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THE NFL PLAYOFFS ARE HERE - NOW WHAT?
Wagering on the NFL had evolved into by far the most popular sport for bettors through the years and the playoffs provide the ultimate frenzy in activity. Now that hopefully you have survived the regular season with bank account and marriage still intact I'd like to share some thoughts regarding handicapping the playoffs because trust me on this, it's a different animal guys.
First of all take a hard look at momentum. Some teams are coasting in and have not engaged in a game of significant importance for awhile all the while others have been scrapping and clawing their way into the big party. Consider byes also fellas, a bye week can certainly have it's distinct advantages, first and foremost being the opportunity for injured players to have some much needed healing time and also the coaching staff is given extra time for game preparation and the value of that cannot be overstated.
However, if a team basically coasted awhile and also has a bye you can see where that can be a double whammy. It is very difficult, no matter what the players and coach's say to the media, to just hit a button and turn the emotion back on. Football, more than any other team sport is played with raw emotion and momentum and once that is lost brother, it is just not easy at all to regain.
I would also take a close look at the scheduling and how it affects the teams coming into the first round. Were they on the road the last regular season game and now facing a long road trip on short rest. Do you not think that can have an effect on team preparation? I would also take a deep look into the head coach and staff's, have they been in a playoff environment before and how did they perform? To patrol the sideline during the regular season is not quite the same as when the intensity gears up during these contests.
Another thing I would like you to stay on top of are the total plays, you can often find incredible value out there with the totals during the playoffs. The public just loves to bet the over as a rule and the oddsmakers all know that so they have already taken that into consideration when making their numbers, when you factor in that the squares who rarely bet during the regular season tend to get involved during the playoffs and we all know they are going to get on the overs if past history holds up, there you go guys, the books are going to adjust those totals accordingly and that can lead to some juicy totals for the sharps to take advantage of.
I suspect you will see more turbulent movement in the totals during the playoffs than you saw all season long up to now. And finally, a word to the wise. However tempting, don't bet huge on every side and total during the next few weeks. The chances of catching real value on every play are slim and that is the downfall of many a bettor this time of year, if it is on TV you want action. My suggestion is to keep those marginal games where you have no real feeling to a small amount, just enough to maintain your viewing enjoyment, but put your real bankroll into play only on those games where you have real confidence that you are on the right side. This can be a great time of the year for the football bettor, just stay disciplined in your approach and leave emotion at the door.
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