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Luck's surprise retirement sends sportsbooks scrambling

Yahoo! Sports logo Yahoo! Sports 8/25/2019 Ben Weinrib

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Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck’s retirement caught the NFL by surprise on Saturday night. It also sent waves through the gambling community.

Sportsbooks had to quickly tweak the Colts’ odds for the upcoming season before too many bettors put money on out-of-date lines, which had the Colts as high as tied for the third-best Super Bowl odds in the league.

Lines moved quickly on Saturday night with Westgate lowering Indianapolis' Super Bowl odds from 12-1 to 30-1. Others were even more pessimistic with Cantor Gaming shifting from 18-1 to 40-1, Points Bet going from 12-1 to 50-1 and FanDuel dipping from 15-1 to 60-1.

However, there was still a bit of a lag between news breaking of Luck’s retirement around 9:30 p.m. ET and sportsbooks shifting their lines. According to Action Network’s Darren Rovell, at least one bettor at Circa Sports made maximum bets on the under for 9.5 and 8.5 wins.

For some sportsbooks, the news was big enough to spook them out of keeping their lines up at all. Places that kept their lines up reportedly got hammered with plenty of bets in the brief window between Schefter’s tweets and any changes.

The Colts division odds took similar shifts down with Points Bet dropping them to +600 and the Houston Texans taking over as favorite.

The Colts have a capable backup in hand with Jacoby Brissett, who started 15 games in 2017 during Luck's absence, but he clearly doesn't inspire much confidence. After the team finished 4-12 in 2017, their projected win total from Points Bet is just 6.

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