Every week, three betting lines are released by the various sports books around the country, primarily based on those in Las Vegas. Those are the spread, the over/under, and the money line. The spread is the number of points a team must win by to “cover.” The over/under is the total number of combined points expected to be scored in the game. And the money line indicates how much you must bet on a favored team in order to win $100 (indicated with a “-” before the number) or the amount you would win if you bet $100 on an underdog team (indicated with a “+”).
At the beginning of this week, the Buffalo Bills opened in most sports books as 3.5-point favorites over the New England Patriots and the game had an over/under of 46 points in most sports books. Since Sunday 10/25, the Bills have moved to become 4-point favorites (meaning most of the bets made have been on the Bills to win) and the over/under has dropped to 40.5 in most places.
Orchard Park is forecast to have 100% rain and 20+ mph winds on Sunday, meaning this game is more likely to resemble a smash-mouth type of game favored by the likes of Bill Cowher rather than ones we’ve become accustomed to within the current NFL landscape. Combine that with the Patriots’ poor(lack of) passing offense, and the points expectations have fallen as the week has gone on.
Most sports books started the week with the Bills at a -185 or -190 money line (although there was a brief -125 at the Mirage-MGM on Monday) and that has steadily increased throughout the week to as much as -220. The Patriots’ money line started the week +160 to +170 range and now sit at anywhere from +170 to +185 with most books settling in the middle at +180.