With Super Bowl XLVIII just days away, bookmakers are expecting their biggest action to come over the final 48 hours before kickoff.
The game opened with the NFC champion Seattle Seahawks as a small favorite at most places, but heavy action from the public moved the line over the first 48 hours after the conference championship games. It made the AFC champion Denver Broncos a 2.5-point favorite for the better part of the last 10 days.
Much of the half points have been bought down, and in Las Vegas, Denver is laying two points. Offshore, the Peyton Manning-led Broncos are still 2.5-point favorites at most places, although one shop monitored by OddsShark.com had Seattle at +3 and another had them at +1.
Given the books opened the Seahawks as the favorite, most smart bettors believe a plus-price on the NFC champs are pure value.
"We're expecting bigger money on Seattle any day now," one leading Las Vegas bookmaker said in an interview Friday. "We know a lot of the so-called sharps are probably going to be on the Seattle side, but not cause they like the Seahawks - that's just where the value is."
The bookmaker said his shop has seen only 20 percent of the total money he expects to be played at his book, as most action will start piling in on Friday and Saturday night, as tourists who come to town start checking into Las Vegas hotels. And that's before thousands of tickets start getting written on more than 500 Super Bowl props available across the state and online.
He added the total of 47 hasn't seen a lot of action, and he doesn't expect the weather reports to have an effect on any type of line movement leading up to kickoff.
"When the total was made, we factored in the weather," the bookmaker said. "There's never really been a threat of bad weather. People have been trying to dissect the weather every day. I don't expect the total to change just because of the weather."
At another shop, the sportsbook manager was anticipating more money to pour in on the OVER, forcing that number up to 47.5 or higher.
The Vegas manager said the ideal situation for the book is to have the Broncos win by one or two points, for a profitable Super Bowl. Favorites laying up to -3 points are mired in a 3-7 ATS slide in the big game.
AFC favorites are on a 12-8 ATS run, while the over is 12-8 when an AFC team is laying points. When the total is between 42 and 48 points, there have been nine overs and six unders.