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  • Writer's picture@WizeOwlSports

2022 NFL Week 9: Carolina Panthers @ Cincinnati Bengals

Betting on a reversal of fortunes: Carolina Panthers +7.5 -115


We have observed evidence that reversion to the mean is a thing in NFL gambling markets. Specifically, teams that get out the gates the fastest ATS tend to sputter versus the number during the belly and tail end of the season facing laggards versus the number. This observation implies that despite the Panthers' 3-5 ATS record, and the Bengals' 5-3 tally against the betting line to this point, Carolina is likely to collect the cover when theses teams meet in week 9. We are betting accordingly.


After the fifth game of the NFL regular season, taking points with teams that have covered less that 40% of their games has proven statistically significantly profitable versus teams that covered 60% or more of their action...



This angle has delivered a 12% return on investment since 2005-06, has suffered only three seasons with ATS win rates south of 50%, and is 5-3 ATS this year.


To explain the success of this system, first we cite casual bettors' infatuation with favorites. Of 20,721 regular season contests in the Bet Labs database, point-layers logged the support of a majority of spread bets about 78% of the time. This lopsided action might lead bookmakers to shade lines, creating value with underdogs.


Similarly, Joe Public was exhibited a recency bias. Also per data from Bet Labs, bettors have historically thrown a majority backing behind teams with winning ATS cover rates almost twice as often as thy have clamored to back squads with losing records against the spread (2,466 times and 1,414 times respectively). So teams that cover at higher clips are roughly twice as likely to find darling status in the eyes of three betting public, despite the normalizing effect of the aforementioned reversion phenomenon. Here too, a common result might be overpriced lines for teams in this spot (i.e. value with the opposing side).


At odds with these general tendencies though, as of the time of this writing, the lowly, underdog Carolina Panthers were supported by 59% of ATS bets tracked by Sports Insights and 63% of dollars wagered versus the number. As a result of this majority action, the spread has contracted from as wide as 9.5 a week ago to the current 7.


We locked in Panthers +7.5 -115 earlier this week, but the risk of loss is no greater with +7, so we would not be deterred by the listed line.


Happy betting!!


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