Week 2 of the NFL season is often reserved for fairly-large overreactions from the betting public. In 2022, the New England Patriots seem to have fallen on the wrong side.
New England was manhandled by the Miami Dolphins in Week 1, suffering a 20-7 defeat in a game full of turnovers, mental mistakes and missed opportunities. Moving into Week 2, the Patriots are facing a Pittsburgh Steelers squad that displayed the ability to do everything New England couldn’t on opening weekend, taking home a dramatic victory over the defending-AFC champion Cincinnati Bengals.
Despite the two squads falling on the opposite end of the season-opening spectrum, sportsbooks see the matchup between Pittsburgh and New England as a pick ’em — even giving the slight edge to the Patriots. Bill Belichick’s squad is favored (-1.5) by most books heading into Sunday. And while a pair of key injuries to Steelers stars could influence that line, there has been an overwhelming decision by the public to hammer Pittsburgh and the points.
Pittsburgh has commanded 80% of public bets and 74% of the handle placed on Sunday’s game, according to DraftKings Sportsbook. But, the public reaction Week 1 isn’t just felt for matchups in the immediate future, the public is actively betting against New England.
Of the total money placed on the Patriots’ playoff fate, 80% has been placed on New England missing the postseason for the second time in the last three years, according to BetMGM Sportsbook. After the performance they put on last Sunday, it’s slightly understandable, but the public isn’t even getting good odds on those bets. New England’s odds to make the postseason (+135) are much more favorable than their odds are not to (-165).
Either way, the people will get a pretty good idea of where their bets are headed Sunday. Whether New England wins or loses, those odds are bound to change.