Bookies are in the process of sending thank-you cards to Matt Ryan, Knowshon Moreno and Fred Jackson after the three players played huge parts in securing victories for their respective teams, giving sportsbooks three significant wins in the early schedule of Sunday’s Week 1 games.
Ryan threw for a career high 448 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Atlanta Falcons in a stunning 37-34 OT win against the favored New Orleans Saints. Not one to be outdone, Moreno went for quite a debut with the Miami Dolphins, rushing for 134 yards and scoring a late touchdown to send the New England Patriots to their first opening day-loss since 2003. Then there’s Jackson, who once again brushed aside questions of age by setting up Dan Carpenter for the winning field goal against the Chicago Bears.
All three games had significant action on the Saints, Pats and Bears. With all three losing out and not covering the spread, bookies were spared from many parlays tied to the three losing teams.
Overall, the Thursday night game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Green Bay Packers generated the highest turnover, although money was evenly split between the two sides. The biggest turnover among all of Sunday’s games was the Denver Broncos-Indianapolis Colts. It was coasting to a huge public win for the Colts until Andrew Luck generated a last ditch comeback to cover the 7.5-point spread.
The public did have some success during the weekend, winning out on Minnesota’s surprising demolition of the St. Louis Rams, as well as Houston shutting down Washington and Philadelphia comeback over Jacksonville.
Overall, seven underdog teams covered the spread; with five teams (Atlanta, Miami, Buffalo, Minnesota and Carolina) scoring outright wins.
Heading into Monday’s action, books are looking for the New York Giants and the Arizona Cardinals to win, although those sentiments could change depending on how much action comes in throughout the day.