Life in the Slow Lane

August 19, 2009

Favre’s return doesn’t do much to sway Vegas

Filed under: Gambling,Sports — pauljlane @ 10:48 am

Most football fans, sick of Brett Favre’s back-and-forth retirement, are more apathetic upon hearing of his latest return to the NFL, this time with the Minnesota Vikings.

Photo by The Associated Press

Photo by The Associated Press

Apparently, Vegas’ biggest bettors are, too.

According to information from R.J. Bell of, the Vikings’ Super Bowl odds barely budged upon news of Tuesday’s signing of Favre. Where they had 20-to-1 odds to win the Super Bowl prior to Tuesday, those odds only crept up to 17-to-1 with Favre, which indicated to Bell that big-time gamblers aren’t interested.

“A vast majority of Super Bowl future action comes from small bettors – the type who take a $20 shot on their gut feelings. Brett Farve is clearly a major factor in this type of bettor’s mind,” he said.

More significant, Bell said, is Minnesota’s projected win total for the coming season. The number started at 9.5, and it didn’t budge upon Tuesday’s news.

“A vast majority of season win total action comes from big bettors who are extremely sharp in their opinions. This sharp group has concluded that the addition of Farve is irrelevant to Minnesota’s chances this season,” he said.

Of note, Favre got more respect last year when he forced a trade from the Green Bay Packers to the New York Jets. The Jets’ win total before their 2008 training camp started was 7, but it leaped to 8.5 once Favre joined the squad.

I, for one, certainly would feel better about betting on a Favre-led team than a Tavaris Jackson-led team or Sage Rosenfels-led team, but the Vikings enter this season with a solid team regardless of the quarterback, so I can see much of the big money not being impressed by the signing. More impressive would have been Favre if he took the focus off of himself for two minutes and actually decided to stay retired for more than three weeks.


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