VEGAS RUNNER’S “VALUE” TOP 10 LIST…for MLB, NFL, & CFB BETTING MARKETS !!
The bettors had beaten up on the bookmakers in the first 2 weeks of the NFL Preseason but the odds makers did a good job of protecting them in week 3 by factoring in “public perception” more, and getting the wise guys and recreational bettors on opposite sides. You have to keep in mind that the ultimate goal of the odds makers is to create balanced betting action for their clients, the bookmakers. Many times throughout the year, when public money outweighs wise guy money…the best way to do this is to offer a “fair line” rather than a “true line”.
When that’s the case, odds makers know they need to factor in the bias of bettors in the marketplace. Knowing recreational bettors have a bias towards “favorites” and “over”, it’s no surprise that many times both are inflated. This inflation assures the books that their hold will be more than the built-in 4.5% they get from bettors laying 11 to win 10.
That’s not to say you should never bet the Favs or the Over…it simply means you will need even more supporting info/data to overcome the bias being factored into the price. This week we have MLB, the final week of the NFL Preseason, and the opening week of CFB. Rest assured that books are bracing for an increase in volume from both, the recreational bettors and wise guys.
This has resulted in plenty of “over/under” valued teams in each of those betting markets, so let’s zero in on those and see if we can isolate some spots where we can get the best of it…
TOP “5” OVER-VALUED TEAMS :
1.) MILWAUKEE BREWERS
Once again we’ll focus on the team in MLB that’s on top of my list. This week it’s the Brewers because NO team in baseball has been hotter in August and more importantly, getting more HYPE. They’ve taken a 10.5 game lead in the NL Central and with only one other team in the division sitting above .500, I think it’s safe to pencil them into the post-season. Recreational bettors have been backing them nightly and tying them into cross sport parlays when football’s on the docket so odds makers will add an even bigger premium ahead. I look for them to slow down some as they become a mathematical certainty to be playing after the regular season ends and with an inflated price-tag, it’ll be tough to make any more money backing them. If you missed the money-train this month, it’s probably too late to jump on now.
2.) FLORIDA STATE
The Seminoles are my pick to have a huge season and win the ACC when it’s all said and done. But going into this week’s game, I don’t need to be a psychic to know they’ll be looking ahead to their show-down with Oklahoma on the 17th. Until then, the focus will be on staying healthy and preparing for revenge from last season and not on the opposition at hand. But looking at the opposition, it’s obvious odds makers know the books will be heavy on the FSU side. Look for them to offer no value until you can at least name 1 player on the team they’re playing.
3.) NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
They’ve looked amazing in the preseason and cashed a lot of tickets for recreational bettors in 2 of the 3 games played. This last one came on a national stage where they also went OVER the total to cash a ton of
parlays. Bettors love offense and the Saints are loaded with it but going into their final preseason game, the goal will be to stay healthy. This is an established team that isn’t working on new schemes so there’s no reason at all to assume they won’t already be focusing on their season opener against the Packers. But odds makers know this team will attract public money in week 4 so they’ve sent them out inflated.
4.) SAN DIEGO CHARGERS
Another team that’s being touted as “loaded on offense” and after a 9-7 season, they’re expected to win the AFC West this year. That may happen but it’ll be tough to find many spots where they aren’t sent out with a premium attached. After coming from behind to get a push in week 3, odds makers expect bettors will be on them again in week 4. I believe this is another team that’s already looking ahead to the regular season and isn’t in need of giving their starters much work in the final preseason game. But that won’t stop bettors from backing them even at an inflated price.
5.) GREEN BAY PACKERS
It’s rare to get much value on a Super Bowl winner but even rarer to get any if they’re expected to repeat. At least that’s what the odds represent because this team is right near the top at most books. But this is another team that already had it’s dress rehearsal in week 3 and even though they didn’t get the cover, odds makers know they’ll get action. This means they’ll continue inflating the price to back the Pack, and that exercise is expected to be repeated throughout the upcoming season. They went 9-7 ATS last season and odds makers will want to see them do worse in 2011.
TOP 5 “UNDER-VALUED” TEAMS :
1.) ARIZONA DBACKS
I sound like a broken record but the Dbacks continue to offer value for bettors this season. They did experience a bump in the road a few weeks back but turned it right around winning 7 of their last 10. NO team in baseball has received less hype for the season they’re having and because of that, they aren’t getting much support from bettors. This has allowed odds makers to continue sending them out at a discount and that’s resulted in making them the #1 money winner in all of MLB. As long as bettors continue to stay away, the price will continue to offer value.
No team got as much love from wise guys as the Tigers when the Golden Nugget put out a line on “Games of the Year” back in July. In fact, the book was forced to adjust a number of times for each match-up they were involved in since sharps kept betting the LSU side. BUT the problems they are dealing with as the season is set to kick off has recreational bettors looking to fade them. This usually translates into a ton of value because we are left with a very solid team that bettors are afraid to back. Almost always, the market over-reacts to news and it takes a while for it to eventually catch up. In the mean time, the discount gives those willing to take advantage the best of it.
3.) KC CHIEFS
NO team has put up less points on offense this preseason and NO team has a worse ratio of points scored/points allowed. The offense has not grasped the new coaches schemes yet and the lock-out didn’t help matters much. But this is a team that won their division last year and even though they won’t be going to the Super Bowl, they’ll definitely begin to progress. The way to uncover value is to take advantage of “perception” and have the ability to get out ahead of the market. I believe the Chiefs offer both and should cash some tickets as long as they continue being offered at such a huge discount.
4.) SF 49ERS
They went 6-10 SU and ATS last season and have looked terrible in the preseason. ONLY the Chiefs have scored less points and bettors are already looking to fade this team. It’s not like odds makers aren’t aware of this and I’ve always stated that the point-spread is the “Great Equalizer” in sports betting. Look for the point-spread to be adjusted enough to where the 49ers are actually offering bettors value. Teams are almost never as good/bad as they look in the preseason and I expect that to hold true for the Niners, at least in the ATS world.
5.) INDY COLTS
Who would have ever thought that Payton Manning’s Colts would ever become “under” valued. Well, when bettors conclude that they are NO longer Payton’s Colts, the market’s over-reaction ultimately leads to them offering value. The uncertainty on when and if Payton returns has books racing to take down future bets on the Colts, but they’ll be forced to offer a betting line weekly. Just last week they were a 9 POINT HOME DOG and lost in the final seconds, proving that with enough points…ANY team can be the right side. Bottom line, as long as Peyton is on the sidelines or doesn’t look 100%, the Colts will be the Value side.
MONEY METER :
MLB = 65% SHARP / 35% PUBLIC
NFLX = 70% PUBLIC / 30% SHARP
CFB = 60% PUBLIC by kick-off / 40% SHARP....Right now : 90% SHARP / 10% PUBLIC
The public money action always slows down in MLB when football takes center stage until the post-season begins...But in the NFL, it's overwhelmed the books when compared to sharp money. Looking ahead to CFB, these betting lines were up for a while and they've received a ton of sharp money early since recreational bettors don't like to tie up their bankrolls well in advance. But, when gameday gets here the books will receive enough public money to out-weigh that sharp money in plenty of match-ups especially the very first week when bettors are so amped up.
Thanks again for all your support and best of luck ahead, Vegas-Runner.