It’s in my DNA
I have loved sports and football since before my first memories. My parents living room cabinets are full of VHS tape videos archiving my brother and I’s childhood.
One of the classics from the archive is of my brother and I running around the living room in full football gear tackling each other as the Monday Night Football theme song blares in the background.
Toddler Bradley was doing his best to keep up with his older brother.
Being the younger brother and the youngest kid in the neighborhood gave me an intrinsic edge to keep up with the bigger and stronger kids in the pack.
I loved to compete whether it was at math flash cards, video games, youth leagues, or backyard games with the neighborhood gang.
Even in my youth, I could feel my stomach turning as the competition approached. I feared losing.
All I wanted to do whether it be basketball at the local YMCA or a Little League All-star game was win!
Sports were the outlet my parents steered their competitive child toward and I won’t complain. I can’t get enough of sports and I’m sure you feel the same way.
A Baseball Card Beginning
My mother introduced me to baseball cards in my youth as another outlet of my competitive and analytical personality. Mom’s always do know their children best.
While I loved playing sports as much as the next kid, I also loved building things. I was obsessed with LEGOs… as my mother still has most of my LEGO creations preserved to this day.
I also enjoyed drawing and coloring. My mother could tell I needed something more than just watching and playing sports.
Buying a box of baseball cards was a thrill. It was my earliest form of gambling!
The anticipation and thrill of opening a box of cards with the hope of pulling a 1 of 1 card or an autograph was second to none in my childhood.
The Thrill of Trading Cards
As the years of my youth passed, I slowly accumulated multiple binders full of baseball cards meticulously organized by team, brand, and players.
The best part of constructing my collection was trading cards with my brother, friends, and cousins. Trying to amass a collection of either Alex Rodriguez or possible players I perceived to be underrated.
Sleepover nights were filled with hours of haggling and dealing. I wish I could go back and study the negotiations as I’m sure we exhibited the endowment effect with our cards.
I can recall some nights spent in hours of negotiations only to make 1 small trade. However, the fun and memories made were in the journey to get to the one small deal.
I would like to believe I won the trades. I don’t have recollection of any significant deals but I would like to believe the market indicated I was a successful trader.
One afternoon before a card-trading/sleepover session with a cousin. I heard my aunt yell to him from inside the house, “make sure you don’t take any of your good cards with you.”
It’s not as if any of the cards we owned were autographed Babe Ruth or Mickey Mantle rookies and who knows what cards will be good today and bad tomorrow.
But even at a young age I’m sure my family could tell whatever game I played; I was going to play to win!
From the ages of 8 to about 16, my brother coordinated a full 162 game baseball league on Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64, and then PlayStation 2. We acted as the general manager/coach/and players for a team.
The league consisted of competing against the computer, 3 boy cousins, and one friend in the neighborhood. All who were the GM/coach/player of their team.
We would play one game every day on the PlayStation, just like the big leagues. We would trade players with each other and the computer in hopes of building a super team to win the World Series.
Winning the World Series for my brother and I consisted of going outside and dousing each other with shaken up cans of soda. It was the closest mom and dad would let us get to a champagne celebration.
In the fall, we would transition to football. Mike Vick was my guy. If you played with Mike Vick on Madden football in the early 2000’s you were gaming the game! I loved playing Madden more than baseball.
The peak of my Madden career came in 7th grade when my history teacher/28-year-old football coach overheard my friends and I talking about Madden in class. He insisted he could embarrass us on Madden.
He told us if the class finished all the necessary review material before the end of the week, we would be allowed to have a free day. During that free day we were given permission to play a Madden tournament in his class. Winner of the tournament played him.
The anxious churn in my stomach was in full effect. I was not going to lose. A week passed and I was preparing after school on Madden harder than my homework. All I could think was a public setting to compete against my peers and my teacher… It doesn’t get any better!
The Madden tournament day came and I ran the table on my classmates with ease. “21-skunking” in two of the three games thus earning a spot against my coach/teacher.
I don’t remember the exact details of the game against my teacher but I remember it being close going into the 4th quarter.
I sealed the victory with Mike Vick racing down the sideline for a touchdown to secure the win. I sat quietly with a smirk on my face as the teacher exclaimed, “This is BS” and stormed away from the television without congratulating the victor.
Fantasy Football Roots
As we grew into our junior high and high school years, my grandpa, a former high school baseball and football state champion coach, started a fantasy football league for our extended family. An 8-team league comprised of grandpa, uncles, and cousins. A league that has grown and stands today.
These early years of sports gambling introduced me to closely following the NFL and my #1 overall pick and favorite player of all time, LaDainian Tomlinson.
Watching and studying the NFL became a shared bond among my family and friends. One of my favorite memories is my grandpa taking my brother and I to a post church Sunday breakfast at Waffle House to discuss fantasy football.
We would sit at the counter and talk last minute lineup strategy as waffle machines beeped and bacon grease cracked in the background.
Time has changed things since my early adulthood. My grandpa is no longer with us and I am unbale to gather with friends to talk football on a regular basis. However, my competitive passion for the sport has not faded.
The Competitor Lives on
I played Division 1 baseball in college while studying finance and economics. My competitive personality drove me to achieve in both the classroom and on the field.
