The NFL has made it a mission to turn the 2019 Pro Bowl betting matchup into something more than just a glorified, meaningless, celebration. They’ve sort of succeeded? The last two Pro Bowls have been dink and dunk contests both won by the AFC, 20-13 in 2016 and 24-23 in 2017, and each has turned the clock back on the idea that the OVER in the Pro Bowl is guaranteed money like it used to be.
You want to know how crazy Super Bowl LIII is supposed to be? It actually has a higher total than the 2019 Pro Bowl! What is this world coming to?
The emphasis on offense this season could lead to a much higher scoring Pro Bowl, though. The AFC boasts some serious arms with Patrick Mahomes starting and Deshaun Watson and Andrew Luck coming off the bench. Mahomes will dart the ball all over the field while playing. Watson and Luck will likely do the same, with the latter a pivotal force towards the end of what’s been a close matchup in recent years.
In the NFC, the emphasis should be on rushing the football. Russell Wilson, Mitch Trubisky, and Dak Prescott head to Orlando in place of Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, and Jared Goff. The three replacement players aren’t known for heaving the ball 60 yards downfield the way the AFC quarterbacks are.
2019 NFL Pro Bowl Betting
AFC vs NFC
Sunday, January 27th – Camping World Stadium – 3:30pm ET
Line: Pick ’em (55.5)
AFC Counting On Mr. Luck
Tom Brady’s playing on Feb. 3. Patrick Mahomes will get some playing time, but he came up limping after a few plays in last week’s AFC Championship. Mahomes might try to take it easy on Sunday. He put in a lot of work just a week ago during a losing effort against the Patriots.
One player who will go all out should is Andrew Luck. The Colts quarterback missed all of 2017. He led Indianapolis to the playoffs this season. Heck, he even led them to a playoff win. Luck should have a lot of football left in the tank.
With Luck playing the majority of snaps late in the game, the AFC should easily move the football. They’ll utilize their running backs – James Conner, Melvin Gordon, and Lamar Miller – but they won’t use those guys as much as calling plays for Luck to throw it all over the field to a core of receivers that is ultimately way more talented than what he has on the Colts.
It helps that the Chargers’ coaching staff will manage AFC players. LAC used Gordon almost as much in the passing game as they did in the rushing game this season.
NFC Could Dominate on the Ground
While the AFC will throw the ball, the NFC might go the operate direction. Although Todd Gurley will play in the Super Bowl, the NFC still has three excellent running backs in Saquon Barkley, Alvin Kamara, and Ezekiel Elliott.
There’s a good chance the NFC decides to hand the ball off primarily to Barkley and Elliott. One of the reasons is because the Cowboys’ coaching staff will stand on the NFC sideline. Dallas is a run first team.
Kamara will get some carries, but the NFC might just decide to use Alvin as their third down running back since he’s the best pass catcher of the three.
2019 NFL Pro Bowl Betting Analysis and Pick
There are some trends to consider. First, the dog tends to cover. The underdog in the NFL Pro Bowl has gone 12-3 ATS since 2004. Not only does the underdog cover, but the underdog also wins on the moneyline.
In the NFL Pro Bowl, the underdog is 9-5 SU in the last 14 renewals. When it comes to the total, under might be the play. The under is 8-7 O/U in the last 15 Pro Bowls.
The best trend is on the underdog, but with even money on both sides and zero spread to factor in, you have to assume that the roster with more explosive playmakers is going to take the victory. The AFC simply has better pivots under center. Not only that, but the NFC won’t show the vertical passing game with their quarterbacks while three of the liveliest arms in the NFL play for the AFC.
Remember, this is an all-star game and you shouldn’t be leveraging a ton on the action. Just lay enough to pique your interest.
2019 NFL Pro Bowl Betting Free Pick: AFC -110