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Action all over the place for Lions-Chiefs matchup
By Andrew Caley
We talk to John Lester, senior lines manger at BookMaker about the action coming in on a few of the biggest games on the Week 8 NFL board.
Detroit Lions vs. Kansas City Chiefs – Open: -3.5, Move: -6, Move: -3
The Lions bid for their second win of the season while the Chiefs try to win their second game in a row as the NFL plays its last game in London, England this season.
The Lions head across the Atlantic off a 28-19 loss on home turf to the Minnesota Vikings while the Chiefs defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 23-13 to get their record up to 2-5.
As Lester points out, the line in this one has bounced around all over the place with kickoff approaching.
“We opened at -3.5 and moved to -6 within the first day on the board,” Lester says. “The number bounced around between that and -4 for a few days and has settled back at the opener. Action is all over the place with both types of bettors on both sides. Should be a good game for us as we’re split on the handle.”
Arizona Cardinals at Cleveland Browns – Open: +5, Move: +4.5, Move: +6
The Browns own the league’s worst run defense and will have its hands full with the Cardinals backfield trio of Chris Johnson, Andre Ellington and David Johnson to tend to Sunday. Cleveland is allowing 151 rushing yards per game and has dropped back-to-back contests heading into this matchup.
Arizona’s Chris Johnson is second in the league with 567 yards on the ground, while David Johnson leads rookies with six touchdowns (three rushing, two receiving, one kick return).
The Cardinals have been the darlings of both square and sharp bettors so far this season and this week is no different, though if that number climbs higher, wiseguys could start backing the Browns.
“Squares love the Cards in this one and the sharps somewhat do as well,” Lester “If this keeps climbing and reaches the key number, I suspect we’ll see some wiseguys come out of the woodwork to grab Cleveland. Almost 90 percent of the wagers taken are on Arizona so we certainly would love to see an upset in this one.”
Seattle Seahawks at Dallas Cowboys – Open: +6.5, Move: +4.5
A four-game losing skid has the Cowboys in dire need of a win but might get a boost with the possible return of wide receiver Dez Bryant. Bryant has been out since having surgery on his foot back on Sept. 14.
The Seahawks come to Dallas off an impressive 20-3 victory at the San Francisco 49ers in Week 7’s Thursday nighter and will look forward to the bye next week. Speaking of bye weeks, The Seahawks are 20-6 heading into their bye week, the best mark in the league.
“The smart bettors didn’t even let this one get to +7 as they started knocking out the 6.5s early in the week,” Lester says. “It’s been nothing but Cowboys money since then, and I don’t disagree with the move. Dallas played well last week but no one seemed to notice. I think Matt Cassel is good enough to manage a win here. Around 75 percent of our bets on Seattle but the spread continues to drop.”
New York Jets at Oakland Raiders – Open: +1, Move: +3
The Raiders can move to one game above .500 with a win while the Jets will hope to rebound from a disappointing loss to the New England Patriots one week ago.
The Jets and the top-ranked run defense held the Pats to just 16 yards in that game and will look to hold the Raiders at bay in Oakland Sunday.
Sharps have stayed away from this game for the most part, but the public has backed the Jets in resounding numbers.
“Not seeing a lot of professional action here, but the public is getting plenty of Jets at an almost 80 percent clip. We’ve moved from the opener of -1.5 to -3. The general public just isn’t ready to buy into the Raiders being a legit team. I doubt this gets past the key number but if does, there’s value on the home dog.”
Green Bay Packers at Denver Broncos – Open: Pick, Move: +2.5, Move: +3
The Sunday nighter pits a pair of unbeaten squads against one another so something will have to give in Denver. In fact, this will be just the fourth time in NFL history that a pair of 6-0 teams (or better) square off.
These are also two of the best teams at the betting window with the Broncos 4-2 ATS and the Packers 5-1 ATS.
Bettors hammered the Packers early as nobody seems to believe in the Broncos and their stellar defense.
“Bad line on the PK open as we immediately got hammered with Packers money,” Lester says. “As I mentioned in the opening line report, the media has convinced the world that Denver is a diminishing team with a subpar quarterback. That may be true, but this is certainly a quality defense. Both sharps and squares on the Pack to the tune of 75 percent.”