Man vs Machine: Pickswise expert vs the computer model NFL Week 14 best bets

Derek Carr Raiders vs Chargers
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Andrew Ortenberg

NFL· 1 month ago

Show Bio

I'm an editor here at Pickswise who was raised in a household full of sports fanatics. Since I unfortunately never had LeBron James' jumping ability I wasn't able to make it to the NBA, and chose writing about sports as the next best thing. An avid sports bettor myself, I'm excited to get to write about the industry as it gets set to take off across the country. Buckle up.

Man vs Machine

Welcome to the 2021 edition of Man vs Machine. This NFL season, I’ll be making my five best NFL bets each week. Our Pickswise supercomputer will make its best five bets, and then we’ll compare. May the best man (or machine) win.

Our computer model gives probabilities and projections for the main NFL betting markets (spread, total & money line), best bets for spread, total, money line, and same game parlays. It also features prop bet probabilities for first and anytime touchdown scorer, plus individual player projections for passing, rushing, receiving yards, and touchdowns for betting and fantasy use.

For more information on how the supercomputer works and how it generates picks, scroll down to the bottom of this page. Now let’s look at the picks:

My 5 best bets

Jaguars +8.5 over Titans

The Titans just aren’t very good right now. Remember a couple weeks ago when they were a multi-score favorite over the Texans, and lost outright? When these teams played earlier this year, the final score was very misleading. The Jags significantly outgained the Titans, putting up over 450 yards of offense. Trevor Lawrence averaged 8.3 yards per attempt in one of his best games as a pro.

Raiders +10 over Chiefs

When these teams played in Las Vegas pretty recently, the Chiefs were only 2.5-point favorites. Now just because the Raiders have had a rough few weeks, this line is double digits in Kansas City. That’s an overreaction. The Chiefs’ offense simply isn’t what it used to be, and they’ve topped 22 points only once in their last 6 games. As such, there’s no way I could lay this many points with them.

Texans +8.5 over Seahawks

I’m going with another multi-score ‘dog here. The Seahawks shouldn’t be this large of a road favorite against anybody. I mean this number is just ridiculous in my opinion. The Seahawks are a 4-8 team that has plenty of internal issues. Going on the road, I wouldn’t be surprised if they no-show and lose outright.

Browns -2.5 (-120) over Ravens

The Browns were done a massive favor by NFL schedule-makers here. Cleveland played Baltimore in Week 12, then had a bye week last week. They’ve essentially been able to prepare for the Ravens for three weeks in a row. Baltimore, on the other hand, had to play a physical slug-fest against the Steelers in between.

Bengals +2 over 49ers

The computer and I agree on this one. Everybody has been quick to downgrade the Bengals just because of one loss to the Chargers last week. But they just got unlucky in that game, and also had some injuries on the offensive line. Now they’re getting a couple starters on that line back.

Computer picks

Raiders +10 over Chiefs, Seahawks -8.5 over Texans, Jets +5.5 over Saints, Chargers -9 over Giants, Bengals +2 over 49ers

The computer and I are on three of the same games this week. We both like the Raiders and Bengals, but we’re on opposite sides of this Seahawks/Texans game. Our system faded the Jets last week, but they’re hopping on the Zach Wilson train this time around. Clearly the computer isn’t a believer in Mike Glennon and the G-Men. Last week I went 4-1, while the computer went 3-2 for yet another winning week to improve to a stellar 39-25-1 on the year. Hopefully we both keep it going for Week 14…

2021 season results

Pickswise Expert (33-32)
Pickswise Computer (39-25-1)

Don’t forget to check out our free picks on the side and total for every NFL game. You can also view all of our computer picks.

How are the pre-game win probabilities calculated?
The Pickswise supercomputer creates pre-game probabilities using machine learning techniques as inputs to a Monte Carlo approach. This means we simulate a sporting event 10,000 times, catering for the deep range of outcomes and probabilities within a given event. We first predict the performance of each individual player based on hundreds of algorithmic variabilities, which we use to run our event simulations.

Why do the win probabilities and predictions change over time?
The probabilities are dynamic in nature and get updated as new information becomes available. This includes but is not limited to team news, weather conditions, and moves in the betting market.

What does a ‘value bet’ mean?
A value bet is where we’ve identified that the probability of the event occurring is more likely than the listed sportsbook odds. Taking these bets gives you an increased chance of being a successful gambler.

How is the change in win probability calculated during a live game?
Live win probability is a statistical metric that projects the team’s likelihood of winning at any given point by simulating the remainder of the game. Based on the performance of historical teams in the same situation and the current state of the game, the model updates in real-time following every major event during the game.

Pickswise is the home of free NFL Picks and NFL Odds. Check out the latest NFL Prop Bets and NFL Parlays as well as expert NFL Underdog Picks and NFL Computer Picks.

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