- Dave Tuley, ESPN Insider
It finally happened. Tuley's Take has had back-to-back losing weeks. If you think I was surprised that it happened two weeks ago when favorites were just 8-7-1 against the spread, I was stunned that it happened again last week when underdogs were 10-5-1 ATS.
I found winners on only three of those 'dogs while passing on the others -- and added insult to injury when the Lions lost as my "Chalk Pick of the Week," as I wish I had landed on the Colts as an underdog. I was 3-3 ATS with 'dogs, which isn't good enough when laying 11 to win 10.
The back-to-back subpar weeks have dropped my overall winning percentage below 60 percent for the first time this season. I am still 50-31 (61.7 percent) with underdogs and 11-11 with faves, so I'm going to drop the "Chalk Pick of the Week," as it's dragging down my winning percentage. Besides, I don't bet those myself since I'm allergic to chalk. Plus, making that concession hasn't kept people from saying "all you pick are 'dogs." If I'm going to get that criticism anyway, I might as well go all-in.
As I've stated before, just because I exclusively bet underdogs doesn't mean I bet every underdog. The biggest advantage that bettors have is their freedom to pick and choose which games to bet. I can be profitable betting all 'dogs; I just have to pick the right 'dogs. (If someone else feels comfortable backing only favorites, he or she can be profitable by playing the right favorites.)
We're at the quarter pole (a horse-racing term for the marker indicating there's a quarter-mile left in the race) with four games left in each team's 16-game schedule. We didn't do this column in Week 1, so I'm on a 16-week regular-season schedule too.
Good luck this week and the rest of the season.
Last week: 3-4 ATS | Year to date: 61-42 (59.2 percent) ATS
Note: Consensus pick percentages as of Friday afternoon.
Spread: Redskins minus-2.5
Public consensus pick: 52 percent picked Redskins
Public perception: The RG3 bandwagon continues to fill up, especially with the Redskins at 6-6, in the wild-card race and just a game behind the Giants in the NFC East. Just as important to bettors, the Skins are 8-4 against the spread. The Ravens are still popular with the public, which is the only reason the pick percentage isn't lopsided.
Each week, Vegas insider Dave Tuley breaks down the lines and offers NFL pick recommendations against the spread based on perceptions of public-versus-sharps betting trends. Here's the Week 14 action.