Early NFL Wild Card Weekend Sharp Report

January 9, 2023 10:59 PM

Wake up with VSiN Daily Morning Bets, a quick 15-minute podcast posted at 6:30 a.m. ET highlighting the top games and biggest line moves of the day. For a full breakdown of Tuesday's betting action, be sure to catch the VSiN Market Insights Podcast at 2:30 p.m. ET. 

In the meantime, let's examine where early smart money is leaning for NFL Wild Card Weekend...


Los Angeles Chargers (-1, 47.5) at Jacksonville Jaguars 

The Chargers (10-7) enter as the 5-seed having gone 5-2 over their last seven games. Los Angeles is coming off a meaningless 31-28 loss to the Broncos in the regular season finale but managed to cover as 6.5-point road dogs. Meanwhile, the Jaguars (9-8) are the 4-seed and are riding a 5-game win streak. Jacksonville just beat Tennessee 20-16 to win the AFC South but failed to cover as 6-point home favorites. This line opened with the Chargers listed as a 2.5-point road favorite. The public is laying the points with Los Angeles. However, despite receiving 63% of bets we've seen the Chargers fall from -2.5 to -1. Some shops are even down a pick'em. This signals sharp reverse line movement on Jacksonville, with pros backing the home team. Wild Card dogs are 16-8 ATS (67%) over the last five postseasons. Jacksonville has value as a buy-low contrarian play in a heavily bet primetime game (8:15 p.m. ET on Saturday night). The Jags also have buy-low value as a "bad" ATS team (8-9) against a sell-high "good" ATS team (11-5-1). The total has ticked up slightly from 46.5 to 47.5. Currently 50% of bets but 62% of money is on the over, a sharp over bet discrepancy. 


New York Giants at Minnesota Vikings (-3, 48.5)

The Giants (9-7-1) enter as the 6-seed and went just 2-5-1 down the stretch. New York rested their starters in Week 18, losing to the Eagles 22-16 but covering as 17-point road dogs. On the flip side, the Vikings (13-4) are the 3-seed and went 5-2 in their last seven games. Minnesota just beat the Bears 29-13, covering as 6.5-point road favorites. This line opened with the Vikings listed as a 3-point home favorite. The public is backing Minnesota, with 60% of bets laying the points with the home favorite. However, despite this lopsided betting the line hasn't budged an inch. Some books even briefly dipped to -2.5. This signals a sharp line freeze on the Giants, with books reluctant to hand out the hook to contrarian New York backers. Wild Card road dogs are 15-7 ATS (68%) over the past five postseasons. New York is receiving 40% of bets but 54% of money, a sharp bet discrepancy. Wiseguys also seem to be leaning over, as the total has risen from 48 to 48.5. The over is receiving 41% of bets but 64% of money, a sharp contrarian over discrepancy. The Vikings are 11-6 to the over this season, including 7-2 to the over at home. 


Dallas Cowboys (-2.5, 45.5) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 

The Cowboys (12-5) enter as the 5-seed and went a pedestrian 2-2 over their last four games. Dallas fell to Washington 26-6 in Week 18, losing outright as 7.5-point road favorites. Meanwhile, the Bucs (8-9) are the 4-seed and have won two of their last three games. Tampa Bay pulled their starters early in Week 18 against the Falcons, losing 30-17 and failing to cover as 6-point road dogs. This line opened with Dallas listed as a 3-point road favorite. We've seen this line fall from 3 to 2.5, indicating some respected money grabbing Tom Brady and the Bucs at home getting the key number of +3. Tampa Bay is receiving 58% of bets but 70% of money, signaling slight public support but also heavy wiseguy action. Wild Card dogs are 16-8 ATS (67%) over the past five postseasons. Tampa Bay is also in a prime teaser spot (+2.5 to +8.5), passing through multiple key numbers. The Bucs have buy-low value as a "bad" ATS team (4-12-1) against a sell-high "good" ATS team (10-7). Pros have leaned over, raising the total from 45 to 45.5. The Bucs are 4-1 to the over their last five games. The Cowboys are 5-2 to the over their last seven games. 

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