The following was written by VSiN’s Josh Appelbaum.
In the age of coronavirus, when sports betting options are limited and bettors are thirsty for action, the NFL is the gift that keeps on giving.
As if Thursday’s NFL draft wasn’t enough, the sports betting universe received an unexpected shot in the arm Tuesday afternoon when news broke that Rob Gronkowski was coming out of retirement. But instead of returning to the New England Patriots, Gronkowski requested a trade to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers so he could reunite with his longtime quarterback, Tom Brady
Bill Belichick granted Gronk his wish. New England sent the star tight end along with a seventh-round pick to Tampa Bay in exchange for a fourth-round pick.
Right on cue, sportsbooks were bombarded with Bucs futures money, forcing oddsmakers to shorten Tampa’s Super Bowl odds, division odds, conference odds and win totals odds across the board.
Caesars adjusted the Bucs win total from nine (over -125) to 9.5 following the Gronk news. Director of trading Jeff Davis reported a “respected” bet on the over nine-win total. Tampa’s Super Bowl odds moved from +1700 to +1400.
Davis said “I was going to leave Super Bowl at 17-1, but we took a bet on it almost immediately.” Tampa’s odds to win the NFC jumped from +800 to +700.
Interestingly, the New Orleans Saints remained the favorite to win the NFC South, falling slightly from -120 to -105. Tampa jumped up from +175 to +150.
The Bucs are now tied with the Saints and Seattle Seahawks for the fifth-best Super Bowl odds at Caesars (+1400), trailing only the Kansas City Chiefs (+400), San Francisco 49ers (+700), Baltimore Ravens (+800) and Dallas Cowboys (+1100).
Caesars adjusted the odds for Tampa to make the playoffs from “Yes -155, No +135” to “Yes -165, No +145.”
At BetMGM, the Bucs jumped from +1600 to +900 to win the Super Bowl and +800 to +475 to win the NFC.
Circa Sports moved the Bucs’ Super Bowl odds from +1500 to +1100 and their win total from 9.5 (under -130) to 10 (under -120). Tampa’s odds to make the playoffs moved from -160 to -210. “It’s a combination of public perception and me thinking there is a decent chance (Gronkowski) can still be really good,” Circa Sportsbook Manager Chris Bennett told the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
DraftKings moved the Bucs from +1400 to +1300 to win the Super Bowl and +700 to +650 to win the NFC. DraftKings also made Gronk the favorite to win Comeback Player of the Year at +200. Gronkowski opened at 300-1 to win MVP at Circa Sports.
Brady’s MVP odds also shortened with Gronk back in the fold. Brady moved from +2000 to +1400 at PointsBet.
At FanDuel there is a prop bet on which team will win more games this upcoming season between the Patriots and Bucs. Before the Gronk news, it was a dead heat with both teams listed at -110. It is now Tampa Bay -145, New England +125.
FanDuel opened Gronkowski’s over/under receiving yards at 599.5 with -112 juice on both sides. DraftKings set Gronk’s over/under receiving touchdowns at five (-110 juice both sides).
In case you’re wondering about New England, its odds didn’t move. The Patriots’ win total remains nine (over -120) at FanDuel, 9.5 (under -120) at DraftKings and nine (-110 both sides) at PointsBet. New England is a +100 favorite to win the AFC East at DraftKings (the Buffalo Bills are the runner up at +160). The Pats and Bills are co-favorites to win the AFC at FanDuel and PointsBet (both +120).
New England is +900 to win the AFC and +2000 to win the Super Bowl at DraftKings. The Patriots are +1000 to win the AFC and +2200 to win the Super bowl at FanDuel.
Belichick is the favorite to win Coach of the Year (+800) at DraftKings.
Here are the latest odds on who will be the Patriots’ starting quarterback for Week 1 of the regular season at FanDuel.
Jarret Stidham -270
Brian Hoyer +260
Cam Newton +750
Andy Dalton +1300
Jameis Winston +1300
Jake Fromm +1800
Jordan Love +2000
Jacob Eason +2300
Justin Herbert +2900
Joe Flacco +5000
VSiN reporter Josh Appelbaum offers more daily sports betting insights at VSiN.com.