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Leaderboards Recap

2019 Divisional Round Weekend Crowd Results and Leaderboard

The crowd got off to a great start on Wild Card Weekend, and they did even better during the Divisional Round. Thanks to a 4-0 record picking the winners, 3-1 against the spread, and 3-1 against the total, the crowd turned $120 into almost $170!

Here are the results:

WagerStakeResultRunning Total
Chiefs ML$10$14.55$124.55
IND-KC Over 54.5$10$0$114.55
Chiefs -4.5$10$19.09$123.64
Rams ML$10$13.33$126.97
DAL-LAR Over 48$10$18.70$135.67
Cowboys +7$10$0$125.67
Patriots ML$10$15.00$130.67
LAC-NE Over 47.5$10$19.09$139.76
Patriots -4$10$19.09$148.85
Saints ML$10$12.63$151.48
PHI-NO Under 52.5$10$19.09$160.57
Eagles +8.5$10$19.09$169.66

Hit two trifectas in one day? Yes please!

This was just an outstanding weekend for the crowd, and while the Cowboys were thisclose to hitting the backdoor cover, the crowd got lucky with the Will Lutz miss that gave the Eagles the cover, so we’ll call it even.

Our Divisional Round Winners were Derek and Gemma with 21 total points. Coincidentally, that tied the crowd prediction score as well. Congrats to both!

The end-of-postseason pot now stands at $152.33 which will be split among the top 3 finishers.

The current Postseason Podium has a little room between the top two and third place, but the fight for third looks to be fierce:

  • Gemma, 37 points
  • ChrisLivdahl, 36 points
  • MichaelRaymond, 30 points

-Chris

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Leaderboards Recap

2019 Wild Card Weekend Crowd Results and Leaderboard

The crowd got off to a great start on Wild Card Weekend, turning a tidy profit of $15 off the initial stake of $120.

Here are the results:

Wager Stake Result Running Total
Colts ML $10 $20.50 $130.50
Colts +1.5 $10 $19.09 $139.59
IND-HOU Under 48.5 $10 $19.09 $148.68
Seahawks ML $10 $0 $138.68
Seahawks +2.5 $10 $19.52 $148.20
SEA-DAL Over 43 $10 $19.09 $157.29
BAL ML $10 $0 $147.29
LAC +3 $10 $18.70 $155.99
LAC-BAL Over 43 $10 $0 $145.99
CHI ML $10 $0 $135.99

So, the lesson here is that hitting the trifecta with an underdog is a great way to improve your return, so if you can do that, I highly recommend it.

Our Wild Card Winner was Lawrence, and he takes home $67.50. Congratulations Lawrence!

The current Postseason Podium is crowded:

  • Lawrence, 19 points
  • Ausame, 18 points
  • ChrisLivdahl, 18 points

-Chris

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Wild Card Weekend CPR: Even Split

Add your Divisional Round Predictions Now!

Wild Card Weekend was quite a rollercoaster for the crowd. It started off with an amazing comeback that resulted in wins against the spread and the total, then a complete whiff, followed by a WotC (pronounced Wahtzee!), followed by two fourth-quarter scores that resulted in losses against the spread and the total. I feel like the crowd deserves credit for getting a perfect mirror image of each day, but it’s hard to cash in on that.

Wild Card Weekend Net Results:

  • Weekly Pot: $51.19
  • Overall Pot: $51.19

Best Bet Results

There was really only one prediction for the whole weekend that we’d consider a best bet, and that was the under in the Bills-Jaguars game.

  • Vegas Total: 40
  • Crowd Predicted Total: 32.27 (almost 20% less)
  • Actual Total: 13

The 3 other games did not see much of a discrepancy between the Vegas total and the crowd’s prediction. The biggest discrepancy with the spread was in the Falcons-Rams game in which the crowd predicted a 7.3-point Rams win against a 5.5-point spread, but as we’ve discussed, we have yet to figure out a formula for determining the strength of the crowd prediction when it comes to the spread.

