Chicago qualifies as one of my strongest technical investments of Week One. First, in Week One NFL games involving one team that made the playoffs the previous season and one that missed the postseason, the team that did not make the playoffs is a profitable 49-33 ATS (59.8%) since 2005.
Better yet, when our ‘play on’ team was .499 or worse against-the-spread, they improve to a remarkable 35-15 ATS (70.0%).
The foregoing system makes sense in that the NFL is a contrarian league from a betting perspective, and public opinion regarding the respective teams in Week One are largely formed by the previous year’s results.
Based on public misperception, we are getting excellent line value on the home underdog as my math model only favors Atlanta by 5.6 points. Let’s also note that teams coming off a Super Bowl loss (i.e. Atlanta) are a money-burning 2-15 SU and ATS in season-opening road games since 1985.
The Falcons are just 5-18 SU and 8-15 ATS in road-openers against non-division opponents and 1-5 ATS when laying points in this series. In contrast, the Bears are a reliable 23-10 SU in home openers, with only three losses by more than six points.
Chicago head coach John Fox enters his third season in the Windy City, which is significant in that his teams are a combined 22-13 SU and 21-13-1 ATS in Year Three under his leadership.
The Bears also apply to a very good 22-4 ATS (84.6%) system that invests on certain NFL teams that had a turnover margin of minus-1 per game or worse last season when matched up against conference foes.
Chicago was a much better team last season than their 3-13 suggests as injuries landed 21 players on IR or PUP, with fourteen of those players missing at least 8 games.
Not only do the Bears enter the 2017-18 campaign relatively healthy, but they also signed five free agents who were starters in 2016.
Finally, Chicago actually outgained opponents by ten yards per game last season despite winning just three games. Grab the inflated number with the Bears as Oskeim’s Free NFL Pick for Sunday, September 10.
Free NFL Pick for Saturday, September 10:
Chicago Bears (+6.5) over Atlanta Falcons
Winning NFL Systems & Free NFL Pick:
- NFL teams coming off a playoff appearance are just 41-62-3 ATS vs. non-playoff teams in Week One of the regular season.
- NFL teams coming off a playoff appearance are just 10-30 ATS vs. division foes who failed to make postseason in Week One of regular season.
- NFL teams that won fewer than 7 games the previous season are 162-126-7 ATS (56.2%) in Week One of the regular season.
- NFL road underdogs that won fewer than 7 games are 49-243 ATS in Week One of the regular season, including 44-15-1 ATS if they won more than three games.
Free NFL Pick: Jacksonville Jaguars (+5.5) over Houston Texans