Russell Wilson makes his highly anticipated return to Seattle on Monday night, and the public likes his chances of closing out Week 1 of the NFL schedule with a victory over his former team.
Wilson’s Denver Broncos opened as 4.5-point favorites at BetMGM but the line has moved to 6.5, with Denver drawing 86 percent of the spread bets and 92 percent of the handle. The action has been similarly lopsided at DraftKings, with Denver backed by 88 percent of the spread bets and 70 percent of the handle as 6.5-point favorites.
The line also has steadily moved at BetRivers, where it opened at Broncos -4.0 but sat at -7.0 points on Monday. Denver has been backed by 85 and 83 percent of the spread action, respectively, at the sportsbook.
Wilson is playing his first regular-season NFL game as a non-member of the Seahawks. He guided the franchise to its lone Super Bowl title during his 10 seasons but was dealt to the Broncos in the offseason in one of the biggest trades in NFL history.
“Hopefully, it’ll be positive,” Wilson said when asked what kind of greeting he might get from the 69,000-plus fans. “Listen, I gave my heart and soul every day. … I know they’ll be rowdy. I know they’ll be excited.”
TOP PROP BET
The heaviest player prop bet at BetRivers has been Wilson to throw more than 1.5 total touchdown passes at -137. All five of the of the heaviest-bet player props for Monday night at the sportsbook involve Broncos, including Wilson to rush for more than 12.5 yards at -114.
The most-bet player prop at DraftKings is Broncos running back Javonte Williams to score a touchdown at +110, followed by wide receiver Jerry Jeudy as an anytime touchdown scorer at +125.
The market opened at 41.5 points at BetMGM but has climbed to 44 points with the Over backed by 51 percent of the bets and 56 percent of the handle.
BetRivers reported the action on the 44-point market is nearly split, while the 43.5-point Over/Under at DraftKings has seen the Over draw 52 and 58 percent of the action, respectively.
Broncos: Right tackle Billy Turner missed most of the preseason while recuperating from knee surgery, and it’s likely Calvin Anderson starts in his place. Turner was limited in practice this week, as was outside linebacker Randy Gregory (shoulder/knee), inside linebacker Josey Jewell (calf) and wide receiver KJ Hamler (knee, hip). Jewell officially has been ruled out while the other three are questionable.
Seahawks: Rookie running back Kenneth Walker III isn’t expected to play after hernia surgery last month. Cornerback Artie Burns has been slowed by a groin injury and is listed as doubtful, while linebacker Alton Robinson (knee) and long snapper Tyler Ott (shoulder) have been ruled out.
It’s difficult to predict how Wilson will perform considering he didn’t play a snap during the preseason. But in a one-score game in a stadium he knows so well, Wilson is a much safer bet than Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith. Prediction: Broncos 23, Seahawks 17
–Field Level Media
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