Las Vegas oddsmakers anticipate NFL lines to hold at 3.5

Jan 18, 2011 |
There was early movement on both lines for both NFL Conference Championship games but oddsmakers don’t expect either spread to reach 4.

“I think this week isn’t going to be like the wild-card weekend or Divisional Round,” says Chuck Esposito, the Race and Sport Executive at the Venetian and Palazzo. “You won’t see as much movement during the week.”

Of course, bettors have already seen both games move off key numbers. As we noted in yesterday’s Opening Line Report, the Pittsburgh Steelers opened as 3-point chalk and some books even had the Green Bay Packers favored by less than a field goal. 

“We opened with the Pack -2.5 for their game against the Bears,” says Jimmy Vaccaro, Director of Sports Operations at Lucky’s sports book. “We moved that up to 3 and then 3.5 pretty quickly and then even added some juice but we’re dealing it at 3.5 flat now.”

“I’m not sure either game will go to 4 but of the two I think the Packers are more likely than the Steelers to reach 4. I think people would eat up the Jets if that line made it up to 4.”

It’s easy to understand why the Packers have become the public darlings of the NFL playoffs. Green Bay is 4-1 straight up and against the spread since losing 7-3 at Detroit in Week 14. Everyone remembers Aaron Rodgers’ career-day against the Falcons last week but they don’t remember how the Pack lost by at Soldier Field this season.

“I was a little surprised to see the [Bears-Packers] line go to 3.5,” Esposito says. “Five of Green Bay’s six losses came on the road this season.”
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