With kickoff approaching for the early Sunday games, a bookmaker sent out an MIA for Team 454.
“Pretty sure the ‘454’ button is not on keyboards in Indiana,” Caesars Sportsbook head of risk Jeff Davis tweeted. Team 454 was the betting rotation number for the underdog Oakland Raiders, and it wasn’t used often in Indiana.
Three hours prior to kickoff in London, 93% of the money bet on the game at Caesars’ seven sportsbooks in Indiana was on the Chicago Bears. When it was over, with the Raiders winning 24-21, Caesars had won more on the game at its new books in Indiana than it won at its more mature shops in Nevada.
The Bears’ falling in London was the most costly outcome of the day for the betting public, and it leads this week’s edition of Notable Bets, our weekly recap of betting storylines from across the nation.
NFL notable bets
Sportsbooks cash in on Raiders
• The Raiders’ upset produced the biggest single-game win of the season for MGM sportsbooks in Nevada. The book reported bets on the Bears from respected customers at -5.5 and -6 that helped drive the number up to -6.5. That’s when a VIP casino player placed a six-figure bet on the Bears at -6.5. “We were totally buried on that game,” Jeff Stoneback, director of race and sports for MGM in Nevada, told ESPN on Sunday night.
• A similar scenario played out at other sportsbooks in Las Vegas: Pros and Joe’s bet the Bears. “You usually don’t like that scenario where the public and the wiseguys are on the same side,” Ed Salmons, vice president of risk at the SuperBook at Westgate Las Vegas, said. “But it worked out for us. The Raider game basically made the morning.”
• Sportsbook PointsBet reported taking a $285,000 two-team money-line parlay on the Chiefs and the Bears.
• DraftKings sportsbook reported taking a $210,000 money-line bet on the Bears at -263 odds. The bet was first reported by the Action Network.
• Caesars Sportsbook in Nevada won twice as much money off the Raiders’ upset of the Bears than it won on any other game of the day.
Props to Patriots
• Big bets came in on both sides of a Yes/No bet on “Will the Patriots go 16-0?” this week at the SuperBook. On Wednesday, a customer bet $24,000 on the “No” at -1200 odds. If the Patriots lose a game, the bettor will win a net $2,000. Over the weekend, another bettor placed two bets totaling $9.500 on the “Yes” at odds around 8-1. As of Sunday, there were 122 tickets on the “Yes” and only three on “No,” according to SuperBook executive director John Murray.
“We would lose six figures on ‘yes’ right now,” Murray told ESPN in an email. “It’s hard to believe they will survive that stretch of at Baltimore, at Philadelphia, Dallas, at Houston and Kansas City unscathed.”
• The Patriots improved to 5-0 (3-2 ATS) with an easy 33-7 rout of winless Washington on Sunday. It was the best result of the day for the betting public at several sportsbooks.
Best of the rest
• The Tampa Bay Buccaneers–New Orleans Saints game featured one of the biggest line movements of the week. The Saints opened as high as 5.5-point favorites before sharp money came in on the Bucs, driving the number down to a consensus spread of -3. “I didn’t understand the move,” Salmons said. “I just don’t see a great difference between [Drew] Brees and [Teddy] Bridgewater. It seems the more Bridgewater plays, the more comfortable he’s getting. But if Brees plays today, there’s no way that line is three.”
• Las Vegas sportsbook operator CG Technology took more action from respected players on the Atlanta Falcons than they took on any other team on Sunday’s slate. The Falcons, who closed as consensus 4-point underdogs against the Houston Texans, lost 53-32.
“The pros just keep betting the Falcons,” CG Technology oddsmaker Dave Sharapan said. “I don’t know what analytics, what measurements they see, but they had the Falcons, and no one else did.”
• The Sunday night game between the Indianapolis Colts and Kansas City Chiefs divided bettors and was the difference between a small winning and losing day for some sportsbooks. “It’s going to come down to the Chiefs whether we win or lose,” Alan Berg, senior oddsmaker for Caesars Sportsbook, said. “If we lose this game, it’s not a burial or anything, but we’re not going to be on the plus side of things.”
• An hour prior to kickoff, the money wagered on the point spread was almost dead even at the SuperBook. “We’ve got this one group, and their goal in life is to bet against the Chiefs in every game,” Salmons said with a chuckle. “They took [Colts] +11 tonight, but the public is definitely betting Kansas City.” The Colts won 19-13.
