Can Matt Ryan finally win a playoff game? Have the Seattle Seahawks suddenly become road warriors? Let's dig into this compelling match-up and see where the value lies.
Here's an interesting point spread to talk about. Last week in the Vegas look-ahead lines, the Falcons were listed as -3 point favorites vs the Seahawks, but after Seattle handled the Redskins they re-opened it at -2.5.
So what's changed during the week? Well, not much. Perhaps reluctantly, most books have moved the line to -3 with a bit extra juice if you like the underdog (odds from SBRforum). Essentially this line sits at -2.75 so if you like the Falcons you can grab -2.5 at an affordable price too.
The Dark Cloud of Failure
The Falcons coaches and players can talk all they want about how they aren't thinking about their lack of playoff success, but that's the most obvious lie of the century.
The Packers and 49ers met to open the season and now for one of them, they're about to close their season too. Does that game matter? How does Kaepernick change things? Let's take a closer look at this Divisional Round match-up.
Many people expected the Packers to defeat the Vikings in the Wild Card round, including Vegas. Therefore, there isn't much change in the look-ahead line. Last week Vegas put out theoretical point spreads and the Packers were +3 dogs vs the 49ers. It re-opened at +3.25 with the option to lay a bit extra juice on either side for a favorable number.
But there's been some movement early in the week. If you like the Packers (like I do), you'll have to lay a bit extra juice just for +3 (odds from SBRforum). Will it move off the 3? It could at some point, but it would take a lot considering what a key number it is and the amount of money expected to be bet on this game.
I'm not going to take any chances and go ahead and grab the +3 now.
Much Ado About Nothing
The Denver Broncos have won 11 straight games. The Ravens are coming off an inspired playoff win at home, but enter the game as big underdogs. Do they have a chance to win this game? Can they cover the point spread? Let's take a closer look at this Saturday match-up.
Prior to the Wild Card round, Vegas put up a theoretical point spread for every potential Divisional Round match-up. For the Ravens/Broncos, they put up a line of -7. At that number I would have made Denver an official pick this week, but when things re-opened for betting on Sunday night the Broncos were listed at -9.5 (odds from SBRforum). That's not a number I want to get involved with, but it's also not inflated enough to come in on the underdog either. The true point spread for this game should be Broncos -7.5.
Do the Ravens Have a Chance?
In a word, no.
Russell Wilson? RG3? That Seahawks defense? Home field advantage? Let's take a closer look and break down this Sunday playoff match-up.
So the Seahawks opened up at -1.5 favorites on Sunday and by the time the clock struck midnight, it had already been bet up to -2.5. It took a few days, but -3's starting appearing on the board around mid-week. The good news for those of us that like the Seahawks (and have multiple books to shop at) is there are still -2.5's available for a bit extra juice. Most sharp books have the line around -2.75 with juice attached to favorable lines on each side (odds from SBRforum).
All the media talk for this game is focusing on the Wilson/RG3 match-up, which is fine, but that's not what I'm going to spend much time talking about here. Both have been phenomenal and it will be fun to watch, but I don't see either as having a huge edge over the other.
Ray Lewis is retiring, but what difference will that make? Can Andrew Luck sour to new heights? Let's take a closer look at the first Sunday playoff game.
When it comes to playoff point spreads, nothing is much of a surprise. The books usually do a great job at finding a sharp line that spreads public (and sharp) opinion. However, what we have here is one of the most intriguing lines of the weekend. They opened up with the Ravens as -6.5 point favorites and it's taken almost the full week before we've seen any hints of movement. Right now, books are creeping towards -7, but you'll have to lay a little extra juice depending on what side you like.What strikes me is that the line didn't move to -7 when the lines were posted last Sunday. This is a clear indication that nobody with a clue respects the Ravens that much. In fact, I'm surprised that they opened up this high. I'll gladly pay a little extra and buy an affordable +7 to take a chance on Andrew Luck and company (odds from SBRforum).