NFL Betting Trends to Apply to Your Week 4 Picks

Jason Lake

Monday, September 22, 2014 5:10 PM GMT

Monday, Sep. 22, 2014 5:10 PM GMT

The Green Bay Packers have yet to beat the football lines this season. But that could all change in Week 4 when the Packers play their second straight road game, with the Chicago Bears supplying the opposition.

Jason’s Record After Week 2: 4-7 ATS, 1-2-1 Totals

Profit: minus-8.8 units

 

For the third straight year, the Green Bay Packers have opened the season at 1-2. But at least the Packers managed to salvage an ATS win out of those slow starts in 2012 and 2013. This year? Bupkes. Green Bay is 0-2-1 ATS after three games; the latest letdown was Sunday’s 19-7 loss to the Detroit Lions (–1 at home), with the Packers managing just 223 yards of total offense.

Fear not, Cheeseheads. We have good news, and it’s in the form of this week’s feature NFL betting trend: Since 2002, teams playing the second of back-to-back road games were 376-287 ATS (56.7 percent) going into the new season. You can add 1-1 ATS to that after Week 2 of the 2014 campaign; the Jacksonville Jaguars (+5) failed in Washington, but the New England Patriots (–3.5) got the job done in Minneapolis. Which side of the coin will the Packers fall on this Sunday (1:00 p.m. ET, FOX) when they visit the Chicago Bears?

Check Out the Opening Odds for NFL Week 4!

Jars of Clay
The NFL lines say this should be a very close contest. The Bears opened as 1-point favorites at Soldier Field, one full day before their Monday Night Football date with the New York Jets. That’s another piece of good news for Green Bay; according to Walter Cherepinksy, underdogs coming off a loss in this situation are 182-115 ATS (61.3 percent) since 2002. But what happens if the Bears get drilled Monday night in New York, and the NFL odds flip for Week 4? Favorites coming off a loss are only 53-55 ATS.

You can imagine all those Packers fans turning into Jets fans for just one night. That whole Brett Favre thing? Fuhgeddaboudit. Of course, it shouldn’t make any difference to how Green Bay and Chicago perform if the Packers switch from underdogs to favorites. But Monday’s results could make a difference, if the Jets win big, and/or if Jay Cutler (99.7 passer rating) gets injured again.

Did somebody say “injured again”? LB Clay Matthews is a question mark for Sunday’s contest after he tweaked his groin in the fourth quarter against the Lions. Matthews told reporters after the game that he didn’t feel too bad, but wasn’t certain what his timetable would be – this is the first groin injury of his career. Usually, it’s his hamstrings. Matthews also missed five games and the playoffs last year with a broken thumb.

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The Tennessee Waltz
The Packers aren’t the only team looking to capitalize on this week’s football betting trend. The Tennessee Titans will be at The Luke this Sunday (1:00 p.m. ET, CBS) to take on the Indianapolis Colts, with the Colts opening as 7.5-point favorites (+110) at 5Dimes. Tennessee is coming off a disappointing 33-7 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals (–6.5) at Paul Brown Stadium; after a strong season opener, the Titans are now threatening to unravel at 1-2 SU and ATS.

If you were only going to bet on one of these two games with you NFL picks, the trends say you might want to go with Green Bay. Mike McCarthy has a personal record of 5-1 ATS in this situation since taking over as Packers head coach in 2006. Ken Whisenhunt, on the other hand, was 0-3 ATS in the second of back-to-back road games during his tenure as coach of the Arizona Cardinals. Whisenhunt also has some work to do with the Titans after they got steamrolled in Cincinnati. Jake Locker (85.4 passer rating) struggled in each of the last two games, and if he doesn’t get things sorted out soon, we might see the beginning of the Charlie Whitehurst Era. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

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