NFL Futures 2012 - Win Totals
AccuScore’s NFL Season Forecast will be updated regularly starting June 1 through the final week of the season. Visit the NFL Futures Page regularly for updates.
Based on the current win totals betting line we have grouped the NFL teams into 3 classes --- 1) Solid Over Picks (teams at least 0.5 wins above the line); 2) Solid Under Picks (teams at least 0.7 wins below the line); and 3) Push.
There are 256 regular season games but if you add up all the projected Vegas Line wins you get 264. This is the Vegas Vig which typically guarantees that the sportsbook makes money. Because of this factor there are twice as many Solid Unders than Solid Overs.
SOLID OVER PICKS
There are two clear-cut factors that jump out at me looking over this list. Depending on your evaluation of these factors you may be encouraged to bet on the over or discouraged.
• Two of the Solid Over Picks are heavily reliant on older QBs (Peyton Manning in Denver, Carson Palmer in Oakland) being able to stay healthy and play well. AccuScore assumes health through 16 games but this is not necessarily a great assumption. In Oakland’s case you also have the health concerns with RB Darren McFadden.
•Two AFC East Teams, the Jets and Bills, are also appearing on the list. The AFC East plays the NFC West this season and it is not a coincidence that there are 3 NFC West teams appearing on the Solid Under picks. Clearly, AccuScore thinks the AFC East is a better division than the NFC West. The NFC West has been one of the weaker divisions for several seasons now. Outside of Tom Brady there really isn’t a proven great QB in either division. In simulations the AFC East defenses (upgraded Bills pass rush, solid Jets / Dolphins squads) are getting the edge over the work in process offenses in the NFC West.
SOLID UNDER PICKS
To account for the Vegas Vig we are classifying the solid under picks as teams with at least -.7 wins under the Vegas line, and not 0.5 like we are with wins. It is important to note that in many cases AccuScore’s under picks are not indicators that the teams are not as good as most think. In several cases it is a reflection of a tough schedule.
The Bears are on this list despite adding much needed depth at QB and RB and upgrading at the WR position. The NFC North has the Bears at 9.5 wins, Packers at 12.0 and Lions at 9.5. This is a ton of wins to have in one division. The Vikings are only at 6.0 wins and they are the team with the best RB (Adrian Peterson) in football who appears to be recovering very well from his ACL injury.
The Texans are heavy favorites to win the AFC South but their non-division schedule is extremely tough. The schedule includes the improved AFC East, the tough NFC North (see above) and AFC division winners (Baltimore, Denver). The only ‘easy’ wins are division match-ups vs Jacksonville and Indianapolis (who has the #1 pick Andrew Luck) and in the NFL no division match-up ends up being ‘easy’.
The rest of the teams on the list all have challenging schedules with especially tough division match-ups (Cincinnati, Giants, Eagles, Dolphins, Falcons) and/or non-division opponents (Rams, Cardinals). The Chiefs are the only team that does not have a bear of a schedule on the Under list. They have an 8.0 line which makes sense since they won 7 games despite major injuries at QB, RB, TE, Safety, etc. That said, in AccuScore simulations the Broncos, Chargers, and Raiders all should be better than they were last year if they all stay healthy which largely negates the gains that KC would hope for.
Half of the league (16) appear in the Push category including the Colts and Redskins who drafted #1 and #2. The Colts are getting over 3 more wins in Vegas and by AccuScore by adding Andrew Luck and the Redskins are only seeing just over +1 win with Robert Griffin III. The Colts have the weaker division which helps them get more of a boost from their first year QB. AccuScore and Vegas also similarly projected the impact of high draft picks Trent Richardson on the Browns and Matt Kalil on the Vikings.
Besides the teams that drafted #1 through #4, the Push list also includes a lot of the best 2011 Teams including the Packers, Lions, Ravens, Saints, Patriots, Steelers and 49ers.