NFL Wild Card Weekend Report: What Oddsmakers Are Saying About Every Game

Written By FairwayJay on January 14, 2022

The NFL Super Wild Card Weekend kicks off on Saturday, Jan. 15 with six contests on the slate. Wild Card Weekend follows an exciting finish to the 2021 regular season and features two games on Saturday (4:30 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. ET), three on Sunday (1 p.m., 4:30 p.m., and 8:15 p.m. ET), and one on Monday (8:15 p.m. ET).

In this article we’ll take a look at NFL Playoffs odds and point spreads for each playoff game. TheLines reached out to the leading online sportsbooks to provide the betting splits and handle, and we’ve included a market report and betting data with updates on Friday. Check out the sportsbook director’s comments, and also track the Wild Card line movement ahead of each game.

NFL Super Wild Card Weekend Odds & Insights

Bengals vs Raiders

The Cincinnati Bengals are a home favorite over the Las Vegas Raiders. DraftKings Sportsbook had the Bengals as a -5 point favorite with a total of 49 on Friday evening, while FanDuel Sportsbook dropped down to -4.5 before moving back to -5.5 Friday with the over/under at 48.5 points.

According to DraftKings, the Bengals were taking the most spread money with 73% of the handle and 63% of the bets as of Friday. And 60% of the handle and 73% of the bets expect more scoring and the total points to finish over the total.

BetMGM reported that the Bengals-Raiders game had the highest ticket count with the Bengals the most bet team while also generating 56% of the spread handle.

Caesars Sportsbook has taken a pair of big bets for $110,000 on the Bengals (-5), which has resulted in the most spread money (64%) being bet on this game as of Friday.

“When the market first opened there were some Bengals -6.5s, I thought that was a little high so I went Bengals -6,” said Adam Pullen, Assistant Director of Trading at Caesars Sportsbook. “We got Raiders money and did get to as low as 5, and that’s when the big bets came in.”

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Bills vs Patriots

The Buffalo Bills are a home favorite over the New England Patriots with a total of .

Johnny Avello, DraftKings Director of Sports Operations, expects another huge handle from New York sports betting after the state’s launch last weekend. Avello said this week that New York’s betting handle was “amazing” and the “numbers were off the charts.” Millions more customers will continue signing up to bet on sports remotely with Avello adding, “We’re really confident in our sportsbook app. It’s designed by DraftKings and is really efficient and easy to navigate.”

Bettors in New York are also confident in the upstate Buffalo Bills. DraftKings reported that 68% of the handle and 62% of the bets were on the Bills to cover the point spread as of Friday afternoon. “This game has been all over the place,” Avello said. “We opened the Bills -4.5 and went to -4 and as low as -3.5 before we got a big Patriots push. Now we’re back up to -4.5 with light juice (-105).”

Avello added, “This will be one of the biggest bet games, certainly for Saturday and maybe for the entire weekend.”

FanDuel Sportsbook, the official sports betting partner of the Buffalo Bills, will be providing electric hand warmers for the first 5,000 fans that show their downloaded FanDuel Sportsbook app (game day at section 123).

The Bills have been a very popular bet on both the spread and moneyline, generating 75% of the handle at FanDuel Sportsbook as of Friday.

WynnBet took two Super Bowl futures bets this week from former Patriots player Julian Edelman, who believes coach Bill Belichick and the Patriots will play Tom Brady and the Buccaneers in Super Bowl 56. Edelman bet $50,000 on the Patriots (+750) to win the AFC for a potential return of $375,000. Edelman also bet $50,000 on the Buccaneers (+340) to win the NFC for a potential return of $170,000.

This Bills-Patriots game has been the most popular and has drawn the highest percentage of handle at Caesars Sportsbook. Buffalo snagged 75% of the total number of tickets and 76% of the total dollars wagered as of Friday. If you’re in New York, take advantage of the Caesars Sportsbook sign-up offer for a $300 free bet and up to $3,000 on deposit.

