Saturday, February 02, 2008

More on Brady passing TD props

Some people have asked me where I estimated Brady's average passing TDs in the Super Bowl. When I posted some of my bets earlier in the week, I was using around 2.65. That made Under 2.5 +170 look like a good bet.

But since then, a few things has happened. First, the total has gone up. That means slightly more points for the Patriots. Second, the team total for the Patriots is 34 at most books. That means Brady should be expected to pass for slightly more TDs. Lastly, there has been rumors from some seemingly credible sources that the Patriots will be passing much more often early in the game. I don't know if that's true or not, but I wouldn't discount it. So, let's assume for a second that Brady's estimated average TD should be 3.0. That's a big move from 2.65. What does that do to the Under 2.5 wager? Using the Poisson Distribution, Under 2.5 would be worth +136. +170 is still a good bet given that scenario. Of course, Under 3 is probably a better bet, but it is all price relative. Under 3 -119 is equal to Under 2.5 +136.

So did I lose value on this bet? Probably. But I also gained value on other bets that was pro-Brady. Bets such as:

1Q Brady TD Pass Yes +140 +124
4Q Brady TD Pass Yes -120 -130
Brady TD Pass before INT -280 -364
NE's first TD is pass -210 -212
First TD is Passing TD -170 -187

The first number is the price I bet at, the second is the value when I also thought Under 2.5 TD passes by Brady was worth +170. Those values should all increase now.

If Brady is going to throw for 4 or more TDs (remember, I don't have just Under 2.5, I also have Under 3 and Under 3.5...if he throws for exactly 3, I'm ok), then the other 5 related bets will have a better chance of winning than the prices I paid for them.

To sum it up, I thought I had edge in all of these bets. Even if I am wrong on one of them, many of the bets hedge each other. It is one thing to try to identify a positive-EV bet, and another to try to identify multiple positive-EV bets that hedge each other.

Yes, I could have waited and probably gotten a better price on the Brady Under 2.5 bet..maybe the Under 3 bet also (but probably I wouldn't have gotten a better price on the Under 3.5). But if I waited, I would probably also have missed value on the other bets, as some of those have moved to. I know the 1Q and 4Q bets are no longer available, and the Brady -1.5 vs Manning is mostly +160 in the books I see.

If I wanted to take on more risk, I would have taken the other props and left myself naked on the Brady Under 2.5 to bet now. There are two reasons I didn't do that:

1. I'm not in Vegas anymore, I left Friday. Not being a Vegas resident has some disadvantages, one is not having the ability to bet into possible softer lines as the game approaches.

2. My entire portfolio shows that I am rooting for NE to win the game. If they win by a blowout, I do well. So in essence, even with the Under 2.5 TD passes on Brady, I'm still rooting for him to do really well. Well, at least financially I'm rooting for him.