USA Today Sports. Pictured: David Johnson
- Vegas sportsbooks report that the Seahawks-Cardinals game could be loom large for bettors and bookmakers.
- The bookies are also expecting heavy public action on the Patriots against the Dolphins.
LAS VEGAS — While the most popular game in Vegas for Week 4 NFL is quite obvious (Chiefs-Broncos), a far less noteworthy matchups is also getting bookmakers’ attention: Seahawks-Cardinals.
Yup, you read correctly. What we would assume to be the most irrelevant game of the weekend is actually taking big action at two major Sportsbooks around town.
According to Tony Miller, executive director of the Golden Nugget Sports Book, “This game is getting so much attention more so because Arizona is a dumpster fire and it doesn’t appear the betting public has any faith in Josh Rosen just yet.
“We’re at Seattle -3 -120 and all the money is coming in on the Seahawks. The reason for so much money is likely all of the parlays and teasers that include this game. We’re going to be pretty big Cardinals fans this week.”
This is the second-most bet game of the week at William Hill as of Friday with 88% of the money wagered going to Seattle.
Sharp money backing the Jets
Another game getting some sharp attention far away from the betting public: Jets at Jacksonville (-7.5). Most of the sportsbook directors I spoke with wanted to discuss this game more than others.
Jeff Sherman, manager at the Westgate SuperBook, said earlier this week, “I wanted to set this line around Jacksonville -7.5, but we ended up opening at -9 and we saw some early Jets money which pushed the line to -7.5.
“It’s not surprising. Even though you have that teaser range there, once you get sharp support you quickly get away from that number. So when you see the line go to -8 or -8.5, the teaser players want that line as much above -7 as they can get, but as long as it’s above -7 they’re fine with it and will hit it hard.”
>> Sign up for The Action Network’s daily newsletter to get the smartest conversation delivered into your inbox each morning.
At the Golden Nugget, Miller says the betting is going one direction. “We’re definitely rooting for the Jets because it’s been all Jags money here. We’re currently at -7.5 and we expect it will go up to -8 very soon.”
At William Hill, they’re only seeing 51% of the money wagered on the game going to Jacksonville. This could be a key game with the sharps.
0-3 Houston has value
Texans-Colts is an obscure but interesting game drawing the public’s attention. This line ranges from Indy +1 to -1 depending where you look around town and has been all over the place all week. According to Sherman, this line has fluctuated from the moment it came out. “We tested the waters early opening Houston at -1 but the other books went for Indy -2.5 to -3.
“We stayed on the short side of that and Tuesday the line came crashing down to Colts -1. That puts us in a good position. We really like Houston here and we think it’s an overreaction given how their season has started. Honestly, we’re not that high on Indy and to some extent the public feels the same way.”
Miller is a bit perplexed by this line movement as the week has progressed. “The Texans opened as the favorite around town but now, depending where you look, the number is different. Wiseguys have been betting the Texans [thus supporting Sherman’s position]. However, we’re getting more Colts action over Houston at the moment.”
At William Hill, a majority of the tickets written (72%) are on the Colts, but only 57% of the money is on Indy, suggesting the Texans are getting fewer but larger wagers. Another key sharp game.
As far as the games we expect to be the focus of attention this Sunday, Patriots (-7) vs Dolphins is getting a lot of public action, which means it will be a key game for parlays and teasers with most of the money still on New England. But that wasn’t the case early in the week. “We posted an early line of Patriots -9.5 before the Sunday Night game,” Sherman said.
“After the game we quickly dropped the line to Pats -7 and we saw a bit of Miami support and the line dropped to -6.5 in most books, which surprised me a little. It seems clear the sputtering Patriots offense is causing some people to lose faith quickly in New England.”
As the week has progressed it’s no surprise money is coming back on the Pats, according to Miller, “The public is still on the Patriots here. Especially when the line is around -7, the bettors know they can tease that down to pick ’em or -.5.”
“They’re going to continue to be all over the Patriots at that number. But I honestly do like how Miami is playing. I think [the Dolphins] could stay within the -7 here. We’re definitely going to need Miami to cover.”
At William Hill, they actually might be rooting for the Patriots this week as they’re currently getting 63% of the money bet on Miami.
As stated earlier, the game of the week from an action perspective will be the Monday night game with the Chiefs (-4.5) at the Broncos.
William Hill’s director of trading, Nick Bogdanovich, said early in the week how excited he was about this game. “I expect this to be a high-scoring game, but I can’t believe this this total is getting supported at 55.5.”
It has since dropped to 54-55 around town.
“I look at that number and Denver hasn’t shown me to be a high-scoring offense,” Bogdanovich continued. “I mean wow, that’s just crazy. We opened at KC -4 and it’s steadily going up. Kansas City looks unstoppable. That should be a monster decision for us Monday no matter how Sunday goes,” he added.
Currently the game is taking 17% of their action with an interesting 79% of the tickets written on Kansas City, but only 60% of the money being bet on the Chiefs suggesting there’s a little bit of Denver support there.
At the Golden Nugget, Miller is seeing all the money on the Chiefs. “I can assure you, with the way betting is going right now we’re going to need the Broncos in a big way as a home dog.”
“There will be so many liabilities with KC teasers and parlays and especially the over. It’s definitely all over money right now and we expect that to continue because of what [Chiefs quarterback Patrick] Mahomes has done with this team.
“KC also can give up some points too. I expect to see the ball in the air for most of the game. I’d like to believe this number is still too high, but KC has so many offensive weapons. I don’t know if Denver can slow [the Chiefs] down.”