NFL Marketwatch Week 12 2011-12

Daniel Fabrizio

The NFL Marketwatch column is written by Daniel Fabrizio, founder and president of, with the goal of  providing sports betting enthusiasts unprecedented insight into the NFL point spread market. The column takes an academic and contrarian view of the sports marketplace, as detailed in this article published in the Wall Street Journal, entitled, “A Contrarian’s Guide to Football Betting. is a leader in the sports information industry and has published a popular and best-selling Sports Investing series of books as well as recent articles comparing the Sports Marketplace to the Financial Markets and Contrarian Sports Investing: Why It Works.

The column is normally published every Saturday morning. Readers can sign-up to receive an advance copy of the NFL Marketwatch, which is distributed via email on Saturday mornings. Sign-up to Receive the Early Edition of the NFL Sports Marketwatch

NFL Marketwatch Performance

Recap of Last Week’s “Game to Watch” (7-4 = 63.6%)

Sports Insights’ Marketwatch columns continue to find value in the sports marketplaces.  Last week’s NFL Marketwatch “Game to Watch” selection, the Washington Redskins, was ahead late in the game.  Dallas came back, but the Redskins took Dallas to overtime, before succumbing in OT.  The pendulum continues to swing back and forth for many teams.  The NFL Marketwatch is now 7-4 (63.6%) for the season.  Since its inception more than six years ago, Sports Insights’ popular NFL Marketwatch column has produced a winning percentage of about 57%.  

Sports Insights’ Best Bets in the NFL have gotten off to a 18-13 (58%) record this season.  Last season, Sports Insights’ contrarian methods of Betting Against the Public, includingSquare PlaysBest Bets, and Marketwatch had a solid NFL season, producing a combined winning percentage of about 55% with NFL Squares at 57%.  Check out the Blog for timely betting trends reports, plus original analysis on featured games and strategies.

View Last Week’s Column

Tracking Public Performance

It was looking like a long and bad weekend for the Public after the early games on Sunday, with the Public standing at just 2-4 in lopsided-bet games.  However, San Francisco and Chicago — two “Public” teams won their late Sunday afternoon games — bringing the Public back to even for the weekend.  New England’s big 34-3 win on Monday Night Football brought the Public to 5-5 for the weekend — and prevented the sportsbooks from a very profitable weekend.  This brings the public’s cumulative record to a competitive 47-43 (52.2%) in lopsided-bet games this year.  Over the past six seasons, the public has been correct only about 48% of the time against the spread in “lopsided-bet” games, which are defined as games having 65% or more bets on one team.

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

As if the NFL sports betting marketplace could tell this is a shortened week with Thanksgiving, an offshore line-maker gave us a call on Tuesday and mentioned, “…early sharp actionon KC surprisingly pushed the line down against the Steelers.  Most bettors are taking the heavy favorite, as usual, but the early sharps pushed the line down to 10.”  Sports Insights’ analysts note that Pinnacle and CRIS did, indeed, open the game at Kansas City +10.5 — and the game is currently generally available at +10.

The line has dropped down to +10, even with more than 85% of the bets coming down on the Steelers.  Including teasers and parlays, the Steelers are accumulating about 87% of the total bets. We like the Kansas City Chiefs for many reasons this week:

  • Smart money is on Kansas City.
  • We’ll “bet against the public” and grab the contrarian value and double-digit point spread.
  • Our research in the NFL shows a bias for underdogs receiving 7 or more points.
  • Just a few weeks ago, the Chiefs stood at 4-3 and now they are 4-6 (after losing three games in a row).
  • Similarly, a few weeks ago, the Steelers were 3-2, before running their record up to 7-3 (going 4-1 in their last five games).
  • This match-up definitely falls into our contrarian method of trying to “buy low and sell high.”
  • While it’s not quite near the end of the football season as defined by this academic article (the article discusses the bias for home underdogs in NFL Weeks 15-18), we like Kansas City as a live home underdog.

The line had dropped to Kansas City +10 after the early sharps got down on the Chiefs, but the barrage of public betting on Pittsburgh has created a “bubble,” pushing the line back to +10.5.  At the time of writing this article, if you shop around for the best line, the latest lines at public books such as Bodog and SportsInteraction (SIA) are starting to tick up to +11.  This is a Sunday night football game on Thanksgiving weekend, so we will be tracking the point spread for this game closely.  There is a chance that the public will “chase” this spread even higher.  Note that this game falls into the 80/20 betting system highlighted by my article here — as well as a Wall Street Journal article highlighting Sports Insights.

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Sports Insights!

Kansas City Chiefs +11 (Bodog)

If the NFL Marketwatch has helped you improve your handicapping skills and bottom line, then try Sports Insights’ Premium Pro Membership.  It should be another exciting NFL weekend. Keep NFL Marketwatch picks handy and your browser pointed to for the latest Real Time OddsNFL Betting Trends and NFL Betting System Picks. I’ll be back next Saturday with the new edition of NFL Marketwatch. Enjoy the games!

Daniel Fabrizio