After a postseason full of rematches, NFL fans will be treated to a unique matchup in the Super Bowl. The Chiefs and Eagles face off for the first time this season. The Chiefs vs. Eagles line, after opening around Chiefs -2, has settled with the Eagles at .
While we know the Chiefs vs. Eagles line now, we can also look back and see how market perception of these teams has evolved. As both teams wound up 14-3, we can guess both teams enjoyed strong market power rating numbers for most of the year. But, the Chiefs topped the futures market for a good chunk of the season. Should we be surprised they’re now underdogs? Have the Eagles ascended thanks to their playoff dominance?
Using estimated market power ratings, we can provide an answer to these questions.
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How The Chiefs Vs. Eagles Line Would Have Looked At Different Times
If you aren’t familiar with estimated market power ratings, refer to this article. The gist of it is that using betting lines, we can estimate how the market perceives each team relative to every other, not just the one they are playing that week.
More so than any analytic or a team’s record, that gives us insight into the strength and weakness of each team. There’s a reason analytics guru Ben Baldwin — whose market-derived numbers informed most of these estimates — calls them some variation of the “most correct” power rankings every week.
Without further ado, let’s check in on how the market perceived the Chiefs vs. Eagles line at various points. We’ll take a look at roughly each “quarter pole” and then the start of the playoffs.
|Week 1||Week 5||Week 9||Week 13||Start of playoffs|
|Chiefs -4||Chiefs -2||Pick'em||Chiefs -2||Chiefs -1|
According to Baldwin’s market-derived ratings, the closest the Eagles got looks to have been +0.25 or so at a couple of points in the season. Week 9 saw the Eagles creep the closest. They coasted to a fairly easy win over Houston. On Sunday Night Football, the Chiefs posted a lackluster 20-17 overtime win over Tennessee.
However, the Chiefs rebounded from there with eight wins in nine games, losing only a close contest to Cincinnati. Meanwhile, the Eagles lost three of their final nine, albeit two of those with a backup QB starting.
Obviously, what’s striking is that the market so quickly steamed the Eagles upon the Super Bowl opening line. Both FanDuel Sportsbook and market shaper Circa in Las Vegas appear to have followed their power numbers. Each opened the Chiefs as favorites. Additionally, the Chiefs laid -1 in most look-ahead markets prior the teams’ respective conference championships.
It’s fair to say this is the first time all year the Eagles would have been favored over the Chiefs. NFL power rankings posted here on TheLines had the Eagles briefly ahead of the Chiefs in Week 7. But, the staff rated the Chiefs the stronger team every other week including prior to the first two playoff rounds.
Should These Chiefs-Eagles Lines Affect Your Super Bowl Bets?
The operative question is what happened during conference championship week to move the Eagles ahead of the Chiefs. While Philly enjoyed another dominating victory, it’s fair to say bettors can’t take much away from that one since San Francisco didn’t have the capability to throw forward passes for most of the game. The Chiefs won a close game against a quality Bengals team, one in which Football Outsiders’ Post-Game Win Expectancy formula awarded them a 90% chance of victory.
Essentially, if you don’t think the conference championships should have meaningfully moved the needle, then you have an opportunity to get some value betting the Chiefs here.
Of course, a reasonable person could believe the market underrated the Eagles the entire season. And only now has the correct adjustment come.
Either way, best of luck betting the Chiefs vs. Eagles line. And if you are having a tough time divining where the value is in the Super Bowl’s major markets, be sure to check out TheLines’ dedicated Super Bowl props page. You’ll surely find something worth a wager there even if you believe Eagles is fair.