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Cleveland Browns vs Pittsburgh Steelers
Cleveland was eliminated from the playoffs Sunday afternoon while Pittsburgh still has a chance at reaching the playoffs. The Browns went from a -3.5 point opening favorite and now a two-point away underdog.
We are buying Pittsburgh tonight. The Steelers have their destiny in their own hands but this is a must-win game for Pittsburgh. Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is possibly playing the final home game of his Hall of Fame career. He’s up against a Cleveland defense ranked tenth against the run and eighth this season against the pass. Roethlisberger has thrown seven touchdown passes with five interceptions over his last five starts and is 25-2-1 over his career against the Browns. Running back Najee Harris is closing in on 1000 yards and has scored once over his last five games.
Cleveland has literally nothing left to play for and there are rumors the Browns might sit a couple of starters and likely be the cause for the drastic line movements. Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield has thrown more interceptions (8) than touchdowns (7) over his last five starts and threw four picks on Christmas Day against Green Bay. He’s up against a Steelers defense ranked thirteenth in passing and dead last in rushing yards allowed. That bodes well for Cleveland running back Nick Chubb who has rushed for more than 100 yards twice over his last five games. Consider laying the two points and going with Pittsburgh tonight.
The WolfLine Technical Analysis Take
There are only two methods of analysis for any free market where the market participants are attempting to determine when any asset/security represents an opportunity where there is an irrational relationship between the market price and the value of the asset/security and thus offering an opportunity for profit if there is a call to action/position established.
1) Fundamental Analysis (Which Phil just did for you)
2) Technical Analysis (TA is used universally across the globe by 100s of millions of traders/investors, etc. in the contexts of stocks, options, futures, cryptocurrencies, forex etc. However, TheWolfLIne.com is the only platform/technology in the world to provide TA data and products for the Sports Betting securities markets/asset class)
A more lengthy description (It is kind of long) can be accessed here https://www.thewolfline.com/page/technicalanalysis
There are 3 methods of analysis on TheWolfLine user interface
3) Charts (only applicable to the “spread”/”totals” markets that are binary 50/50 when “juice” is removed. Not applicable to “moneyline” which is a probability market away from 50/50. For example, a moneyline favorite is an In The Money options call/Out of The Money options put and a moneyline underdog is an Out of The Money options call/In the Money options put. More on TheWolfLine options later)
The alerts are a function of the indicators, and the indicators are a function of the charts. The charts represent upticks and downticks just like any other financial market chart where upticks occur when the market becomes overly pessimistic and downticks occur when the market becomes overly optimistic
1) “Spread markets” are like price action, intra-sector pairs trading/swing trading
2) “Totals markets” are like volatility trading
3) “Moneyline markets” are probability markets like ITM and OTM options
Now let’s look at the Cleveland Browns at the Pittsburgh Steelers from a Technical Analysis perspective very briefly and simply.
1) The NFL (all 3 markets) gets the most volume of any of the leagues/sectors in the United States. Because of that, the indicators (0.00-2.00 absolute value) and the alerts (0.00 – 0.79 is gray/not significant. 0.80 – 1.19 is yellow/significant. 1.20 – 1.59 is orange/highly significant . 1.60 – 2.00 is red/extremely significant) are the most heavily weighted of all of the leagues/sectors for “market bubble probability”. That is why I have this study set for “more liquid markets” and “correction trading”. A quick look at TWL grid shows me no alerts and all indicators for all 3 markets basically “fair” (close to 0.00).
2) So I now have zero opinion on this game of potential market irrationality or over-adjustment. I then move to the charts. All that I can see in the charts for price action/spread is a recent very small Consolidation Channel (yes, that’s a real thing) with a bottom of (-4) and a top of (-3). The Steelers are now at the bottom level of (-4) so using serial correlation (also a real thing. it means how an asset(s) correlates with itself), a very tepid case could be made for a “buy signal”/expectation of an “uptick”/covering the spread for Steelers. However, I do not see any confirmation of sell signal data for the Browns.
3) No alerts or even higher non alert indicators for the “total” (volatility) as we can see with the 0.05 indicator in the 20 period window (basically “absolute fairness”)
My personal subjective interpretation of the objective TheWolfLine Technical Analysis data is that I have no reason to make a trade/bet/put on a position here. However, gun to my head, I would buy that Steelers little Consolidation Channel but with a 42 market total (“implied volatility”), if you like the Steelers, makes more sense to buy them on moneyline -135. Remember that sometimes the best trade is no trade at all and deciding to not make a decision is making a decision
Joe made this video yesterday prior to the drastic line movements but the info is still valuable.