Newly Updated NFL Strength of Schedule Based on Vegas Win Totals

By Warren Sharp

As last newsletter discussed (sign up here) I updated all win total data just before the start of training camp.  This allows us to see updated Strength of Schedule (SOS) from around the league.  For some teams, the changes aren’t as noticeable.  But in some cases, teams schedules have become measurably easier or more difficult.  Check out the full-sized visualization HERE to see how the current lines compare to the opening lines.

Here’s a look at how the schedules have changed.

Pre-Camp SOS Changes Win Totals

Let’s examine the teams whose schedules have become easier or harder:

►Easier Schedules 

  1. Ravens
  2. Dolphins
  3. Packers
  4. Lions
  5. Cardinals

The team with the easiest shift in SOS is the Ravens.  That is because the Ravens have the benefit of playing the Bills (most bet-against team), the Bucs (3rd most bet-against team), the Panthers (4th most bet-against team), the Steelers twice (6th most bet-against team), the Raiders (7th most bet-against team) and the Bengals twice (9th most bet-against team).

The Dolphins saw their schedule improve thanks to playing the Bills twice.  Additionally, the Dolphins have games against the Raiders and Bengals, both of which rank in the top-10 most bet to the under teams since May.

►Harder Schedules

  1. Redskins
  2. Titans
  3. Jaguars
  4. Eagles
  5. Cowboys

The Redskins moved to having the 2nd most difficult schedule in the NFL after ranking 23rd in the May SOS.  It was the largest jump in the entire league.  And several other teams in the NFC East moved up as well (Eagles & Cowboys).  This was predominantly due to the fact that the Giants have been the most bet-on team in the entire league since May.  Their win total, which opened at 6.5, is now up to 7 and in some spots 7.5.  The Redskins also face the Colts in week 2, who are the 2nd most bet-on team since May.  Additionally, the Redskins face the Saints (5th most bet-on team), the Jaguars (7th most bet-on team) and the Titans (10th most bet-on team).

Meanwhile, the Titans come in with the 2nd most difficult shift, and this was in large part due to facing the Colts twice and the Giants once, the two most bet-on teams this offseason.  Tennessee also must face the Dolphins (the 3rd most bet-on team), the Chargers (6th most bet-on team) and the Jaguars twice (7th most bet-on team).

Most Bet On Teams

You can find the master visualization posted HERE on the ever-important Vegas Odds page at Sharp Football Stats.  This page includes the “Pre-Training Camp Win Total Movement” visualization, which showcases all of the win totals from May to pre-camp, and shows which teams have received positive or negative movement.

Here’s a quick cheat viz for a portion of this data:

Win Total Variance May to July

Here you can see the most bet-on teams (green) and the most bet-against teams (red) based on the movement in their 2018 Win Total from a consensus ranking of 3 of the sharpest Vegas books.  Click the link above to view more data from the Vegas Odds page.