Saturday, September 19, 2015

NFL Week 2 Line Movement: Lots of inflated numbers

Where is the value in week 2 NFL games?
LAS VEGAS -- A lot has changed since April when CG Technology sports books in Las Vegas first posted Week 2 of the NFL. Between a combination of injuries, preseason play and one regular season game, several teams have had their ratings massively adjusted -- some higher and lower. You've also got to factor in the books not faring well last Sunday, so a couple of teams books know that are going to get lots of love might be favored too much this week and a couple of teams the public hates is going to get extreme value, or at least a few more points.

Let's take the Buccaneers, for example, for its road game at New Orleans. CG Tech posted the Saints as 6.5-point favorites for this game back in April. The combination of seeing rookie QB Jameis Winston routinely finding trouble -- just like most first halves at Florida State last season -- which led to a 42-14 drubbing last week at the hands of the Titans and their rookie QB. The Saints didn't look all that great in their Week 1 opening loss at Arizona, but the Bucs dropoff in perception and rating forced CG to re-open the Saints -10 on Sunday night.

Is that a proper adjustment? Do we all really think we got Winston figured out? We've really got the book on him and we've come to the conclusion after one week that it's going to be a long year for him and Tampa Bay? Whatever reality might be, it's the public that tells us the answer. And with the way they're betting the game, they're saying -10 is just fine. Sharp money may disagree on game day. The Westgate SuperBook and Wynnare both dealing -9.5 while everyone else is using -10.

A situation where a team may have been upgraded way too high after one week of play is another team led with a rookie QB -- the Titans and Marcus Mariota. Were the Bucs that bad last week or was Mariota so sensational that he's worth a 5.5-point swing?

CG books opened the Browns as 4.5-point home favorites against the Titans in April. This week they re-opened the Titans at -1. Sure, the Browns offense struggled at the Jets last week, but is one week enough time to really properly gauge the ratings of both Cleveland and Tennessee?

Is Johnny Manziel really that big of a drop off from Josh McCown? Las Vegas oddsmaker Kenny White says Manziel starting is a 2-point drop off. Sounds high, but even then -- if McCown was starting -- it would be Cleveland -1 which is still a significant jump from where the number started. The Westgate SuperBook and William Hill books have Tennessee -1.5 while Wynn is at Pick 'em.

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