Titans-Chiefs Results (2 for 3)

Correct: Titans +8.5 (-110), Under 44.5 (-110); Incorrect: Chiefs ML (-420); Net: $38.18

wcw2018-tenkc

The crowd had an interesting separation for this game. 6 users predicted a sizeable victory for the Chiefs, easily covering the 8.5-point spread (4 users predicted an 11-point win). 5 users predicted the Chiefs to win but fail to cover, and 3 users picked the Titans to win outright, with Bryan coming within a two-point conversion of an on-the-money prediction.

The users who predicted a Tennessee upset swung the crowd prediction to a win. As we’ve discussed a few times, the user who predicts a big underdog to win outright can outweigh multiple users who predict the favorite to cover by just a point or two. In this case, the 4 users who predicted an 11-point win for the Chiefs were neutralized by the user who predicted the Titans to win by 3 (4 users * 2.5 (11 points – 8.5) = 10  < 1 user * 11.5 (3 points + 8.5). The same goes for the other two extremes of the bell curve. Once the two extremes were balanced out, the crowd’s aggregate prediction was composed of the remaining predictions that foresaw a sizeable Chiefs win that didn’t cover the spread.

Falcons-Rams (0 for 3; Wabby)

Incorrect: Rams -5.5 (-115), Over 48 (-110); Rams ML (-250); Net: $0

atl-lar-chart

The crowd had a much different split in the Falcons-Rams game compared to the Titans-Chiefs. Additionally, Jason, the lone Atlanta win predictor, was well outweighed by the predictor (who we’ll keep anonymous) who expected a huge Rams triumph. Once his pick was balanced out, the crowd prediction around the spread aggregated in a reasonably comfortable Rams win.

With respect to the total, the crowd prediction was JUST over the Vegas total, so when it comes to wagering, the smart move would be to hang on to your money until the crowd sees a bigger discrepancy, such as in the Bills-Jaguars game.

Bills-Jaguars (3-for-3; WotC!)

Correct: Bills +8.5 (-110); under 40 (-110); Jaguars ML (-420); Net: $50.56

wcw2018-bufjac.jpg

The distribution of spreads in the Bills-Jaguars game was similar to Titans-Chiefs. A single predictor who saw the Bills winning balanced out the 4 folks who saw a big Jacksonville victory. Thus, the crowd aggregate landed right at 7 which ended up being the exact final spread.

Much more interesting in this game was the crowd’s prediction of the total. The crowd predicted a total of 32.27, almost 20% below the Vegas line of 40. Only one predictor saw a high-scoring game; every other predictor was at or below 40. The resulting crowd prediction was by far the strongest value play of the weekend, and it came through with room to spare with an actual total of 13.

Panthers-Saints (1 for 3)

Correct: Saints ML (-275); Incorrect: Saints -7 (-115), Under 48.5 (-110); Net: $13.64

wcw2018-carno

The crowd had a few predictors that expected sizeable double-digit wins for the Saints. Unlike the other games, though, there was only one predictor who saw the Panthers winning, and that was insufficient to sway the crowd to a thread-the-needle result.  Nevertheless, the crowd saw a pretty close game (though lower scoring than what ultimately happened), and that is precisely what happened.

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Week 16 CPR: A Little Dose of Reality

I had to take a little dose of reality this week. I was very excited when, again, the crowd predicted 13 correct straight-up. This result tied for first among ESPN experts. But I looked back at Week 15, and again at these picks, and I realized that the crowd was mainly picking favorites, in some cases heavy favorites, and the favorites were winning. One miss the crowd made was on the Seahawks, who they favored in all 7 road games prior to Week 16, and had they continued that trend, would have correctly picked one of three underdogs to win outright. I’m guessing the crowd over-indexed on the blowout loss to the Rams and the Cowboys primetime win over the Raiders such that it swung them away from their previous disposition. (The crowd did predict Seattle to cover.)

In any case, there is no shame in picking the favorites. Those teams are favorites for a reason, and if accuracy were really that simple, more experts would have done so. Still, it means that I have to temper my excitement a bit.

There is one data point that still makes me happy, and that is that the crowd has predicted 158 correct winners which ties them for third among experts. One could point out that this is only two picks ahead of the ESPN Pick ’em Crowd and say, “So what’s so special about your crowd then?” To which I’d say, actually, that proves my point about crowd wisdom. When considering the straight-up results, the ESPN crowd and the CSS crowd both have the same goal: picking the winner. And this proves that the crowd wisdom is a more reliable predictor than most experts.

