November 8, 2018 - by Team Rankings
We’re back for NFL Week 10 with six picks that need to be on your radar screen if you want to win your NFL pick’em contest or confidence pool. For a quick primer on value-driven picking in football pools, see our article on NFL pick’em pool strategy.
Through NFL Week 9, TeamRankings subscribers have already reported over 1,000 weekly prize wins in football pick’em pools, a win rate 200% higher than expected. And last season, 81% of subscribers won a season or weekly prize in a football pick’em contest. How? They used our Football Pick’em Pool Picks.
The six NFL Week 10 picks listed below stand out based on their win odds and pick popularity. Deciding which way you want to go on these games should be top of mind when you make your NFL Week 10 pick decisions.
Keep in mind that we are not saying you should make all of these picks. The best picks for your specific football pick’em pool depend on multiple factors, such as the number of entries in your pool; whether it uses confidence points; and whether it offers season prizes, weekly prizes, or both. Our Football Pick’em Picks product figures out the best pick strategy for you.
Note: Win odds and projected pick popularity data quoted below may change between publication time and kickoff time. If you want to see the latest numbers, our product updates multiple times per day with the latest information.
New England Patriots (at Tennessee)
The Patriots are 6.5-point favorites on the road against Tennessee. With the Patriots’ win odds around 72%, this week the public (currently at 73% on New England) isn’t wildly overrating the Patriots, like it often does. Usually a team that is favored by this much is more popular nationwide, but people may be worried about the injury status of tight end Rob Gronkowski and running back Sony Michel, both listed as questionable. Looking at this from the another direction, the Titans are not an ideal upset pick this week. Vegas has them at 29% win odds, but with 27% public pick popularity there’s only a 2% differential between win odds and nationwide popularity. Underdogs such as Carolina or the Giants have a better risk/reward profile.
Atlanta Falcons (at Cleveland)
The Falcons are 4-point favorites on the road against Cleveland. With Cleveland already managing two wins and a tie so far this season, the public may be a little more hesitant than they were last year in finding excuses to bet against them in pick’em or survivor pools. While our models have the Falcons’ win odds at just under 59%, Vegas is more optimistic about their chances, with Atlanta’s odds translating to about a 62% chance to win. In our view, Atlanta is already a favorite at a reasonable price, but if you side more with Vegas’ more optimistic view, the Falcons become an even more favorable Value Favorite with a 3.4% differential between win odds and pick popularity.
Los Angeles Chargers (at Oakland)
The Chargers are 10-point favorites on the road against the Raiders in Week 10. Based on the data we’ve seen, the popularity of the Raiders may vary quite a bit from pool to pool this week. A Raiders pick popularity of 28% (and 72% for the Chargers) may be a good baseline number to use if you don’t have good reason to suspect substantially different numbers from your competitors. Using these numbers, the Chargers (with 80% win odds according to Vegas) would be a solid value favorite with their win odds exceeding their nationwide pick popularity. Our models are slightly less optimistic on the Chargers, giving them 77% win odds, but that is still more than enough to be able to get bonus value if you pick likely winner Los Angeles.
New Orleans Saints (at Cincinnati)
The Saints, favored by 5.5 points on the road, are relatively unpopular with the public (60% pick popularity) given that Vegas has them at 69% win odds. The Bengals are coming off a bye week in Week 9 while the Saints had to play against a tough and previously undefeated Rams team last Sunday, which could partially explain why the Saints aren’t more popular. Our models are slightly more optimistic about the Saints’ chances here than Vegas, giving them win odds over 10% higher than their pick popularity. In almost any pick’em pool format, New Orleans is worth very strong consideration; it’s rare for there to be this much additional value for the favorite.
Indianapolis Colts (vs. Jacksonville)
The Colts, 3-point favorites at home over the Jaguars, have 58% win odds according to Vegas. While we have the Colts’ chances a shade lower, our model still has their winning chances above the 56% pick popularity that the Colts have right now. The Colts’ last two wins have come against the Raiders and Bills, arguably the two worst teams in the NFL, and the public may not want to give them much credit for those wins. On the other hand, even though Jacksonville has the same 3-5 record as Indianapolis, perhaps your pool opponents may feel like the Jags still have a chance to return to their superior form from last year. Whatever the reason, although the amount of value for the favorite in this game is less than in the Saints-Bengals game, even a small positive differential is a rare find. The Colts look like the better play in most pool formats.
Carolina Panthers (at Pittsburgh)
In Week 10, all of the games have a point spread of at least 3 points, so going with even the smallest underdogs this week will involve more risk than in other weeks where you could pick a toss up or smaller underdog. For weekly pools that reward more risk-taking, one of the better candidates for a value gamble this week is Carolina, a 4-point underdog on the road at Pittsburgh. Only 14% of the public has picked the Panthers, so you will have the opportunity to gain ground on many of your competitors if Carolina pulls off the upset. While there are a couple less risky underdogs this week such as Jacksonville and Washington, those teams have a smaller differential between win odds and public popularity; Jacksonville’s risk/reward profile as an upset pick looks especially poor.
Maybe all of them, maybe just some of them. We’re not dodging the question — the reality is that it takes a lot of math to get to the right answer.
We built our Football Pool Picks product to do all the number crunching for you, and figure out when it makes the most sense for you to go with the favorite vs. the underdog. You answer a few quick questions about your pool, and it will customize Week 10 pick recommendations to give you the biggest edge.
Here’s how it works:
The result? In our postseason survey last year, 81% of our subscribers reported winning a weekly or a season prize in a football pick’em contest, and over the long term our customers are winning pools at rates that blow away expectations.
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