Bookmaker's Corner: NFC Championship Game Odds
by Richard Gardner | Bodog Sportsbook Manager - 1/19/2010
Before I dive into next weekend’s NFC Championship odds between the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints, I want to take a quick look back at what transpired last weekend during the NFL’s divisional round…
How about those Saints? New Orleans appears to have found their scoring touch; their resounding 45-14 victory over the Arizona Cardinals was a nice wakeup call, at any rate. Over at Bodog Sportsbook we were cheering for New Orleans on the moneyline while hoping for Arizona on the spread (+7) and also the under.
Instant $250 Free Bonus Bet from Bovada -
Ah well… Even though the Saints had a great season overall, three straight losses to close the season, preceded by two squeakers no less, attracted a healthy contingent of Bodog bettors to throw down on the Cards.
It’ll be interesting to see if the New Orleans team that shows up on Sunday will be the same team that hammered the New England Patriots all the way back in Week 12 (and then did much of the same to Arizona last weekend).
All things considered, we felt we had to be pretty careful when we posted our point spread in the Vikings game. We opened the Saints as 4.5-point favorites but have since moved the line to 4. Brett Favre is a popular guy with our bettors as most of the money coming in right now is on the Vikings.
It’s hard to say which way this one will go. The Saints and the Vikings have been popular with our bettors throughout the season and with Favre and Brees – both teams have high-profile quarterbacks. (Brees and Favre were 1-2 in the NFL in passer rating with 109.6 and 107.2 ratings, respectively.) Still, neither Minnesota nor New Orleans are big markets that can influence the spread.
The one trend that people will be talking about before this game is the Vikings’ record away from their own dome sweet dome. Minnesota was perfect at home this season, but dropped its last three road games of the year in Arizona, Carolina and Chicago.
Brett Favre was far from terrible away from the Metrodome. His quarterback rating on the road in 2009 was 96.2, compared to 118.1 at home.
It’s the defense that’s struggled for the Vikings without the raucous crowd on its side. Minnesota surrendered at least 20 points in six of their eight road games in the regular season, holding only Detroit and St. Louis to less.
The Minnesota defense will have its work cut out, getting pressure on Drew Brees, as well as taking down Reggie Bush, who is healthy and playing like everyone expects him to play.
As for the futures odds of the two remaining NFC teams, Bodog has the Saints at 2/1 and the Vikings at 4/1. I expect the most action to continue on Minnesota.
So there you have it, folks. The Vikings and the Saints are both coming off big wins and now find themselves fighting for NFC supremacy – and a shot at the whole enchilada next month in Miami.
I will be posting weekly articles including betting previews, matchups and the inside scoop from a bookmakers point of view right here at Doc's Sports. Read my past articles - Click Here, and learn more about Bodog sportsbook - click here. If you're ready to set up an account and start playing I'd like to offer you a Sign up Bonus - Click Here. Enjoy the Bodog Experience.