My senior season I was named 1st Team All Southland Conference at 1st base and All-Academic Southland Conference. I graduated from Texas A&M Corpus Christi with a double major in Finance and Economics. Three years later, I obtained my MBA.
My current body of work is in finance as an administrator. My work day consists of excel spreadsheets, forecasting, project management, and communicating with fellow coworkers through various mediums.
I love how I can apply my education not only to work but to sports betting. My numerical finance knowledge allows me to appreciate the statistical aspect of the players and teams.
While the economics aspect allows me to understand market behaviors and inefficiencies in the sports betting economy.
I spend countless hours researching the NFL and applying skills I have learned in sports, school, and my job to my sports betting career.
My research into the NFL sports betting ecosystem has brought me to a couple conclusions.
- It is difficult to win long term
- When betting the NFL, the teaser bet should be your friend
The majority of pundits on TV and the internet are picking games straight up or against the spread. If you enjoy making wagers this way, there is absolutely nothing wrong with it. Have fun!
However, if you are betting to make a profit, winning 56% of your bets in the NFL against the spread is a hard task to accomplish.
The NFL market is efficient and it’s hard to consistently win games against the spread. You will most likely go 50/50 or worse for the season and lose money.
Throughout the season I will give my opinion of plays I am betting against the spread but the majority of the wagers I will make are teaser bets.
I will explain why this is the case.
In a teaser bet you are modifying the point spread in your teams favor by 6, 6.5, or 7 points.
6-point teaser example: Bills @ Patriots (-7.5)
You can tease the Patriots from -7.5 down to -1.5 or the Bills from +7.5 up to +12.5.
If you back the Patriots, the Patriots must win by 2 points or more for you to win the bet. If you bet on the Bills, the Bills can lose by up 12 points and you will still win.
Make sure you check your sportsbook house rules when it comes to a push on a teaser. Some books will count a push as a loss.
Seems like a no brainer bet right? What’s the catch?
The trick to the teaser is you must pair and win two games with modified point spreads in order to win the bet. If one leg loses, the whole bet loses.
The vigorish (vig) and payout will vary depending on how many teams are in the teaser and how many points you are choosing to modify the spread by.
Teaser vigs have increased over the years as the books are starting to realize the teaser bet can be a profitable long-term wager.
The Math of a Teaser
From 2000 to 2011 a single 6 point teaser leg has beaten the teaser spread 68.28% of the time and a 7 point teaser leg has won 71.31% of the time.
How do you know what probability is necessary to be profitable?
We can calculate our necessary break even point for a teaser bet by diving risk by return. This will give use the necessary percent of time we need a teaser leg to win.
Since we have two events that must both win to achieve the necessary outcome, we need to take the square root of the necessary win percentage against a (-110) vigorish to see what our break even point for each leg will need to be.
Hopefully you use a book that offers (-110) vigorish for a 6-point teaser.
(-110) Vig Example:
Risk $110 to win $100.
Initial cost of the ticket is $110.
Potential return = initial cost+potential winnings = $210.
So we need to win a 6 point teaser leg 72.37% of the time to break even when paying a -110 vig to make the bet.
But wait! I just said the 6-point teaser leg only wins 68.28% of the time over a sample size of 11 years. 68.28% is less than 72.37%!?!
Nobody said It was easy… time for some strategy!
Finding initial value in a game’s spread and then gaining added value through key numbers is the gameplan I institute. As you follow my picks throughout the year, I want you learn how to make the teaser a staple in your betting arsenal.
Why We Bet Teasers
Teaser bets are offered for both sides and totals in football and basketball. However, the most effective way to use a teaser is on NFL sides.
On average from 2003-2015, 56.65% of NFL games end with the final score decided by 7 or less points. This overall number jumps to 70.15% if you move up to 10 points or less as your settle figure.
If you are able to find two or more teams a week in which you believe there is existing value and can be manipulated by a teaser through the key numbers of 3, 7, or 10 you should play a teaser bet. Secondary key numbers to take into account when teasing are 6,4, and 14.
The previously mentioned 6-point teaser leg winning 68.28% and 7-point teaser leg winning 71.31% is blindly playing all sides offered no matter the number. These statistics do not take into account a person strategically picking games that are only moving through key numbers.
If we can find at least two games in which we perceive there to be initial value in the games spread and then tease those games through at least 2 keys numbers we should be in for a winning season.
3 Rules for NFL Teasers
- Shop around to find the best line. Different books offer different lines. A half point can be the difference between the win and a loss.
- Find a game in which there is value in the line. Often the earlier in the week the better.
- Make sure you are able to tease through at least 2 major key numbers. (3&7) (7&10) (10&14)
I hope you enjoyed getting to know the person behind the picks.
Please share my website with friends and family as I want to offer my opinions and research with others who can find value in it. I love playing fantasy football and I love betting on NFL football games.
I want you to check here as a reference every week to help you make an informed decision on your NFL wagers and fantasy football roster construction.
If you leave my site with a little more knowledge about your NFL picks or fantasy lineup, I have accomplished my goal.
I would love to hear from you in an email with your take on a game or a fantasy football player.
I want us to have a fun and successful football season!
It goes without saying, I don’t know anybody who has lost and had fun.
Let’s go out and win your league and beat your book!