2008 Week 2 NFL Picks

Before I give you this week's computer model picks, here are a couple of reasons we should wait at least until week 4 or 5 before using my picks:
  • Predictions follow team specific trends
  • Last year's data, although weighted less than this year's, has significant impact on results
  • Roster changes are not taken into account completely until week 6
Having said this, I have to get myself out of the whole. I am going to make a couple of picks this weeks for games where team rosters have not changed much AND the model finds a good opportunity in playing. Still, I encourage everyone to just follow them and take no action until week 5. These are:


Jacksonville -5.5incorrect point spread pick
The model is catching this game as an over-reaction of the market to last week's Buffalo's win. Buffalo's run over the Seahawks was unexpected, but is it that Buffalo is that good or that Seattle is overrated? The Jaguars had a rough week 1, but they have a solid team and are still favorites in their division. They play well at home and came out last year with a 3-2 ATS, but one was a 2-point win against Pittsburgh which they were favorites by 2.5. They lost against Miami in the pre-season, so if this is accounted for in this point spread it shouldn't be. The last time these two teams met was in November 25, 2007 when the Jaguars beat the Bills at home 36-14.

Pittsburgh -6incorrect point spread pick
Are the Steelers back to their Super Bowl shape? Maybe. Are the Browns over estimated this year? Could be. My statistical model is picking up this game, I think, because the Steelers have a good ATS record against the Browns and because the Browns are coming off a couple of losses, in their past games. The pick predicts Pittsburgh by at least 9 points, and historically when a home team is underdog by more than 6 points, 55% of the time in the past 3 years, they don't make the spread. The graph below is an interesting one. It shows Cleveland vs. Pittsburgh games for the past 7 years. Of 15 mathups, Cleveland has won 4 ATS (including the last one though). To read this, looking at the last game, you can see Pittsburgh was favorite by 9, but Cleveland cleared by 3 since the score was 31-28 Pitt.

Good luck!