We are trying to identify value in the over/under and the spreads, and that can only be identified when we collect actual scores, and that is where we see the most value in the crowd wisdom.

No On-the-Money Predictions, but some Lone Predictors

While no one hit on any final scores this week, the crowd did nail a couple of team totals right on the money. The crowd predicted the Rams would score 27 and the Bears would score 20. They also nailed that the final spread of the Raiders-Eagles game would be 9. One lone predictor, user G.A., picked the 49ers over the Jaguars. G.A. also picked the Raiders to beat the Eagles outright which brought the predicted spread under the -10 and gave the crowd the Wahtzee.

CPR Week 16 Summary

  • Straight-up: 13-3 (81%)
  • Against the Spread: 7-9 (44%)
  • Over/Under: 8-7-1 (53%)

Overall

  • Straight-up: 158-78 (66%, +1%)
  • Against the Spread: 113-119-8 (48%, -1%)
  • Over/Under: 125-109-6 (53%, +0%)

7 predictors in Week 16, down 1 from Week 15. Thank you to those who keep returning. We cannot tell you how much we appreciate your support. Please tell your friends!

The Cynthia Frelund Experience

Sadly, no @cfrelund experience this week since the primetime games fell on the weekend. I’ll have a follow-up post reviewing the Thursday night and Monday game accuracy over the 2017 season.

The WotC (Wahtzee) GotW

For the third week in a row, I have to deny my impulse to highlight the Wahtzees in which the crowd threaded the needle of picking the favorite to win and the underdog to cover, essentially because the two games in question – Colts-Ravens and Raiders-Eagles – both had huge spreads, so threading the needle wasn’t much of a risk. In the case of the former, the crowd predicted a 12.5-point win for Baltimore and only hit the Wahtzee because of the 13.5-point spread.

This week’s Wahtzee goes to the Browns-Bears because the crowd nailed the Bears score exactly, and had a couple of bounces gone Cleveland’s way rather than Chicago’s, the score could very well have been around the predicted 20-13. Additionally, the over/under prediction was one of only a few best-bets for Week 16.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Bears Bears
Spread Bears by 6.6 (spread was Bears by 5.5) Bears by 17
Over/Under 33.4 (under 37) 23

The Wabby of the Week

There were two candidates for the Wearing-a-Barrel game this week. The crowd whiffed on both Lions-Bengals and Jaguars-49ers. While I’d certainly say that it was surprising that Detroit, a team with playoff hopes, would lose to a Cincinnati team that has been out of the chase for a while, the 49ers putting up 44 against Jaguars had to be the surprise of the week. If you had told me that San Francisco would have beaten the total of 42 by themselves against the Jacksonville defense, you’d have my house and I’d be wearing a barrel on Sunday.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Jaguars 49ers
Spread Jaguars by 6.14 (spread was Jaguars by 4.5) 49ers by 11
Over/Under 40.14 (under 42) 77

Week 16 Top Performers

User C.A. had a great week this week, coming in first across all three categories and picking 14 of 16 winners. Congrats to all the top performers, and thanks for your continued support!

STRAIGHT-UP AGAINST THE SPREAD OVER/UNDER
C.A. (14)
P.M. (13)
P.C. (11)
G.A. (7)
B.C. (7)
C.A. (7)
P.C. (11)
C.A. (11)
B.C. (7)
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Week 15 CPR: The Home Stretch

It’s hard not to get too excited when the crowd produces results as they did in Week 15. Once again, they did very well picking the winners, correctly selecting 13 out of 16 for an 81% accuracy. They also performed very well in the over/under, picking 12 of 16 correct for a 75% accuracy rate.

What’s really important about the Week 15 over/under results is that it ticked the crowd over the crucial 50% mark, moving the season-long average to 53% (117 correct, 5 pushes, 224 total games). This is a critical indicator of our theory since the best predictors aim for 55%, and with two more good weeks, our crowd will show that they are just as good.

Separately, the crowd predicted totals that were over 10% below or above the line set by Vegas, and they went 5-2 in those games. Over the season, the crowd is 48-34 in those games for a 59% accuracy rate which is stellar.

