NFL Wild Card Picks: Sharps Wasting No Time Betting Bills vs. Texans & Vikings vs. Saints
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Deshaun Watson.
- Early money is already moving lines for this weekend's Bills vs. Texans and Vikings vs. Saints wild card games.
- Learn how sharps are betting these NFL playoff matchups.
It’s been less than 24 hours since lines opened for this weekend’s NFL wild card action, but sharp bettors are already taking a bite and influencing lines for two games.
Here’s how they moved opening numbers for Bills vs. Texans and Vikings vs. Saints.
Odds as of Monday at 1 p.m. ET and via FanDuel, where Action Network users get a risk-free bet up to $500.
Buffalo Bills vs. Houston Texans
4:35 p.m. ET Saturday | ABC/ESPN
After laying an egg at home to the Colts last year in the Wild Card round, the Texans are hoping to bounce back against a defensively-sound Bills team.
Buffalo is the worst offensive team that made the playoffs, but could stifle Houston’s weapons with its elite defense. Houston has some firepower, but it also had trouble scoring at times, especially in the first half.
With an opener of 41.5, it’s clear the oddsmakers don’t expect a shootout. Neither does the public, as more than 60% of early bets are on the under.
Sharps, though … well, what do they think?
The 38% of tickets on the over account for more than 90% of the cash — a huge discrepancy that indicates very large wagers have come in on the over.
There was also a Steam Move that struck the over on Monday at 12 p.m. ET, sending the line up from 41.5 to 42.5.
Forty-two isn’t a terribly important number in NFL over/under betting, but 41, 43 and 44 most certainly are. It will take another significant wave of sharp activity to get the number up to 43 around the market.
Sharp Angle: Over (moved from 41.5 to 42.5)
Minnesota Vikings vs. New Orleans Saints
1:05 p.m. ET Sunday | FOX
Another game, another over being struck by sharps … and everyone else, too.
While Buffalo-Houston has the sharps and public split, this game has bettors of all types hand-in-hand and absolutely head over heels in love with the over.
More than 90% of bets and dollars are on this over, which has also been hit with a Steam Move.
After opening at 47, it is up to at least 48 around the market and even 48.5 at several books.
Something that may be factoring into these decisions is the fact that bettors do not need to worry about winter weather for either game, as they’re both played in domes.
Historically, taking the over in playoff dome games has been very profitable, though the sample size is not exactly huge at 42 games.
Since 2003, these overs have gone 29-13 per Bet Labs, cashing by nearly four points on average. Note that last year was actually the least profitable season for this trend though, as overs went just 1-4.
If pros and Joes continue to bet in harmony, oddsmakers may be forced to push this total up towards 50. It’s still very early, so be on the lookout for buyback on the under if this total gets too high.
Sharp Angle: Over (moved from 47 to 48/48.5)