The Denver Broncos opened as six-point favorites on the road against the Oakland Raiders for Week 5, according to the latest NFL odds, but already that line is moving toward the home team's direction.
As of Tuesday evening, Sportsbetting.ag had the Broncos as five-point favorites while 5dimes.eu listed Denver with a 4.5-point advantage, ostensibly reflecting bettors' actions toward Oakland as the AFC West rivals enter the second quarter of the 2015 NFL season.
Maybe that reflects lack of confidence in Peyton Manning, or maybe it's a recognition that road division games in the NFL are tough. Broncos coach Gary Kubiak talked about the tough task ahead of the Broncos on Monday.
"It's tough on the road in this league anytime. We've got two back-to-back road games coming up here. We knew that. We knew early in the season we're playing a lot of road football games," Kubiak said. "We just need to go back out there and play consistent. We know Oakland is a tough place to play. They've been playing extremely well. We've got to have a good week of preparation. Playing good road football usually means protecting the football and playing physical. If you do those two things, you'll probably get a good chance."
The Broncos have done both of those things extremely well to date, leading the NFL in turnover ratio through three weeks of the season and boasting a world-class defense that has helped seal all four of their wins in the fourth quarter. But the rising trio of stars in Oakland in quarterback Derek Carr, receiver Amari Cooper, and running back Latavius Murray promises to be one of Denver's tougher challenges, especially in Oakland.
Sportsbooks believe the Broncos have the edge, but that opinion is trending away from Denver early in the week.