Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:56 PM
Books earn decent win in Week 7
The top-three teams for bettors failed to cover in Sunday’s NFL Week 7 action, and two of them were facing the worst-rated teams in the league. That alone shows you that the point-spread does eventually catch up to all teams no matter the talent gap.
Overall, favorites went 9-3 straight up and 6-5-1 against the spread on Sunday giving Nevada books varied results, but most ended up either breaking even or in the black to different degrees of success.
“Solid day,” said William Hill’s head bookmaker Nick Bogdanovich. “The Niner game was huge and the Giants losing was second-best. The Rams, Packers, Vikings, and Jaguars were all losers, but all three late games were two-way action and the Sunday night risk is manageable.”
It was kind of the same story at Station Casinos which deals with a similar type of local clientele as William Hill.
“Good day, but not great,” said Stations’ sportsbook director Jason McCormick. “The Cardinals and Redskins were the key wins for us but Rams, Vikings, Jaguars, Packers, Colts, Titans, Ravens, and Saints cashed a lot of tickets.”
The 49ers remain unbeaten at 6-0, but their 9-0 road win at Washington failed to cover the spread that moved from -9.5 to -10 aided by sheets of rain that poured non-stop turning FedEx Field into a big puddle. Because of both teams were trying to run most of the time due to conditions and churning the clock, it turned out being the shortest game (2:36) in a decade.
The Redskins, the second-worst rated team when making point-spreads, drop to 1-6 on the season, but jumped up to 2-5 ATS. The 49ers were tied with the Bills and Lions for the best ATS teams at 4-1, but all three failed to earn covers on Sunday.
The consensus around Las Vegas books was that the Redskins and Cardinals were the best for the house.
“Our best wins on the day were the Redskins and Cardinals and the worst was the Rams and Vikings,” said MGM Resorts sportsbook director Jeff Stoneback.
The Cardinals 27-21 win at the Giants (-3) was their third straight win bringing them to .500 (3-3-1) and they’re now 5-2 ATS tied with the Saints, Packers, and Rams (and maybe Patriots who play Monday) as the best ATS teams in the NFL.
New Arizoan head coach Kliff Kingsbury and rookie quarterback Kyler Murray have finally established a rhythm offensively, albeit against the Bengals, Falcons, and Giants in their last three who have only three wins combined between them, but the Cards are finally executing now and have defenses respecting the youngster which in turn has opened up an impressive run game.
“We didn’t have a lot of the large straight bet action on the Giants like other places did, but what the Cardinals win did for us was break up a lot of live parlays that had the Packers, Rams, and Vikings on them,” said CG Technology sportsbook director Tony DiTomasso who actually needed the Packers because of sharp action early in the week on the Raiders.
CG books probably had one of the better Sunday’s in Nevada because of beating one bettor at the Venetian who made two wagers on the Bears money-line at -230 and -240 totaling $540,000. The Saints (+4.5) marched into Soldier Field with a dominant 36-25 win, a score that doesn’t do justice of the beatdown or poor play of QB Mitch Trubisky in his return. The Bears have now lost their last six games coming off a bye. Sharp action initially played the Bears from -3 to -4.5.
“We had some larger bets on the Bears,” said Westgate Superbook VP Jay Kornegay. “A lot of people thought this was a tough spot for the Saints, including me.”
The Saints haven’t lost a game behind QB Teddy Bridgewater this season. He’s won all five since Drew Brees got hurt in a Week 2 loss at the Rams. Three of Bridgewaters wins have come on the road. The Saints have the luxury now of not having to bring Brees back quickly.
“We didn’t win a lot of games, but the games we did win were big decisions,” said DiTomasso. “The monster swing against us was the Titans winning (23-20) against the Chargers. We had taken a lot of Titans sharp action starting at -1 and up the ladder to -3. What are the Chargers thinking with all those late goal-line runs and no timeouts, you got to throw at least once in that spot, right?”
The Chargers twice ran the ball at the goal-line with less than 30 seconds and no timeouts and both times scored but reviews overruled the calls -- knee down before the ball crossed. With only 7 seconds left, they tried a run again and RB Melvin Gordon fumbled. Titans win and cover for most that had bet them.
The Dolphins are the worst-rated team in the NFL, but they proved +17 at Buffalo was too much in the Bills 31-21 win. The spread probably should have been Bills -14 and when +17 showed, the sharps sniffed out an inflated line and took the Dolphins down to +15.5. The Dolphins are still 0-6 on the season, but their first two covers of the season have come the past two weeks.
Also, the Bengals are fast catching up to the Redskins for No. 2 worst rated team. The Jaguars number ran as three-point road favorites up to as high as -5 and their 27-17 win wasn’t as indicative of how bad QB Andy Dalton and the Bengals are. “The Jungle” in Cincinnati was loaded with fans wearing brown paper bags on their heads for the shame of supporting an 0-7 team but not wanting to be identified.
The public put their faith back in the Rams (-3) at Atlanta despite three straight losses, but they hated the Falcons much more to throw the Rams on a bunch of their parlays and were rewarded with a 37-10 win, a score the public loves and remembers from their Rams of the past two seasons they could always trust. Meanwhile, the Falcons drop to 1-6 and their 1-6 ATS record is the worst mark in the NFL.
At least the public didn’t totally get crushed ending a trend of the past couple weeks and got to see a few of their reliable teams help cash some three-teamers. The underdogs are now 61-41-2 ATS this season, through Sunday’s games. The tide is about to turn, as it always does. Perhaps Week 8 is the week of the favorites colluding and sending the books to one of those Tsunami parlay loss days that happens twice a season. The public is still waiting for the first one and the books know one is coming soon.
Roberts is a former Las Vegas sports book director that has been covering the sports betting industry for the last 15 years.