Minnesota Vikings projected to win 12 of first 15 games, according to the early betting lines

In an age where metrics are a thing that can boast enough predictable success to be honored by gamblers, those who violate laws that aren't enforced are intrigued. Given the current climate, Vikings haters may want to start investing against them.

Technically speaking, in most of the country gambling is illegal.

Yeah, right.

We’re a society that often justifies lawbreaking. Unenforced laws can occasionally be broken or overlooked. The general feeling among motorists is that you can hit cruise control at 77 mph on a freeway and the odds of you getting a ticket are slim at best. It is what it is in real-world terms.

God-fearing Packers fans are willing to bet a few bucks on the green and gold to win games. If that church-going parishioner is a hot streak, there’s a little extra in the plate – trickle-down economics at its best.

So it is that point spreads are made. The better team is penalized for being the better team – and the bettor team. To get the novice excited about plunking down his or her money, sports books will take bets on games that won’t be played for six months.

http://www.scout.com/nfl/vikings/story/1673628-access-viking-update-free...  They utilize the type of metrics that provide 10,000 simulated games that put in extraneous factors that may or may not apply – Adrian Peterson has a penchant for fumbling in big playoff games, Dez Bryant takes plays off, etc. They also factor in legitimate factors like past performance, future improvement projections, continuity in personnel, etc.

Because of this need to feed the beast, gamblers are given early (early, early) point spreads for games that will happen between Weeks 1-16.

CG Technology, which was utilized by ESPN, has come up with betting lines for Weeks 1-16 of the NFL season. For some reason, the lines are supposed to be valid – yet 2015 numbers aren’t referenced – so Week 17 point spreads aren’t included. The reason cited is that starters may be rested.

To say these are speculative numbers are understating the case – injuries ravage teams, but, in June, those factors are irrelevant.

The projections go simply on the premise that the better team wins.

The verdict?

The Minnesota Vikings head into Week 17 with a 12-2-1 record.

Of their 15 games in the first 16 weeks, the Vikings have only three games that they are not favored. That sounds pretty solid.

That’s the good news.

The bad news is that, aside from being 5½-point dogs at Carolina in Week 3, the only other team that is predicted to beat the Vikings in 2016 is the Green Bay Packers.

In the official NFL debut game at U.S. Bank Stadium In that Week 2 matchup against the Packers, the game was called a Pick ‘Em, implying the Packers are three points better than the Vikings. When Minnesota heads to Lambeau in Week 16, the Vikings are 4½-point dogs.

Other than that, Vikings fans, it’s supposed to be smooth sailing.

According to the numbers, the Vikings run unblemished against everybody else.

Chicago and Detroit? Fuggetaboudit. Because the Bears are the team the Vikings play at home in Week 17, no betting line is available. In Week 8 at Soldier Field, you can get the Bears and 2½ points. The Lions are 2½-point home hounds on Thanksgiving morning and are being given 6½ points when they come to The Bank.

http://www.scout.com/nfl/story/1675506-analyst-names-nfl-s-10-most-talen...  The NFC East? Welcome to the jungle. The once-vaunted Giants are getting six points. By Week 7, NoDak product Carson Wentz may be the storyline. At his new home in Philadelphia against the Vikings, he’s a 1½-point home underdog. Kirk Cousins? You’re facing the same dilemma as Wentz – minus-1½ in front of the natives. The always-hyped Cowboys? They’re jumping on with 4½ points being provided.

The respected NFC West? The Vikings draw Arizona and get to lay 1½-points – the only other visitor to The Bank where the home team isn’t the better team with all things being equal. But laying points is laying points.

The not-so-respected AFC South? Once again, the South will lose, according to CG. In the season opener, the Vikings are giving away three points. In Week 5, the defending division champion Texans are being given six points for their troubles. At Jacksonville in Week 14, the home team gets 2½-points to hold their turf. The next week, the Vikings are obligated to give Andrew Luck four points – do you feel Lucky, punk?

One can only imagine that if the June projections are December realities, even Mike Zimmer would be satisfied with a 12-1-1 record on New Year’s Eve.

For the rest of us? Bet how you like. The metrics don’t lie, right?


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