The NFL season was just completed, and many people are wondering why the line for the Eagles-Redskins game moved in the direction that it did. The favorite, with large amounts of money on the line, was an easy choice. But what exactly happened? Let’s take a closer look.
The Eagles Were a Few Points Favored
The Eagles were heavily favored in the game, and many sportsbooks, including online bookmakers, adjusted their lines in their favor. In fact, after the line moved in the Eagles’ direction, it never returned to its original position. Even after the season ended, the line kept moving in Philly’s favor, eventually settling at -3.5 points. A few points are a lot in sports betting, especially when you’re talking about a game with such high betting interest. It’s not hard to understand why the line moved in the Eagles’ direction.
The Redskins Had a Bad Season
The Redskins had a disastrous season, and many bettors didn’t expect them to cover the spread against the Eagles. Washington was 4-12 ATS, and that’s the main reason for its futility. It didn’t help that its games were generally low-scoring affairs, with the exception of one, high-scoring affair where it covered. In general, the team was outscored by 81 points, and it also gave up a league-high 52.8 points on defense. But the team’s issues go beyond the numbers—it didn’t have a single victory when behind by four points or more, and it lost nine of its 13 games by at least seven points (including the playoffs). It was a very frustrating season for the Redskins, and many gamblers aren’t likely to forget how they underperformed.
The Final Regular-Season Adjustment
The last week of the regular season was incredibly exciting in the NFL. Teams that were guaranteed to make the playoffs faced off in games that were practically must-wins for one side or the other. Many teams were in the running for the top seed in the conference, and games like the Eagles-Redskins matchup were must-wins. In fact, the line moved a lot in the final week of the season, with the total amount of points moved above or below the average line movement for that week being 36.5 points. It’s clear that many people knew what was coming, and they were trying to capitalize on that information. Most notably, the line moved in the Eagles’ direction in games featuring Philadelphia (which had a 100% success rate in predicting the winner of those games). But the biggest mover in the final week of the season was the over-under on the total points scored. The total was moved up by 1.5 points, making it one of the most active weeks of the entire season. But what does this information mean? It could indicate that people expected more points to be scored in the game. Or it could mean that people expected fewer points to be scored. Only one thing is for sure: it was certainly unexpected.
While many fans of the game will have their favorite explanation for why the line moved the way it did, the reality is that it was probably a combination of everything stated above. The Eagles were an easy choice for bettors, and the lines quickly adjusted in favor of Philadelphia. The fact that the team was favored by 3.5 points and actually won the game means that the line knew what it was doing. It’s just a matter of whether or not you agree with its methods. Either way, it was quite the way to end the season.