By Bill Speros | | 9 mins
NFL Week 18 Betting Recap: New York Begins With A Bang
It was a big weekend as New York sports betting went mobile before Week 18 of the NFL betting season. It came just in time for bettors to cash as the Buffalo Bills rode to the playoffs as AFC East champions.
The Bills officially clinched the AFC East when Miami beat New England early Sunday evening. Buffalo (-16) then closed out the regular season with a 27-10 win and cover against the Jets.
Nationwide, the books closed out the season in the black, pushed across the line by the underdogs going 10-6 against the spread and outright upsets by the Jaguars (+16) over the Colts, the Broncos' (+11.5) cover against the Chiefs, Pittsburgh’s (+5) straight-up win at Baltimore and the Patriots' (-6) continuation of their late-season horrors in Miami.
The first bet placed in New York at FanDuel New York was a winner – with one bold bettor staking $21 on the Over of 43.5 points in the Cowboys-Eagles game Saturday night. The Cowboys rolled 56-21. Overall, the book saw bettors flock to the two NFL games on the first day of legal, online betting in the Empire State. They were the top-two most bet events on Day One by handle. Both Saturday games – the Chiefs' 28-24 win over the Broncos (+11.5) and the Cowboys (-4.5) rolling over the Eagles’ scrubs.
Of the top 10 most-bet teams at DraftKings New York on Saturday, nine were NFL franchises. Here’s a look:
Top 10 Most Bet Teams At DraftKings NY
- Kansas City Chiefs
- Dallas Cowboys
- Philadelphia Eagles
- Buffalo Bills
- Indianapolis Colts
- Green Bay Packers
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- New York Jets
- New York Knicks
- Denver Broncos
Action Breakdown At DraftKings
Here’s a breakdown of the action taken by DraftKings NY on Day One:
Overall, the action in New York on Day One was stratospheric. Transaction volume was 5.8 million among the four providers taking mobile bets in New York – DraftKings, Caesars Sportsbook New York, FanDuel and BetRivers – according to GeoComply, as reported by Seeking Alpha.
Most players across the industry expect New York to become the biggest regulated market in the nation in terms of overall revenue. The revenue projection of gaming for the state this year lies between $400-$700 million, which tops Bank of America’s initial estimate of $309 million, Seeking Alpha added.
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Close Calls Continue In Week 18
Outside New York, betting sites and sportsbooks enjoyed a profitable weekend, as well. In Atlantic City, the Borgata closed the regular season above water in Week 18. The book did not see any difference in its traffic with the addition of New York betting apps.
”This is traditionally the hardest week of the season to book but we came out OK. We won some really big decisions ($480K on the Giants first half +3 ½) but lost six figures on some popular underdogs like the Steelers and Niners. Both were getting bet on the spread and for bigger amounts on the moneyline. But this weekend will actually be one of the bigger handle weekends of the season for us. Overall, it’s been another season of growth for the NFL in terms of handle and revenue, so I can’t complain at all,” reports Borgata AC Director of Race and Sports Book Thomas Gable.
“We personally haven’t seen any difference with New York going online but I don’t anticipate the Atlantic City books to feel any effects from it. I think the apps, particularly the smaller ones, may end up feeling the pinch.”
WynnBET said Week 18 was “strong” for the book nationally. Sunday night’s last-second, Raiders 38-35 win over the LA Chargers, was a nearly perfect two-way play for the site, with 50.2% of the spread money laid on the Chargers -3. The book scored well on the moneyline, with 75.7% of the moneyline handle riding with the Bolts, who were eliminated with the loss. Had those teams played to a tie, both would have advanced to the playoffs by virtue of the Colts' calamitous loss earlier Sunday.
A WynnBET player in New Jersey wagered $1,000 on a two-leg parlay featuring the Jacksonville Jaguars moneyline (+700) and the Raiders-Chargers game ending with a tie (+1350) in regulation. The total odds were +11500 and the winning ticket was worth $116,000.
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Week 18 NFL Betting Trends
Lions Roar Until The End
The Detroit Lions (+3.5) finished 11-6 against NFL spreads this season with a 37-30 outright win over the Green Bay Packers Sunday. The Lions finished with the third-best record ATS in the NFL, behind just the Dallas Cowboys (13-4) and the Packers (12-5). The Houston Texans finished with a 4-13 record, tied for third-worst in the NFL. They managed to complete the season 8-9 against the line, which is the same record as seven other teams, including playoff-bound Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Las Vegas and the LA Rams.
Here are the final standings of all 32 NFL teams ATS:
NFL Teams ATS In 2021 NFL Regular Season
Close Calls Continue
As was the case all season, many spread, total and moneyline bettors were unable to relax until the final gun for much of the day Sunday. It was fitting that the final game of the regular season – Chargers-Raiders – was not settled until the last second in overtime to determine the final playoff spot(s) and seeding in the AFC.
A total 33 games, or more than two full weeks of play, were decided by a game-winning score on the final play this regular season, the most all-time. A total of 49 games this season ended with the game-winning score coming in the final minute of regulation or overtime. That tied the record set in 2013 and ’15.
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Major Week 18 Wagers
There were Big Bets aplenty in Week 18. Here are some notable net wins and losses:
- Loss $237,279.05: Chargers ML (-160) Over Raiders at Caesars Sportsbook
- Loss $170,000: Chargers ML (-160) Over Raiders at Caesars Sportsbook
- Loss $220,000: Over 40.5 (-110) Bills vs Jets at Caesars Sportsbook
Plays Of The Day
Matthew Stafford did these bettors a solid with that late interception.
Can you carry this momentum into the playoffs?
We all marry up.
Thoughts and prayers.
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All odds are current as of publication. Check out our DraftKings vs FanDuel comparison of the two books.