Winning on the road is tough in the NFL, right? That's what we hear from announcers each and every week.
Consider this: Through five weeks of NFL football in 2021, road teams have won 41 games. If that statistic doesn’t reach out and grab you, here’s another one: Home teams have won only 39 games.
That’s right. Through 80 NFL games played in this 2021 season, road teams have won more often than home teams. Though for years, home field advantage was considered to be worth somewhere between 2.5 and 3 points in the NFL, the fan-depleted 2020 season revealed little, if any, difference between home and road teams.
That we’re almost to Halloween and the trend is continuing into 2021 suggests something very real is changing about the way the league works. In fact, road teams are 45-35 against the spread so far this year!
That’s something bettors and ATS pickers should take into account when looking at this week’s slate of HUGE road favorites:
Green Bay Packers -5.5 at Chicago Bears
Los Angeles Rams -10 at New York Giants
Kansas City Chiefs -6.5 at Washington Football Team
Buffalo Bills -5.5 at Tennessee Titans
If all these lines are building in a home-field advantage that doesn’t really exist, you’re getting 2.5 points worth of free value when you lay the points.
If the true expected difference between the Titans and Bills on a neutral field is eight points, but the line is -5.5, laying that 5.5 is a no-brainer!
Of course, this is the NFL. Any given game can end any conceivable way on any given Sunday, and if teams always performed to their expected values then nobody would bother picking games because we’d all already know the results. But if current trends hold, oddsmakers will have to start changing the assumptions they make when they make odds.