Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes
- Sunday's AFC Championship Game between the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs (6:40 p.m. ET, CBS) is wreaking havoc on betting lines, specifically the over/under.
- Oddsmakers moved the total because of the forecast, and bettors have been more than happy to oblige by steadily playing the under.
As recently as 11:25 p.m. ET Monday, just 31% of money wagered on the New England Patriots-Kansas City Chiefs total had come in on the under. At the time, the over/under sat at 57 after opening at 58.5 on Sunday afternoon.
However, the early weather forecast for the AFC Championship Game started gaining attention from mainstream sports media members throughout the day Monday, specifically surrounding the bitter cold expected at Arrowhead Stadium.
With the potential for frigid temperatures making its way to NFL fans, and therefore casual sports bettors, the Patriots-Chiefs over/under fell to 56 on Monday afternoon.
According to D.J. Fields, an Odds Consultant for BookMaker.eu, Monday’s move to 56 was solely to get ahead of the forecast and not a reaction to sharp money.
“The move down to 56 was based purely on an early weather report describing arctic conditions in Kansas City, and the expectation that this will be one of the coldest games played there,” Fields told The Action Network.
Unsurprisingly, oddsmakers were correct in anticipating under action which has kicked the total down to 55, at the time of writing.
The Action Network’s public betting data is now reporting 60% of money wagered on the total taking the under, up significantly from the 31% late Monday night.
With the forecast looking historically cold, don’t be surprised to see recreational bettors continue playing this under with the expectation that the weather will result in fewer points scored.
However, after being assigned homework by Bill Simmons on The Bill Simmons Podcast, The Action Network’s data guru John Ewing analyzed over/under for every cold weather playoff game since 1985 and found that these games actually trend toward the over.
There’s still plenty of time for the AFC Championship forecast to mature, so be sure to download The Action Network’s mobile app to track live odds and betting percentages for both NFL conference championship matchups.