Earlier this week, CG Technology posted gambling lines for the first 16 weeks of the regular season. They did not include Week 17 because of the impact playoff implications will often have on those games. But in giving us 15 games worth of team lines, we get a better idea of how Vegas views each team.
Football Perspective’s Chase Stuart takes those lines and offers a little more detail on what it means for each team. Each year he develops a simple rating system (SRS) to figure out a Vegas rating for each team. Gambling lines are as much about how the public will bet on a given matchup, but when a team is favored or an underdog in a bunch of games, we get a handle on where they stand.
Stuart determines how much a team is projected to win on average after removing homefield advantage from the equation. The 49ers rank 12th in implied team rating, and seventh in the NFC. The Los Angeles Rams rank sixth, while the Seattle Seahawks rank 19th. It is no surprise the New England Patriots are first by a sizable margin.
Plenty will change between now and the end of the regular season. Just for comparison, a year ago, the Los Angeles Rams ranked 29th and the Jacksonville Jaguars ranked 27th. By season’s end, both had won their division, and ranked third and fourth respectively in point differential across the NFL. On the flip side, the Oakland Raiders ranked seventh and the New York Giants ranked tenth in Stuart’s rating. By season’s end, the Raiders were 6-10 and the Giants were 3-13.
Las Vegas expects plenty of wagering on the 49ers coming off last year’s strong regular season finish. The 49ers are favored in nine of their games, and the juice on their win total odds is trending over. They face a tough start to the season, with things easing up during the back half. I don’t expect anybody to be betting weekly lines yet, but you might have some wiggle room if the 49ers get off to a slow start. Aside from Super Bowl odds, there might be some value to be had on their weekly lines if they perform close to those early season lines. I could see the betting public turning on the 49ers if they don’t come out of the gates blazing.