1. #1
    illfuuptn
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    Is the NFL actually beatable?

    Seems like the lines are too damn efficient. I was looking into this guy named Scott Kellen of sixthsensesports and he seems to win every year, but last year he was like 52.9% which was a solid drop off from prior seasons. It seems like these database guys are just getting crushed in tge past few years. How could any database be better than those available to bookmakers? Anyone know of an NFL capper who they know without a doubt is beating the books and not just running well or fading away from old time success when it wasn't as hard to win?

  2. #2
    uva3021
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    that's why the database should coalesce to the line itself, and your wagers by degree should increase with every week, or flat until week 12-13

  3. #3
    Dark Horse
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    Yes. it's beatable. But it is the most over-analyzed league in the world. Therefore, speaking for myself, compared to other sports it is much more time consuming to find value. I've seriously considered letting the NFL go, apart from a few easily identifiable angles, because of that time investment. Last season I burned out after ten weeks and moved on to the 'quicker' angles only.

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  4. #4
    k13
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    Very, if only I could stop betting 10 parlay's a week. lol

    Still profitable.

  5. #5
    Darkside Magick
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    it very profitable like dark horse said, people over analyzed then before you know you at even money or below!!!

  6. #6
    tlfs
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    Certainly beatable, but the obstacles are that with only 16 RS games, and talent levels very close, common NFL statistics, common NFL results vs. spread, etc., don't mean much in terms of projecting. I read a really good book "How to Beat the Pro Football Pointspread" by Bobby Smith and it really showed how knowing the teams styles, systems, coaches and coordinators can help you see very helpful betting stuff in the matchups that most people don't because they get caught up in what happened in the last game, or in the wrong stats, etc. Pretty well thought out and no ego BS-ing about how great he is or anything like that.

  7. #7
    Indecent
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    Quote Originally Posted by illfuuptn View Post
    How could any database be better than those available to bookmakers?
    It doesn't have to be having access to more information/a better database, most likely it's doing a better job finding value using the same data.

  8. #8
    bobbyk1133
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Horse View Post
    Yes. it's beatable. But it is the most over-analyzed league in the world. Therefore, speaking for myself, compared to other sports it is much more time consuming to find value. I've seriously considered letting the NFL go, apart from a few easily identifiable angles, because of that time investment. Last season I burned out after ten weeks and moved on to the 'quicker' angles only.
    In my first couple seasons of using research and stats I had the same feeling. It was a lot of work. But if you find something that works the time needed to use that method diminishes greatly. At the end of the day most of us actually want to turn a profit - not just get an action-rush. Therefore, you will need to put in some hours during the week if you want to be a little bit more serious about it. I say if you are spending hours on most days of the week leading up to Sunday, you better hope you are closer to 60% than 50% for your time. Otherwise it is just not worth it.

  9. #9
    Pokerjoe
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    The English Premier League is more over-analyzed, if by over-analyzed you mean, more studied, more watched, more discussed, more wagered on. Hugely more. The NFL is a minor league sport. There are hundreds of countries in this world. We're the only one that cares about football.

    And even if by over-analyzed you mean, not "watched, handicapped, etc", but more number-crunched, then MLB wins at that. Pro football has no analysis equal in depth to sabermetrics. Basketball, too, for that matter, is better number-crunched.

    The problem with football isn't that it's over-analyzed, it's that it's season is so short. How many seasons does it take to establish that you're beating it (as opposed to just being lucky)? 8? 10? Or to develop a sample size on which to model?

    By then the game may have changed so that your results from a decade ago are no longer proof of much.

    The problem isn't that "no one's beating it." The problem is that, to some extent, no one can ever know if they're beating it. The single-season sample sizes are nearly trivial.

    But by the same token you never have to admit you won't BE beating it, so, enjoy.

  10. #10
    Dark Horse
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobbyk1133 View Post
    In my first couple seasons of using research and stats I had the same feeling. It was a lot of work. But if you find something that works the time needed to use that method diminishes greatly. At the end of the day most of us actually want to turn a profit - not just get an action-rush. Therefore, you will need to put in some hours during the week if you want to be a little bit more serious about it. I say if you are spending hours on most days of the week leading up to Sunday, you better hope you are closer to 60% than 50% for your time. Otherwise it is just not worth it.
    I spend one or two hours on baseball and basketball per day, and usually find good value. I easily spend 20 hours per week on NFL, probably closer to 30. I've had very successful NFL seasons, but it takes more and more time in my experience. With the exception of a few angles. To me the NFL is the start of the year and an invitation to take your game to the next level. (that is, the effort pays off in other sports as well). But in spite of what someone else said, there is no question in my mind that there isn't a league in the world with sharper lines. Razor, razor sharp in the NFL. That doesn't mean it can't be beaten. Of course it can. Anything can be beaten.

