FOX Sports Betting Analyst
Now, Jalen Hurts — who was a sizable long shot when this market opened — has made it to the top in odds to win the NFL MVP.
If the Philly Eagles quarterback can keep rolling, then some bookmakers could take a notable hit, particularly from bettors who jumped on the hurts train early.
Hurts so good
The Eagles won their first eight games and continue to have the NFL’s best record, sitting at 12-1 through 14 weeks. Hurts is obviously a huge reason for that success.
The third-year QB has thrown for 3,187 yards, with 22 touchdown passes against just three interceptions. He’s got a hefty 108.4 QB rating — up 21 points over last season — and oh, by the way, has also rushed for 686 yards and 10 TDs.
Those are impressive numbers, and a potential nightmare for FOX Bet.
“Hurts initially opened at +8000 after the 2021-22 season, but was quickly cut to +5000 and steadily dropped in price since,” FOX Bet trader Matthew Griffe said. “Hurts currently stands as our largest liability on the market, closely followed by Derek Carr.”
However, Carr is no longer listed on FOX Bet’s NFL MVP odds. Meanwhile, Hurts is the -143 favorite (bet $10 to win $16.99 total), leapfrogging Chiefs superstar Mahomes this week. If you got on Hurts months ago at +8000 (80-1) for, say, a hundred bucks, then you’re on the price of winning $8,000. Heck, even a $10 bet wouldn’t be $800 at those long odds.
But the race is not over yet. Mahomes is still a close No. 2 choices, at +180. Bill’s QB Allen has fallen back considerably from earlier this season and now sits No. 4 at +2000.
Between Mahomes and Allen is Cincinnati Bengals QB Joe Burrow, who’s got his team rolling of late and is the +700 third choice. Griffe said FOX Bet would certainly take Mahomes or Burrow at this point, seeking to dodge a Hurts MVP win.
“Mahomes and Burrow would be solid results for us in terms of liability,” Griffe said.
NFL MVP ODDS (at FOX Bet)*
Jalen Hurts, Eagles QB: -143 (bet $10 to win $16.99 total)
Patrick Mahomes, chiefs QB: +180 (bet $10 to win $28 total)
Joe Burrow, bengals QB: +750 (bet $10 to win $85 total)
Josh Allen, bills QB: +2000 (bet $10 to win $210 total)
Lamar Jackson, Ravens QB: +6000 (bet $10 to win $610 total)
Tua Tagovailoa, dolphins QB: +7000 (bet $10 to win $710 total)
Geno Smith, Seahawks QB: +12500 (bet $10 to win $1,260 total)
Justin Jefferson, Vikings WR: +12500 (bet $10 to win $1,260 total)
Tyrek HillDolphins WR: +12500 (bet $10 to win $1,260 total)
Kirk cousinsVikings QB: +17500 (bet $10 to win $1,760 total)
JustinHerbert, Chargers QB: +17500 (bet $10 to win $1,760 total)
Dak Prescott, cowboys QB: +17500 (bet $10 to win $1,760 total)
Micah ParsonsCowboys LB/DE: +30000 (bet $10 to win $3,010 total)
Travis KelceChief’s TE: +30000 (bet $10 to win $3,010 total)
Dalvin CookVikings RB: +50000 (bet $10 to win $5,010 total)
Derrick Henry, Titans RB: +50000 (bet $10 to win $5,010 total)
* = as of 12/12/2022
November/December to remember
PointsBet USA opened Hurts at +2200 to win the NFL MVP. After Week 8, with the Eagles still unbeaten, Hurts moved to +350. But if you paid attention, after Week 11, you could’ve gotten the rising star at double those odds, +750.
The ship has since sailed on all those numbers. After Week 13, Hurts was +190, and this week, he’s in minus-money territory as the -120 favorite. Hurts has taken 29% of all money wagered in PointsBet’s MVP market, followed by Mahomes (18%) and Allen (8%).
With hurts having significantly longer odds than Mahomes and Allen for a good chunk of the season, PointsBet sports analyst Mike Korn echoed Griffe’s concerns and hopes.
“Hurts is our biggest liability for MVP, so we’ll be rooting for Mahomes or Joe Burrow to win the award,” Korn said.
Mahomes is PointsBet’s No. 2 choice at +140, followed by Burrows at +700 and Allen at +2000.
‘We just want to continue to chase progress’
Jalen Hurts talks with Pam Oliver about the improvements that the Philadelphia Eagles have been making each week throughout the season.
Popularity picks up
In each of the past two weeks, DraftKings has put out a Monday release providing a 24-hour snapshot on NFL MVP betting in the wake of Sunday’s games. In both cases, Hurts was no. 1 in ticket count during that 24-hour period.
One can certainly see why. In Week 13, Hurts led a 35-10 bashing of Tennessee, throwing for 380 yards and three TDs, and rushing for another score. In Week 14, Hurts led another smackdown in a 44-22 rout of the New York Giants. He threw two more touchdown passes and rushed for 77 yards and another TD.
“It’s just been a remarkable season for Hurts. Bettors are playing him because he’s consistent,” said Johnny Avello, director of sportsbook operations for DraftKings. “He’s still got some hurdles to overcome, but if he stays on this path, there’s a good chance he’s gonna win this.”
DraftKings opened Hurts at +4000 and actually slid the Eagles QB out to +4500 in the offseason. But with betting buzz building in the preseason, Hurts was +2000 before Week 1 and got to +850 after just two games.
He’s since continued his steady climb and is now the -175 favorite at DK, followed by Mahomes at +200. Burrow is the +750 third choice, while Allen and Miami Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa are the +2000 co-fourth choices.
While Hurts is the worst outcome for DraftKings, he’s not a loser for the book but rather just a lesser winner.
“We’re actually in a good position in this market,” Avello said. “Hurts is not as good a winner as some others, but we’re still in the plus.”
Avello said a fair amount of preseason/early-season play on Los Angeles Chargers QB JustinHerbert other Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson helped DraftKings shore up its position. Neither Herbert nor Jackson is even on the odds board anymore at DraftKings.
Big bet dropping
Before Sunday’s games, Caesars Sports had Mahomes as the +115 favorite and Hurts as a +160 second choice. Late Sunday night, updated odds had Hurts -110 and Mahomes +200.
Both players saw noteworthy wagers over the past day or so at Caesars. Mahomes drew two $5,000 bets, one at +200 and one at +180, leading Caesars to shorten his odds to +150. Hurts had one bettor wager $5,200 at -110, and a $4,000 bet landed on Hurts -110, too.
Hurts has since strengthened as a favorite, going to -140 at Caesars, while Mahomes slid back out to +200. Adam Pullen, assistant director of trading for Caesars, noted that much like DraftKings, his shop is in good shape to a Hurts MVP trophy.
“Usually, we’d be sweating the quarterback coming into the season with higher odds,” Pullen said. “But we’ve been pretty aggressive moving hurts with the Eagles doing well. Mahomes was one of the preseason favorites, and people just don’t like to lump all those favorites. Mahomes is definitely the better result for us, but we’re in good shape on hurts, too.”
Patrick Everson is a sports betting analyst for FOX Sports and senior reporter for VegasInsider.com. He is a distinguished journalist in the national sports betting space. He’s based in Las Vegas, where he enjoys golfing in 110-degree heat. Follow him on Twitter: @PatrickE_Vegas
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