Opening Line: Vegas reacts to NFL

Eli Manning and the New York Giants didn't cover against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night. Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

LAS VEGAS -- There was a surreal scene at the LVH SuperBook here right around 4:30 p.m. Pacific time on Sunday.

The Packers-49ers and Cardinals-Rams games were still in progress, yet it was time for the LVH to post its opening NFL lines for the upcoming Week 2. After 6½ thrilling hours of wall-to-wall pro football with a standing-room crowd in the race and sports book proper and more than 1,000 more fans/bettors in the LVH Theater, the business of moving ahead to next week's card couldn't wait -- even though there was action on the current day to be completed.

And that's what this new Monday morning column here on ESPN Insider will be all about. Even though we'll still have a Monday night game to complete the current week (and in today's case, two games), we're going to plow ahead by looking forward. I'll start by giving my takeaways from the weekend's action from a gambling perspective, and then we'll apply those lessons to next week's games, as well as examine the early line moves. We'll also look at any injuries that have affected the lines or kept games off the betting boards.


1. Parity is alive and well
Everyone talks about parity in the NFL and how "any team can beat any other on any given Sunday," but when it comes time for casual bettors to place their wagers, it seems they forget that mantra. Standing in the betting lines at the LVH making last-minute wagers (and this was true in the dozen other Vegas books I visited over the course of the weekend), all the surrounding chatter was about the teams people were using in their parlays and the most common phrases heard were "the Patriots are going to blow out the Bills and their rookie QB," "the Jets are the worst team in the league and are going to get crushed by the Bucs," "the Raiders can't keep up with Andrew Luck and the Colts," "the Seahawks are for real and are going to run over the Panthers," and so forth. But as we all saw, parity is alive and well and most bettors were left humbled on a day that went well for the bookmakers.