Sunday, January 18, 2015

2:05pm CST
Seattle if -5 or better, OR, Green Bay if +9 or better NB

5:40pm CST
New England if -3 or better; Indy if +7 or better. B, L

Week: 0-1
Overall: 35-25-2 (59.7% W & P)

The idea is to find an edge over the theoretical 50-50 betting line. This is an easier way of expressing it. When choosing the game, simply refer to the instructions.

I’m expecting fivethirtyeight to adjust their algorithm over the summer. Because of game importance – or lack thereof – like in the regular-season New England-Buffalo matchup that New England lost by conserving players since they already had clinched. Underline emphasis mine:

A solution to this kind of quandary might be to tweak the Elo K-factor for each game using a leverage index-style metric, like the “swing” number FiveThirtyEight contributor Mike Beuoy uses to measure the playoff implications of a given matchup. Such a mechanic would elegantly put more emphasis on games in which teams had a great deal on the line, while simultaneously downplaying the importance of relatively meaningless games like Sunday’s Patriots-Bills tilt. Until then, however, Elo can only use the information it’s given, and that means we’re probably undervaluing the Patriots’ Super Bowl chances come after season end.

Win and push rate to date is just over 60.6%, if my math is correct – feel free to double check anything.

I consider these laws to be uncapitalistic (is that a word?), but the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) has nominated Michigan, New Jersey, Arizona, and Texas as contenders for their first annual Luddite Awards.

The states, many of which already had laws on the books prohibiting manufacturers fro selling direct to consumers, felt it necessary to one step further and re-up their commitment to squelching free enterprise by passing more laws to prohibit sales direct, basically just making sure that Tesla is unable to find any loopholes in their decades-old laws.

There are other nominees as well, such as the National Rifle Association for the stance on smart guns, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s opposition to Health IT. Cast your vote on the most Luddite here.

Saturday, January 3, 2015
Arizona +6.5 (Elo -.5) at Carolina 3:35pm L
Bet Pitt if -1.5 or better; bet Baltimore if +6.5 or better NB
Sunday, January 4, 2015
Bet Indy if pickem or plus; bet Cincinnati if +5 or better NB
Bet Dallas if -3 or better; bet Detroit if +8 or better NB



27. December 2014 · Write a comment · Categories: Sports · Tags: ,

Dallas -5.5 (Elo -10) at Washington, 12pm W
New York Jets at Miami -6 (Elo -9) 12pm
Buffalo at New England -5 (Elo -11.5) 12pm L
Philadelphia +3 (Elo +.5) at New York Giants 12pm
Arizona +6 (Elo Pickem) at San Francisco 3:25pm W
Detroit +7.5 (Elo +4.5) at Green Bay 3:25pm L



I’m not betting anything with a spread between Elo and Vegas less than 2.5 this week.

Sunday, December 21, 2014
Minnesota +7 (Elo +4.5) at Miami, 12pm (Do not bet Minnesota less than +7)
Detroit at Chicago +9.5 (Elo +4) 12pm (Do not bet Chicago less than +6.5) W
Cleveland at Carolina -3.5 (Elo -6) 12pm (Do not bet Carolina more than -3.5)
Green Bay at Tampa Bay +11.5 (Elo +8.5) 12pm (Do not bet Tampa Bay less than +11) L
Seattle at Arizona +8.5 (Elo +1.5) 7:30pm (Do not bet Arizona less than +4) L

Week: 1-2-0

Overall: 31-20-2

As you can see, I’m betting 2.5 or greater spreads this week.

Nate Silver is a nerd’s nerd. A number-cruncher extraordinaire.

This year, on his blog, he began an Elo analysis of the teams, and I began to look for values in the spread difference between his projections and the Vegas odds. I started this in the first week, and though I have slightly changed my picks during this time, my method is 30-18-2 for the year as of today. Yes, you will have to take my word for it – I did not anticipate that I would publicly post this info until recently, but if you go back, you can roughly verify my numbers.

I base the picks favoring Elo. In other words, I assume that Elo is correct and I look for value on the Vegas side, so if Elo indicates the Bears +3 and Vegas says +9, I pick the Bears, or if the Bears are -3 and Elo says they should be -9, I pick the Bears.

What I’ve discovered is that point differences of 2.5 – 3.5, favoring the Elo side produces the best results. Nate (can I call you Nate?) will tell you these results are within “luck”, but I’m not sure. Its working now. Interestingly, higher differences – +5 or more – seem to taper off on win percentage, but I still go with them. For the past few weeks, I have dropped anything less than 3 point differences, but I think I am going to start adding the 2.5 differences back in.

Bear (no pun intended) in mind that the ratings DO NOT take into account injured quarterbacks or other extenuating circumstances. For one or two weeks, I pulled some picks where the quarterback was out. However, it appears to depend on the team, and the value. So while Arizona can seemingly overcome key player outages, other teams cannot. Also, it is possible that the quarterback could be out on the “other” side. Statistically, it doesn’t seem to matter much, so I have decided to ignore injuries to key players to keep it simple. publishes their Elo ratings no later than Thursday evening. Here is where their Elo ratings are explained.