Sports betting may have contributed to big expectations for Bills

AFC Wild Card Playoffs - New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills
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The Bills haven’t been to a Super Bowl since 1993. Last year, they didn’t even make it to the AFC Championship, losing in soul-extinguishing fashion to the Chiefs after taking the lead with 13 seconds to play. Buffalo is breaking in a new offensive coordinator in Ken Dorsey, now that Brian Daboll is the head coach of the Giants.

And yet somehow the Bills continue to be the trendy pick to win the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history.

Myles Simmons and I discussed the dynamic on Thursday’s PFT Live. And here’s a wrinkle on which we stumbled. Sports betting may have fueled this specific beast.

Not long after the confetti fell at SoFi, the Bills became installed as the favorites to win the next Super Bowl. While that’s been a fairly common reality when it comes to the coverage of the NFL, the unprecedented chatter and attention given to such potential wagers throughout sports media fuels and cements perceptions.

Hell, the Bills are favored to win tonight, by 2.5 points. Even though Sean McVay has never lost in Week One. Hell, the Rams have never even been below .500 in five years under McVay.

They’re hanging a banner tonight. Since 2004, the defending Super Bowl champion is 14-2 when opening at home on the first Thursday night of the season. (In 2013, the Ravens lost on the road. In 2019, the NFL scheduled the Packers and Bears for the first game, in honor of the league’s 100th season.)

Also, it will be very hot under the glorified car port that is the incomplete roof over SoFi Stadium. The Bills are traveling across the country for the game. And the fact that the Rams are one of 10 home underdogs this weekend will give them an extra little kick, when it’s time to get the players appropriately fired up.

It’s surprising the number hasn’t moved. Maybe it will as kickoff approaches, and as more people realize that the Rams getting 2.5 points is a pretty good deal.

13 responses to “Sports betting may have contributed to big expectations for Bills

  1. Sounds like the Bills are the only ones facing challenges this game. Rams replacing Whit, no big deal. Von Miller switched teams, no big deal. OBJ out/gone, no big deal. Staffords elbow hurting, no big deal. Bills winning this matchup two years ago, no big deal. Yeah, quite strange the line hasn’t moved on this one.

  2. The reason he only brought up the Bills challenges is because a 2.5 in favour of the away team is significant. The common view is that the home team is spotted 3 points (though some view it as less now). 5.5 might not seem like that big of a difference in favour of the Bills, but it means statistically that the gamblers view an 11 point win as more likely than the Rams winning by 1 point. As the SB champions. Both teams have their challenges. Are the Rams really more likely to be double digits/multiple possessions behind the Bills than to win by a single point? More likely to lose by a full 2 TDs than to win by a single FG? Thats a bold take that the Bills are that much better already.

  3. Let’s all remember the new rules now that we’re a favorite. If the Bills lose ALL of the chuckleheads will be out lol’ing. Though as the article states it’s a tough game and, well it’s game 1 – you don’t win or lose anything week 1. Bills win, as I expect, it also doesn’t matter but we’ll hear the chorus of the same folks laughing at how we are so excited in week one.

    It’s a lose lose for the better team, Buffalo, in this fun matchup. The bills are better and the improved defense on the Bills side is the difference 37-24 Buffalo. I hate making a score prediction but better than the trolls to follow with the lame banter.

    Go Bills!

  4. I think there’s a lingering perception that the Rams sold their souls and cheated the cap last year to stock up and win the big one…and that it’s all downhill from there. Also the Bills are really good. We’ll get some answers tonight.

  5. you know sometimes it feels like some people act like the Rams where this juggernaut team last year and just sweep though the entire league to win it all. They won the last 3 playoffs games by a total of 9 points and honestly could have lost any of them givin a few plays here or there. So they are a really good team but not a great team.

  6. Spent 20 years watching the Bills play almost exclusively at 1:00 on Sundays, and lamenting their lack of prime time games. Now, they have the kick-off against the SB champ, and the next game is MNF. And I kind of miss playing at 1:00 on Sunday all the time.

    The Bills have big expectations because they have a very good & well-rounded team. But the league is also stronger now than it’s been for a long time. There will be a lot of great games this year, and hopefully tonight is one of ’em.

  7. McDermott would scare me as a coach. He’s got the worst in-game instincts. I also wonder has their window shrunk from the past two years when it was wide open. No running game and physical teams can easily dominate them.

  8. buffman716 says:
    September 8, 2022 at 1:42 pm
    you know sometimes it feels like some people act like the Rams where this juggernaut team last year and just sweep though the entire league to win it all. They won the last 3 playoffs games by a total of 9 points and honestly could have lost any of them givin a few plays here or there. So they are a really good team but not a great team.

    —————–

    Kroenke owed the owners money from the loan. Logan Wilson did not commit a penalty on a ball thrown behind Kupp.

    There’s nothing spectacular about the Rams. The bottom line is, the NFL likes to script games and script season$ for financial gain, if it’s not obvious to most. A flag thrown on 3rd down for the Rams in a Super Bowl to help them along, is not impressive. These are things we never used to see ever in a Super Bowl under the Rozelle and Tagliabue regimes. And, if they did happen, they were extremely rare occurrences, not an every season or a weekly thing on the schedule where it does happen where there is an excuse for the horrendous call or deflections from 345 Park Ave.

  9. Let’s all remember the new rules now that we’re a favorite. If the Bills lose ALL of the chuckleheads will be out lol’ing.

    ———

    Once your team is a favorite, you are also a target of every other teams fans. Bills fans have to get used to that because they will probably be good for 10 + years.

    Embrace the hate!

  10. I cannot believe I even remotely agree with T6, but hey the season starts today. The Rams aren’t and weren’t that great. Actually replaying the game, I’d expect the Bills, KC or Cinci to win – but anyways I do agree with T6, that call ???? Watching at a bar while traveling of all things and every single person knew it was bs and knew why it was thrown. I’m not tin foil hat, I dint think like that but a very suspect call given the gravity of the situation. Not saying you put whistle away but let’s play ball!

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