GAMBLING GUIDE

Play, action or pass week 17: Pressure; pushing down on me

Tom Brady and the Pats are big favorites this week. Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images

Pressure, depending on the quality of the group, can influence a team in different ways. Teams already having clinched a spot in the postseason, but playing for seeding have much less pressure than those that are in "win or go home" situations. According to BetLabs, since 2003, teams in must-win games during Week 17, are 56-68-4 (45.2%) ATS.

Where we can find an edge is through public perception and average bettors thinking the "need" factor benefits them. Using the same BetLabs tool, dating back to 2003, teams playing at home, in must-win games hold a record of 31-42-2 (42.5%) ATS in Week 17.

A must-win situation doesn't mean "Must win by the spread." It solely indicates win and advance. There are various reasons why you won't see the better team cover a given spread. One is the pressure of mistakes late in games when playing with a lead. Games that hold higher implications tend to be called slightly more conservative towards the final quarter as teams don't have an obligation to press for more points and instead just maintain a score to advance. Also the look-ahead factor, and when playing with a substantial lead, some teams use clock management with one eye ahead to the next opponent and also to avoid injuries. Especially, when a group knows it will be playing the following week (Wild Card Weekend).

Most Bet Teams:

Chiefs 78%
49ers 73%
Cowboys 72%
Redskins 71%
Colts 71%

Play action or Pass is 45-33-2 on the year, winning at a rate of 57.7%.

Play

Patriots-15
New England has already clinched the AFC East title, 14th in the last 15 years. What can the Patriots gain? The coveted No. 1 seed and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. By defeating the Jets on Sunday, or a loss by the Steelers, the Patriots can pave the road in the AFC through Foxborough. Standing in their way is an overachieving Jets team playing with a backup quarterback. In the last three games, the Jets have mustered up a league-low 8.7 points a game. Ironically, the Jets have been good vs. the Patriots as of late, going 7-1-1 ATS in the last nine. Much has to do with the extra motivation teams have when playing Tom Brady and the Patriots, a stat which fails to show up in the box score. Don't let the big spread scare you as the Patriots have covered seven straight games as a home favorite of 14 points or more. The Patriots are 14-4 ATS in their last 18 games in Week 17. The Jets score an average of 15.1 points on the road, New England tallies up 29.9 per home game. Throw in a few turnovers and the large spread is justified. Patriots, in a beatdown.

Oakland +8
We spoke about the pressure of having to win to get in and how it can affect a team. Games played in December tend to have more influence than games earlier in the season. By weeks 12 and 13 the playoff pictures have become somewhat clear, and the path that needs to be taken becomes apparent. When the pressure has been on, the Chargers have gone 2-7 ATS in their last nine home games in December. This a divisional matchup in a so-called home game, we say that loosely because countless locals are predicting the old LA Raider faithful to run the stadium 75-25%. I expect the Raiders to get up for this game behind the extra motivation behind the fans. Rather than going into the offseason on a four-game losing streak, a win playing the spoiler vs. a division foe can serve as some kind of redemption for a team that unquestionably underachieved this season. With Melvin Gordon a little banged up and limited all week, look for LA to coast to the finish line leaving the back door open. The Raiders are 32-25-1 on the road against the Chargers; look for the Raiders to keep this close and make the Chargers earn a playoff berth.

Action

Packers+7
Redskins -3
Panthers+4
49ers Moneyline
 

Teasers 7 point
Panthers+11/ Patriots-8
 

Teasers 10 point
Patriots-5/Vikings-1/Saints-Bucs over 40

Be very selective this week as motivation will play a big factor. Don't fall into the trap "because a team needs to win they will cover." Bad teams with extra pressure is not a warranted combination. A wise man once told me, "If a team needs to win in week 17 to advance, then they probably aren't that good anyway." DONT FALL FOR THE TRAPS.

For any questions or comments reach me at @JerryBoKnowz

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

ESPN Houston 97.5 FM
The fourth quarter continues to frustrate Texans fans. Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images.

Here's where we stand, our Houston Texans have played three games against arguably the three worst teams in the NFL (present company excluded) and have zero wins to show for it.

Sunday’s heartbreaking, but thoroughly deserved 23-20 loss to the grounded Bears was a tour de force of futility, a total team collapse for the Texans. Everybody did their share, the offense, defense, coaches, and the Texans left Soldier Field with a loss that shoulda, coulda been a victory. Losing close games is what bad teams do, why coaches get fired.

This was the second consecutive game on the road for the Texans where the home team was booed by their fans - and still beat the Texans.

Here’s an alarming stat: the Texans have been outscored 30-0 in the fourth quarter. More troubling for the rest of 2022: the Texans are a boring, lousy, losing product that will lead to a half-empty NRG Stadium like recent years.

On Sunday, like the week before, I turned to the Astros game on AT&T SportsNet SW during Texans TV breaks and it got progressively harder to return to the Texans game. I wound up watching the Astros live and Texans later on DVR.

Sunday’s Texans game would have been a comedy of errors if the team weren’t so tragically awful. Maybe CBS should run a laugh track during Texans broadcasts.

The Texans now find themselves alone in last place in the AFC South. They’re winless after playing three patsies. Now they get ready to host the Los Angeles Chargers, then head east for the first-place, you read that right, Jacksonville Jaguars and later the 0-3 Las Vegas Raiders. Before the season started, oddsmakers had the Texans as underdogs all 17 games this season. It still looks that way.

Fans and the media are losing faith in Davis Mills as the team’s quarterback of the future. Yes, Davis has been disappointing so far in 2022, with the 30th lowest quarterback rating in the NFL. Mills looks like a young quarterback who’s in over his head and shows little signs of being a firebrand leader. Mills went 20-32 for 245 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions on Sunday.

It’s true, teams have won the Super Bowl with lesser talented quarterbacks, like Brad Johnson for Tampa Bay in 2002 and Trent Dilfer for Baltimore in 2000. This just in, however, Houston will not be going to the 2023 Super Bowl.

While Mills continues to cast doubt on his future as QB1, Bears quarterback Justin Fields was stunningly horrible Sunday. At least Texans coaches involved Mills in the offense. The Bears know they have clunker in Fields, who went 8-17 for 106 yards, two interceptions and no touchdowns. Those are Air Force vs. Army numbers, unseen in the NFL in decades.

I asked a buddy, is Justin Fields the worst quarterback in the NFL? His answer: “You mean besides our guy?” I don’t know if he was joking or not. Note to Alabama quarterback Bryce Young - your scripts for next year’s H-E-B commercials are in the mail. Stay upright.

Sunday also saw the NFL announce that Rihanna would be the half-time headliner at this season’s Super Bowl. The reveal came with the factoid: Rihanna is the second biggest-selling female recording artist of all-time. OK, trivia buffs, who’s the No. 1 selling female artist?

(Answer: Madonna has sold 335 million records since 1982, while Rihanna has sold 250 million since her debut in 2005.)

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome