Wild Card drama
The Jacksonville Jaguars snatched victory from the jaws of defeat against the Los Angeles Chargers over the weekend in an NFL Wild Card game that cost one bettor particularly highly. The gambler staked $1.4m on Justin Herbert and company to win when their team was 27-0 up at the end of the first half.
$1.4m in-game moneyline DraftKings wager
On Sunday night, Bleacher Report Betting shared the $1.4m in-game moneyline DraftKings wager that offered just $11,200 in potential profits:
To rub salt into the bettor’s wound, fifth-seeded Chargers had a 98.5% winning probability when the individual placed the bet, the game seeming all but over for the Jaguars at half time. As a result, the wager secured odds of just -12500.
Instead, fourth-seeded Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence overcame his nightmare first half to drive his franchise to a famous 31-30 AFC Wild Card victory.
An intense reaction
Both the bettor and the Chargers faced a storm of criticism and disbelief on social media after the game.
should’ve self-excluded himself”
Many took to Twitter puzzled why a bettor would risk over $1m for such a relatively paltry return. User @LindheimerJohn said the individual “should’ve self-excluded himself under responsible gaming guidelines” when the field-goal was imminent and time was still on the clock.
Circa Sportsbook director Matthew Metcalf, meanwhile, used the platform to criticize — while not directly stating the sportsbook’s name — DraftKings for allegedly leaking the bet:
How it played out
Sunday’s Wild Card game really had to be seen to be believed
With 5:35 left in the fourth, the Chargers were ahead 30-20 with a win probability still as high as 84.9%. Seconds later, Trevor Lawrence hit Christian Kirk for a nine-yard touchdown followed by a two-point conversion.
a slightly nervy 36-yard field goal
With the game still in the Chargers favor 30-28 and just 5:25 left, the win probability dropped to 58%. The Jags’ game management was spot on from there, with kicker Riley Patterson sailing a slightly nervy 36-yard field goal over as time expired.
The Jaguars will play Championship favorites the Kansas City Chiefs in an AFC divisional round matchup on Saturday. Most sportsbooks think the Jags’ run will end at Arrowhead Stadium, with FanDuel’s odds on the Chiefs -8.5.