NFL Divisional Round Pros vs. Joes: Bucs-Saints Drawing Big Money

Special insight into sharp and public betting reports at DraftKings Sportsbook

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The NFL season is down to eight teams, which means we get some great matchups this weekend.

Prior to making your NFL wagers, it's worth reading up on which sides are drawing the most sharp and public money.

To learn more about the betting markets for this weekend, we talked to Johnny Avello, sportsbook director for DraftKings, for his insights.

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Los Angeles Rams at Green Bay Packers (-6.5, 46)

The Los Angeles Rams head to Lambeau Field this weekend to take on the Green Bay Packers in what should be a fun one. From a betting perspective, this game is shaping up to be a classic Joes vs. Pros matchup.

“We’re 80 percent heavy on Packers money,” said Avello. “And, I see that continuing into the weekend.”

As for the line itself, the oddsmaker said they opened at Packers -7.5, which got hit immediately.

“The sharps took some of Rams +7.5,” Avello stated. “So, we adjusted it and moved it down to 6.5.”

Avello compared this game to last week’s Indianapolis Colts-Buffalo Bills matchup.

“This game is being bet similarly to that game last week, and we’re seeing the same kind of move,” Avello explained. “All the money was on the Bills in that one, but they didn’t cover.”

I asked Avello about home field, especially with the game being in Green Bay and the weather expected to be frigid.

“Because of COVID-19, we cut home field in half, but we’ve made adjustments since,” he explained. “In this instance, we’ve given the Packers not the full home field, but a portion of it.”

The oddsmaker explained that every situation is different, but a couple of teams that always stick out when it comes to home field are the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay.

“Green Bay is normally 3.5 points towards the spread,” he stated. “We’re right around there for this game, close to 3.”

As for the total, DraftKings has seen a drop from 47 to 46, but Avello attributes that to the weather.

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Baltimore Ravens at Buffalo Bills (-3, 50)

There are so many good games in this round, but this one might take the cake. Two of the hottest teams in football face-off with the right to advance to the conference championship game.

“This game is going to be entertaining," Avello agreed. "The Ravens are on a run but the Bills are also playing great, and Allen has come into his own and is confident.”

As for betting, Avello anticipates this game seeing split-action.

“I know we are a little heavy on the Ravens on the moneyline,” he explained. “But, this could be one where by game time we have a little more balance.”

When it comes to the total, it has gone up from the original number of 49.5 to 50.

“The Ravens have a strong running game and the Bills can also score,” Avello said. “Both teams don’t lack the ability to score points, so the total has moved up a little.”

Cleveland Browns at Kansas City Chiefs (-10, 57)

Can the Cleveland Browns continue to shock the world? Will the Kansas City Chiefs be rusty? DraftKings is seeing some two-way action on the game so far.

“10 was the number I thought that would be good for balanced action, and we’re seeing that,” the oddsmaker explained. “If it was 7.5 or 8, it would be all Chiefs, but 10 is one of those numbers that makes you think a little and the backdoor is always open.”

But, that does not mean the public is not liking the Chiefs when it comes to the exotics.

“As we get closer to Sunday, Kansas City is going to be in every single parlay, teaser, and alternative bet you can think of,” Avello said.

The total has jumped significantly from 54 to 57.

“Why not?” Avello asked. “The Browns don’t play great D and both teams can certainly score.”

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints (-3, 52)

Tom Brady vs. Drew Brees headlines the last game of the weekend and Avello thinks this game will be one of the highest wagered games of the season.

“This is the last game of the weekend where guys are looking to chase or double up,” he said. “This game could surpass all the handles we’ve seen throughout the playoffs by kick-off.”

He did say they opened the game at New Orleans Saints -3.5, which got bet down to 3 right off the bat. Like they have all season, the public loves to bet on Brady.

“The Bucs got bet on in the first two games, and will get hit here again,” Avello said. “Ever since Brady went to the Bucs, money has been flowing on them to win the SB, and that has continued throughout the season.”

Avello thinks the Bucs are a little overvalued at this time and states that 10 out of their 12 wins were against non-playoff teams.

When it comes to the total, the line has moved up from 50.5 to 52, with the public on the over.

“Both teams aren't known for their stellar defense,” he said. “If the game opens up, it’s possible to see some points in the second half.”

So, there you have it, folks. May the odds be in your favor this weekend.

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