The NFL’s Best Betting Stats

Football, NCAAF, CFB, NFL article at Knup Sports

The NFL preseason is here, and that means so is NFL wagering, and the many stats that are used to analyze each matchup. It can be a lot to wade through, but we’re here to help.

On Thursday the NFL’s preseason kicked off for real, and the Ravens predictably took care of business with a 13-point win over Tennessee.

Betting is difficult, and especially in the preseason. Except for when the game involves the Ravens.

Joe Montana and the 49ers won 18 straight games. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers won 19 straight games. Tom Brady and the Patriots won 21 games. And now the Ravens have 21 straight (preseason) wins.

Montana, Rodgers, and Brady, have now been bested by a combination of Josh Woodrum, Tyler Huntley, and Jerrod Johnson.

Of course not every bet is so straightforward. There won’t always be a Trace McSorley or Joe Callahan to hang your hat on. Sometimes you have to settle for lesser sure things, like Josh Allen and Justin Herbert. When that is what you have, what stats are your best guide?

Real Quarterback Rating

The NFL’s formula for quarterback rating has been used for decades, and it hasn’t changed with the game. So instead of using an outdated metric that gives at best an incomplete picture, Cold, Hard Football Facts gives the sports betting world Real Quarterback Rating.

Using a formula that factors in attempts and competitions, rush attempts and sacks, passing and rushing yards, and plus plays (touchdowns) and negative plays (turnovers), Real Quarterback Rating gives us the very best way to rank quarterbacks.

Using quarterback rating the top-five quarterbacks in 2021 were Aaron Rodgers, Joe Burrow, Dak Prescott, Kirk Cousins, and Russell Wilson. Using Real Quarterback Rating we get Rodgers, Tom Brady, Justin Herbert, Matthew Stafford, and Joe Burrow.

That second list is far more accurate.

Defensive Real Quarterback Rating

In the same vein as the above stat, Cold, Hard Football Facts gives us a more accurate way to judge the best passing defenses in the league. Traditionally “the best” defenses are ranked by yards allowed. But again, that’s only part of winning games because of a good pass defense.

The NFL’s top-five pass defenses from 2021 (using yards) are the Bills, Patriots, Panthers, Bears, and Browns. Cold, Hard Football Facts’ top-five pass defenses using Defensive Real Quarterback Rating are the Bills, Patriots, Cowboys, Rams, and Saints.

Using that stat, the Panthers drop to 17th, the Bears are 22nd, and the Browns rank ninth.

Again, that second top-five is far more accurate than the NFL’s very basic rankings.

Scoreability and Bendability

The last of the best when it comes to judging a team’s efficiency doesn’t have an equal elsewhere in the stats world. You can look at points scored and points allowed, but that can be very misleading.

Scoreability calculates the efficiency in scoring points, and it factors in defense, special teams, field position, and red zone efficiency. The same is done for Bendability, which measures how difficult it is to score on a team, using the complete team and how all facets affect an opponent’s scoring.

It’s another way that Cold, Hard Football Facts measures each weekly matchup, giving bettors the most complete picture available.

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