NFL Week 1 betting market watch

Written by on September 9, 2021

Here is our weekly look at how the NFL betting market is shaping up leading into the weekend.

Keep in mind, the Week 1 NFL betting market is unique in that point spreads and totals on the opening games have been up for months; therefore, most line movements occur in the weeks prior to the games rather than in the days leading up to kickoff as is more typical during the regular season.

For consistency, lines, totals and betting percentages are from Caesars Sportsbook, unless otherwise noted. The percentages of bets and money wagered are as of Wednesday afternoon and not specific to the current lines and totals. They are designed to provide a snapshot of the early betting action.

Dallas Cowboys at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Monday line: Buccaneers -7.5, 52

Wednesday line: Buccaneers -8, 51

Spread action: 68% of bets, 76% of money wagered on Buccaneers

Total action: 57% of bets, 52% of money wagered on the over

Notes: After opening at Bucs -6 in the earliest lines this spring, the number has been growing. In late August, the point spread shot up to as high as Bucs -10 at some shops before settling back around 7.5. The line ticked back up to Bucs -8 on Tuesday.

New York Jets at Carolina Panthers

Monday line: Panthers -4.5, 44.5

Wednesday line: Panthers -5.5, 44.5

Spread action: 59% of bets, 76% of money wagered on Panthers

Total action: 58% of bets, 80% of money wagered on the over

Philadelphia Eagles at Atlanta Falcons

Monday line: Falcons -3.5, 48

Wednesday line: Falcons -3, 48

Spread action: 59% of bets on Eagles, but 62% of money wagered on the Falcons

Total action: 63% of the bets, 65% of the money wagered on the over

Notes: The line had been as high as Atlanta -4 in the offseason but had been sitting at -3.5 for much of the past few weeks. The 3.5s disappeared this week, with influential money coming on the underdog Eagles.

Denver Broncos at New York Giants

Monday line: Broncos -3, 42.5

Wednesday line: Broncos -3, 41.5

Spread action: 67% of bets, 81% of money wagered on Broncos

Total action: 51% of bets, 65% of money wagered on the under

Notes: The Broncos opened as low as 1-point favorites this spring. The line climbed to -2.5 in late August and reached the key number of three by the middle of last week.

San Francisco 49ers at Detroit Lions

Monday line: 49ers -7.5, 45.5

Wednesday line: 49ers -7.5, 45

Spread action: 79% of bets, 90% of money wagered on 49ers

Total action: 68% of the bets, 75% of money wagered on the under

Notes: Bookmakers have been pointing to this game in anticipation of needing the underdog Lions. “We’re seeing a lot of the 49ers, lots of teasers and money-line parlays and some straight-bet action, as well,” Chris Bennett, sportsbook supervisor at Circa Sports in Las Vegas, said. “I’m sure that will continue all the way up until game time. I’m sure we’re going to be very happy if the Lions win that game.”

Green Bay Packers vs. New Orleans Saints (in Jacksonville)

Monday line: Packers -4, 50

Wednesday line: Packers -4, 50

Spread action: 77% of bets, 77% of money wagered on Packers (action on bets after game moved to Jacksonville)

Total action: 76% of the bets, 97% of the money wagered on the under (action on bets after game moved to Jacksonville)

Notes: The Aaron Rodgers saga caused this line to be all over the place during the summer. The Saints opened as around 3-point favorites. The number flipped to Packers -3 on July 27, when Rodgers showed up for training camp. It pushed up to -4 this week at most books. At DraftKings, 91% of the point spread money was on the Packers as of Wednesday. That’s the most lopsided early betting on any Week 1 game at DraftKings. Remember to check your sportsbook’s rules regarding games that have been relocated. Some sportsbooks cancel all wagers that were made prior to a game’s location being moved.

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