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Sports Book Industry Report

Sports Book Industry Report

Sports Book Industry Report - Books take home another win on Sunday
By: Micah Roberts

For the ninth Sunday in 11 NFL weeks, the Las Vegas sports books came away with a winning day, which begs the question: How much money does the betting public have to lose? Apparently there is an endless supply of cash because they keep coming back for more as the weekly handle hasn't suffered one bit. In fact, by most accounts, the handle is growing compared to the same weekends from 2012.

When looking at the slate of games Sunday and seeing the favorites go 7-4-2 against-the-spread with eight of the 13 games going OVER the total, it looks like a perfect recipe for the general public to do well. The public loves betting favorites on their parlays and they love to bet the OVER, but there hadn't been any real pattern for bettors to follow over the first 10 weeks of the season, causing them to out-think themselves in a sense.

Station Casinos sports book director Jason McCormick reported that the public did well with five games - the Seahawks (-13.5), Cardinals (-9), Bengals (-4.5), Eagles (-4.5) and Buccaneers (-2.5) - while their books did well in six games with the Bills (+2), Steelers (+3), Dolphins (+2.5), Giants (-3), 49ers (+3) and Broncos (-7.5).

The one team that looks like it's in the wrong category above is the books needing the Broncos in the late game, which is a perfect example of the public being crossed-up and changing their own philosophy after having a rough time of it this season.

Four out of five times the public will bet the favorite - whoever it is - in isolated night games, and that figure goes up even higher when we're talking about an elite team, and higher still when that elite team is at home. Well, the Broncos are the most elite team in the NFL, a team that would be favored over anyone on a neutral field. But on this particular Sunday for some reason, the public wanted to switch things up and side with the underdog.

However, the Kansas City Chiefs weren't your average underdog. They were undefeated at 9-0 with a respected defense and from the moment the line opened up with the Broncos being 8.5-point favorites last Sunday, the majority of public and sharp bettors both took the points all week with Kansas City, dropping the line to 7.5.

There were plenty of Broncos supporters as well, but not enough to have the sports books rooting for the Chiefs, and for a Sunday night game, the books found themselves in a very unusual situation of rooting for the favorite, and the Broncos got there with a 27-17 win, which also stayed UNDER the total of 49.5.

The 27 points scored by Denver was their lowest total of the season, down from the 28 they scored last week at San Diego. They had come into the game averaging 41.2 points a game, but stayed UNDER the total for their second consecutive contest after going OVER in their first eight.

"We had a pretty solid day," said LVH SuperBook vice-president Jay Kornegay. "We won most of our decisions, including our biggest games with the Steelers, Bills and Raiders."

The Texans had lost seven straight games coming into their home game against the Raiders, but still opened up as 7-point favorites and bettors laid it. When it was announced that Raiders QB Terrelle Pryor would not start, the adjustment pushed the game up to -9.5, and the public still laid it all the way up to kickoff when the game closed -10.5. Back-up QB Matt McGloin played well, jumping out to a 14-0 lead, and pulled off a 28-23 upset, the largest underdog of the four dogs that won outright Sunday.

The Jets were bet from an opening 1-point underdog to a 2-point favorite by kickoff at Buffalo, and the Bills ended their three-game losing streak to win 37-14, upping their ATS mark to 5-1 at home. The Lions were a popular public play as well, but lost outright 37-27 as 3-point favorites at Pittsburgh.

"Our most bet game of the day was the 49ers-Saints game," said Kornegay. "The side was a wash because it landed on 3, but did well because it stayed UNDER the total."

With the push, the Saints are now 5-0-1 ATS at home this season and now the 49ers have lost two straight for the second time this season. Prior to the 49ers' home loss last week to Carolina, they had won and covered five straight following their first two losses.

There are only six more weeks of NFL action for bettors to have an opportunity to get their money back from the first 11 weeks. The tally so far has the books 9-1-1 against the public. It's too bad there wasn't a prop like in baccarat where you could side with the house.

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