• A bettor on Tuesday at the SuperBook placed a $22,000 bet on Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes to win NFL MVP at -110 odds.
• Caesars Sportsbook and MGM reported taking sharp money on the San Francisco 49ers at -3.5 and -4 in the Monday night game against the Cleveland Browns. “One of our sharpest players bet the Niners -3.5 and came back the next day and bet -4,” Berg said.
The 49ers were consensus 5-point favorites heading into Monday.
Early Week 6 lines
From Caesars Sportsbook, at completion of Sunday night game
Carolina Panthers (PK, 47.5) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (in London)
Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens (-11, 47.5)
Houston Texans at Kansas City Chiefs (off)
New Orleans Saints at Jacksonville Jaguars (PK, 45)
Philadelphia Eagles at Minnesota Vikings (-3, 44)
Seattle Seahawks at Cleveland Browns (-2.5, 47)
Washington Redskins (-3.5, 41) at Miami Dolphins
Atlanta Falcons (-1.5, 51) at Arizona Cardinals
San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Rams (-4, 49)
Dallas Cowboys (-9, 43.5) at New York Jets
Tennessee Titans at Denver Broncos (-2.5, 39.5)
Pittsburgh Steelers at Los Angeles Chargers (Off)
Byes: Buffalo Bills, Chicago Bears, Indianapolis Colts, Oakland Raiders
College football roundup
• “We struggled [on Saturday],” the MGM’s Stoneback said. “The Ohio State game killed us, the Georgia game killed us, Washington game was bad. The night games were bad for us. We didn’t do too well at all yesterday.”
• Salmons, of the SuperBook, who is respected by his peers for his college football odds, currently has Ohio State ahead of Clemson in his power ratings. “If they played today, I have Alabama by three over Ohio State,” Salmons said. “I have Ohio State by two or three over Clemson.”
• Caesars Sportsbook reported taking an $800 money-line bet on Oklahoma to beat Kansas. The bettor won a net $8 when the Sooners beat the Jayhawks 45-20.
• CG Technology took a $337,500 money-line bet on Maryland (-675) to beat Rutgers straight-up. The bettor won $50,000 when the Terrapins crushed the Scarlet Knights 48-7.
• Notable college football opening lines from Las Vegas sportsbook operator Circa Sports:
Oklahoma (-10.5, 73.5) vs. Texas
Florida at LSU (-13, 56)
Alabama (-18, 60.5) at Texas A&M
USC at Notre Dame (-10, 62)
Florida State at Clemson (-27.5, 64.5)
Penn State (-2.5, 46.5) at Iowa
• More money was bet on the Vegas Golden Knights‘ season opener against the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday than had been bet on any other regular-season hockey game at the SuperBook, according to vice president of risk Jeff Sherman. Included in the record handle were seven bets on the Knights from a VIP customer at odds between -180 and -230, totaling $103,500. The Knights won 3-1.
• “We had a player in, a Canadian who comes in over at the Bellagio and likes to play a lot of hockey and likes to bet it big,” Stoneback said. “He loaded up on the Golden Knights on the puck line. We took a bath that night. The first week of hockey for us has not been good at all.”
• Most bets to win the Stanley Cup at MGM sportsbooks in Nevada:
1. Maple Leafs
3. Lightning/Golden Knights/Blackhawks
Odds & ends
• Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale, the Houston furniture storeowner who placed big bets on the Astros to win the World Series, ended up with $5.4 million in wagers before the playoffs started last week. McIngvale’s largest bet was $3.5 million with DraftKings. He placed a $1.5 million bet with FanDuel and various bets with Las Vegas sportsbooks totaling just under $400,000.
• This week, multiple Las Vegas sportsbooks lost access to the NFL’s official data feed that had been used to book in-game betting. Sportradar, the NFL’s official data distributor, was asking for an additional fee, beginning Sept. 30. Some Las Vegas books chose to book live betting on select games manually. Others chose not to offer in-game wagering on the NFL.
• Teams that have attracted most bets to win NBA title at SuperBook
• Teams that attracted the most money wagered to win the NBA title at SuperBook:
• Online sports betting went live in Indiana last week. The Hoosier state joins Iowa, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and West Virginia as states with active regulated online betting.