It’s officially time to review our 19 brave entries into SportsChump’s first ever NFL Over/Under contest. Not a bad turnout if I do say so myself. Best of luck, gentlemen. Feel free to bookmark this page and check in every so often to monitor your progress. I plan on reviewing the season (and our picks) periodically to see who stands the best shot at SportsChump stardom.
Regarding our pool-wide picks, I can’t say there was too much that surprised me, however, with a significant enough random sample, there were considerably more UNDER picks (102) than OVER picks (88), which tells me either we think there are more bad NFL teams than good or we’re just a bunch of haters.
Here’s what else stood out from this year’s entries. If this information can, in any way, help you win money with your NFL wagering, please don’t forget to send me a thank you card.
Least touched team: Carolina Panthers
Only one person, the daring Hanahan, took a stab, either over or under, on Carolina, taking them under 4.5 wins. Everyone else stayed away entirely. I guess it looks like nobody’s really sure what Cam Newton can do after all. However, after passing for over 850 yards in Weeks One and Two, the rookie only needs 11 more seasons to pass Brett Favre’s record for career passing yards.
Most convinced to be horrible: Miami Dolphins
Not too many fans are on the Chad Henne bandwagon these days. In fact, if his momma were in this pool, she might have bet Miami under just to fit in. Not a single person picked the Fish to finish over 8 wins yet thirteen of us, including yours truly, picked them to lose that many. As a friend told me before the season started “The Dolphins have to play the Pats and Jets twice, all four of which they’ll lose. That means they’ll have to win 8 out of their remaining 12 games. Ain’t happenin’.” Can’t say I disagree.
Teams that saw the most action
1 – The aforementioned Dolphins – 13 picks
2 – Tennessee Titans – 9 picks
Apparently, not many of us were impressed with Matt Hasselbeck replacing Vince Young. Eight of us picked Tennessee to win under seven games. Only one of us, Dwindy, picked them to win over that amount. Keep in mind, this Titans team has won eight or more games in four of their last five seasons and that’s playing in the same division as a healthy Peyton Manning. Of course, 2010 was not one of those seasons.
3 – Colts, Patriots, Lions – 8 picks each
Surprisingly, more of us picked Indianapolis to finish over ten wins rather than under, although most of those picks were submitted between Peyton Manning’s first and second neck surgeries. Kerry Collins appreciates your support. Seven out of the eight of us who picked New England took them over 11.5. After a 2-0 start, that’s looking like a smart play. The Suh-led Lions have been a trendy pick and, after beating the Bucs and Chiefs in Weeks One and Two, they look like they’re well on their way to being a better than .500 team. Five out of the eight of us who picked Detroit had them over.
Most over selections
1 – New England Patriots – 7 picks
Our love affair with the New England Patriots continues… for good reason. Bill Belichick’s still their coach and Tom Brady’s still their quarterback. The win totals for New England and Green Bay topped Vegas’ projections this season with 11.5 victories, yet for some reason, even though the Packers are last year’s Super Bowl champs, more of us are confident the Pats will have a better regular season. Meanwhile, only Drew took the Packers over that very same number. After watching both Green Bay and New England early on, these two seem destined for the playoffs… and probably the over.
2 – San Diego Chargers/ Atlanta Falcons – 6 picks each
Like Detroit, the Chargers and Falcons were also both trendy over picks. The Chargers fell short last season, as they usually do, but most feel, in a weak AFC West, this is the year they rattle off a healthy amount of wins. Similarly, prognosticators are still waiting for Matty Ice and the Falcons to take that next step as well.
3 – Broncos, Lions, Colts, Eagles – 5 picks each
I wouldn’t touch the Denver melodrama with a ten-foot pole. Will Orton start? Will Tebow start? And who’s buying up all those billboards? While 5.5 wins is a low number for a team that perennially wins more than that, for anyone to say with any certainty that Denver will be competitive this season is crazy. Could Kyle Orton finally prove without a doubt he’s the number one starter? Sure. Could the Broncos end up starting Brady Quinn? Uh… yeah. Then there’s the NFL’s 2011 Dream Team or so they’ve been dubbed. With all the talent Philadelphia added to its roster this off-season, most thought it might take the Eagles a while to gel. It didn’t look that way in Week One against St. Louis.
Most under selections
1 – Dolphins -13 picks
Why pile on the Dolphins any more than we already have? Let’s just say if the Dolphins make the playoffs, all of us will be surprised.
2- Titans – 8 picks
Unfortunately for Titans fans, Frank Wycheck and Kevin Dyson are not walking through that door any time soon. However, they did take care of Baltimore in Week Two.
3 – 49ers – 6 picks
Brand new head coach. Same old starting quarterback. Eight wins might be tough to come by in the City by the Bay, or at least six of us seem to think so.
Teams nobody picked over
Dolphins – 0 overs, 13 unders
49ers – 0 overs, 6 unders
Bears – 0 overs, 4 unders
Bills – 0 overs, 3 unders
Panthers – 0 overs, 1 under
We’ve already touched on the Panthers, Dolphins and Niners so let’s just head on to the Bills and Bears, shall we? I stayed away from the Bills entirely In fact, most of us did, with only three of us choosing them under. This just in… they’re 2-0!!! But when’s the last time someone other than a disillusioned Bills fan actually took them over for the season? Probably not since the days of Jim Kelly and Thurman Thomas. I’m actually surprised nobody took at shot at Chicago over. Probably the Jay Cutler factor, but didn’t this team go 11-5 last year, make the playoffs and win its division?
Teams nobody picked under
Eagles – 5 overs, 0 unders
Will Michael Vick do what Donovan McNabb couldn’t? Bring the Eagles a championship? Jeffrey Lurie is willing to wager $100 million that he will.
Rams – 4 overs, 0 unders
The Rams, like the Texans, Lions and Falcons are a trendy over pick. A young team who’s time has come to turn the corner, or so some of us think. The Rams have a promising young quarterback and play in one of the worst divisions in football. Four among us think that’s enough to win more than 7.5 games.
Most assigned ten confidence points
Texans – 3 times
With Manning still recovering from injury, most of us put our confidence points squarely on the shoulders of Matt Schaub, Andre Johnson and the Houston Texans to win the AFC South. All three of us who assigned them ten confidence points took them over their projected 8.5 wins.
Patriots, Falcons, Cardinals – Twice
We have our first dissension. While most of like the Pats to finish over, TopHatAl actually assigned them ten confidence points to finish UNDER 11.5… and they’re his favorite team! Apparently we also have some Kevin Kolb believers in the house as Yaz and Zbignu both like the Cardinals over seven. They must have discussed that at the poker table.