In was an incredible Week 18 finale in the NFL, with dogs going 9-5 ATS on Sunday and overs going 9-5. Seven of the nine dogs also won outright. The biggest shocker of the day was the Jags ( 14) upsetting the Colts 26-11, cashing 650 of the moneyline. The win set off a chain reaction for playoff implications, inevitably allowing the Steelers to make the postseason.
A major storyline for Sunday Night Football, and the betting world at large, was the opportunity for a tie. Entering the game, the Chargers and Raiders knew that they would both make the playoffs if the game ended in a tie. If it did, however, the Steelers would then miss the postseason.
All Sunday, sportsbooks were taking in huge action on "would the game end in a tie?" prop bets, some of which were as high as 50/1. If the game ended in a tie, sportsbooks would have taken a massive hit due to all the recreational wagers betting the longshot tie. The game appeared poised for a tie late in overtime. But then the Raiders ( 3) walked off with a 35-32 win, bailing out the sportsbooks and ruining the longshot dreams of bettors.
Dogs finish the regular season with a profitable 141-126 ATS (53%) record. A $100 bettor taking every dog all season long made roughly $400. Road dogs finished 85-71 ATS (55%). Short road dogs 6 or less finish 51-28 ATS (65%).
Unders finish the regular season a profitable 146-123 (54%). Windy unders 10 MPH or more finished 50-36 (58%).
Here are the opening lines for Wild Card Weekend
Raiders at Bengals (-6) O/U 49
Patriots at Bills (-4.5) O/U 43.5
Eagles at Bucs (-9.5) O/U 49
49ers at Cowboys (-3) OU 49.5
Steelers at Chiefs (-13) O/U 47
Cardinals at Rams (-4) O/U 50
Here are the updated NFL futures at BetMGM entering the playoffs
To Win AFC
Patriots, Bengals 900
Raiders, Steelers 2000
To Win NFC
Rams, Titans 800
Bengals, Patriots 2000
Steelers, Eagles 6600
Now it's on to Monday where we have the College Football National Championship game to get down on, plus 5 NBA games, 3 NHL games and a handful of College Basketball matchups. For an updated breakdown of Monday's betting action, be sure to tune in to the VSiN Market Insights Podcast with Josh Appelbaum. It will be posted by 2:40 p.m. ET. I'll also be joining The Lombardi Line at 1:30 p.m. ET and then co-hosting Betting Across America with Mike Pritchard from 3 to 4 p.m. ET.
In the meantime, let's discuss where the money is flowing for tonight's National Championship game...
8 p.m. ET: Georgia vs Alabama
The two best teams in College Football face off for the championship trophy. The game will be played at Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts. Georgia (13-1, 9-5 ATS) is ranked 3rd and just crushed Michigan 34-11 in the CFP semifinals, easily covering as 7.5-point favorites. Meanwhile, Alabama (13-1 SU, 8-6 ATS) is ranked 1st and just dismissed Cincinnati 27-6 in the semifinals, covering as 13-point favorites.
This line opened with Georgia listed as a 2.5-point neutral site favorite. Early on, we saw wiseguys lay the points with the Bulldogs, driving the line up to -3. Over the weekend, we saw buyback hit Alabama 3, dropping the line back down to 2.5. A very interesting bet split is shaping up for this one. The public is all over the Crimson dog as a trendy dog, with Alabama receiving 64% of bets at BetMGM. However, a larger proportion of respected money is laying the points with Georgia, who is only receiving 36% of bets but 48% of money.
Reading between the lines, this looks to be a battle around the key number of 3, with pros targeting Georgia -2.5 and value minded bettors buying back on Alabama 3. This is a revenge game for Georgia, who lost to Alabama 41-24 in the SEC Championship game, losing outright as 6-point favorites.
The total hasn't budged off the opener of 52.5. Currently 68% of bets and 75% of money is on the over.