NFL Week 15 brings us our first Saturday games of the 2020 season, with the Buffalo Bills and Denver Broncos, and the Carolina Panthers and Green Bay Packers squaring off a day before everyone else. It’s still a fairly standard week overall despite that, though there are a few surprisingly popular underdogs that have picked up steam in large part due to their strong Week 14 performances. More on that below, and more on the line movement in Sunday’s update as well.
Sunday Line Movement Update
- The 49ers are up to -4 following the news that Ezekiel Elliot will be inactive. The total has stayed the same, however, indicating an expectation for the Cowboys to be passing more as a result.
- The Patriots remain at +1, as it looks like the Dolphins injuries had already been priced into the line.
Betting Splits Breakdown
This week’s big favorites are predictably the most popular bets, with the Rams, Ravens and Steelers facing three of the worst teams in the NFL. What’s more interesting is how DraftKings Sportsbook bettors are betting a couple of the underdogs, with both the Bears (+3) and the Eagles (+6) getting more than 50% of both the bets and handle in their respective games. The Bears are coming off of an impressive blowout win over the Texans, which has kept Chicago in the playoff hunt for at least one more week. The Eagles stayed alive in the NFC East race as well, upsetting the Saints in Jalen Hurts’ first start at quarterback. DraftKings Sportsbook bettors seem to be rallying behind these two teams and hoping that they’ll at least cover the spread in Week 15.
How the Lines are Moving
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-4 to -6)
New England Patriots (+2.5 to +1)
San Francisco 49ers (-1.5 to -3)
Cleveland Browns (-4.5 to -6)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons (51.5 to 48.5)
It’s a well-established trend that the Falcons tend to struggle without Julio Jones and an obvious one at that considering that he’s one of the best wide receivers in the history of the NFL. Jones is expected to miss this week’s game, and as a result, the spread and total have both moved strongly against the Falcons’ offense.
Line movement toward the Patriots this week directly contradicts the public, both in terms of the bets and the handle. Sharp bettors clearly seem to be buying low on the Patriots, who have had 10 days off since their embarrassing loss to the Rams. This odds shift also coincides with DeVante Parker and Mike Gesicki trending toward playing, making this situation even more of a challenge to figure out.
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All views expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and am ineligible to play in public DFS or DKSB contests.