“It’s interesting that Bills-Patriots is the spread with the biggest disparity. I wouldn’t have guessed that,” Pullen said. “At the beginning of the season, the Bills were viewed as one of the top Super Bowl contenders, and they came on late in the season, including handling the Patriots in New England. It’s a small number for a team that has been expected to challenge for a Super Bowl all season long, whereas the Patriots haven’t had that as much.”

Buccaneers vs Eagles

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are home favorites over the Philadelphia Eagles with a total of .

Caesars Sportsbook reported that the Bucs-Eagles game featured the most movement so far. Tampa Bay opened -9.5, and the total shifted from 49 down to 46. While Tampa Bay had hauled in most of the spread action with 68% of the total number of tickets and 67% of the total dollars wagered as of Friday, there was still plenty of interest on the Eagles getting points. That included a $100,000 moneyline bet on the Eagles (+330) for potential winnings of $330,000.

As of Friday, this was the second-most bet wild card game at DraftKings Sportsbook, but could have the highest handle, or by kickoff on Sunday. “They’re betting the under in this game and we’ve moved it from 49 to 46,” Avello said. The DraftKings betting data showed 83% of the over/under bets and 74% of the money supporting under the total on Friday.

The Buccaneers have been a very popular bet laying the points at BetMGM, with the handle growing to the second most popular play.

Cowboys vs 49ers

The Dallas Cowboys are home favorites over the San Francisco 49ers with a total of  .

WynnBet Senior Trader Motoi Pearson told TheLines that this will be the most public game of the week.

The over had generated the most money of the weekend games as of Friday afternoon with 83% betting on more scoring at WynnBet. The Cowboys were also among the most popular spread bets with the total bets and money both nearly 60%.

The 49ers and Cowboys have had plenty of sharp and public opinions since the game opened,” Pearson said. “I don’t see that slowing down, and I figured it would get plenty of intrigue and action considering that the Cowboys are among the best in the league against the spread (13-4 ATS).” The 49ers are a popular dark horse team, and bettors are supporting San Francisco as well.

“It will be hard to not back them as an underdog,” Pearson added.

The Cowboys had taken the most money to cover the spread at BetMGM as of Friday, while PointsBet also reported the Cowboys and over the total among their more popular bets.

Chiefs vs Steelers

The Kansas City Chiefs are home favorites over the Pittsburgh Steelers with a total of .

The spread bets were nearly even at DraftKings Sportsbook as of Friday, but the Chiefs had taken more money with 65% of the handle betting on a Chiefs blowout.

The spread bets and money were nearly perfectly split at WynnBet, but at Caesars Sportsbook, 54% of the spread money was on the Chiefs, while 53% of the bets were taking the Steelers as the biggest underdog ever in the NFL Wild Card round.

Rams vs Cardinals

The Super Wild Card Weekend concludes Monday Night on ESPN with the Los Angeles Rams as  favorites over AFC West division rival Arizona Cardinals. The total is .

Caesars Sportsbook took a notable bet early week on the total (over 50.5) for $110,000. The spread bets and handle have been very close on both teams, but Pullen said, “I don’t think it’ll be as close when this kicks off Monday, and more money is going to be on the Rams eventually. The Rams are viewed as just a better team than the Cardinals and they’re the favorite here, and that should generate a lot of public action.”

Avello said, “They’re betting the Cardinals, and we went from -4.5 to -3.5 and the total down from 50.5 to 49.” Yet 72% of the total bets and 63% of the money was on the over as of Friday, and it moved back up to 49.5.

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FairwayJay is a leading national sports and gaming analyst and is recognized as one of the sports industry's most insightful professionals. Jay has pursued his passions and maintained a pulse on the sports, gaming and poker industries while living in Las Vegas for nearly two decades. He's been a regular featured guest on sports and gaming radio shows, podcasts and produces sports betting and related industry articles and content for various sites and sources.

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