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  11. #11
    dogman
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    Like any form of gambling you have to get an edge. The edge may be something you read in a forum or that you came up with on your own. For years growing up I heard that teasers were a sucker bet. But there were some that didn't agree and found that crossing the 3 and 7 gave them an edge and now look what's happened with the teaser rules and change in some of the lines.

    If the book won't allow a certain kind of bet then you know it's a loser for them and a winner for you. Parlays were suppose to be bad bets, like throwing your money away but some out there were making big money with correlated parlays(some still do).

    It is beatable but you have to find the ways. I played the greyhounds for 30+ years and I always heard at the track that the maiden grade was the toughest grade to handicap. So, from that time on, that was the only grade I handicapped. My mission was to know more about the dogs that the average racegoer would kow. The answer was in the schooling races. I followed all of them which would give me the edge I needed.

    So anything is beatable you just have to do your homework.

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  12. #12
    bobbyk1133
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Horse View Post
    But in spite of what someone else said, there is no question in my mind that there isn't a league in the world with sharper lines. Razor, razor sharp in the NFL.
    I can only speak for myself and how I analyze matchups, but the sooner you begin your research, the easier it will be to stay ahead of the line adjustments throughout the season. Playing catchup is no fun given how fast the weeks fly by during the year.

  13. #13
    CrimsonQueen
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pokerjoe View Post
    The English Premier League is more over-analyzed, if by over-analyzed you mean, more studied, more watched, more discussed, more wagered on. Hugely more. The NFL is a minor league sport. There are hundreds of countries in this world. We're the only one that cares about football.

    And even if by over-analyzed you mean, not "watched, handicapped, etc", but more number-crunched, then MLB wins at that. Pro football has no analysis equal in depth to sabermetrics. Basketball, too, for that matter, is better number-crunched.

    The problem with football isn't that it's over-analyzed, it's that it's season is so short. How many seasons does it take to establish that you're beating it (as opposed to just being lucky)? 8? 10? Or to develop a sample size on which to model?

    By then the game may have changed so that your results from a decade ago are no longer proof of much.

    The problem isn't that "no one's beating it." The problem is that, to some extent, no one can ever know if they're beating it. The single-season sample sizes are nearly trivial.

    But by the same token you never have to admit you won't BE beating it, so, enjoy.
    Absolutely great post

    I do, however, think NFL is just as beatable as any other very public sport. There's A LOT of squares betting on football. Who doesn't want to bet on New England, or the Colts to win the Super Bowl?? Totally easy money, RIGHT GUYS?!?

  14. #14
    JayTrotter
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    "Move only when you have an advantage. It's very basic.
    You have to understand the odds, and have the discipline to bet only when the odds are in your favor."

    Charlie Munger, Vice chairman Berkshire Hathaway

  15. #15
    tlfs
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    I disagree about razor-sharp lines in the NFL, or anywhere. The median NFL result from the spread is 8.5 points. That's more than one score. The lines are what they are. They aren't necessarily sharp. I find it amazing that people will look at a game with a line of 3, and say, "the line's right, I'm not betting" but if it moves to 3.5, they will bet. That's not an investor. That's an action junkie. Whether the game ends 20-17 or 20-3, that line was right. The line is always right.

  16. #16
    Justin7
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    NFL is much more difficult to beat than most sports. If you're new to stat-based handicapping, there are much easier markets to beat. That said, NFL *is* beatable, and the market size is huge, even on overnights.

  17. #17
    ForgetWallStreet
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    Quote Originally Posted by tlfs View Post
    I disagree about razor-sharp lines in the NFL, or anywhere. The median NFL result from the spread is 8.5 points. That's more than one score. The lines are what they are. They aren't necessarily sharp. I find it amazing that people will look at a game with a line of 3, and say, "the line's right, I'm not betting" but if it moves to 3.5, they will bet. That's not an investor. That's an action junkie. Whether the game ends 20-17 or 20-3, that line was right. The line is always right.
    No action junkies lay 3.5 when they think the fair price is 3.

  18. #18
    ForgetWallStreet
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForgetWallStreet View Post
    No, action junkies lay 3.5 when they think the fair price is 3.
    Left out an important comma.

