Has the Packers vs. Lions Spread Moved Too Much?

Has the Packers vs. Lions Spread Moved Too Much? article feature image

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Aaron Rodgers

  • The Packers have moved from -6 to -3.5 against the Lions on Monday Night Football.
  • Using Bet Labs, let's analyze how NFL teams perform in primetime games following big line moves.

The Packers opened as 6-point favorites for tonight’s game against the Lions (8:15 p.m. ET, ESPN). Despite the game taking place in Lambeau and Green Bay having a superior record, the line has moved from Detroit +6 to +3.5.

Injuries help explain the line movement. Aaron Rodgers will be without his favorite weapon Davante Adams, who will miss a second game in a row with a toe injury.

Safety Darnell Savage and tight end Robert Tonyan have also been ruled out, while corner Tony Brown is doubtful.

Odds as of Monday at 9:30 a.m. ET and via PointsBet, where Action Network users can access an exclusive promotion to get a 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150).

The line movement favors the Lions, but can gamblers trust Matt Patricia’s team to cover?

Lions vs. Packers Betting Analysis

History says no.

What are you doing on Monday, Thursday and Sunday night? Watching football of course. As a result, primetime games like Monday Night Football are among the most heavily bet contests every week.

A large line move in these matchups is often an overreaction by the public to a piece of information like an injury or poor recent play.

It has been profitable to go against big line moves in primetime games. Since 2003, a $100 bettor would have won $2,333 backing teams that see the line move at least two points against them (+3 to +5 or -3 to -1, for example) according to Bet Labs.

According to William Bernanke of CG Technology in Las Vegas, non-quarterbacks have little impact on the spread when out. Even the worst quarterbacks in the league are worth more to the betting line than the best receivers and running backs.

The Cheeseheads will be without one of the best receivers in the league and a few other contributors, but the line movement is an overreaction. Sean Koerner’s NFL Power Ratings agree. According to his numbers, the Packers should be 5.5-point favorites.

History, oddsmakers  and power ratings all suggest the Packers are being undervalued by the betting market. The market is moving against the Packers, but look for savvy bettors to back Aaron Rodgers & Co.

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