Who knew a hand could throw NFL playoff odds in a tailspin?
The revelation that Tom Brady's hand injury was more serious than first believed sent sportsbooks scrambling on how to handle the issue. The Patriots are one of the best in the business at hiding injury news and this situation is no different. Some of the best NFL betting sites have taken Brady and the Patriots down to a touchdown, while most sportsbooks have settled on the final number at -7.5 in favor of the Patriots.
Earlier in the week, I took the Patriots at -9 and I'm still favoring that number, so I would still jump on the Patriots at a shade more than a touchdown.
Oddsmakers believe Brady will play, but they believe that the gameplan will be hindered by the injured hand.
The main problem with thinking that will be the case is that reports are mixed on actually how serious the injury may actually be for Brady. As I mentioned earlier this week, this game comes down to Jacksonville's inability to move the ball consistently, so even if Brady doesn't quite look Brady-esque, then it shouldn't have that much effect on how you believe this game will finish.
Now, if Brady doesn't play, then this number will nosedive. Carson Wentz looks to be worth about six points in the final odds in the Minnesota vs. Philadelphia game, so I would assume Brady's worth would be at least a touchdown.
Keep an eye on the injury report before the game, but it appears Brady will play. And if he plays, injured hand or not, trust the Patriots in the AFC Championship game.
Scott Levine is the Associate Editor for the Clinton Herald. During his free time, he blogs about fantasy sports and handicaps games. Check out more at Against The Chalk.
Scott Levine can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @ScottLevineCH