History of Betting Double-Digit NFL Win Totals: Determining the Value on the Overs

History of Betting Double-Digit NFL Win Totals: Determining the Value on the Overs article feature image

Photo by Todd Rosenberg/Getty Images. Pictured: Patrick Mahomes

  • What does history tell us about betting the over on double-digit NFL win totals?
  • Evan Abrams studied the 195 teams to have a double-digit regular-season win total in the Wild-Card era (since 1990) to find out.

Welcome to year four of the 17-game schedule in the NFL! Two years ago, I did a study on double-digit win totals in the NFL. Now two years later, we have a larger sample size, but a lot of the same results.

Since 1990, there have been about 5.8 teams with double-digit win totals per season. In the first year of a 17-game schedule, eight teams were listed with a double-digit win total.

This season, there are also nine teams listed with a double-digit win total:

  • Kansas City Chiefs (11.5): Chiefs have gone under their win total in two of the last three years. They were over in eight straight prior to that stretch. Under Andy Reid, the Chiefs are 9-2 to their win total over and Reid overall is 18-6-1 to his win total over with the Chiefs and Eagles.
  • San Francisco 49ers (11.5): The 49ers win total of 11.5 is tied for their highest win total since 1996 (12). Under Kyle Shanahan, the 49ers are 4-3 to their win total over.
  • Baltimore Ravens (11): Ravens had gone under their win total in three straight years entering last year (their longest streak since 1996-98) before they broke the streak winning 13 games. Under John Harbaugh, the Ravens are 9-6-1 to their win total over.
  • Buffalo Bills (10.5): In seven seasons under Sean McDermott, the Bills are 6-1 to their win total over. His only under came in 2021 when Buffalo's win total was set at 11.5 and the Bills won 11 games after winning their final four games of the regular season.
  • Cincinnati Bengals (10.5): The Bengals had their first double-digit win total since 1989 last season and are now in line to do it again. This will be Joe Burrow's 5th season with the Bengals and Cincinnati's win total has increased each year: 5.5, 6.5, 9.5, 11, and 11.5.
  • Dallas Cowboys (10.5): Dallas has gone over their win total in 3 straight seasons, which is the first time it's done that since 1990-95 (6 straight seasons). Over the last 20 years, the Cowboys have the highest average win total for teams to not win a Super Bowl: 9.2.
  • Detroit Lions (10.5): The Lions win total is 10.5 this year. They were the only NFL team without a double-digit win total in the Wild Card era (since 1990) entering 2024.
  • Philadelphia Eagles (10.5): The Eagles will have a double-digit win total for the third straight year this season, they haven't done that since 2003-05. Double-digit win totals haven't been kind to Philly — they've gone under their win total in 7 of the last 8 seasons they had a double-digit win total.
  • Green Bay Packers (10): In fifteen seasons with Aaron Rodgers as their starting QB, the Packers went 7-8 on their win total over. In Jordan Love's first season last year, Green Bay went over their win total of 7.5.

But for any bettor considering taking the over on any of these nine win totals, there's a cautionary tale about the history of doing so.

Here's what my study of the 195 NFL teams to have a double-digit win total during the Wild-Card era (since 1990) revealed.

The History of Double-Digit NFL Win Totals

It's proven extremely difficult for a team to exceed expectations when its win total has been set so high.

Since 1990, only 79 of the 195 teams with double-digit win totals over the past 34 years have exceeded their number. The most alarming aspect of that 42.7% is the fact that those teams have gone under their win total by close to a full two-thirds of a win (-0.63).

Finding Value on Double-Digit NFL Win Totals

Oddsmakers know what they are doing. When setting win totals in the preseason, there is a difference between "expectations" and "great expectations."

There have been 63 teams with a win total of 11 or more since 1990, which averages out to about 1.9 teams per season. Those 63 teams are 30-30-3 to the over in that span. Drilling it down a bit further, between 1990-1999, overs were 12-8-1 in this spot and they are 18-22-2 to the over since 2000, including 3-7 to the over since the 17-game schedule was implemented in 2021.

The advantage comes with teams valued at the 10 and 10.5 mark. The 132 teams with such win totals are 76-49-7 (60.8%) to the under, going under the win total by almost a full win (-0.85).

The 17-Game Schedule Impact

Speaking of the 2021 schedule change to 17 games. Let's do a small deep dive on the 3-year history.

To fully understand the impact of adding an extra game to the schedule and how that affects win totals, let's look at the results of the last few years for all 32 teams.

Total Market Wins

In 2021, if you added up every preseason win total, the total wins in the market equaled 277 wins — the sport itself had 272 regular season games.

Between 2018 and 2020, with a 16-game schedule, the average total wins in the preseason market was 260.8 (with it being its highest in 2020 at 262.5) — the sport itself had 256 regular season games.

For reference, since the 277 figure in 2021, we've seen 272.5 in 2022, 273 in 2023 and 273 this season — which is much more in line with the total wins for the season.

Phone With the Action App Open
The must-have app for NFL bettors
The best NFL betting scoreboard
Free picks from proven pros
Live win probabilities for your bets

How to Bet the Outliers

With the extra game on the schedule, one interesting trend since 2021 we will be tracking moving forward is how outlier win totals perform.

