November 16, 2018
Each Friday for PhillyVoice, Steve Maltepes, known as “The Philly Godfather,” will impart his gambling wisdom on the Eagles and where the smart money is going on various pro and college football games this weekend. Maltepes is one of the nation’s hottest sports betting experts who appears weekly on national radio and has his own website, www.thephillygodfather.com.
(Games 259 & 260 on the sports betting screen)
The Line: Saints minus-8/Total: 56
What is the line telling you: This is the biggest game of the season for our beloved Philadelphia Eagles. Bookmakers and offshore opened this line with the 9-1 Saints as huge 9-point home favorites over the Birds with a combined total of 54.5 on Monday. Since then, we’ve seen a one-point downgrade off the original price. The biggest move has been on the total, which was walloped by the sharp money and forced oddsmakers to move it up a full 1.5 points, where it currently sits. The total will go higher. We’re dealing with two dubious defenses. Around 64-percent of all tickets punched offshore and in Vegas, while the bigger bets and sharper bets and overall money wagered is top heavy on Philly. Anytime a team is smoking hot, like the Saints, who continue to out-perform the market and cover the spread 77-percent of the time and 7-2 against the Vegas spread this year, you better believe that you’ll be paying a premium on an inflated price to back this team. Even though the defending Super Bowl champs are riddled with injuries on defense and banged up on their offensive line, bookmakers have that factored into the price to charge an extra fee to back New Orleans at home. The line is a little too high. The last three games, New Orleans’ defense has given up almost 400 yards per game. The Saints play Atlanta next week in a much more important divisional game.
Bottom line: The smart money likes the Eagles plus-8, and there are a few 9s out there and the over.
(Games 451 & 452 on the sports betting screen)
The Line: Panthers minus-4/Total: 49.5
What is the line telling you: The oddsmakers and offshore sports books opened this game with the Panthers being a small 3.5-point road favorite with the combined total set at 50.5. Since then, we’ve seen sharp money attack the screen and force bookmakers to move a full point on a side. The total rose to as high as 51.5, before we saw plummet to where it is right now at 49.5. The early market reports are showing the Average Joe and the sharp money in agreement in on the same side here, with 80-percent of the tickets punched have been on Carolina offshore and in Vegas. Usually, the home dog catching more than a field goal would be the right side, but after the Panthers’ lopsided loss to the Steelers last week, and Detroit coming off a third-straight loss, the sharp money is all over Carolina. The Lions have accepted the fact that their playoff chances are over. More than likely, they’ll put it on cruise control the rest of the season.
Bottom line: The smart money likes the Panthers minus-4.
(Games 457 & 458 on the sports betting screen)
The Line: Bears minus-2.5/Total: 44.5
What is the line telling you: Both of these teams have made the recreational sports bettor some nice paper this year by out-performing the market at this point. The Bears have the third-best record against the Vegas spread at 6-3, while the Vikings have snuck behind them covering the number 62.5-percent of the time, which equates to a 5-3-1 clip. The Bears opened as a 3-point favorite. Since then, we’ve seen this line bounce back and forth to as low as Chicago minus-2.5, where it stands now. Right now, according to the early market reports, the Vikings were receiving 62-percent of the love from the Average Joe. When we look at recent play, the Vikings have won four of their last five games, which looks great to the naked eye. But the reality is, they haven’t beaten anyone with a winning record. Think about who the Vikings have beat during this stretch: The Eagles, Cardinals, Jets and Lions. All four of those offenses have somewhat of a stench to them. Not one of those teams are in the top 20 offenses when it comes to yards per play. Those teams have no explosiveness. It’s going to be freezing by kickoff. The Vikings are coming off a bye, but that’s offset by playing in a domed stadium.
Bottom line: The smart money likes the Bears and the under.
(Betting lines are subject to change.)