  19. #19
    chipleader
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    I think NFL is hard to beat because of the conspiracy theory out there. I think the NFL is easier to fix.

  20. #20
    Pokerjoe
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    They myth of NFL difficulty stems, really, merely from the prevalence of betting on it. In the US, anyway. In the rest of the world they talk the same way about EPL, but here, if you get a bunch of average (losing) sportsbettors together, the few who bet MLB (and lose) will say MLB is tough, and the few who bet NBA (and lose) will say NBA is tough, etc.

    Then when you ask them if the NFL is tough they'll ALL say, "oh, yeah, NFL is tough!" because, like they do in all other sports, when they bet NFL, they lose. But unlike the other sports, they all bet the NFL.

    Then they'll walk away from that conversation saying, "A few guys said MLB is tough, so I guess it must be a little tough, and a few said NBA, too, so that must be a little tough, but man, everybody said the NFL is tough so it must be really tough!"

    Not realizing that more people say the NFL is tough because more people bet it. People aren't losing because more people bet it, more people are losing because they lose at whatever they bet, and they mostly bet NFL.

    I have make this more confusing, sorry. But I'm right, LOL.

    Anyway I'm just saying that it's a myth that the NFL is tougher. There's just a kind of a reverse survivor's bias going on.
    Last edited by Pokerjoe; 08-10-10 at 01:30 PM.

  21. #21
    DukeJohn
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    I spent a lot of time looking over the NFL and just never found an angle, but every year I look into it. Maybe I could build a model if I really, really had the time, but I just haven't. My sports are MLB, NHL, NBA, all have lots of games and I find them much, much easier to pay my bills with.

    Someday, I will really dive into the NFL and find out once and for all, can I beat the NFL year after year, tell then I will just have to sit out the seasons.


  22. #22
    donjuan
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pokerjoe View Post
    They myth of NFL difficulty stems, really, merely from the prevalence of betting on it. In the US, anyway. In the rest of the world they talk the same way about EPL, but here, if you get a bunch of average (losing) sportsbettors together, the few who bet MLB (and lose) will say MLB is tough, and the few who bet NBA (and lose) will say NBA is tough, etc.

    Then when you ask them if the NFL is tough they'll ALL say, "oh, yeah, NFL is tough!" because, like they do in all other sports, when they bet NFL, they lose. But unlike the other sports, they all bet the NFL.

    Then they'll walk away from that conversation saying, "A few guys said MLB is tough, so I guess it must be a little tough, and a few said NBA, too, so that must be a little tough, but man, everybody said the NFL is tough so it must be really tough!"

    Not realizing that more people say the NFL is tough because more people bet it. People aren't losing because more people bet it, more people are losing because they lose at whatever they bet, and they mostly bet NFL.

    I have make this more confusing, sorry. But I'm right, LOL.

    Anyway I'm just saying that it's a myth that the NFL is tougher. There's just a kind of a reverse survivor's bias going on.
    So you think increased limits are not correlated with increased efficiency?

  23. #23
    skrtelfan
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForgetWallStreet View Post
    Left out an important comma.
    No, money down!

  24. #24
    Dark Horse
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pokerjoe View Post
    They myth of NFL difficulty stems, really, merely from the prevalence of betting on it. In the US, anyway. In the rest of the world they talk the same way about EPL, but here, if you get a bunch of average (losing) sportsbettors together, the few who bet MLB (and lose) will say MLB is tough, and the few who bet NBA (and lose) will say NBA is tough, etc.

    Then when you ask them if the NFL is tough they'll ALL say, "oh, yeah, NFL is tough!" because, like they do in all other sports, when they bet NFL, they lose. But unlike the other sports, they all bet the NFL.

    Then they'll walk away from that conversation saying, "A few guys said MLB is tough, so I guess it must be a little tough, and a few said NBA, too, so that must be a little tough, but man, everybody said the NFL is tough so it must be really tough!"

    Not realizing that more people say the NFL is tough because more people bet it. People aren't losing because more people bet it, more people are losing because they lose at whatever they bet, and they mostly bet NFL.

    I have make this more confusing, sorry. But I'm right, LOL.

    Anyway I'm just saying that it's a myth that the NFL is tougher. There's just a kind of a reverse survivor's bias going on.
    Where do you get these ideas? Ask any pro what is harder to beat, and which lines are sharpest. MLB, NBA, or NFL.

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  25. #25
    Darkside Magick
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    Imo , here is the order of toughness to me!!!

