Rovell: Most Sportsbooks Suffer ‘Worst Outcome’ on Monday Night Football


Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Russell Wilson

Dec 03, 2019, 11:33 PM EST

Monday Evening Update

11:30 p.m. ET: The Seahawks did it again, winning 37-30 and covering as popular 3-point favorites on Monday Night Football against the Minnesota Vikings. John Murray from the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook called the result, which also included the Over 48.5 hitting, the “worst outcome” for his book.

“The Seahawks are a very popular bet and everyone loves the over,” Murray said. Westgate paid out $34,166 on an individual bet from a client who wagered $41,000 on the Seahawks -2.5.

MGM got hit even harder: It paid out to profits of a $100,000 bet on Over 48. “Once game went over we couldn’t win no matter what,” Scott Shelton from the Mirage told The Action Network. Shelton & Co. were assisted by a $100,000 bet on Vikings +3 coming up short, but not enough to cut their losses.

Other books were also feeling the hurt on Monday night. William Hill, the largest retail book in North America, reported pregame that 73% of the money was on Russell Wilson & Co. PointsBet in New Jersey was even more lopsided with 83% of the money.

7:30 p.m. ET: The Seahawks will host the Vikings on Monday Night Football in a game the public is dying to bet on Seattle to cover as home favorites. According to our data, 69% of the tickets are on the Seahawks, who are -2.5 or -3, depending on where you’re looking.

At PointsBet in New Jersey, the split is even more lopsided: 77% of the tickets and 83% of the money is on Seattle. Same goes for William Hill, which has seen 78% of the tickets and 73% of the money come in on the Seahawks at its sportsbooks in Nevada, New Jersey, Iowa, West Virginia and Indiana.

Jeff Sherman from the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook told The Action Network that his shop needs Minnesota to cover, especially after taking a $41,000 bet (to win $34,166) on Seahawks -2.5. CG Technology is in the same boat. It took a $25,000 to win $25,000 on Seahawks -3.

But not every shop is as heavy on the Seahawks. MGM had its books evened out a bit by a $100,000 wager on Vikings +3, as first reported by Patrick Everson.

Monday Morning Update

11:28 a.m. ET: Just got word that a DraftKings bettor in New Jersey wagered $565,000 to win $452,000 on the Texans +4 against the Patriots on Sunday Night Football.

That bet ended up cashing pretty easily: The Texans were covering the 4-point spread for the entirety of the game and ended up winning outright, 28-22.

Sunday Evening Updates

11:30 p.m. ET: Earlier this morning, we reported that a few of the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook’s biggest bets of the day were on Sunday Night Football — and they weren’t necessarily on the team you’d expect:

  • $30,000 to win $25,000 on Texans (+3, -120) over Patriots
  • $24,000 to win $20,000 on Texans (+3.5, -120) over Patriots
  • $20,000 to win $20,000 on Texans (+3) over Patriots

All three of those bets cashed, as Houston pulled off the outright upset over the mighty Patriots at home. But don’t mistake those $75,000 in losses to mean the book had a bad night: It’s actually the opposite.

While a few big bets came in on Houston, John Murray from the SuperBook said, “There was so much public support for the Patriots that we did well.” The Pats are always a popular parlay piece, so the fact that Houston emerged victorious was certainly helpful for sportsbooks.

The win on Sunday night capped what PointsBet’s Patrick Eichner called a “very solid, winning day for the book,” as a few other popular favorites lost outright.

“Best results came in the Jets loss to the Bengals, as 90% of the tickets and money were backing Gang Green at significant volume,” Eichner said, “and the Eagles loss to the Dolphins, with Philly at good volume plus over 80% of the tickets and 70% of the money.”

The one game that kept this from being a great day from sportsbooks? The Packers’ cover as 6.5-point road favorites at the Giants. Green Bay closed with  getting 86% of the tickets per our data, making it the second-most popular NFL side since 2011.

7:13 p.m. ET: Moments before kickoff of the Raiders-Chiefs game, the New Jersey sportsbook PointsBet took a $33,000 bet on the Chiefs -11. The bet ended up cashing quite easily, profiting $33,000, as the Chiefs won, 40-9.

7 p.m. ET: Coming off two losses in their past three games, the Rams weren’t an overly attractive road favorite on Sunday against the Cardinals. But that didn’t deter one bettor at PointsBet from taking a risk on Jared Goff & Co.

The bettor wagered $500 per point on Rams -3.5 via a style of betting the company calls Points Betting. This allows bettors to cash in more depending on just how correct they are about a bet. (The inverse is also true: If you really miss on a Points Betting wager, you’ll lose more than you would’ve on a normal bet.)

In the case of the Rams -3.5 bet, the volatility that Points Betting provides ended up being a very good thing for this bettor. The Rams went on to cruise to a 34-7 victory, meaning L.A. covered the spread 23.5 points. So this bettor profited $11,500 ($500 per point x 23) on his wager.

4:30 p.m. ET: Sportsbooks didn’t get a much-needed cover from the Giants as home underdogs against the Packers, as Green Bay scored 14 unanswered in the fourth quarter to win 31-14. But books did see at least one positive on the early slate: a victory from the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Cleveland Browns.

The Browns were popular road favorites — they closed as 1-point favorites, getting 66% of the betting tickets per our data. One bettor at MGM was especially confident in Cleveland’s ability to leave Pittsburgh victorious, plopping down $200,000 on the Browns -1.5 to win $182,000, as first reported by Patrick Everson.

Cleveland got out to a 10-0 lead halfway through the second quarter, but was outscored 20-3 thereafter by Devlin Hodges & Co., much to the delight of sportsbook operators (especially MGM).

Sunday Morning Updates

One of the most lopsided games of the season: It’s pretty clear which side the sportsbooks will need to cover in the Packers-Giants game. Green Bay (8-3, 7-4 ATS) is a 7-point road favorite in the Meadowlands today and bettors are happy to lay the points with the Pack. According to our consensus data, this is the most lopsided game of the day with 88% of the bets on Green Bay. Individual sportsbooks are also seeing heavy Packers action. DraftKings reports 97% of the money is on Green Bay, FanDuel has it at 96% and PointsBet at 92%.

“It’s one of the most lopsided games of the season,” Matt Chaprales of PointsBet said. “It’s been nothing but Green Bay action. Over 90% of the tickets and money and the most volume of any game on the board.”

While the Packers are a clear public side, Jeff Sherman of the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas said they’ve taken some sharp money on the Giants. The SuperBook has also taken two five-figure wagers on this game: a $27,900 bet on the Packers moneyline (-310) that would net $9,000 and a $22,000 bet on the Giants +6.5 that would net $20,000.

Liabilities: Sherman reports that their biggest needs so far are the Colts (+1) vs. the Titans, the Jaguars (+3) vs. the Buccaneers and, believe it or not, the Patriots (-3) at Houston.

Sharps and Squares: Sherman also noted that the public is backing the Panthers (-10.5) vs. the Redskins and the Eagles (-10.5) vs. the Dolphins. As for the sharps, they’re backing the Titans (-1) at the Colts, Buccaneers (-3) at the Jaguars, Bengals (+3) at the Jets and the Cardinals (+2.5) vs. the Rams.