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UNDERs Cashing for NFL Prime-time Games

NFL Primetime Game UNDERS 2019 Season

UNDER is the new OVER in NFL prime time and UNDERs are cashing heavily for nationally televised games. After 11 games in the national spotlight, the UNDER has hit in eight of them, with an identical record for the first-half totals.

If you had bet $100 on the full-game UNDER in every prime-time game of the 2019 season, you’d be up to $427.27 in profit.

Where Does This UNDER Record Rank All-Time?

Going back 18 years, 2019 has the second-best UNDER record (based on percentage) for prime-time games after three weeks according to Odds Shark’s database. Prime-time games in 2019 have had an average combined score of 43.6 points per game.

The best record (based on percentage) after three weeks of an NFL regular season was in 2006 when six of the eight prime-time games went UNDER with one PUSH. If you exclude the PUSH, that’s an 85.7 percent success rate. In 2006, Week 1 had only one Monday Night Football game and no Thursday nighter, which is why there was only an eight-game sample size. Those games had an average combined score of 31.2.

Why Prime-time Games Keep Going UNDER

Outside of Monday night’s turnover-fest between the Bears and Redskins and the shootout in Lambeau Field between the Eagles and Packers, each prime-time game has started slowly with it seeming like teams’ offenses are still looking rusty from lack of preseason reps.

First downs can be a key indicator for totals in the NFL. Take Washington Redskins games, for example. In their three games, the OVER has hit each time with the Redskins and their opponent having combined to move the sticks over 40 times in each of those games.

In 10 prime-time games in 2019, the two contestants have only combined for over 40 first downs three times – the Texans-Saints game in Week 1, which went OVER, and the Bears-Redskins game in Week 3, which also went OVER and Eagles-Packers on Thursday. Here are the 10 prime-time games and their combined first down totals:

Prime-time Games - 2019 Regular Season
GameFirst Downs CombinedResult
Packers @ Bears29UNDER
Steelers @ Patriots39UNDER
Texans @ Saints47OVER
Broncos @ Raiders37UNDER
Bucs @ Panthers36UNDER
Eagles @ Falcons35UNDER
Browns @ Jets29UNDER
Titans @ Jaguars33UNDER
Rams @ Browns38UNDER
Bears @ Redskins46OVER
Eagles @ Packers55OVER

Week 4 Prime-time Game Totals:

Cowboys-Saints, Total at 47.5

Cowboys rank second in NFL in first downs per game at 25.3 while the Saints are averaging 18.3. Worth noting that Saints only had 15 first downs in Week 3 vs Seattle.

Bengals-Steelers, Total at 45

Both the Bengals and Steelers rank in the bottom five in first downs per game with the Bengals at 17.7 and the Steelers at 14.3. Neither offense has looked great through three weeks.