Todd's Take On NFL Favorites Killing The Sportsbooks

By: Don Best Staff | Thursday, November 8, 2012

It was truly a 'dogs world in the NFL a few weeks ago when underdogs were cashing tickets at a 64 percent clip. That all came to an end this past week, however, when favorites covered 10 of 14 games on the Week 9 slate.

"That sent sportsbook directors heading for the hills," Don Best market analyst Todd Fuhrman noted in this edition of Todd's Take. Some of the bigger shops in Las Vegas reported seven figure losses as the public enjoyed the windfall. One $5 wager on a 15-team parlay at Red Rock Station resulted in a six-figure payday for one lucky customer."

One pet peeve of Fuhrman is the player who claims to either be a favorite or an underdog bettor.

"You're either a bettor, or you're not," Fuhrman said, adding that value comes in all shapes an sizes. "If you limit yourself to only playing underdogs, especially in the NFL, you're not doing yourself a service."

Bettors who consistently fade the public often find themselves in trouble as well. A prime example last week was the game in Cincinnati between the Bengals and Denver Broncos. Sharps bought in with Denver laying three points, but the line moved to Denver -5 and the public was on Cincinnati at that spread, eventually tearing up their tickets when the Broncos scored a 31-23 triumph (click here for updated NFL odds).

Shifting over to the college basketball season that gets underway this week, this is the time of year that the betting markets aren't as efficient as they will be later once teams begin to find their rhythm and learn to perform at their best with new rotations on the floor.

Bettors who are prepared and have done their homework for the 2012-13 campaign are the ones who will reap the benefits from some of the early season tournaments like the Maui Invitational or Great Alaska Shootout. Books can be stubborn about adjusting their power ratings based on just a few games, and bettors who are flexible will be rewarded.

Fuhrman has followed his own "five-20-five" rule on the college hardwood, meaning teams will play five games above their heads during the course of a 30-game season, 20 games where they play exactly as expected, and five below their abilities. Bettors need to take a hard look at the schedules for a given team and then try to identify the games that will follow Fuhrman's rule weeks in advance.

Make sure to check back next week for another edition of Todd's Take and click here to follow Todd on Twitter.

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