The Good Teams

Let's start with just the double-digit win totals. Since 2021, they are 12-15 to the over, with each team going under their win total by an average of 0.37 wins/team per season. If you compare that to the three years prior (2018-20) and then the three years prior to that (2015-17), the win percentage for overs are very similar. Difference is, the margins are getting tighter with the extra game on the schedule.

2021-23: 12-15 to the over (-0.37)
2018-20: 6-9-1 to the over (-0.82)
2015-17: 6-10 to the over (-0.66)

One thing to look at when dissecting these double-digit win totals is consistency of expectations. Let's look at the 49ers, Chiefs and Ravens. For all three of those teams, this will be either the fifth or sixth straight year they've had a double-digit win total.

On the other end of the spectrum, the Lions and Packers will have a double-digit win total for the first time under this roster/QB — especially with Detroit being at the peak of their franchises expectations.

Here is some data on how teams have performed on their win total based on how many consecutive years they've had a win total of 10 or more:

The other angle worth looking for when it comes to the "good teams" and the top of the league is first time teams with high win totals. In the 17-game era, we've only had three teams with a win total of 11 or more, coming off a season where they had a win total of less than 10: 2023 Bengals, 2021 Bills, 2021 Buccaneers.

The Bucs had a win total of 12 and won 13 games, while both the Bills and Bengals went under by two-plus games. Going a step further, in the 17-game era, we've only had four teams with a win total of 11 or more in their second consecutive year with a double-digit win total. Those four teams went 1-3 to the over, with two of those unders cashing by three whole games.

Beware of teams with very high win totals who may not have already been in that spot recently.

The Bad Teams

Let's take a second now and look at some lower win totals for a second to try and get some comparison.

In recent history, betting the under on low win totals has shown a slight edge, even with what seems like an outlier year in 2022. Since 2021, win totals of under 9 were 21-25 to the over and going back to 2018, they are 48-55-4 to the over. Looking at win totals of under 8, they are 31-40-3 to the over since 2018 as well — all slight edges, but all pointing under.


Under 9: 7-11 to the over
Under 8: 5-8 to the over


Under 9: 9-6 to the over
Under 8: 9-2 to the over


Under 9: 5-8 to the over
Under 8: 3-7 to the over

Finally, it is worth looking at the worst of the worst. Since 1990, 26 teams have had a win total of under 5 and those teams are 14-10-2 to the over, going over their respective win totals by 0.79 wins per team. Since 2020 though, we've seen a bit of a reversal with win totals of under 5 sitting at 4-1-1 to the under.

At the moment, we don't have a team with a win total of under 5, with the New England Patriots being the closest at 5 and the Carolina Panthers at 5.5. Since 2017, this would be just the second year without a win total below 5 (2018). The interesting note about 2018? Double-digit win totals went 4-1-1 to the under that year with a more balanced league.

The Top of the Class

Since 1990, no team has had more double-digit win total seasons than the 49ers (19); the Green Bay Packers and New England Patriots are right behind them with 17 each.

One category San Francisco still sits behind New England in is double-digit win total overs. The Patriots lead the way with ten such seasons since 1990, while the 49ers are at nine, with no other team having more than six.

The unique part of the Patriots win total history in the Wild Card era is the substantial difference between the Bill Belichick/Tom Brady years as opposed to the years the Patriots were without them.

Under Belichick, New England was 15-6-1 to the over on their win total, including 10-3-2 to the over when they had a double-digit win total in the Belichick era — going over their win total by more than a full win per year (+1.1). In the 18 total seasons with Brady as its starting QB, New England went 14-2-2 to its win total over.

In the Wild Card era without Tom Brady as their starter, the Patriots are 5-10-2 to their win total over.

When looking at which of the 195 teams with a double-digit win total over the past three decades exceeded expectations the most, you have to point to the obvious: the 2007 Patriots. They went 16-0 that regular season to go over their win total by 4.5 games — the largest margin since 1990.

Only three teams have exceeded their win total by 4 wins or more: 2007 Patriots, 2022 Eagles and 2009 Colts.

The Bottom Of The Class

Entering the 2023 season, only two franchises had yet to enter a season with a double-digit win total in the Wild Card era: Cincinnati Bengals and Detroit Lions.

In 2023, Cincinnati closed with a win total of 11, breaking that streak. It finished with 9 wins after Joe Burrow only started ten games.

Now in 2024, the Detroit Lions are here to break the last streak with a win total of 10.5.

Ironically enough, in the 32 years since 1990, both the Bengals and the Lions have an identical 19 unders and 14 overs in that span.

The Lions and Bengals are now tied with the Bears with just one double-digit win total, with Chicago's one coming back in 2007 when it had a win total of 10 and finished with 7 wins.

When it comes to the worst single-season, there's really only one team that's earned the scarlet letter: the 2013 Houston Texans.

The Texans won 12 games in 2012 for the first time in franchise history, also making the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time — things were looking up in Houston.

Houston won its first two games in 2013 against the Chargers and Titans … then the wheels came off.

The Texans lost out, becoming the first team in NFL history to start 2-0 and lose 14 consecutive games within the same season. They finished eight games below their win total — the largest margin in the Wild-Card era.

Note: All win total data via Sports Odds History

How would you rate this article?

This site contains commercial content. We may be compensated for the links provided on this page. The content on this page is for informational purposes only. Action Network makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the information given or the outcome of any game or event.