NFL Machine Learning Picks - Week 11

Huuuge week last week. Official picks covered 66% plus TNF, SNF, and MNF all covered as discussed in the podcast. The models are getting some juicy data and winning is now more dependent on keeping track of injuries and ensuring we're not going with a back up QB or a depleted offense or defense.

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Free pick of the week!

Pittsburgh +3
Lock this up. We've gone 7-1 ATS this season on Thursday Night Football. James Conner practiced full on Tuesday which would be a huge plus. The Steelers defense is #4 in DVOA and well balanced in pass (4) and rush (11). Mayfield is in a close second place to the most INT. Mike Tomlin likes primetime and they are 6-2 ATS in last 8 games and one of those losses was against the Patriots. Not enough points against this hyped up Browns team who just came off a win. 

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NFL Machine Learning Picks - Week 10

Not a great week last week, the black cat Monday night saved us from total disaster. As the season continues more relevant data is fed and the accuracy increases. This week should be good based on what we've learned from last week. A couple of quick learnings:

1. Need to adjust the weight on strength of schedule. New England lost because they hadn't seen an offense like that in any of the previous games

2. No more Mexico or London game bets, period. 

This week we have some obvious picks and others that are a game time decision depending on injury reports. 

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Free pick of the week!

Cincinnati +10 
A rookie QB getting his shot at becoming a starting QB for the NFL! You understand my models aren't great when there is a key player missing, but in this case we can assume this is an upgrade from Dalton who has thrown more interceptions than everyone but Mayfield. Also, home dogs by more than 7 coming off a bye are 69% (24 games) against the spread. Baltimore's offense was pretty impressive last game, but that also makes me think there's a recency bias. A divisional game like this should be closer, give me the home dog!

Arizona +4.5 correct NFL point spread pick
A Kyler Murray is looking better every week. All my models are pointing at an upset here with good confidence of 59% in this situation. Tampa has been on the road for the last 5 games which could have depleted them. 

Minnesota +3 correct NFL point spread pick
Dallas on short rest after an ugly win. The Giants were in that game the whole time until the black cat showed up. Dallas has one of the weakest strength of schedules and their defense isn't great agains the run. Dalvin Cook to do some damage here. All the Vikings need to do is bring a black cat.

Honorable mentions:

Oakland - models are mixed. Since 2000, homedogs by less than 3 in a divisional game are 59% ATS (55 games). Oakland has also one of the top 3 toughest schedules so far and their offense is 5 in DVOA! Can you believe that?

Here are the week 10 point spread machine learning predictions and their respective confidence on all NFL games this week. 

Game Vegas Line Estimate Diff Confidence
BALTIMORE @ CINCINNATI 10.0 8.9 -1.1 59.7
ARIZONA @ TAMPA BAY -4.5 1.0 5.5 59.4
MINNESOTA @ DALLAS -3.0 2.0 5.0 57.6
LA CHARGERS @ OAKLAND 1.0 -2.0 -3.0 55.6
SEATTLE @ SAN FRANCISCO -6.0 2.0 8.0 55.1
BUFFALO @ CLEVELAND -3.0 2.0 5.0 53.6
DETROIT @ CHICAGO -3.0 2.0 5.0 53.6
ATLANTA @ NEW ORLEANS -13.0 -8.0 5.0 50.3
CAROLINA @ GREEN BAY -5.0 1.0 6.0 47.4
LA RAMS @ PITTSBURGH 3.5 0.9 -2.6 39.7
NY GIANTS @ NY JETS 2.0 -3.0 -5.0 45.5
MIAMI @ INDIANAPOLIS -10.5 -13.6 -3.1 NA