Last Updated: 2019-09-14
Week 2 of the NFL season began on Thursday, but it begins on Sunday for most of the contestants in the Westgate SuperContest. Locking in on five picks is hard enough without rushing to get all five selections in before that Thursday Night Football game kicks off. That never stops players from picking it, but the overwhelming majority of the field waits until the last possible minute to make decisions.
Those that have followed us and our SuperContest progress over the last few years may think that I’m exaggerating about how difficult the process is to whittle the card down to five selections. With no margin for error in a contest like this, you have to look at every minute detail. With a personal bankroll, hitting 55% in an NFL season is outstanding. With a contest entry, hitting 55% in the NFL is a pat on the back and about 7% below where you need to be to have a chance at making money.
Yet, there is something endearing about all of that agonizing and it brings us back to the SuperContest year after year. Both of our BangTheBook entries checked in at 3-2 in Week 1. Good, but not great. You need a lot of great weeks to cash in the SuperContest, but having good weeks surely helps as well.
Our entries matched on Bills, Colts, and Texans last week and those were the three winners. The four losers were Panthers, Lions, Broncos, and Giants. Overall, the field had more losers than winners in Week 1 with a win percentage of 49.94%. The consensus checked in at 5-11, but the top-five consensus was 3-2, with the three most popular picks all coming through. That is why the field was just slightly below 50% despite the poor effort overall.
Once again, the rules are simple. You pick five NFL sides against stale spreads that come out on Wednesday night. The most points at the end wins. You get a point for a win and a half-point for a push. You get zero points for a loss. Sixty entrants had zero losses in Week 1. There are 3,328 entries in the SuperContest this year, which is yet another record. Eight percent of the $1500 buy-in is taken for admin fees, so the total prize pool is $4,592,640 and the winner will get $1,469,644.80 before taxes. The top 100 get paid and so does the winner of the Mini Contest from Week 15-17.
Last year’s cut-off for the money was 53 points and the lowest possible winning percentage to make the money was 62.4%. The bar is very high in this contest.
Here are our Week 2 selections:
BangTheBook.com (3-2-0, 60%)
16 Jaguars +9
17 Steelers -4
25 Rams -2.5
27 Bears -2.5
31 Browns -2.5
BangTheBook Podcast (3-2-0, 60%)
4 Colts +3
17 Steelers -4
19 Bengals -2
29 Eagles -1.5
31 Browns -2.5
Last week the entries had three matching picks. This week, there are only two. It was simply too hard to pass on the line value with the Browns. The Browns are -6.5 at time of writing in the betting market, as the Sam Darnold news broke after the SuperContest lines were released. Early in the contest, you have to just try and pick winners and stale line value, in theory, should lead to an increased chance of a winner. The other matching pick is the Steelers.
In the Circa Million, our two entries are opposite on a game, but there are no competing games on the SuperContest card. One underdog appears on each card and short favorites make up the other picks.
You can hear BangTheBook Radio host Adam Burke’s thoughts every Friday on the show regarding his SuperContest picks for the BangTheBook Podcast entry and the BangTheBook-2 entry in the Circa Million.
We’ll be doing a Saturday SuperContest preview article and a Tuesday recap article all season long, so be sure to check those out.
Here are the spreads, pick counts, and consensus for Week 2 of the 2019 SuperContest (Gold count in parentheses):
1 Panthers* 311 (7)
2 Buccaneers (+6.5) 93 (6) WIN
3 Titans* 711 (21)
4 Colts (+3) 455 (16)
5 Chargers 495 (9)
6 Lions* (+2.5) 594 (37) (Gold #2)
7 Bills 492 (17)
8 Giants* (+1.5) 439 (14)
9 Ravens* 266 (8)
10 Cardinals (+13) 367 (8)
11 Patriots 198 (3)
12 Dolphins* (+18.5) 304 (14)
13 Cowboys 966 (tie consensus #2) (25) (tie Gold #5)
14 Redskins* (+5) 277 (12)
15 Texans* 206 (11)
16 Jaguars (+9) 501 (21)
17 Steelers* 966 (tie consensus #2) (25) (tie Gold #5)
18 Seahawks (+4) 296 (8)
19 Bengals* 804 (consensus #4) (23)
20 49ers (+2) 300 (19)
21 Packers* 421 (19)
22 Vikings (+3) 687 (33) (Gold #3)
23 Chiefs 616 (14)
24 Raiders* (+7) 353 (16)
25 Rams* 785 (consensus #5) (22)
26 Saints (+2.5) 374 (17)
27 Bears 618 (21)
28 Broncos* (+2.5) 533 (24)
29 Eagles 374 (7)
30 Falcons* (+1.5) 729 (30) (Gold #4)
31 Browns 2053 (consensus #1) (71) (Gold #1)
32 Jets* (+2.5) 46 (2)
The top-five consensus is the Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, Pittsburgh Steelers, Cincinnati Bengals, and Los Angeles Rams. The Browns are officially the most selected side ever in the SuperContest and also have the highest percentage ever of entrants with 61.7% of the field on Cleveland.
For the second straight week, the consensus is a loser on the Thursday Night Football game. I don’t have the exact number in front of me, but the consensus was very poor on the Thursday Night game last season. You also run the risk of missing out on some news or some stale line value by getting all five plays in to use the short-week game. Rarely will we do it and I only remember one time that a TNF game had a top-five consensus pick over the last 4-5 years.
The top-five consensus in the Gold is the Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings, Atlanta Falcons, and a tie for fifth between the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers.
Seventy-one contestants took the Browns, making them far and away the most selected side and the side with the highest percentage in SuperContest Gold history.
Follow along with our SuperContest picks every week at BangTheBook.com in this Saturday article and with the BangTheBook Podcast entry every Friday during the Westgate SuperContest Selections segment.
<< Previous PostNext Post >>