Buffalo Bills Look to Defy New York Sportsbook Odds in Wild Card Game

Written By Derek Helling on January 3, 2020
Bills looking to pull off upset in wild card game

Buffalo has had a successful regular season and wants to extend it to Baltimore next week. If the Bills wild card game results in the franchise doing so, New York bettors may cash in on that win.

Buffalo will have to get its first road win in a wild card game since the “Music City Miracle” of 1999 in order to pull it off. New York legal sportsbooks aren’t high on that happening right now.

Breaking down the current Bills wild card game lines

Casinos in the Empire State partner with legal sportsbook operators to offer legal sports betting in New York. Several of those books have lines on the game, including:

DraftKingsBuffalo +3 -118
Houston -3 -104
Over 44 -110
Under 44 -110
Buffalo +130
Houston -148
FanDuelBuffalo +2.5 +100
Houston -2.5 -120
Over 43.5 -110
Under 43.5 -110
Buffalo +130
Houston -150
RiversBuffalo +3 -118
Houston -3 -104
Over 44 -110
Under 44 -110
Buffalo +125
Houston -152

Unfortunately, online sports betting remains illegal in the Empire State. Because of that, New Yorkers have to travel to land-based sportsbooks inside commercial and tribal casinos to place bets.

There, New Yorkers will find an array of prop bets as well as alternate spreads/totals. Getting the most out of their betting dollars demands information. There’s plenty of that available.

What to know about the Bills game on Sunday before wagering

This is the first time that Buffalo and the Houston Texans have met in the wild card round. The Bills last played a road wild card game in 2017, which they lost 10-3 on the home field of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Houston has won three of its past five wild card games at home. The biggest concern for Buffalo isn’t the venue but rather several injuries.

Chief among them is cornerback Levi Wallace, though several other key defensive players are also dealing with nagging ailments. Houston won’t hold back if Wallace and others are limited or out altogether.

The real downside of the situation is that when healthy, the Bills’ defense is formidable. It’s a primary reason why Buffalo went 6-2 on the road during the regular season, getting wins over multiple AFC playoff teams.

The Texans’ defense has been similarly impressive this season, however. In terms of strategy, expect Houston to load the box and dare Bills quarterback Josh Allen to beat them through the air.

All that information points toward a Texans win. The track record of both teams points toward a close contest and identifies a particular bet that looks the most appealing.

Taking the Bills spread looks like the best bet here

Buffalo went 6-0-2 against the spread (ATS) in its road games during the regular season. In six of those, the Bills entered as the underdog. In their 12 games against other AFC teams, they went 6-4-2 ATS.

Houston’s performance ATS this season is on the opposite end of the spectrum. The Texans’ record in home games this regular season was a mere 2-6, and they were 5-7 ATS against AFC teams.

Because of Buffalo’s potent running game and strong defense, it is primed to at least make this game a close one if not pull off the mild upset. It’s understandable how some might be tempted to take the Bills money line because of those facts.

The problem with that bet is Buffalo’s injury concerns and the talent Houston boasts, especially in its wide receiving corps. The safest bet it would seem remains the Bills, with the points.

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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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