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Sports Insights' contrarian betting strategy for Week 8 of the NFL

REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

Home-field advantage in the NFL is typically assumed to be worth about three points to the spread, although there are exceptions. For example, the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks have exceptional home crowds, while the Jacksonville Jaguars and Miami Dolphins are renowned for their poor turnouts. All home-field advantages are not created equal and, more importantly, they are almost always overvalued by casual bettors.

Since the start of the 2003 season, home teams have covered the spread at a 48.8 percent clip. That's hardly surprising for weekly readers who have heard this point reiterated ad nauseum, but bettors may not realize than the edge in picking the road team only exists because of divisional rivalries.

After a slow start to the season, my system picks rebounded with a 4-1 performance in Week 7. Using Bet Labs data analysis software, I'll look to continue that success with a new system that has gone