No Team Yet, But NFL Is Big Time In Las Vegas
Today marks the first day of the NFL season. And while Nevada doesn’t have a team – yet – professional football is huge news here because of the money it brings to the state from sports betting.
Nevada sports books took in hundreds of millions in sports bets last year and won more than $200 million.
But a lot of us don’t know a thing about betting.
It’s safe to say Art Manteris has forgotten more about sports betting than many will ever know. He’s back to help us navigate the gambling gridiron for the coming season.
On the Packers:
They’re a good team. They have some serious public backing. They’re not the favorite to win it but they’re certainly in the mix. They’re certainly one of the teams I consider a team to beat.
On the favorite:
I think the Pittsburgh Steelers are going to be a real factor this year. Of course, I’m from Pittsburgh and a lot of people say I’m biased. That’s really not the case at all. I’m too heavy vested in this industry to let personal biases dictate my position too often.
I think the NFC is loaded with a lot of talent. There’s going to be a real fight between the Seahawks and the Packers and the Panthers and the Cardinals in the NFC. It is going to be very hard to reach the Super Bowl from the NFC.
The AFC should have a little bit easier path to get to the Super Bowl.
On betting so far:
I’ve seen nothing to indicate there will be a rollback in handle this year. I think that this growth that we talked about last year should continue. Last year, the state of Nevada handled over $4.2 billion in sports wagers and that was a record. I expect that record to go by the wayside again this year.
On the Las Vegas Raiders and whether they would increase sports betting:
I think the NFL is far above and beyond everything else that’s been discussed for Las Vegas. Certainly, bringing a hockey team to Las Vegas is very exciting for the city. It’s a fun time to be a sports fan in Las Vegas, but the NFL is the NFL. I think the NFL wagering is on the upswing and will continue to grow regardless whether we get a team or not. The prospect of getting a local team is very, very exciting for those of us in the sports industry or even the casual fan.
On betting the money line:
That’s the confusion on baseball, because money line betting on football is how baseball betting is conducted on a day to day basis.
On tonight’s start of the season for example, where the Carolina Panthers are about a three or a little bit higher than a three point favorite over the Denver Broncos. You might be able to bet $170 or $180 to win $100, meaning they’re minus 170 or 180 on the money line – The Panthers - to win the game. So you would be putting up $17 to win $10 and getting 27 dollars back when you go to cash your ticket if they win the game after the game. Or you’re taking something higher than even money on the Broncos. You might be able to take plus a $1.55 or $1.60 on the underdog Broncos to win the game, meaning you’d get $8 back for every $5 that you bet or $160 for a $100 bet on the underdog to win the game.
On the over/under:
The over/under is the number that is projected for both teams to score over the course of the game. You can bet that projected total to be more or less than that amount. The rules are the same as point spread wagering.
Art Manteris, vice president, sports book operations, Station Casinos