    1. Mlb
    2. Nba
    3. Nfl

  26. #26
    do5000
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    if youre looking for trends, they are tougher to find with such a short season

  27. #27
    gman2114
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    sure very beatable. make your picks and bet the opposite.
    guarenteed to turn a 38% capper into a 62% capper.

  28. #28
    jetsjets1028
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    yes nhl can beat it

  29. #29
    Pokerjoe
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    Quote Originally Posted by donjuan View Post
    So you think increased limits are not correlated with increased efficiency?
    Absolutely somewhat correlated, of course, but not nearly as much as most people might think. A small market attracting only sharp action could have a more efficient closing line than a large market in which the sharper action is diluted; a sport which allows for number-crunching could have a more efficient line than one which doesn't. But most likely, the amount of square participation in a sport is little related to it's line efficiency.

    A market's efficiency isn't only dependent upon the number of participants, but also upon the quality of their participation. In the stock market, no one is buying a stock at 67 when it's broad market price is 65. Yet in sportsbetting, people do things like this constantly. Especially in NFL betting. Any bookie will tell you that there's very little correlation between bet size and win rate in NFL betting. The line can be 7 all over town, they can post 7.5 ... and get action on the favorite, from their biggest player, who they knew would bet the fave which is why they marked up the price to begin with. IOW words, mere action, including large action, isn't much correlated to efficiency. It's a peculiar market. This is a market, after all, where smarter money can be declined BECAUSE it's smart. People don't get kicked out of the real estate market or the stock market because they win at it, they get invited in.

    If the sharp action is 10% of the total action, or 50%, the line ends up basically just as efficient. Non-sharp action doesn't increase the efficiency, because it doesn't much affect the line.

    Or put it this way: in roulette, say, the line is perfectly efficient, if you want to put it that way, because it's perfectly known. The amount of action a wheel generates doesn't impact this efficiency.

    Limits are higher in NFL betting because interest is, and the house can balance large action more easily if it wants, AND because the sport attracts so much spectacularly dumb betting (against which the book can gamble, if it wants). But this doesn't lead to much more efficient lines.

  30. #30
    Pokerjoe
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Horse View Post
    Where do you get these ideas? Ask any pro what is harder to beat, and which lines are sharpest. MLB, NBA, or NFL.
    You're confused.

    There's a difference between the perception of difficulty and the reason for difficulty.

    The public, square perception of the NFL's difficulty stems from the fact that more people lose at it, which stems from the fact that more people gamble at it, and not from it's actual difficulty. If you turn sportsbetting into roulette--and most players do--"line efficiency" becomes meaningless, "difficulty" becomes meaningless, and so on. DUCY? No?

    Put 100 sportsbettors in a room. Ask them to raise their hands if the NBA is tough. Maybe 10 do, because THAT'S HOW MANY BET ON IT. Do the same with MLB, NHL, etc. Get about the same results.

    Then ask that crowd if the NFL is tough, and because they all bet it, THEY'LL ALL RAISE THEIR HANDS, and laughingly agree that the NFL must be the toughest because THEY ALL RAISED THEIR HANDS.

    Understand? Their perception of the sport's difficulty has nothing to do with the sport's difficulty. Even though the same crowd would get the same losing results in the other sports as they do in NFL betting, because they don't bet the other sports, they don't perceive them as tough. They basically don't percieve them at all.

    I can't spell it out more simply. For me, /thread.
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  31. #31
    pro-style
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pokerjoe View Post
    Limits are higher in NFL betting because interest is, and the house can balance large action more easily if it wants, AND because the sport attracts so much spectacularly dumb betting (against which the book can gamble, if it wants). But this doesn't lead to much more efficient lines.
    This

  32. #32
    BetterBizness
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    Great Great reply Joe... Very Thought Filled

  33. #33
    Sawyer
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    Of course, NFL is beatable (Example: Fezzik) but it's hard to beat. It's also Vegas' moneymaker. Other sports are easier to cap in my opinion since there's too many X factors, unpredictable events in football.

    Why mess with football? They play only once a week, basketball&hockey are offering much more betting opportunities..

  34. #34
    Poogs
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    What joe said. EVERYONE bets the nfl. Even my mom throws 50 bucks "on the guys with the gold uniforms" now and then. (She actually faded the pats last year and ended up positive.)

    I do think there is a counter-point though. With so much action on the nfl, a lot of books/locals will offer a ton of props and direvitives to attract action. I didn't bet these last year but I would imagine there are some profitable spots out there.

  35. #35
    HedgeHog
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    With Matchbook, all major sports are beatable.

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