Week 3 of the 2018 NFL preseason is making betting history on multiple fronts.
Earlier this week, we noted that Saturday’s Kansas City Chiefs-Chicago Bears (1 p.m. ET) over/under is flirting with the highest preseason total we’ve ever tracked.
Not to be outdone, the spread for Friday’s Green Bay Packers-Oakland Raiders (10:30 p.m. ET) matchup is also moving into rarefied air.
After opening at a relatively standard Raiders -3, bettors have pounded Oakland up to a 7-point favorite. According to The Action Network’s public betting data, 89% of spread dollars have taken the Raiders.
To put this in perspective, an NFL preseason game hasn’t closed with a spread of seven points since the Houston Texans played the Denver Broncos during the 2014 preseason, according to the Bet Labs database.
A 2011 matchup between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Washington Redskins (-7.5) marks the last time a preseason point spread crept above a touchdown.
The 2011 preseason also included games with closing lines of -8.5 and -9. Here’s a look at the three preseason point spreads in our database, which dates back to 2004, that closed higher than 7.5:
While the sample is very small, NFL preseason favorites of a touchdown or greater are just 9-13 (40.9%) against the spread since 2004.