Welcome to the Pennsylvania Sports Betting Brief for NFL Divisional Round Weekend. In this column, we’ll review some recent sports betting news in the Keystone State and spotlight some potentially advantageous betting opportunities as well.
The NFL postseason continues, and although Pennsylvania sports fans no longer have any in-state teams to root for, there are still no shortage of betting promotions and opportunities. We’ll start by looking at three Divisional Round offers from DraftKings Sportsbook before offering betting takes on the Titans-Ravens and Seahawks-Packers showdowns on Saturday night and Sunday evening, respectively.
Pennsylvania Sports Betting Industry News
PA bettors can still have plenty of skin in the game despite postseason absences of Steelers, Eagles
The sole home-state rooting interest in the NFL postseason for Pennsylvania bettors is gone now that the injury-hampered Eagles got the boot from the postseason last Sunday. However, there are still naturally plenty of opportunities for Keystone State football fans to temporarily “adopt” other clubs by plunking down some cash during this weekend’s Divisional Round contests. To that end, DraftKings Sportsbook is offering PA bettors a trio of appealing promotions for the Divisional Round.
One is a Parlay Boost promotion exclusive to Pennsylvania residents that offers a 20 percent boost on a 4-leg parlay for this weekend’s playoff contests. Each leg of the parlay must have at least -500 odds. A profit boost token improving the line by 20 percent will be applied once the bettor elects it from their bet slip before placing the parlay wager. The maximum wager allowed under the promotion is $25.
The second is a Live Bets bonus that offers the opportunity for a free bet of up to $50 throughout Divisional Round weekend when bettors opt-in and place live bets on any of the four playoff games. However, to qualify, bets must have minimum odds of -200 or greater. Users are eligible to qualify for one free bet based on the top tier reached for total amount of live wagers. Those tiers are as follows:
- Bet $25+, get a $5 free bet
- Bet $50+, get a $10 free bet
- Bet $100+, get a $20 free bet
- Bet $250+, get a $50 free bet
Last but not least is DK Sportsbook’s Superstar Touchdown Boost. The promotion allows bettors to get 10/1 odds or better on any when wagering on which player will score the first touchdown in any of the weekend’s games. Bettors must select the boost in their bet slip before placing the wager; $10 is the maximum bet amount allowed under the promotion.
This Week’s Best Bets at PA Sportsbooks
NFL Divisional Round Weekend
Tennessee Titans at Baltimore Ravens — Sat., January 11th, 8:15 p.m. ET
- DraftKings Sportsbook Point Spread/Odds: Ravens -9.5 (-110)
- FOX Bet Point Spread/Odds: Ravens -9.5 (-118)
- FanDuel Sportsbook Point Spread/Odds: Ravens -9.5 (-110)
- Rivers Casino Point Spread/Odds: Ravens -9.5 (-110)
The Titans increasingly have the look of one of those underdog squads — think 2007 Giants, for example — that gets hot at the right time and pulls multiple shockers in the postseason. However, there’s still a long way to the promised land for Tennessee. The Titans don’t get any respite after impressively toppling the Patriots in the Wild Card round. The matchup against the Ravens is arguably tougher all the way around.
Tennesee naturally relies heavily on 2019 regular-season rushing champ Derrick Henry. The stud back proved that statistically tough matchups matter little to him once he gets rolling by racking up 182 yards against New England. Henry gets a slightly less formidable task on paper this week versus a Ravens squad that allowed 101.2 rushing yards per home game (compared to 77.2 PPG for the Pats). With Ryan Tannehill, A.J. Brown and Corey Davis facing a Baltimore secondary that picked off 12 passes and allowed just 15 passing touchdowns this past regular season, it should be a steady diet of Henry once again Saturday night.
For the Ravens, it’s naturally all about Lamar Jackson in terms of what drives the offense. Compiling 43 total touchdowns during the regular season earns one that distinction. Tennessee allowed 251 rushing yards to quarterbacks on 61 carries this season. Meanwhile, Jackson was essentially matchup-proof all year. Veteran running back Mark Ingram, who complemented Jackson perfectly throughout his first Baltimore campaign, has been dealing with a calf injury since Week 16 but is expected to suit up. However, the weather report includes a 90 percent chance of rain, almost guaranteeing poor footing. There could therefore be a good amount of Gus Edwards mixed in as well against a Tennessee squad that finished the regular season yielding just 99.4 rushing yards per road tilt.
Despite the expected poor weather conditions and Tennessee’s very strong play in recent weeks, I see the well-rested Ravens pulling out a win here. But, I lean toward the Titans keeping it close enough to slide in under the elevated 9.5-point number.
The Pick: Ravens moneyline
The Lean: Titans +9.5
Seattle Seahawks at Green Bay Packers — Sun., January 12th, 6:40 p.m. ET
- DraftKings Sportsbook Point Spread/Odds: Packers -4.5 (-110)
- FOX Bet Point Spread/Odds: Packers -4.5 (-110)
- FanDuel Sportsbook Point Spread/Odds: Packers -4.5 (-110)
- Rivers Casino Point Spread/Odds: Packers -4.5 (-110)
The Seahawks were able to get past a crippled Eagles team in the Wild Card round for an ugly win. As valiantly as Philadelphia fought, that’s just not saying much for Seattle. That’s especially true considering Carson Wentz (head) was knocked out late in the first quarter and it now turns out backup Josh McCown played with a torn hamstring in Wentz’s stead for the second half of the game. Seattle could hardly have asked for a more depleted opponent. It’s the diametric opposite Sunday versus a well-rested and almost fully healthy Packers squad.
The Seahawks may also be somewhat ill-equipped to take advantage of what would usually be a very favorable matchup against Green Bay’s run defense. The Packers allowed the fourth-most rushing yards per home game (133.9) during the regular season, along with 4.9 yards per carry to RBs. Green Bay also yielded 15 rushing touchdowns. Yet Marshawn Lynch and Travis Homer are essentially the last two men standing in the backfield for the Seahawks. Coach Pete Carroll did emphasize Lynch would play more often this coming week. How much success he’ll enjoy with only two games under his belt remains to be seen. Then, Seattle’s passing attack will face a much stiffer challenge against a Green Bay secondary that yielded just 18 passing touchdowns and snagged 17 interceptions.
On the other side, Aaron Rodgers has had time to rest up and prepare to target a fairly vulnerable Seahawks secondary. Rodgers started to work promising second-year speedster Allen Lazard more into the offense over the last two weeks of the season. He fed the promising receiver 15 targets overall during that span. Lazard’s speed serves as an excellent complement to the elite possession skills of Davante Adams and should help keep some defensive attention off the latter. Then, the effective backfield duo of Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams will be challenged versus a Seahawks front seven that surrenders a respectable 115.8 rush yards per away contest.
The Seahawks bring postseason experience and were a very strong road team this past season. I still lean toward Green Bay being well prepared enough here with the bye week to pull out a hard-fought win of at least five points.
The Lean: Packers -4.5