday, isn’t disrupted and/or the opposing pass rush is sucking wind after a ball-control drive, the Patriots passing game is lethal.

The Rams, 15-3 SU and 9-7-2 ATS, are new to the tumult of the Super Bowl. However, head coach Sean McVay thrives at creating mismatches, and two of the Rams’ season-long strengths, running out one-back, one-tight end sets and using play-action passes, are not tactics that New England has defended particularly well.

Goff also led five game-winning drives during the season, emerging victorious in quarterback matchups against stars such as Drew Brees, Patrick Mahomes and Russell Wilson (twice).

The total has gone OVER in seven of the Patriots’ last eight games in the playoffs. New England’s last four closely contested playoff games have featured 68, 74, 44 and 62 points.

For more odds information, betting picks and a breakdown of this week’s top sports betting news check out the OddsShark podcast with Jon Campbell and Andrew Avery. Subscribe on iTunes or Spotify or listen to it at OddsShark.libsyn.com.

First commercial, Trump Tweets, Gatorade color among Super Bowl LIII props

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Fans watch the Super Bowl for the commercials as much as the game, which also lends itself to Super Bowl props.

For instance, Bud Light is the -105 favorite have a commercial appear first during the telecast at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. The brewer has a long track record of attention-getting ads, and making a first impression can whet the appetite for something later on in the evening.

Budweiser (+200) is a second favorite on that prop and there might be longshot value on Stella Artois (+550), whose ad will include Jeff Bridges and Sarah Jessica Parker reprising their respective roles from The Big Lebowski and Sex and the City. Michelob Ultra (+550) and Bon & Viv Spiked Seltzer (+550) are also on the board.

The total number of commercials is set at 96, with both the over and under priced at -120. In the car commercial prop, Hyundai (-250) is favored against Mercedes-Benz (+170), but it might be worth playing a hunch since the February 3 game is at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

Atlanta has also been hit by wintry weather this week, and it’s -140 on the Super Bowl 2019 prop bets on the stadium’s roof being closed against even money for open.

The previous two championship matchups each had over 60 points scored, and the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Rams are certainly capable of trading touchdowns. It is -140 that any scoring drive will consume less game time than however long it will take Gladys Knight to perform The Star-Spangled Banner.

As far as coach props, the over/under is 1.5 on broadcaster references to the relative youthfulness of 33-year-old Rams coach Sean McVay, with the over (-220) favored against the under (+155). Los Angeles is the underdog on the 2019 Super Bowl odds.

There is also a total set for the number of tweets from President Donald Trump’s Twitter account during the big game. Over 6.0 tweets is a -140 favorite with the under an even-money underdog. It is -650 on Trump not attending the game and +375 on him showing up. He did not attend Super Bowl LII in 2018.

A cross-sport bet is whether Houston Rockets star James Harden’s streak of 30-point games – 24 and counting – will end before Super Bowl LIII does, with -120 odds either way. Harden’s next two opponents, the Denver Nuggets and Utah Jazz, have each managed to keep him under 30 at least once this season.

As far as props that pay off postgame are concerned, there is the ever-popular bet on what color liquid the winning coach will be doused in after the game. Clear / water (+220) is a slim favorite over lime / green / yellow (+225), followed by orange (+400), blue (+400), red (+600) and purple (+1000). The Patriots, for what it might be worth, have poured a clear liquid on coach Bill Belichick following each of their four most recent Super Bowl wins.

For more odds information, betting picks and a breakdown of this week’s top sports betting news check out the OddsShark podcast with Jon Campbell and Andrew Avery. Subscribe on iTunes or Spotify or listen to it at OddsShark.libsyn.com.