The Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers are still the top two favorites on the NFL odds board for Super Bowl 50. But Seattle has lost ground going into Sunday's matchup.
Jason's 2015 record as of Sept. 15: 4-3 ATS; 2-2 Total
Is this the end for our heroes? The Seattle Seahawks have made us a ton of money over the past three years, going 34-21-1 ATS (regular season and playoffs) during the Pete Carroll-Russell Wilson regime. But the Seahawks lost their first game of 2015, falling 34-31 to the St. Louis Rams (+3.5 at home) in overtime. It wasn't just the fact they lost that has Seattle supporters on edge – it was how they lost.
Meanwhile, the Green Bay Packers are off to a roaring start after beating the Chicago Bears 31-23 as 6-point road faves. The Packers have now vaulted over Seattle as the top favorites to win Super Bowl 50; as we go to press, Green Bay (+500) sits atop the NFL odds list at Bovada, followed by the Seahawks (+700) and the New England Patriots (also +700). Before we get to the playoffs, the Packers and 'Hawks have a date this Sunday night at Lambeau Field. Guess where the early action has been?
If you've been reading this space, you already know the answer – sort of. The Packers kicked things off with 60 percent support as 3.5-point home faves (+100), and they've held onto that support, moving the line to the full –4 at press time. However, our first expanded consensus reports are in, and while the Packers have a majority of bettors on their side, over 61 percent of the money is on Seattle. The average bet on the 'Hawks is $57, compared to just $26 for Green Bay.
Interesting. These are both small bet sizes, although not that unusual in early trading. We're more intrigued by the idea that anyone would want to bet on Seattle after that loss to the Rams. There are some serious questions about this team on two fronts: the offensive line and the secondary. Those are two critical areas for our NFL picks, as well, and the Seahawks aren't likely to come up with any solutions by Sunday night (8:30 p.m. ET, NBC).
Must Check: Seahawks vs. Packers Props Betting Guide
We mentioned the offensive line earlier. The Rams broke through and sacked Wilson six times, the highest sack total of Week 1. Wilson's stat line at the end of the game might look respectable: 32-of-41 for 251 yards, a TD and a pick. But from an efficiency perspective, Wilson was –61 Total DYAR (Defense-adjusted Yards Above Replacement) on the day. That was worse than Cleveland's Johnny Manziel at –60 DYAR.
The secondary might be even worse. The Seahawks had to play contract Whac-A-Mole this offseason, and the one guy they didn't sign, safety Kam Chancellor, is the guy they miss the most right now. Back-up safety Dion Bailey got burned multiple times in Chancellor's place last week. Imagine what Aaron Rodgers might do to him this week.