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NFL Live Betting Week 14: How We’re Live Betting Monday Night Football

NFL Live Betting Week 14: How We’re Live Betting Monday Night Football article feature image
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Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images. Pictured: James Conner (left, holding the ball), Jabrill Peppers (tackling Conner), several others.

The New England Patriots are on the road against the Arizona Cardinals in what looks to be a competitive conclusion to Week 14 on Monday Night Football. The spread has varied a bit, but it was -2.5 in favor of the Patriots right before kick, with a moderate 43.5 point total.

Our favorite live betting angle of the week followed the most likely scenario — a Patriots lead. If that didn’t come to pass, though, there were some alternate plays worth checking out.

Here’s how we’re looking to live bet Monday Night Football in Week 14.

The Live Betting Scenarios to Watch For on Monday Night Football in Week 14

Unders in a Close Game — LIVE BET MADE

Both of these teams play very cautiously while the score remains close. Both teams have a slightly negative pass rate over expectation, and the passes they do throw tend to be lower aDOT plays that are less likely to stop the clock (or create big gains).

If this one remained close throughout the first half, we were looking to take an under in the upper 40s.

With a live total of 41.5 at FanDuel after the Cardinals’ second field goal, we’re not quite there, but we’ll take it. Arizona’s only scoring drives to this point were due to incredibly fortuitous field position from a Mac Jones interception and a 39-yard DPI on an uncatchable ball. They only have six points, but that’s about six more than they should. The Patriots certainly aren’t going to score four more touchdowns themselves, so the under gets it. This also still qualifies as a “close game” and should play slow for the foreseeable future.

Outside of that, the only things to watch for are player props. At halftime of Thursday and Monday Night Football each week, my predictive analytics colleague Nick Giffen is live on “Bet What Happens Live With Dr. Nick!” He’ll cover props, and possibly join us with a total bet as well.

The Other Live Betting Scenario We Were Watching For

Overs With a Patriots Lead 

This one was purely based on expected pace. The Cardinals rank 18th in the NFL in pace with a lead and 18th in close games. However, when playing from behind they speed things up considerably, checking in at ninth.

Similarly, the Patriots rank 31st in a close game but a more reasonable 16th when playing from in front. While there isn’t a huge sample of them playing with a big lead, their average pace is actually faster than in close games. (This is likely due to a significant portion of that time being in late-game scenarios where the opponent was calling time outs.)

How We Approach Live Betting in General

The NFL is perfect for live betting, with the pauses between plays providing plenty of time to get bets in. This season, I’ve built a model to project the pace of play under a variety of in-game scenarios. These include first vs. second half, as well as which team is leading or when the game is within a touchdown.

The primary benefit is for betting totals. If the game is going to be faster or slower than was assumed pregame, the application is obvious. Faster-paced games tend to produce more points.

Player props also present some interesting opportunities. Sportsbooks are offering a variety of live player props, and faster or slower than expected games create obvious opportunities.

Take a look around various books before placing bets, though. There tends to be more variation between shops in live markets than there is pregame.

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