NFL underdogs bark loudest Monday and Thursday nights

Oct 29, 2012 |
Primetime has gone to the dogs.

Underdogs have dominated the NFL standalone games on Monday and Thursday nights, posting a combined 13-3 ATS record – 6-2 ATS on Monday Night Football and 7-1 ATS on Thursday Night Football.

Heading into Week 8’s Monday night matchup between San Francisco and Arizona (+7), underdogs have covered in nine straight primetime games on Mondays and Thursdays, boosting the season-long trend of underdog success. As of Monday, teams getting the points are 71-43-3 ATS (62.28 percent) on the year.

And a look at the totals shows that under players have also been able to cash in as well in primetime contests. Monday and Thursday games have combined for a 5-11 over/under mark, heading into Monday.

Favorites have been taking a regular and consistent hosing when they have the NFL spotlight to themselves. In Week 1 the Ravens were able to cover seven when they obliterated the Bengals, and the next week Atlanta gave three to the Broncos and won by six.

But that’s it.

Starting with the replacement-ref screw job that the Packers got in Seattle and continuing through Detroit’s half-point cover in a loss to Chicago a week ago and including Denver’s wild comeback win over San Diego, Monday night pups have nailed the spread.

On Thursday nights dogs have also had their day – six straight covers.

Dallas opened the season as a 3.5-point underdog at New York and beat the Giants outright. Since then the Bears (vs. Green Bay), Giants (vs. Carolina), Browns (vs. Baltimore), Rams (vs. Arizona), Titans (vs. Pittsburgh), Seahawks (vs. San Francisco) and Buccaneers (vs. Minnesota) have all covered.

What gives?

With the majority of wagers coming in heavy on favorites, offshore and Las Vegas books can feel comfortable putting their thumbs on the scale and skewing the number a bit higher, providing more value for underdog players.

“The dogs are barking all right (on Mondays and Thursdays),” says South Point Casino sportsbook manager Bert Osborne. “And it’s true the public likes favorites and overs. But we don’t push the numbers at all based on when the game is played.”

The Kansas City Chiefs are 9.5-point underdogs at San Diego Thursday night while the Philadelphia Eagles are getting 3.5 points at New Orleans on Monday.
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