Having a system in place when handicapping a given week of football can help you sort out the relevant information and save you time. On average there are approximately 75 games a week. That is a lot of information to process. So how should you go about handicapping the week?
First, I like to print out all of the matchups so I can have them in front of me. I look at the opening line and study the movement to determine if it’s telling me something. I can get an indication of how the smart money and public are viewing a game. Remember, if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. Next, I’ll perform my fundamental analysis. I write down YPC, YPA and 3rd down for both offense and defense. Then I look at turnovers, penalties, red zone performance and the kicking game. I focus on defense because it’s defense that cashes tickets over the long term. After this, I write down notes pertaining to the game, like injuries, byes, motivation, letdowns, look-aheads; basically any one-time event affecting a game. I always try to make a case for the underdog. The odds-makers know the public bets favorites and overs, as well as the national brands.
Putting it all together, I get:
• NFL: 70% fundamental and 30% situational
• NCAAF: 45% fundamental and 55% situational
The difference is that professionals block out emotions better than 18-20 year old kids and the rosters are more stable
I hope this helps you analyze games and puts more money in the bankroll