It is no secret that unders have been more successful through four weeks of the 2022-23 NFL season.
Unders have gone 31-17-1 on the young season, according to the database at sportsoddshistory.com. Bettors know that this run will eventually end, if for no other reason than that oddsmakers will adjust. But when should we stop riding with unders?
For my sake, I hope it isn’t this week because I’ve placed three under bets on the Week 5 slate as of Wednesday morning. If you choose to follow my plays, place your bets at Caesars Sportsbook, which is the official odds partner of Bet Chicago Sports.
- My bet: Under 43.5
- Current odds at Caesars Sportsbook: 42.5
Starting with the Thursday Night Football matchup, I see no reason to rush to bet the over in this matchup. Not only have unders gone 9-3-1 in primetime games so far, but neither of these two teams have done much on the offensive end.
The Colts rank 31st in EPA (expected points added) per play, while the Broncos currently sit in 22nd. Both teams are dealing with poor quarterback play from their new signal callers. Matt Ryan ranks 27th among quarterbacks with a Pro Football Focus grade of 58.9, and Russell Wilson is listed at 16th with a mark of 66.7.
The Colts have yet to score more than 20 points in a game this season, and the Broncos have three different outings with fewer than 20. This game could be ugly.
- My bet: Under 44.5
- Current odds at Caesars Sportsbook: 44
The market disagrees with me a bit on this game because there are some 45s out there, but that just means readers can get a better number.
Teddy Bridgewater is a capable backup, but the Dolphins’ offense might not be as explosive with him leading the way. He completed 14-of-23 passes for 193 yards after coming in for Tua during last week’s loss to the Bengals. I wouldn’t be surprised if the ground game is a bit more involved in Teddy’s first start of the year.
More importantly, this is an awful matchup for Zach Wilson and company. The Jets are dealing with several injuries along the offensive line, and likely won’t be able to hold up against a Dolphins defense that tends to bring a lot of pressure. Wilson posted a Pro Football Focus grade of 32.5 under pressure last year, and I’d be surprised if he fares much better in his second start of his second season.
- My bet: Under 47
- Current odds at Caesars Sportsbook: 47
The Pittsburgh Steelers went into Buffalo and shocked the world with an upset over the Bills in Week 1 of last year. A win this week would be an even bigger stunner, as the Steelers are currently a 14-point underdog at Caesars Sportsbook.
Rather than touch the spread, I’m playing the under in Kenny Pickett’s first start of his career. Defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier is going to be a head coach somewhere next year, and his defense should eat up Pickett this week. This defense held the Ravens scoreless over the final two quarters of their eventual 23-20 victory.
On the other side, the Bills tend to run up the score on bad teams and that is always a concern. But the Bills have a road meeting with the Kansas City Chiefs up next, so if there was ever a time for an NFL team to be somewhat vanilla on offense, this would have to be it. I’m taking the under and hoping the Bills call it a day a bit early.