Week 16 NFL Betting Notes: How the Jets-Browns Spread Has Moved, Titans-Packers

Week 16 NFL Betting Notes: How the Jets-Browns Spread Has Moved, Titans-Packers article feature image
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Jason Miller/Getty Images. Pictured: Jarvis Landry.

How do you adjust for a game in which a team loses its top-four wide receivers … the day before?

That unprecedented situation happened Saturday, when news circulated that the Cleveland Browns would be without starters Jarvis Landry and Rashard Higgins and backups Donovan Peoples-Jones and KhaDarel Hodge due to COVID-19 contact tracing.

“We’ve never had this situation before,” the Circa’s Chris Bennett said. “How much are these four wide receivers worth?”

At the start of Saturday morning, books had the Browns at as much as 10-point favorites.

“When word started circulating that some players might be out, I lowered the limits for Saturday,” Bennett said.

Typically, when the games get to Saturday, Circa limits are $30,000 per bet. But Bennett said he was concerned that information would come fast and furious.

It did.

“We immediately moved the game down to +8.5, even though some books decided to take it down,” Bennett said. “We took a Jets bet there and moved to +8. We took another bet and then moved it to +7.5, but -115, and then down to +7 (-115) and then to +6.5. And that’s where we started getting Browns money again.”

Bennett said he’s not sure how heavily bettors will come on Sunday.

“I mean, the public perception is that the Jets are massive locks now,” Bennett said. “But I can see the Browns’ offensive line controlling the line of scrimmage and them running forever.”

If this becomes a popular game to bet, Bennett thinks the Jets moneyline bets will roll in.

“They beat the Rams last week, so the thought is that they can win, and now that they won one, they’re going to try to win them all,” he said.

The Action Network PRO Report shows that 78 percent of the bets were on the Browns at 6pm on Saturday. By 11pm ET, that number had dropped, but not precipitously — to 70 percent.

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If there’s another game that’s really fun to talk about, it’s Titans vs. Packers on Sunday Night Football, where we have a real weather situation.

These are two teams that certainly could put up more than the original total of 56 points.

“This could easily be a 41-38 game in perfect conditions,” Bennett said. “And I still wouldn’t be surprised if they did it.”

Nonetheless, the line is coming down as the public is buying into the weather, with the Action PRO Report having 61 percent of the money on the under.

So how bad is the weather?

There’s projected to be some pregame snow, with it expected to be “foggy” by game time.

Is this a regular fog or, appropriately in the same week as the Fog Bowl was in 1988, the kind of fog that rolled over Soldier Field that day?

The right call might lie in the denseness of the fog.

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