Three (!) On-the-Money Predictions and a few close calls!

There was something in the air this week. Users E.P. and C.A. both predicted the Ravens-Browns game right on the money. User D.K. predicted a 27-24 final between the Patriots and the Steelers for another on-the-money prediction as well.

But that’s not all. User P.C. predicted a 24-23 win for the 49ers over the Titans (the actual score was 25-23) and a 30-19 win for the Saints over the Jets (the actual score was 31-19). The latter is especially impressive given that a 19-point total is pretty uncommon. User M.R. predicted a 24-17 win for the Bills over the Dolphins (the actual score was 24-16) as well as a 21-10 victory for the Lions over the Bears (the actual score was 20-10).

CPR Week 15 Summary

  • Straight-up: 13-3 (81%)
  • Against the Spread: 6-9-1 (38%)
  • Over/Under: 12-4 (75%)

Overall

  • Straight-up: 146-78 (65%, +1%)
  • Against the Spread: 106-110-8 (49%, -1%)
  • Over/Under: 117-102-5 (53%, +2%)

8 predictors in Week 15, down 2 from Week 14. Thank you to those who keep returning. We cannot tell you how much we appreciate your support. Please tell your friends!

The Cynthia Frelund Experience

2017-week15-mnf-cf

@cfrelund‘s crowd went 2-for-3 on Monday night, hitting on both Atlanta and the under, but overestimating the size of the win by the Falcons. The spread result basically hinged on the Bucs scoring a touchdown in the final minutes rather than kicking a field goal, but that’s generally why we are interested in identifying big discrepancies between the crowd predicted spread and the lines since our expectation is that, by and large, those games will be safe from a backdoor cover.

The WotC GotW

Once again I have to deny my initial instinct to pick a game in which the crowd threaded the needle as they did in the Falcons-Bucs game. Additionally, the crowd hit the spread exactly on Jets-Saints game and only missed an on-the-money prediction by two points for each team. However, this week, the crowd was really on the Ravens-Browns game. Not only did they hit the total right on the money while making it a best bet, but they predicted a big win for the Ravens, and they came through nicely.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Ravens Ravens
Spread Ravens by 10 (spread was Ravens by 6.5) Ravens by 17
Over/Under 37.25 (under 42) 37

The Wabby of the Week

Week 15 was the second week this season in which the crowd hit at least one category for every game. Nice work crowd! Unfortunately, that makes finding the Wearing-a-Barrel game a little harder to identify. However, I think it’s safe to say that if you had given me the Seahawks and 34.5 points, you’d have my house and all my clothes on Monday.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Seahawks Rams
Spread Seahawks by 1 (spread was Seahawks by 11) Rams by 35
Over/Under 53.5 (over 47.5) 49

Week 15 Top Performers

User M.R. had an incredible week picking the over-under with 14 while also coming in first against the spread. Meanwhile, P.M. and P.C. both picked 13 of 16 straight-up. Nice work everyone! We had 8 total predictors this week, so thanks to everyone who continued to help us out!

STRAIGHT-UP AGAINST THE SPREAD OVER/UNDER
P.M. (13)
P.C. (13)
C.A. (12)
M.R. (9)
P.M. (7)
P.C. (7)
E.P. (7)
M.R. (14)
P.C. (10)
D.K. (10)
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Week 15, Game 1 – The Early Indicator

In Weeks 13 and 14, the crowd missed across all 3 categories, and I was reluctant to write up my recap because I kept hoping that somehow the results would change and the crowd would get at least one right somehow. Sadly, it never did.

In Week 15, though, the crowd got 2 of 3 correct, and yet I was stuck getting a write-up published. As it turns out, this ended up being somewhat of a benefit as I can look back at the week’s games in their entirety and try to draw a through-line.

In the Thursday game between the Broncos and the Colts, the crowd provided an early indication of what was to come. The crowd predicted a strong play on the under, accurately predicted Denver to win, and missed the spread. The game-winner was never really in doubt and neither was the spread winner while QB Brock Osweiler somehow turned in one of his best performances in the last two years, on the road no less. The over/under ended up being a little close for comfort, but the best bet came through.

