Updated October 11, 2020 - 9:33 pm
Leave it to a team from Las Vegas to beat the odds and pull off the biggest upset of the NFL season.
The Raiders became the first double-digit underdog to earn an outright win when they stunned the Chiefs in a 40-32 victory at Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday after closing as 10½-point underdogs.
In dealing defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City (4-1) its first loss, Las Vegas (3-2) delivered the biggest win of the NFL season to the Westgate sportsbook, which won six figures on the game.
“There were so many money-line bets on the Chiefs and a lot of teasers. It felt like every money-line parlay included the Chiefs,” Westgate vice president Jay Kornegay said. “It wouldn’t have surprised me if the Raiders covered. But to win outright and pretty much in comfortable fashion, that was certainly surprising.”
Derek Carr outplayed Patrick Mahomes in his first win in seven games at Kansas City. Carr threw three touchdown passes in the second quarter, including strikes of 59 yards to Nelson Agholor and 72 yards to Henry Ruggs, to rally the Raiders from an early 14-3 deficit.
Las Vegas scored the first 16 points of the second half to break open a 24-24 game and held on for the win to end a seven-game losing streak in K.C.
“After their first game at Carolina, you can make a case that the Raiders had the four toughest games of any team having to play the Saints, Bills, Patriots and Chiefs,” Sunset Station sportsbook director Chuck Esposito said. “The fact they went 2-2 is a victory for the Raiders. That’s a huge, huge win. And they go into their bye week now, which gives guys like Ruggs and Bryan Edwards a chance to get healthy.”
Las Vegas’ upset also was a big win for Station, William Hill and BetMGM — despite the fact that a BetMGM bettor won $100,000 on a straight bet on the Raiders and a William Hill bettor won $50,000 on a wager on the game to go over 56½.
“It’s certainly going to be very interesting moving forward to see how fast that silver-and-black wagon fills up because if they continue to win, we know their popularity will escalate,” Kornegay said. “We saw it four years ago when they made the playoffs. That season was crazy. Every week, the Raiders were the biggest game.
“I have a feeling if they put a good stretch together, their popularity will go through the roof.”
Big day for books
The books had one of their best days of the season so far, also winning big on outright upsets by the Panthers (+2½, 23-16 over Falcons) and Dolphins (+8, 43-17 over 49ers).
“For some reason everybody was on the Falcons this week,” Kornegay said. “A winless team yet they’ve received a lot of support.”
After blowing double-digit fourth quarter leads in Weeks 2 and 3, Atlanta went into meltdown mode early Sunday, taking a 7-0 lead in the first quarter before giving up 20 consecutive points to Carolina before halftime.
San Francisco got quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and tight end George Kittle back but were still whipped by Miami. Dolphins QB Ryan Fitzpatrick finally conjured some “Fitzmagic” in throwing for 350 yards and three TDs. Jimmy GQ looked awful as he went 7 of 17 for 77 yards and two interceptions before he was benched in the second half.
A BetMGM bettor placed a $290,000 straight bet on Seattle (-6½) over Minnesota on “Sunday Night Football.” Before the game, Stoneback said “it could very easily be our best day of the year.”
The best games for bettors were the Cardinals (-7, 30-10 over the Jets), Rams (-7, 30-10 over Washington) and Steelers (-7½, 38-29 over the Eagles). Pittsburgh covered on Ben Roethlisberger’s 35-yard TD pass to Chase Claypool on third-and-8 with 2:59 left.
Dak over Dalton
Another good game for the books was the Giants covering as 7½-point favorites in a 37-34 loss at Dallas. The Cowboys fell to 0-5 ATS and lost QB Dak Prescott to a compound fracture of his right ankle.
Kornegay estimates that the difference in the point spread between Prescott and Dallas backup quarterback Andy Dalton is 5½ to 6 points. The Cowboys opened as 3-point favorites over the Cardinals on the lookahead line on their Oct. 19 matchup. But Arizona was reposted as a 2½-point favorite Sunday night.
“Maybe Dalton will play a little better than he did his last few years in Cincinnati,” Kornegay said. “He certainly has a lot more weapons in Dallas.”
Survive and advance
The $1,000-entry Circa Survivor contest had 640 entries remaining entering Week 5 and 169 were eliminated by the 49ers, the most popular pick.