2022 NFL Week 13: Jacksonville Jaguars @ Detroit Lions
Betting Lions' cover streak ends at four games: Jacksonville Jaguars +1
The Detroit Lions rattled off four straight covers most recently, to improve to 7-4 ATS and tie for the second-most bettor-friendly record in the NFL. The Jacksonville Jaguars, who sport a 4-7-1 record versus the number and are tied for fifth-worst ATS record in the League, will take a point from the Lions at Detroit's Ford Field Sunday. These observations make capping this contest fairly straight-forward, if not intuitive: take the point and side with Jacksonville for the cover. We rationalize this perspective below:
After about the first third of the regular NFL season, siding with dogs that have covered at no better than a 40% clip has proven solidly profitable versus teams with at least 60% ATS win rates...
This angle has delivered a (statistically significant) hypothetical 12% return on investment since 2005-06, with cover rates below 50% in only three seasons. It's record so far this year is 8-7 ATS.
This week in particular, our picks have revolved around an effort to exploit recency bias. Our play on the Jags is no exception. We believe the operative system works because the public expects covering teams to continue to cover. However, as the football year progresses bookmakers are likely to shade lines of winning teams that become public darlings, rendering future success Brady's the number less likely.
Through a different lens, ESPN's NFL Football Power Index (FPI) gives the Jags a 5.8 point advantage over the Lions on a neutral field in week 13. Jimmy Boyd's True Home Field Edge methodology implies Detroit deserves about 2.3 points for hosting the affair (based on data since 2003-04, from Sports Insights). Thus, a smart, power rankings-based approach likewise favors the road team for the ATS win, signaling that Jacksonville is more than a field goal better than the Lions Sunday.