The NFL Preseason finally kicks off this week and books have already seen an increase in betting volume. Though many recreational bettors save their bankrolls for the start of the regular season, the eagerness to have action on a football game has most getting down on these exhibition games.
Since public money outweighs wise guy money in many football match-ups, odds makers have no reservation about shading the lines to factor in the biases of those public bettors. On the flip side, odds makers also are aware there will be games that sharp money leaves them exposed, especially throughout the preseason where recreational bettors aren’t as active.
Finally, the MLB betting market will begin receiving even less public money until the post-season gets here. To compensate for this, odds makers will look to send out more “true lines” when compared to “fair lines” on most match-ups. With that said, those marquee teams that receive plenty of parlay money and many prime-time games will still reflect a price aimed at creating balance or giving the betting public the worst of it.
We’ll start adding some CFB teams to the list in the coming weeks, but for now the focus is on the NFL and MLB…
TOP 5 “OVER-VALUED” TEAMS :
1.) PHILADELPHIA EAGLES
They’ve been getting most of the attention since the lock-out ended due to their attempt at putting together a “dream team”…Their season win total has been adjusted and the odds of winning the Super Bowl have dropped from a high of 20-1 to 6-1...Even though it’s only preseason, books expect to see plenty of action on the Birds and that should continue throughout the regular season which means inflated lines.
2.) NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
The Pats receive action from the betting public almost every week…Now that they’ve made some roster improving moves and are one of the favs to win it all, odds makers know the books will be even more exposed when the Pats play…Last year they went 67% ATS and 13-3 Over…Expect the point spread and total to be shaded more this season in an attempt to stop that same thing from happening in the 2011 season.
3.) ST LOUIS CARDINALS
Even though the Brewers have taken a 3 game lead in the standings, bettors have more confidence in backing the Cards…This is reflected in their results against the money-line so far this season where a $100 bettor is down backing St Louis, while that same bettor is up over a dime backing Milwaukee…As long as they continue to battle for the division, odds makers will continue to charge a premium for backing them.
4.) CHICAGO WHITE SOX
Now a game out of 2nd place in the AL Central and still in contention for a post-season berth at 5 games out…Even so, they have a negative run differential and are 2 games below .500 overall this season…They’ve won only 40% of home games but odds makers continue to send them out as big favs since they get plenty of support at the betting window.
5.) ATLANTA FALCONS
They were 69% ATS last season and have been installed as the favorite to come out of the NFC South again in 2011...Being a team that cashes a lot of Over tickets, the betting public gives them plenty of love each week…Expect odds makers to be much better prepared for that betting action this season by inflating the price in both, the preseason and regular season…at least early on.
TOP 5 “UNDER-VALUED” TEAMS :
1.) DENVER BRONCOS
Few teams have received as much criticism as the Broncos since the lock-out ended…The perception is that Tim Tebow is not a pro-level QB and even with Orton, not many recreational bettors will be racing to the window to get down on Denver…After going 37% ATS in 2010 and all the negative talk surround this team going into 2011, I expect odds makers to offer them up at a huge discount.
2.) CINCINNATI BENGALS
No team has seen their season win total get so much action…The only problem is that the action reflects a terrible season is expected…Only the Panthers lost more games than they did in 2010, but they had the same ATS mark as the Eagles, Cowboys, and Saints…Since bettors will look to fade them this season, odds makers will look to attract balance by sending them out cheap in an attempt to entice sharp money.
3.) ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
ONLY the Phillies have made their backers more money this season in all of MLB than the Dbacks…But unlike Philly, this team gets very little action from bettors…They continue to trade the top spot with the Giants in the NL West and as long as they remain motivated and get no respect, I expect them to continue turning a profit…There’s no reason for odds makers to adjust the discounted price being offered, so they’ll continue offering up value.
4.) WASHINGTON REDSKINS
They may have finished in last place in the NFC East in 2010, but they made more money for supporters than all 3 teams that finished above them…Not much is expected to change as far as their SU record according to their season win total…But they may do even better ATS since bettors expect them to be on the decline…Once again, the books will want to limit exposure on their games and the only way to do this is by making them the value side.
5.) CLEVELAND INDIANS
Unlike the Pirates, the Tribe don’t seem to want to regress to the mean and live “down” to expectations…As amazing of a season as this has been for them, few recreational bettors have cashed in…Only the Yanks and Red Sox have made their backers more money so far, but there is very little confidence that they are for real…Instead, bettors continue waiting for them to implode and drop out of the race…which means the discount in price isn’t going anywhere just yet.
MONEY METER : 45% PUBLIC & 55% SHARP
Books expect a lot more balance in the action they take this week since the NFL Preseason kicks off...Even though wiseguy money won't be outweighed just yet, there is still enough recreational bettors that get involved in the preseason...That same balance won't be the case in MLB, where sharp money will begin to overwhelm the books except in match-ups that include marquee teams and on prime-time games...We should continue to see the "public" side of the money meter increase as we approach the start of the regular seasons in NFL and CFB.
Thanks again for all your support and best of luck ahead, Vegas-Runner.