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11/28/2013 7:52:00 AM
The news just gets worse for the Seattle Seahawks. Can they still overcome the NFL odds and beat the New Orleans Saints by at least five points on Monday Night Football?
record on his final NFL picks for 2013, up to November 27 inclusive:
ML (+0.71 units)
NFL Picks: Week 13 Betting Odds Report
It’s no secret that they love their Sweet
Leaf in Seattle. But the laid-back lifestyle might cost the Seattle Seahawks
(10-1 SU, 7-4 ATS) their shot at Super Bowl redemption. Following up on our special
update from earlier this week, two members of the Seahawks secondary are on
the hook for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy. The club announced on
Tuesday that CB Walter Thurmond has been suspended four games; CB Brandon
Browner is reportedly facing a one-year ban, which he is appealing.
This is not good news for Seahawk
supporters. And we’re already seeing the impact on the Week 13 NFL betting odds
for Seattle’s Monday Night Football
matchup with the New Orleans Saints (9-2 SU, 6-5 ATS). The Seahawks have
slipped from –6 at the open to as low as –4.5 as we go to press. Lines are
available anywhere between those two numbers; expect more stability in the
marketplace by the time you read this.
Be sure to check out our:
NFL Picks: Week 13 Fades & Games to Avoid
NFL Picks: Week 13 Value Picks
The whole point behind contrarian betting
is to zig when the NFL betting public zags, counting on the market to make
typical human mistakes, like overreacting to news. But this concept comes with
a caveat: We are all human, and eminently capable of overreacting to other
people’s overreactions. Football betting has layers, ogres have layers.
On the first layer, we have the suspensions
themselves. This is where we deal with the facts. Browner leads Seattle with 10
passes defended; Thurmond is fourth with six PDs. Each player has an
interception, with Thurmond taking his to the house. Thurmond also has a fumble
recovery and a sack. Their replacements for now are Perrish Cox, who was waived
earlier this month by the San Francisco 49ers after barely touching the field,
and Deshawn Shead, who was promoted from Seattle’s practice squad. Shead’s next
NFL game will be his first.
There are lots of other facts to consider
for Monday night’s matchup (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN), but for now, let’s move to the
second layer, where it’s us against the NFL betting public to see who does a
better job of sizing up the impact of these suspensions. And instead of
pretending I was born knowing everything about football, I’ll rely on Scouts
Inc., who had Browner ranked No. 46 out of roughly 250 players at his position,
and Thurmond No. 83. Cox was No. 121. Shead was among 60 or so unranked
Here’s the trick: Cox and Shead aren’t
being put into the starting lineup. They’re filling out the back end of the
depth chart. Browner and Thurmond both played right corner; on Monday, that
spot will likely be filled by Byron Maxwell, with Jeremy Lane also in the mix.
Maxwell (No. 139) and Lane (unranked) are also low on the Scouts. Inc rankings,
but they’re both solid young players who have done very good work on Seattle’s
top-ranked special teams – especially Lane.
Consider that Seattle also has Richard
Sherman (No. 23; eight PDs, four INTs and a TD) playing left corner, and a pair
of excellent safeties in Earl Thomas (No. 5) and Kam Chancellor (No. 11), and
these suspensions don’t seem like that big of a deal – especially when Browner
has been out since Week 10 with a groin injury. Silly football betting public.
Ah, but here we are at the third layer. Driving
an NFL point spread from –6 to –4.5 isn’t really that big of a reaction. It’s
only worth about 15 cents, according to the updated fair prices at Wizard of
Odds. That makes Monday’s line move less important than if it had moved from –3
to –2.5 (21.4 cents). I’m going to stick with Seattle as my pick, but I’m not
going to bust out the YES~! chant because of the lower price. A tastefully
understated Fargo Strut will do.
Take the Seahawks –4.5
(–105) at William Hill