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Over bettors could have saved themselves a lot of grief on Monday night by checking the forecast.
The weather was ugly on Monday night in Buffalo for the Buffalo Bills-New England Patriots game. Winds gusted at about 50 miles an hour. It made it impossible to run an offense. The Patriots attempted just three passes, the fewest in a game since 1974. And they won.
It's December, and that means glancing at the weather forecast for places like Green Bay, Chicago, Cleveland and Buffalo before placing a bet. Yahoo Fantasy has a weather page for NFL games that's an easy bookmark.
For Monday night, there were some easy cashes playing the weather angle. The over/under opened at 44.5 and dipped to 40 by kickoff as videos of blowing snow were posted on Twitter. There was still value at the closing number. The teams scored 24.
BetMGM offers a ton of player props and practically anything you bet that was an under for either passing game hit. Patriots quarterback Mac Jones had 19 yards passing, and his over/under on Sunday night was 202.5 (it came down Monday, but obviously still had value). Josh Allen's over/under was higher and he had 145 passing yards, easily cashing the under. Not many receiver overs hit either.
It doesn't always work this well, but the one factor that usually pays off is paying attention to the wind. Players will say that cold and snow aren't ideal but those conditions are manageable. High winds are not. If you see gusts like we saw in Buffalo on Monday night, grab those unders early.
Some teams are drawing dead
Underdog bettors have to beware this time of year. Some teams are just playing out the string, or so beat up that they can't compete.
The Detroit Lions were battling hard for their first win and got it, covering and winning against the Minnesota Vikings. But some of the other worst teams in the NFL came nowhere close to covering in Week 13. The Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, Chicago Bears, New York Giants and New York Jets all failed to cover and none of them came particularly close.
There's nothing left for those teams to play for. There will be an inspired effort here and there from those awful teams, but they'll be hard to predict. Just be careful when taking those teams and the points the rest of the way.
Patriots are AFC's best team against the spread
New England, after covering as 3-point underdogs on Monday night, are the AFC's best team against the spread. They're 9-4, according to Covers.com. The only other AFC team that is three games over .500 against the spread is the Indianapolis Colts. They're 8-5.
The Patriots have been a covering machine. They've won seven in a row straight up and against the spread as well. It would have been eight, but they gave up an overtime touchdown as 3.5-point favorites against the Dallas Cowboys on Oct. 17. That was a bad beat for Patriots bettors. There haven't been any losses at all since then.