Welcome back to Upset Watch 2021.


For those of you new to Pickwatch, Upset Watch is my weekly column where we look at which teams are most likely to win and cover against the odds. Essentially, we’ll make you look smarter by getting the toughest picks right, and make you money as you go.


Last year we finished up by $2,149 and posted our third consecutive year of over $1,000 winnings. That’s because upsets pay out higher rewards than favorites, meaning that if you can get 1 or 2 a week, you can win big every time.


How do we do it? In two simple ways


Firstly, we use trend analysis to predict the likelihood of upsets occurring. For example, if there are an average of 9 underdog wins in week 2 over the last decade, why would you only pick 4 this season? These patterns are important, and knowing this data is a proven method of improving your chances of winning.

Second, we look at the form of both teams against teams with a similar profile to their upcoming opponents. That means if you’re looking at how the Chiefs will play against the Bucs in last year’s Super Bowl (which this column successfully predicted against the odds), then their win against the Jets is not relevant, whereas their performances against other teams and more recent form is very important.


This season’s Upset Watch will be the first to go into our Pro subscription package. Why? Because it’s a winner, and because tens of thousands of people a week are able to use it to their advantage. Put simply, it’s worth the $30 annual fee for Pro on it’s own, and that’s without the other benefits such as the team-by-team, game-by-game expert and fan stats.


Today’s article is our annual look at the best over/under bets. Just like our weekly picks, we’ll look at the data trends first, including why teams in one situation almost always fail to beat the over, despite being one of the public’s favorite bets every season. The 17 game season muddies the water a little, but for the most part, an over bet is still the same value, and an under bet only slightly diminished, depending on how close to the line a team is.




When I was researching this data, I looked at team situations. Have they changed coaches? Have they changed Quarterbacks? How many games have they won in recent years? How well do losing teams bounce back when their second year QB's settle in?

We calculated the average games added or dropped in all of these situations, and added it to 2021's teams that fit those scenarios to come up with 7 essential bets for the upcoming season.


And I had one particular group in mind: Rookie Quarterbacks...

Rookie QBs

Rookies are our hope. When your team drafts a rookie QB, it’s the sign that things will change, and invariably this is true. Often, teams go from zero to… well, not quite zero in a relatively short space of time, but do they do it quickly enough to beat the over?