With the remaining Week 15 games in the rearview mirror as well, the Thursday night game ended up being the early indicator for what was to come.

The Game 1 CPR – 2 for 3.

Correct: Straight-up; Over/Under; Incorrect: Against the Spread

The one key takeaway that I have learned over the last two weeks is that using the term “strong play” has better karma than best bet, so I’m going to stick with that going forward.

We only had 4 predictors on Thursday, and as I’ve mentioned before, it’s hard to know what the crowd wisdom truly said with such a small number, though I’ll gladly give credit to the crowd for being right. 🙂

2017-week15-tnf-cf

The Cynthia Frelund Experience

Technically spreaking, Cynthia Frelund’s crowd (@cfrelund) also got 2 of 3 right, predicting a final of Broncos 18.6-Colts 16.2, but of course, there are two important points.

  1. We round up or down, so the final predicted would be 19-16 which indicates that Denver would cover the spread.
  2. The crowd indicating that the spread had little value is important information by itself and anyone tailing the crowd would have known to stay away from the spread bet this week.

So in the end, with both those facts in mind, I’m giving Miss Frelund’s crowd the trifecta, which henceforth I’m calling the Wahtzee. (WotC, get it? Thank you, please be sure to tip your wait staff.)

-Chris

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Week 14 CPR: Bet Avoision

The primetime games in Week 14 indicated a trend that I thought was worth digging into a bit more. On both Thursday and Monday, the crowd predicted that the final total was very close to the over/under set by Vegas. When the crowd prediction is close to the line, that’s a signal to stay away from betting.

The crowd overall performed well with respect to the over/under, getting 10 of 16 correct. I reviewed it a little more closely, and of the predictions, the crowd diverged by over 10% from the line in 6 games, and the crowd went 5-1. Looking back over the season, the crowd has gone 44-32 in such games for an accuracy percentage of 58% which is just fine.

As I mentioned two weeks ago, the value in the Over/Under is a bit easier to spot than with respect to the spread, and it’s encouraging to see that the crowd can see such value over the course of the season.

Another On-the-Money from M.R.!

User M.R. predicted the Vikings-Panthers score on the nose, 31-24. This was no small feat given how stingy the Minnesota defense had been over the last few weeks. An interesting side note to this though was that the crowd seemed to be feeling a regression for both defenses as there were 3 predictions of a total of 55 or more. In any case, congratulations M.R.!

CPR Week 14 Summary

  • Straight-up: 7-9 (44%)
  • Against the Spread: 7-9 (44%)
  • Over/Under: 10-6 (62.5%)

Overall

  • Straight-up: 133-75 (64%, -2%)
  • Against the Spread: 100-108 (48%, +0%)
  • Over/Under: 104-104 (50%, +1%)

10 predictors in Week 14, up 2 from Week 13. Thanks so much to the folks who returned, and thank you to those who keep returning. We cannot tell you how much we appreciate your support. Please tell your friends!

The Cynthia Frelund Experience

2017-week14-mnf-cf

@cfrelund‘s crowd missed the mark along with ours on Monday. They predicted a pretty sizeable win by the Patriots, so they, along with all but a small percentage of predictors, were shocked by the Dolphins not only covering but winning outright. The one bright spot was that the crowd said stay away from the total, and that was wise as the Patriots were an inch away from flipping the total from under to over. It ended up being a push, but who needs the stress if the crowd tells you not to worry about it?

The WotC GotW

Followers of the blog will know that I love it when the crowd threads the needle by predicting the underdog to cover a smallish spread while still losing the game as in the Ravens-Steelers game. However, the game this week that the crowd really predicted well was the Eagles-Rams. Not only did the crowd predict the Eagles, who were originally underdogs, to win outright, but the came very close to predicting the final spread. A touchdown during the lateral drill as time expired moved the spread from 2 to 8. Additionally, they had a lot of confidence in the over, and that came through as well.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Eagles Eagles
Spread Eagles by 3.78 (spread was Eagles by 1) Eagles by 8
Over/Under 53.78 (over 47.5) 78

The Wabby of the Week

I think the selection of the Patriots-Dolphins game as the Wearing-a-Barrel game on Monday is a pretty easy one. The Patriots had been holding their opponents, albeit not a great set of teams, to very low totals for quite a while, including 16, 8, 17, and 3 in the last four weeks. Meanwhile, they have scored at least 23 points per game during that stretch. So if you had given me the Patriots AND 6.5 points, you’d have my house and all my clothes today.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Patriots Dolphins
Spread Patriots by 14.33 (spread was Patriots by 11) Dolphins by 7
Over/Under 49.67 (over 47) 47

Week 14 Top Performers

User M.R. placed either first or second in every category this week. Nice work M.R.! We had 10 total predictors this week, so thanks to everyone who continued to help us out!

