The second half of the NFL season is in full swing and news of a few key players that could return from injury has odds on the move. We talk to Aron Black of Bet365 about the action coming in on some of Sunday's matchups and where lines could close come kickoff:
Buffalo Bills at Pittsburgh Steelers - Open: -3.5, Move: -2.5
News that EJ Manuel gets the start for the Bills had bettors backing Buffalo. But can the rook turn the Bills' season around? The AFC East cellar dwellers were 2-3 SU and 3-2 ATS with Manuel under center this season.
"The 3.5 opener didn’t last long before being a juiced 3," Black tells Covers. "Pittsburgh struggles against the run, and with RB’s CJ Spiller and Fred Jackson coming at them, the Steelers' defense may struggle with the run again this week. Action so far is split down the middle."
Seattle Seahawks at Atlanta Falcons - Open: +6, Move: +4.5
The Seahawks narrowly escaped their last two games with victories. They required a comeback to defeat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and barely beat the St. Louis Rams. They have won four-straight games, but are 1-4 ATS in their last five.
"Atlanta WR Roddy White is upgraded to probable, and that has moved the line, but the line was already moving before that," confirms Black. "The running game has been one of the main pillars of Seattle's success, but injuries to the offensive line are causing concern for those looking to back them away from home at a desperate Falcons team. Action still likes the Seahawks at about a 2-to-1 clip ATS, but SU sees a little more on the Falcons."
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears - Open: +1, Move: Pick
Another player set to make a return is Bears QB Jay Cutler. News of such an upgrade had bettors backing the Bears, but injury concerns on the defensive side of the ball have them treading lightly.
"The line has bounced back and forth from small-fave Detroit to small-fave Chicago, but it should end up as a Pick or slight Bears fave," says Black. "Action likes the Bears at a 2-to-1 clip."
Black also confirms that bettors like the Over in this matchup. The total opened 52 and has been bet up to 52.5.