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2017 NFL Playoffs: Patriots open as 5.5-point favorite over Steelers

The Patriots are favorites in the AFC.

The New England Patriots have opened as 5.5-point favorites over the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship Game, according to The over/under opened at 51.

Both the Patriots and Steelers have huge fanbases that love to bet on them, which is why this line is likely to fluctuate.

“Two teams the public loves to bet on so will be interesting to see how this line is shaped,” BookMaker spokeman Scott Cooley writes. “It’s an odd opener, and some of the oddsmaking team wanted to be higher with the Pats because of the unparalleled perception of this squad currently. They look invincible and the bettors can’t get enough of them.”

According to BookMaker, initial bets came in for the Patriots and the under, setting the line to -6, and 50.5.

The line is interesting because the question isn’t necessarily, “will the Patriots win?” The question is, “will the Patriots win by more or less than a touchdown?” With the line at -6, it seems like Vegas is hoping bettors balance equally on both sides of a Patriots win by a touchdown.

BookMaker also has extremely early hypothetical spreads for Super Bowl LI. They have the Patriots as 9.0-favorites over the Falcons and 9.5-favorites over the Packers, which sounds ridiculously high- but gamblers seem to love betting on the Patriots, so Vegas is willing to reach with crazy lines.