STRAIGHT-UP AGAINST THE SPREAD OVER/UNDER
D.K. (10) E.P. (9) M.R. (9) @ChalkDogLines (9) M.R. (9) D.K. (8) G.A. (10) M.R. (10) C.A. (10)
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Week 14, Game 1 – The Good Beat

The crowds missed all 3 picks in the Thursday night game between the Saints and Falcons, but in a way, it was a result that shows how the crowd wisdom can provide value by showing where there is no value.

The crowd predictions, while wrong, pretty much said stay away from this game. The original spread favored the Saints by 2.5, and the total hovered around 52 all week. By Thursday, the spread moved to the Falcons, favoring them also by 2.5. Meanwhile, the crowd’s prediction for the game consistently predicted a close game both with respect to the spread and the over/under.

I heard one of the guys on the Sports Gambling Podcast this week say that, as you get better at betting, you don’t necessarily pick the winners better; you get better at picking games to stay away from.

And that is what the crowd indicated on Thursday. The gap between the crowd prediction for both the spread and the over/under never veered more than a point or two, so the smart move was to wait for better value on Sunday. So even though the crowd came up empty, the silver lining is that it was right that the game was going to be a coin flip, and yea, verily it came to pass.

The Game 1 CPR – 0 for 3.

Incorrect: Straight-up; Over/Under; Against the Spread

The one disheartening aspect is that this is the second Thursday night game in a row in which the crowd missed all three categories. As I mentioned last week, the crowd usually misses all three in one or two games a week, so while I shouldn’t panic, it is always a little harder to take when it’s on a primetime game.

2017-week14-tnf-cf

The Cynthia Frelund Experience

Cynthia Frelund’s crowd (@cfrelund) also missed across the board, but as I mentioned above, they predicted a razor-thin margin. While the Falcons ended up as the favorite, the gap was small enough with both the spread and the total that the crowd indicated that the wise move was to look elsewhere for value.

-Chris

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Week 13 CPR: Flipping the Script

In general, I believe that picking the winner of a game is easier than picking either the spread or the over/under. As I have mentioned at least a few times, the sportsbooks set the lines in order to hit the 50/50 mark of betting on either side, so they want the lines to feel like a coin flip, and this by and large bears out over the course of the season. On the other hand, the sportsbook puts the value on the winners much more in line with the probability of the teams actually winning the game. In other words, if you bet on the Patriots to beat the Bills on Sunday, you would win far less money than if you had put the same amount on the Bills. By contrast, if you had bet the Bills to cover, you would have earned around the same as if you had bet on the Patriots (sometimes the books change their take slightly to optimize).

The crowd has picked more correct game winners than against the spread in all but two weeks this season. They turned the trick again in Week 13, getting 10 right against the spread and 9 straight up.

On-the-Moneys

There were a few close predictions this week, but none that was within a point of the actual result. Users Paul and G.A. were the only prognosticators who predicted the underdog Jets to beat the Chiefs, and they both had the spread at 6, and that deserves a shoutout.

CPR Week 13 Summary

  • Straight-up: 9-7 (56%)
  • Against the Spread: 10-6 (62.5%)
  • Over/Under: 6-10 (37.5%)

Overall

  • Straight-up: 126-66 (66%,+0%)
  • Against the Spread: 93-99 (48%, +1%)
  • Over/Under: 94-98 (49%, -1%)

8 predictors in Week 13, down 1 from Week 12. Thank you to those who keep returning. We cannot tell you how much we appreciate your support. Please tell your friends!

