Coming into last weekend, most sports book directors knew the story that was set to unfold for them as the public was all over the Packers and Patriots.
What they didn’t anticipate was needing the favored Cowboys to save the day.
Despite the line moving as high as -5 at a few sports books, the jeopardy from Sunday’s parlays and teasers from the 13 earlier games had the Giants to the OVER as the big payout game.
With the Giants thrilling 37-34 victory, most of the bettors in the city also celebrated with the big win and sent the sports books to another losing day, something that has been common place for most of the pro football season.
Favorites went 5-10 for the week with five of the underdogs winning outright, but it was the key favorites that did all the damage beginning with everyone’s favorite team, the 13-0 Packers.
“The Green Bay game did all the damage on the day and built a large piece of liability heading into the Giants game,” said MGM Resorts sports books director Jay Rood. “When the Falcons came back against the Panthers and the Saints held on to win by 5 over the Titans, that was pretty much the day for us.”
The Packers blew out the Raiders 46-16 to stay undefeated at 13-0 and don’t look to be tiring anytime soon like we have seen some teams at this juncture going for an undefeated season. Even the sports books have surrendered somewhat to the Packers greatness.
Lucky’s sports book have posted an undefeated prop for the last two months with the last price posted having the YES at -140, but following Sunday’s win, the prop is off the board for good according to Jimmy Vaccaro.
“We’d have to make the number too high with only three games to go and it looks too easy now for them,” said Vaccaro, “No one is going to stop this team now.”
The Las Vegas Hilton Super Book has the Packers 3-2 to win the Super Bowl and 4-7 to win the NFC. The Hilton also has the NFC -4½ in its Super Bowl line.
The NFC doesn’t look to have a real candidate to stop the Packers at Lambeau Field in the playoffs, but the AFC is looking wide open with all kinds of possibilities.
While the Patriots remain the 3-2 favorite to win the conference, there appears to be at least five other teams that a case could be made for to participate in the Super Bowl.
The Texans big win at Cincinnati last Sunday extended their winning streak to 7 and clinched their first division title in team history. It was also a coming out party for rookie quarterback T.J. Yates who came up big in the final moments to seal the victory.
“After Matt Schaub went down, I think we all kind of wrote off the Texans,” said Caesars Palace’s Todd Fuhrman who has the Texans 6-1 to win the AFC. “But they have that nucleus in place with a great offensive line, great running game and Wade Phillips top rated defense that’s going to make them a tough a game for anyone.”
Another team that has to get some acknowledgment is Denver, now 9-1 to win the AFC.
“I don’t know how he (Tim Tebow) does it each week, but you can’t argue with the results,” said Rood following the Broncos improbable 13-10 comeback win over the Bears. “He has such an ugly throwing motion, but between great defensive play and Tebow not turning the ball over and then making the big plays late, they are now in the driver’s seat for a home playoff game.”
The Broncos have a big game this week against the Patriots and are once again the underdog getting 6 points at home to the AFC favorites.
“It wouldn’t surprise me at all to see them beat the Patriots who have all kinds of holes on defense,” said Rood.
“I’m anxious to see who the public backs in this game,” said Fuhrman. “They’ve been on the Patriots almost every week, but we’re starting to see bettors believe in Tebow and the Broncos more each week.”
Seven wins in eight starts for Tebow is pretty impressive. It’s more about the way he’s done it too. Every week the Broncos games have come down to the final moments. They are now 3-0 in overtime games this season.
The best game for the sports books over the weekend that killed several parlays and avoided a disastrous day was Arizona’s come from behind 21-19 win over the 49ers. San Francisco was favored by 4 and had covered 10 of its 12 games this season.