Patriots-Chiefs Vegas Report: Are Sportsbooks Rooting on New England Again?
David Butler II, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Rob Gronkowski
- Last weekend, the unheard of happened as sportsbooks in Las Vegas were rooting for the New England Patriots at home in a playoff game.
- Will bookmakers need the Patriots to cover again in the AFC Championship game against Kansas City (-3)?
LAS VEGAS — Last weekend the betting world was turned on its head when sportsbooks needed the New England Patriots to cover at home in the playoffs. The Patriots did just that in a 41-28 victory over the Chargers.
“I don’t think we’ve ever needed the Patriots at home in a playoff game,” Jeff Stoneback, a sportsbook director at the Mirage, said. “Fortunately, we needed them Sunday, and it was one of those games we didn’t even have to sweat!”
One bettor at MGM lost two separate $100,000 bets, one on the Chargers +4 and the other on the first-half moneyline.
Are bettors back on the Patriots after their clinical win?
Not so fast, according to John Murray, the sportsbook director at the Westgate SuperBook.
“We have seen sharp money come in on the Chiefs, specifically on the money line at -145 and -150,” Murray noted. “Although we did take a five-figure bet on Patriots at +3. Another one on the total under 57. I think the point spread and moneyline for the Chiefs are both too cheap.”
The Chiefs are seeing a decent amount of support from bettors at the Golden Nugget, as well.
“Kansas City is getting lot of public support from the lower $50-$100 bettors. It was enough action for me to move the line from -3 -120 to -3 -125,” Tony Miller, the executive director of the sportsbook at the Golden Nugget, explained. “We did get some buy back on the Patriots but we took a pretty large bet from a VIP who took the Chiefs at -3, too. Other than that, the accumulation is all over the Chiefs. But the sharps still seem to be on the Patriots. As far as ticket count goes it’s definitely lopsided towards KC but as far as money goes, it’s pretty balanced out.”
The action is a little more balanced at William Hill, according to director of trading Nick Bogdanovich.
“So far there’s a slight edge towards the Chiefs here. Not by much though. We’ve written a lot of moneyline wagers on the Patriots but interestingly we still have more moneyline liability to the Chiefs,” Bogdanovich explained.
Jason Simbal, the vice president of risk management at CG Technology, said that there is a chance their line could actually dip back down to the opener, which was Chiefs -2.5, because of New England money.
“This line could go down to Chiefs -2.5. In fact that’s where the line opened for us. But the sharps laid the 2.5 right away, like within minutes of the line coming out. Then we went to -2.5 -120 and they laid that as well,” Simbal exaplained. “So then we go to -3 and since we’ve been there, we haven’t had any sharp action on the Chiefs. The public has been more on the Patriots in this one and mostly on the moneyline.”