The league’s new helmet rule threw oddsmakers for a loop in Week 1 of the 2018 NFL preseason as frequent flags led to increased scoring, evidenced by 11 of 16 games going over the total.
In Week 2, oddsmakers made drastic adjustments to their over/unders which resulted in unders going 10-6.
Looking ahead at preseason Week 3 betting lines, Saturday’s matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and Chicago Bears (1 p.m. ET) includes a staggering over/under of 48.
While that number doesn’t seem overly dramatic compared to typical regular season totals, it’s massive for the preseason.
According to Bet Labs’ archived NFL betting data, the Chiefs-Bears over/under of 48 is tied with the highest preseason total we’ve ever tracked, the 2014 game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Philadelphia Eagles.
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Here’s a look at the highest preseason totals in the Bet Labs database, which includes closing lines from Pinnacle since 2004:
Pinnacle initially opened the Chiefs-Bears total at 44.5 before an onslaught of over money pushed the number up to 48.
According to The Action Network’s proprietary public betting data, 66% of tickets and 86% of dollars wagered on the total have come in on the over.
This isn’t surprising after highlights of Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes’ 69-yard rainmaker to wide receiver Tyreek Hill became the hottest topic of conversation following Week 2 of the preseason.