It appears the Green Bay Packers dramatically helped out two entities last weekend – the Arizona Cardinals, whom they lost a crushing 51-45 overtime contest to, and the Las Vegas sports books.
Not surprisingly, bettors were going big on the Packers, who had beaten the Cardinals 33-7 to end the regular season. The Cardinals opened the game as the favorite (-3), but over the course of the week, the line shifted dramatically towards Green Bay ending at -3 for the Packers. That’s a six-point swing and means all the action was in favor of Green Bay.
Usually, the final game of the playoff weekend always has the most wagers just because of all the repeat wagers after the other games are over. Sometimes, their winning bets from earlier games are rolling over from someone feeling lucky, or sometimes it’s the unlucky who are trying to recoup their losses from the other games.
By Friday of last week, before any of the games started, several sports books were already reporting that the Cardinals game had the most action of the four games by far – both from the Sharps and small money. The ticket count ratio was 6 to 1 at many books in favor of the Packers and the actual cash wagers resembled the same ratio.
In other words, had the Packers scored a touchdown to win in overtime, Vegas would have lost a ton of money. And here’s where you conspiracy theorists can jump in.
People have questioned why a facemask wasn’t called on the play that ended the game, or a personal foul wasn’t called on the helmet-to-helmet hit by Bertrand Berry two players earlier.
Well, I don’t subscribe to conspiracy theories, but if you’re someone who does then you probably know what they say.
Follow the money.