It would appear that odds makers are starting to believe there will be significant changes to the current NFL season because of COVID-19. The Tennessee Titans have already run into a number of issues that have forced a couple of games to be rescheduled, and the positive test result for Cam Newton of the New England Patriots caused the team’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs to change its date, as well. The current Over/Under for whether regular-season games will not be played on their original date is increasing, and it probably won’t take long to determine the outcome of the futures bet. Different sportsbooks such as BetOnline are giving online sports betting enthusiasts’ options to keep things interesting.
The Over/Under Wins Big In The NFL
The NFL has overwhelming seen the Over hit on points in games this season, taking a commanding lead of about 67% of games. It’s only fitting that the Over trend continue, and the Over for games being postponed (not played on their original date) is getting -220 at 10.5 games rescheduled. Heading into Week 5, we’re almost already halfway there.
The Titans are now reportedly dealing with yet another positive COVID-19 case, which could jeopardize their upcoming game against the Buffalo Bills. If the league decides to do so, it could move the game to later next week. At the same time, the Chiefs game against the Bills in Week 6 would have to be moved, as well, and there are rumors that the game could be played on Saturday, October 17.
The Pats, in addition to losing Newton to COVID-19, reported another positive test result yesterday. While it’s too early to determine if cornerback Stephon Gilmore’s case is the only other positive result, the Pats are watching closely and testing often. Any more positive tests from players could lead to New England having to postpone a game.
No Season Suspension Expected
While seeing any outbreak of the coronavirus isn’t good news, at least there is a bright side for football fans. There was no shortage of talk about the season being canceled before September because of COVID-19, and everyone was happy when that didn’t happen. With the sudden outbreak of cases on several teams, talk of whether a season suspension would be in the best interest of everyone has surfaced once again. However, oddsmakers don’t expect this to happen, and are giving “No” -400, while “Yes” is looking at +250. This is one of those times that no one wants the underdog to win.
The NFL is taking the issue seriously and expects teams and players to do the same thing. It has updated league policies to restrict player movement and extracurricular activity, while reinforcing how teams conduct themselves at their facilities. Teams are now expected to introduce shifts for players to use practice facilities in order to reduce the number of people gathering together at any one time, and lockers are being shuffled to provide greater social distancing. The NFL has also sent out an ultimatum to clubs, telling them to adhere to the policies at any cost, or face the league’s wrath.
Among the punishments the league is ready to hand down are team fines, losses of draft picks and even forfeiture of games. So far, at least one team has already been fined for breaking protocol, with the Las Vegas Raiders being slapped with a fine of $165,000 for allowing players to participate in a charity event this past Monday. The Titans could be facing a similar ordeal, as the league has asserted that an ongoing investigation shows that they violated the rules on multiple occasions.