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Wolf Wagers: Analyzing Mid-Week NFL Line Movements for Week 7

Jalen Hurts

Jalen Hurts

Armond Feffer/IndyStar / USA TODAY NETWORK

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Week 7 is right around the corner with Thursday Night Football kicking off tomorrow with a matchup between the Denver Broncos and the Cleveland Browns. While plenty of the action will come closer to the weekend, there’s still value in looking at some of the mid-week NFL lines and analyzing some of the most notable line movements at PointsBet Sportsbook this week.

In tomorrow night’s primetime matchup, the Browns received 65% of the bet count and 66% of the handle at PointsBet Sportsbook, and the line remains at the opening spread of Browns -3.5. There was some intriguing action on the Total as it dropped half a point from an opener of 42.5. 57% of total bets came in on the Over, but 62% of the handle went toward the Under, which could explain the drop to 42.

Bettors looking to back Sam Darnold and the Panthers in his return to Metlife Stadium to face the New York Giants should pounce on the line soon. 86% of bets and 88% of the handle is on Carolina -2.5 and the juice is up to -125, so continued Panthers action could push the line up to Panthers -3. The Giants started 0-3 ATS at home this season, and the Panthers covered in eight of their last nine road contests, so I like this spot for Carolina under the key number of -3.

Even with the team coming off a bye, Jets backers are nowhere to be found early in the week at PointsBet Sportsbook, with 88% of total bets and 91% of total money on New England -7. The line hasn’t moved from the opening spread of -7, and the Total also held steady at 42.5 with 57% of bets on the Over and 82% of the handle on Under 42.5.

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Despite a 2-4 ATS record on the season, 71% of money wagered is on the Kansas City Chiefs so far this week, with 63% of total bets on the Titans. PointsBet Sportsbook opened the spread at Kansas City -4.5 and moved the line up to -5.5. I’m planning to stay off this line for now since I don’t anticipate it getting much higher and wouldn’t be surprised if there’s some buyback to lower the spread later in the week. The Total in this game is more intriguing, since 91% of bets and 93% of money is on the Over, but the Total dipped from 57 to 56.5 before jumping back up to 57. The score went under the total in five of the last six matchups between these teams in Tennessee.

The Washington Football Team owns the worst ATS record in the league so far this year at 1-5 through six games. Ron Rivera‘s squad opened at +9.5 in Green Bay, and the Packers received 71% of the bet count and 68% of the handle, but the spread held firm at 9.5 to this point. Early bets came in on the score to finish below 49, with the Under garnering 52% of bets and 72% of the money.

There hasn’t been much news on the Atlanta vs. Miami matchup, with no movement on the spread or total. In contrast, the Bengals vs. Ravens game already experienced multiple adjustments in the spread, with the line increasing to Ravens -7 from an opener of -6.5 before dropping down to the current line of -6. PointsBet Sportsbook saw 65% of the bets on the Ravens but 61% of the handle on the Bengals. The Total also has solid two-way action with 71% of bets on the Over but 68% of the handle on the Under, and the line dropped from 47.5 to 47.

There are three double-digit favorites this week, and all three of the Rams (-15), Cardinals (-17.5) and Buccaneers (-12.5) received over 50% of the bets. The Rams and Bucs lines each dropped a half point despite also receiving over 50% of the handle, while the Cardinals spread was bumped up by half a point despite 59% of the money being placed on Houston. Double-digit favorites went 6-2 ATS in the first six weeks of this season, so I’ll be watching to see if these lines keep moving throughout the week.

The Raiders opened as three-point favorites at home against Jalen Hurts and the Philadelphia Eagles, and bettors are backing Vegas to cover the spread, with 68% of bets and 75% of the handle on the Raiders. PointsBet Sportsbook increased the juice on Raiders -3 to -121 but the team went 0-2 ATS as home favorites so far this season. The Total moved up from 48.5 to 49 with 79% of bets and 89% of the money on the Over for this game.

One of the most interesting games of the week is the Sunday Night Football matchup between the Indianapolis Colts and the San Francisco 49ers. 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo returned to practice this week, and bettors are fading him for Carson Wentz, with 68% of bets and 54% of the handle on the Colts. I’m more interested in the Total of this game, since I think the 49ers will be able to control the time of possession battle and grind out this game with a strong rushing attack. I lean to the Under for this game, and the Total dropped from 45 to 44 with 62% of bets on the Over and 68% of money on the Under. This movement combined with the split information suggests that the big bettors are taking the Under while the public wagers on the Over early in the week.

The Week 7 NFL slate concludes with the Saints visiting the Geno Smith-led Seahawks, and bettors are more confident in Smith than I am as a jaded Jets fan. Seattle received 56% of bets and 58% of the handle on spread bets and the line of +5 is now juiced to -115. The Total is still listed at 43.5 with plenty of action on the Under, since 62% of bets and 89% of the handle favors the Total to go Under on Monday night.

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