Friday, January 20, 2012

NFL 2011 - Betting Lines - Picks To Win, Versus the Spread and the Over/Under: Conference Championship Playoffs

It's turning out to be an exciting final round of the playoffs before this season's Super Bowl!  And, in true Sports Savant fashion, my picks are getting more accurate as the importance of the games being played grows in intensity.  Not only did I finish with a perfect 4-0 record against the spread and 3-1 to win, but I picked my third Perfect Game Score of the season and my first since Week 2 of the 2011 NFL Season when I chose the Ravens to beat the Texans 20-13 in the Divisional Round of the playoffs.  The only pick I got wrong "to win" was the Giants, but I was one of the few people to even take them with the points so it was a very big upset.  According to my picks this weekend, we are going to have a Patriots vs. 49ers Super Bowl in Indianapolis this February.  Before we get to those picks, lets take a look at the rundown on my picks last week and overall this season...

Winner: 3-1   :-)
Winner w/ Spread: 4-0  :-D
Over/Under: 1-3 :-(
Trifecta: 1
Strikeouts: 0
Perfect Team Score Predictions: 2 (Baltimore, Houston)
Perfect Game Score Predictions: 1 (Houston @ Baltimore)


*2011 Overall Record*
Winner: 178-86 (.674)
Winner w/ Spread: 130-125-9 (.510)
Over/Under: 127-131-5 (.492)

Trifecta: 58
Strikeouts: 33
Perfect Team Score Predictions: 35   [Week 1]: Atlanta, St. Louis, Detroit  [Week 2]: Arizona, Tampa Bay, Minnesota  [Week 4]: San Diego  [Week 5]: Jacksonville, Denver  [Week 6]: Atlanta, Oakland  [Week 7]: Chicago  [Week 8]: Houston, Carolina, Denver, Cleveland  [Week 9]: Oakland, Tennessee  [Week 10]: Miami  [Week 11]: Oakland  [Week 12]: Tampa Bay, Chicago, Seattle  [Week 13]: Buffalo, Washington, Houston, New England  [Week 14]: Houston, Carolina  [Week 15]: Dallas, New York(A)  [Week 16]: Green Bay  [Week 17]: Jacksonville  [Divisional Playoffs]: Baltimore, Houston
Perfect Game Score Predictions: 3   [Week 1] Atlanta @ St. Louis  [Week 2]: Tampa Bay @ Minnesota  [Divisional Playoffs]: Houston @ Baltimore

NOTE: The team with a negative number in parenthesis "(-3)" next to their name is the favorite to win the matchup and the number represents how many points the favorite has to score more than the underdog to count as a winning bet.  The over/under for the game is represented by a number in parenthesis with the letters o and u "(o/u 46)".  The number represents the amount of points you are wagering whether or not the two team's combined score will be in excess of or short of.  Official betting lines courtesy of

My picks for the Conference Championship Round Playoffs...

Baltimore @ New England(-7)  (o/u 50)
Savant Spread Pick: Baltimore with the points; New England to win ~ 26-20
Over/Under Pick: Under

It's plain and simple in this matchup; Do you trust Brady and the Pats sub-par defense to hold up or is it Flacco and the Ravens high ranked defense to slow Brady and that high octane offense down?  Based on recent performance, their is more reason to believe in the Pats than the Ravens playing at New England.  The Ravens defense had three interceptions last week, continuing their "ball-hawk" reputation but numbers are deceiving.  Those interceptions were all very easy pick-offs thrown by an inexperienced third string rookie QB in T.J. Yates, a far cry from the likes of Tom Brady.  The Patriot mystique will roll into the Super Bowl behind 2 TD passes and 317 yards on 37 attempts from Brady while Flacco will put up 260 yards and 1 TD passes on 22 attempts in the loss.  Other player predictions: Ray Rice: 92 yards rushing, 32 receiving 1 TD, Rob Gronkowski: 7 catches 106 yards 1 TD

New York(N) @San Francisco(-2.5)  (o/u 42)
Savant Spread Pick: San Francisco and the points to win ~ 23-17
Over/Under Pick: Under

With most of America on the Giants bandwagon after their playoff stunner versus the Packers, the 49ers are playing the disrespect card all the way to the Super Bowl.  They have thrived on being the underdogs all season(and don't be fooled by the spread. It's just Vegas' way of hedging the risk on everyone taking the Giants bet).  Nobody plays more physical than the 49ers on defense, a team who knocked out 6 running backs this season including last week's crushing concussion Donte' Whitner laid on Pierre Thomas that caused a fumble on the goal line.  The Giants will make a few big plays but keeping a consistent drive will be difficult against the NFL's top rated defense.  Eli Manning will throw for over 300 yards on 41 attempts and 2 TD passes, but the Giants running game will be stifled with my expectation that the Bradshaw/Jacobs combo will gain just 67 rushing yards.  Alex Smith will throw it more than you think likely tossing it 26 times for 267 yards and a TD.  The 49ers running back combo Gore/Hunter will combine for 136 yards rushing and a TD for Gore.  Other player predictions: Hakeem Nicks 7 catches 118 yards 1 TD, Victor Cruz: 4 catches 67 yards, Frank Gore: 94 yards rushing, 18 receiving 1 TD, Vernon Davis: 10 catches 121 yards 1 TD

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