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COVID drives line move in Packers-Cardinals; public uncertain

Updated October 28, 2021 - 2:07 pm

The public has not abandoned the Green Bay Packers, even with their top three receivers on the sidelines for Thursday’s game against the undefeated Arizona Cardinals.

Westgate SuperBook sportsbook director John Murray said tickets and money are “basically dead even” for the game.

The Cardinals are consensus 6½-point home favorites with the total at 50½. Station Casinos is the only Las Vegas sportsbook offering different numbers (Cardinals -6 and 51).

The line opened at Arizona -3½ and shot up on the news that All-Pro receiver Davante Adams would likely be out because of COVID protocols. Eventually, Adams and receiver Allen Lazard were ruled out because of COVID protocols, and wideout Marquez Valdes-Scantling is still not ready to return from a hamstring injury.

“The line move was based on the players ruled out for Green Bay,” Murray said via text message. “The money followed that news and caused the number to climb.”

The line reached 7 on Wednesday at Circa Sports and ticked back down.

Red Rock Resort sportsbook director Chuck Esposito said it also started “to see some Packers money show,” prompting the move to 6 from 6½.

The matchup pits the teams with the two best records in the NFL. The Cardinals (7-0), led by quarterback Kyler Murray, are the league’s only unbeaten, and the Packers, led by quarterback Aaron Rodgers, are tied with Tampa Bay at 6-1.

“Even without the WRs, public is thinking it’s still too many points for Rodgers,” Esposito said via text message.

Esposito also points out that bettors are having to choose between two of their most trusted teams. The Packers and Cardinals are 6-1 against the spread this season.

Contact Jim Barnes at jbarnes@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0277. Follow @JimBarnesLV on Twitter.

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