The complete NFL schedule was released yesterday and as soon as games are scheduled, it’s not long before there are betting lines available.  Westgate released spreads and totals for all 16 Week 1 games nearly five months before we see the first regular season snap of 2017.  With so much time between this opening line and when the line eventually closes, I wanted to take a look at last season to see how much line movement there was between Westgate’s opening line and where Pinnacle closed.

Here are the home team’s line for Westgate’s opening lines from April 14 of last year and where the line ended up:

GameOpener (Westgate)Closer (Pinnacle)
CAR @ DEN-3+3
TB @ ATL-3.5-2.5
MIN @ TEN+3+2.5
CLE @ PHI-7.5-3.5
CIN @ NYJ0-1
OAK @ NO-1.5-2.5
LAC @ KC-7.5-6.5
BUF @ BAL-3-3
CHI @ HOU-4.5-5.5
GB @ JAX+3.5+3.5
MIA @ SEA-7.5-10.5
NYG @ DAL-5.5-1
DET @ IND-5.5-2.5
NE @ ARI0-9
PIT @ WSH+2.5+2.5
LAR @ SF+2.5+2.5

On average the line moved 2.2 points for each Week 1 game.  That number drops to 1.6 points if you exclude the Patriots game which dropped once the suspension of Tom Brady was upheld.  Seven teams that opened as dogs saw the line move in their direction while only three teams that opened as favorite saw line movement make them bigger faves.

Don’t forget that Westgate released spreads AND totals.  And there is actually a much easier pattern to spot when we look at over/unders:

GameOpener (Westgate)Closer (Pinnacle)
CAR @ DEN43.540.5
TB @ ATL4846.5
MIN @ TEN42.540
CLE @ PHI4641
CIN @ NYJ43.542
OAK @ NO5150
LAC @ KC43.545.5
BUF @ BAL43.544.5
CHI @ HOU45.543
GB @ JAX4847
MIA @ SEA45.543.5
NYG @ DAL49.547.5
DET @ IND49.551.5
NE @ ARI5144.5
PIT @ WSH5149
LAR @ SF4744

The Week 1 totals moved 2.4 points on average with the closing total being 1.8 points below what it opened.  13 of the 16 Week 1 games saw their totals drop from the opener.  Those 13 games went 6-7 betting the under on the closing line.  If you had bet those same 13 games on the opening line, the under went 8-5.  If you like the Under in any of these games, it may be wise to pull the trigger now.

It’s never too early to start researching the NFL season.  With over a million data points, you can research any situation in the NFL.  Our new Starter membership is perfect for those that love to research in the offseason.