The books may re-name Tom Brady… Tom Terrific.
The announcement of six-time Super Bowl winner and four-time MVP Tom Brady leaving New England for Tampa Bay brought chatter – and action – to sports wagering companies.
Brady provided a holiday from the coronavirus-induced detour that included:
- Second-tier soccer leagues
- Other sports not normally on their radar
The Brady Bump was a return to normalcy for the sports-wagering community. A glimpse of what daily sportsbook life will return to once the virus fades and major sports-leagues resume.
Bettors welcomed the news, pumping the futures board
In fact, they pounced on the anticipated announcement.
The action began Tuesday news came out that Tom Brady was leaning to Tampa Bay rather than the rumored San Diego, Indianapolis or Oakland. The Bucs suddenly became the darling of the betting public.
DraftKings reported that 25% of all NFL handle has been on the Buccaneers to win the Super Bowl.
“We have already taken 30x the handle and 10x the bets on the Buccaneers to win Super Bowl LV than all bets on the Bucs to win last year’s Super Bowl (LIV),” an official told us.
Tampa Bay’s jump was understandable. The Bucs went from 50-1 to 20-1 at DraftKings and PlaySugarHouse thanks to Tom Brady. The Brady factor is likely to make Tampa Bay a shorter price than New England, permanently.
Matt Stetz, whose Rush Street Interactive company operates PlaySugarHouse.comand BetRivers.com in several states, saw the Tom Brady rumors rapidly impact the landscape of futures.
“Tampa Bay was 50-1 last Friday,” he said. “The movement started Tuesday, going to 40-1, then around 11 a.m. it was cut to 33-1 and 30-1 around 1 p.m. It later moved down to 22-1 and finally 20-1 by the end of the day.”
Stetz said that New England only moved from 14-1 to 16-1 despite losing Brady.
And that’s telling.
Although Brady will be hailed as a Godsend in Tampa Bay, New England’s lack of futures movement indicates belief in the Patriots as a system, rather than one player.
Coach Bill Belichick performs yearly miracles with banged-up teams. When Tom Brady was hurt in 2008, Matt Cassel came in to replace him and the Pats went 11-5.
Belichick is a coaching master chef, compiling game plans around his talent. New England’s We-First philosophy, which produced a string of successful seasons, will remain in place. But this team also needs an infusion of players. It tailed off badly and lost its final two games _ one regular season and one post-season _ at home.
New England has not suffered a losing season since 2000.
New England will miss Brady’s discipline and attention to detail more than his physical tools. At 43, he has diminished pocket mobility. He also made more uncharacteristic mistakes last year, tossing interceptions rather than accepting sacks.
His transition may have a Peyton Manning-like effect on Tampa Bay. Manning stabilized Denver and helped the Broncos win a Super Bowl, even as his skills were in decline, because he had a strong supporting cast. Brady has a talented receiving corps in Tampa.
The Bucs have great offensive potential, but quarterback Jameis Winston had a dubious NFL first of 30-30 last year. That’s 33 touchdowns and 30 interceptions. He’s a great raw talent, but took a step back with those picks.
Other NFL Futures
William Hill reports that the Houston Texans find themselves at 60/1 to win the Super Bowl after opening at 25/1, reportedly because of the loss of DeAndre Hopkins to Arizona early this week. Yet Hopkins’ new team only improved from 60-1 from 75-1.
Everybody loves a winner. Besides having the lowest title odds, the Chiefs also have generated the most betting action in William Hill’s Super Bowl futures. Kansas City has attracted a whopping 25% of the total dollars wagered, as well as leading all teams by drawing 9% of the total number of tickets.
Yet, the biggest Super Bowl wager thus far was on the Colts. One bettor placed $10,000 on Indianapolis at 45/1, and stands to net $460,000 if the Colts hoist the Lombardi Trophy next February.
Was it a hunch that the Colts would land Brady prompting that bet?
And Here Comes the Draft
On Wednesday afternoon, New Jersey bettors gained access to a slew of NFL draft props from William Hill.
Alabama star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is slated to be one of the first quarterbacks taken and his draft position has been set at 4.5, with over 4.5 (drafted at No. 5 or later) priced at -150 and under (drafted before or at No. 4) at +130.
Other quarterbacks whose draft positions are available to bet on right now are Oregon’s Justin Herbert at 6 (over -110, under -110) and Utah State’s Jordan Love at 12.5 (over -110, under -110).
The player with the best draft position on the board is Ohio State cornerback Jeff Okudah at 3.5 (over -130, under +110). The only other prospect with draft position odds inside the top 5 is Louisville offensive lineman Mekhi Becton at 4.5 (over -110, under -110).
The NFL Draft is April 23-25.
Alternate betting solutions crop up everywhere for gamblers.
A Divine Fortune Jackpot winner hit for $278,000 with two bucks, at PlaySugarHouse, last weekend. A quarter-mil plus, from the comfort of one’s home.
PointsBet is reaching out to different regulators, seeking approval for esports and chess. (No wonder they are the Battle of the Books defending champs at PlayNJ.com via Twitter, before Thursday’s battle with Golden Nugget).
Political debates have props at DraftKings. Watch for more of them, as they can be bet.
Horse racing remains viable to New Jersey bettors through 4NJ Bets, powered by TVG. The March 28 Dubai World Cup and Florida Derby are major attractions in the wagering world.
Tracks throughout the country are open every day, but primarily without fans. Yet you can bet.
The Kentucky Derby, postponed until Sept. 5, will likely prompt movement of the entire Triple Crown series. That means a late September Preakness and October Belmont.
OTHER OPTIONS AROUND THE BOOKS
The National Rugby League
Round 1 of the 2020 Telstra Premiership just went underway, as 15 Australian teams and one other from New Zealand vie for glory in the National Rugby League.
The top Aussie league currently has Sydney FC ahead in the standings by 10 points over second-place Melbourne City.
Argentina Primera B, Copa de la Superliga
With nine games remaining, Argentina’s Primera B is heating up. In the past, some great teams have been in this division, such as Argentina’s Juniors and River Plate, who have both won South America’s biggest tournament, Copa Libertadores.
Soccer … G-O-A-L-S!!
Bettors hitting soccer parlays will come to the forefront during this period.
On Sunday, a DraftKings user placed a $250 bet on a 3-leg money line parlay of three different soccer games across three different days. Odds were +864 and the user was paid out $2409.75 when the final leg hit early in the week.
Here were the parlay legs:
- Cruz Azul ML vs. Club America (3/15 Liga MX)
- Agropecuario ML vs. Barracas Central (3/16 Argentina Primera B Nacional)
- Goztepe ML vs. Rizespor (3/17 Turkey Super Lig)
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