The Cynthia Frelund Experience

2017-week13-mnf-cf

@cfrelund‘s crowd went 2 for 3 on Monday night, benefitting both from a pretty impressive comeback by the Steelers and a late line move for the total from 43 to 42.5. The crowd predicted a pretty comfortable win for Pittsburgh, so they certainly weren’t expecting the nailbiter that the game turned out to be. Given that the crowd predicted a spread of 9 against a line of 4.5, I would consider this a best bet that didn’t come through, unfortunately.

The WotC GotW

The Wisdom-of-the-Crowd Game of the Week had a few contenders this week. The crowd was expecting a low-scoring win by the Chargers with the Browns covering (a rare sight this season), and they expected a similar result in the Giants-Raiders with Oakland coming out on top. But the crowd was really in tune with the Rams-Cardinals matchup. Not only did they predict a big win by a big favorite, they were off by the final scores by 1 and 3 points in a pretty high-scoring game.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Rams Rams
Spread Rams by 12 (spread was Rams by 7) Rams by 16
Over/Under 49.71 48

The Wabby of the Week

The Wearing a Barrel game this week ended up being the Thursday night game between Washington and Dallas. The Cowboys had scored 7, 9, and 6 points the previous 3 weeks. If you had given me Washington and 23.5 points going into Game 1 of Week 13, I’d be signing my house over to you wearing a barrel on friday morning.

PREDICTION CROWD ACTUAL
Winner Washington Cowboys
Spread Washington by 6.17 (spread was Washington by 1.5) Cowboys by 24
Over/Under 40.17 (under 46.5) 52

Week 13 Top Performers

Four users tied for the straight-up lead this week, and 3 tied in the against-the-spread category. But user E.P. (who also tied for first in the straight-up category) nailed 10 correct in the over/under for the clear victory. Nice work E.P. and to all the experts!

STRAIGHT-UP AGAINST THE SPREAD OVER/UNDER
E.P. (11)
P.C. (11)
C.A. (11)
@ChalkDogLines (8)
G.A. (8)
C.A. (8)
E.P. (10)
M.R. (9)
P.C. (9)
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Week 13, Game 1 – Thanksgiving Hangover

The Thursday night game for Week 13 featured two teams who played on Thanksgiving, and I wonder if the crowd over-indexed the turkey day results in their predictions. The issue wasn’t that both crowds whiffed across the board; it’s that they predicted best-bets for both Washington -1 and under 46. Our crowd predicted Washington to win by 6 with a total score of 40, and Cynthia Frelund‘s crowd predicted Washington to win by 8 with a total score of 44 (the latter total would not qualify as a best bet).

On Thanksgiving, the Cowboys were beaten handily by the Chargers; Washington outlasted the Giants, but the game never seemed in much doubt. Since both games happened in isolation and one right after the other, it would make intuitive sense to me to conclude that the trend would continue.

Sadly for the crowds, the trend reversed itself quite dramatically.

The one caveat is that Washington experienced a confluence of bad luck events that contributed to the result. That fact doesn’t invalidate the results, of course, but it is a reminder that the wisdom of the crowd has the effect over a large number of games. I tweeted on Sunday that the crowd usually misses all 3 predictions for 1 or 2 games per week. In Week 12, the crowd missed all 3 in zero games; in Week 13, it missed on 3. So really, while I like to hope that the crowd will miss on 0 predictions for every game, the odds say that we should expect a week with more than two 0-fers for every week in which the crowd gets a prediction right on every game. The 0-fer games usually involve some outlier behavior, and Thursday night just happened to be one.

The Game 1 CPR – 0 for 3.

Incorrect: Straight-up; Over/Under; Against the Spread

I probably brought this result on the crowd since I was broadcasting their straight-up results through the season (still a respectable 116-61). Honestly, I was so hopeful that when the final result came through, it took me a while to process it (hence why this post is late). The crowd did just fine for the week, but I am always hopeful that Thursday will start the predictions off on the right foot.

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The Cynthia Frelund Experience

Cynthia Frelund’s crowd (@cfrelund) also missed across the board. They were pretty in sync with our crowd, predicting a 26-18 victory for Washington compared to our 24-17. Only 14 out of 100 selected the Cowboys to win outright. One user predicted a 34-17 victory which is quite remarkable given how much of an outlier it was.

-Chris