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What no home fans could mean for Raiders point spreads in 2020

The Raiders are not expected to have fans in the stands for the 2020 season. We take a look at their current home point spreads and what it might mean.

Crews test out architectural light ribbons and exterior sign lighting as construction continues at Allegiant Stadium, the USD 2 billion, glass-domed future home of the Las Vegas Raiders on April 23, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Raiders and the UNLV Rebels football teams are scheduled to begin play at the 65,000-seat facility in their 2020 seasons. Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The NFL hopes to open its 2020 season on time, but some or all of their teams can expect to be playing home games without fans in the stadium. Each locale is implementing different rules, and today we learned that the Las Vegas Raiders will play with no fans in their brand new stadium, per The MMQB’s Albert Breer. Allegiant Stadium cost $1.84 billion and holds 65,000 people, but it will be empty except for Raiders and their opponent’s players and personnel. It looks like we won’t be able to witness the power of this fully armed and operational battle station for at least a year.

As these reports become official, we’ll start to see some changes in point spreads for their home games. DraftKings Sportsbook has provided a few lines for the Raiders Week 1-16 home games.

Here is where they currently stand:

vs. Saints: +4.5
vs. Bills: TBD
vs. Buccaneers: TBD
vs. Broncos: -2
vs. Chiefs: TBD
vs. Colts: +1
vs. Chargers: TBD
vs. Dolphins: TBD

In sports betting, home field advantage is viewed as being worth roughly 2 to 3 points. Some teams like the Seahawks, Saints, and Chiefs have a more significant advantage than other teams.

DK Sportsbook oddsmaker Johnny Avello said he would cut a home field advantage in half with no fans in the stands. There is still benefit of knowing your home stadium and locker room, and not having to travel, so you still get some boost playing at home. But, it will not be nearly what it would be if there were fans in the stands.

If the Raiders lose 1 to 1.5 points in home field advantage. They are favored over the Broncos by just two-points, so that game could move close to even, while The Colts would gain a point or two on the road. The Saints will be the first team to visit Allegiant Stadium and probably will feel at home in the big empty dome. The Saints should see the point spread rise to around a touchdown sans the extra point.

Of course, not all lines are created equal so this is just a basic projection for the time being. However, sportsbooks have yet to make a move with the potential for no fans in the stand, so there could be some value to be found in early lines.

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