TO Margin / ATS%
On an individual-game basis, there can be an overwhelming amount of statistics to wade through while a football handicapper tries to determine which side is the right side against the spread (ATS). But in the big picture of NFL betting , there are long-term tendencies that have developed within certain statistical levels as they relate to profitability vs. NFL spreads . One of them is fairly well known: Turnovers. The more turnovers a team makes, without at least offsetting them with turnovers acquired, the less chance it has of being a profitable betting commodity in a) any given game, and b) over the course of a season if the turnover-prone ways continue. Observe, in the sortable table below covering five seasons of Turnover Margins for all NFL teams: Sort the list by TO Margin, and you'll still see a heck of a lot of green in the ATS % column for the teams with the largest (best) Turnover Margins; sort the table by worst Turnover Margins, and you see a heck of a lot of red in the ATS % column.
Run-Pass / ATS %
Broadcasters and writers constantly refer to the NFL as a “passing league.” Also, a “quarterback-driven league.” It’s easy to get all caught up in those labels and place way too much importance on quarterbacks and the passing game. Many NFL general managers and coaches certainly do! Many bettors certainly do! And, guess what? When they do, they both lose a lot! Do some hi-low sorting of Rush Attempts and Pass Attempts per game by teams in the last five NFL seasons (see table below). You’ll see a lot more profitable ATS percentages from the run-heavier teams than you will from the pass-heavier sides. Also, you'll see lots of losing ATS percentages (a sea of red!) from the teams that run the fewest times per game and/or pass the most! More proof of a happier life, by not listening to television!