National Football League
Sportsbook 'destroyed' by Chiefs-Jets result; Colorado covers sweet spot
National Football League

Sportsbook 'destroyed' by Chiefs-Jets result; Colorado covers sweet spot

Updated Oct. 2, 2023 9:48 p.m. ET

Sometimes on NFL Sundays, a storm slowly gathers strength throughout the day, then unleashes on Sunday Night Football. 

It becomes that perfect storm for which the betting public lives.

RELATED: Patrick Mahomes' late slide causes bad beat for bettors

In the NFL Week 4 odds market, there wasn’t a perfect storm. But it was near-perfect, and oddsmakers got soaked.


Let’s recap the weekend that was in football betting.

Taylor-Made Victory

Yes, all the rage Sunday night was Taylor Swift in attendance at MetLife Stadium to watch Travis Kelce and the Kansas City Chiefs against the New York Jets. And the betting masses wanted the exact same thing as Swift: a K.C. victory.

The Chiefs barely got there, blowing an early 17-0 lead and eking out a 23-20 win. No, the Chiefs didn’t cover as 7.5-point favorites. But they didn’t need to. 

All Kansas City had to do was win, which cashed a sea of moneyline parlays that survived the day and ran to the Chiefs on Sunday night. And a ton of teaser tickets — on which the spread for favorites shrinks by six points — also got there with the three-point win for K.C.

The result for bookmakers?

"We got destroyed," BetMGM Nevada’s Scott Shelton said. "It was worse than I thought it would be. I can’t even fathom what happens if Patrick Mahomes doesn’t kneel at the end."

Indeed, if the Chiefs scored a TD rather than running out the clock, they would’ve won 30-20 and covered the spread. That would’ve been the perfect storm. It was a bad beat for Chiefs spread backers, but again, cashing loads of moneyline parlays and teasers gave bettors a healthy NFL win for the day.

Blatant mistakes from referees to blame for Jets loss?

Prop Bet Debt

Kelce is always popular in the player-prop market just on ability and results alone. Add in the Taylor Swift effect in a prime-time game, and that popularity is surely multiplied.

But that didn’t work out so well for bettors Sunday night.

At DraftKings, no player took more tickets in the Anytime Touchdown scorer market than Kelce (-130, bet $10 to win $17.69 total). And in the First TD scorer market, only Dolphins wideout Tyreek Hill (+750) – the former Chief – took more tickets than Kelce (+450) at DraftKings.

Further, DraftKings reported taking a lot of bets on Kelce to score two or more TDs. But alas, the Chiefs tight end didn’t find the end zone at any point against the Jets.

Setting the Table

What happened prior to the Chiefs-Jets game set the table for the massive decision. A key decision: The Philadelphia Eagles overcoming an early deficit and ultimately beating the Washington Commanders 34-31 in overtime. That’s what initially kept alive a lot of moneyline parlays/teasers.

Zachary Lucas, TwinSpires Sportsbook director of retail sports, could sense what was coming when Washington fell short.

"It changed things a lot. The Vikings, Ravens and Eagles all winning was not good," he said.

Then in the 4:05 p.m. ET/4:25 p.m. ET window, all three favorites won — and covered, for that matter. The Dallas Cowboys rolled over the New England Patriots 38-3; the San Francisco 49ers dropped the Arizona Cardinals 35-16; and the Los Angeles Chargers topped the Las Vegas Raiders 24-17.

Then, the uber-popular Chiefs narrowly finished the job.

"It was a pretty big decision, one of the biggest of the season," said John Murray, executive director of The SuperBook. "Parlay liability building throughout the day to the [popular] road favorite on Sunday night."

Before Mahomes kneeled out the game, he first scrambled for a first down and slid inbounds at the 2-yard line. That allowed the Chiefs to then run out the clock, as the Jets had no timeouts left.

"Mahomes going down certainly saved us a lot of money. But we still took a loss on the game," Murray said. "Too many moneyline parlays from earlier in the day. We needed the Jets outright to avoid a loss."

And they almost got it.

Up-and-Down Day

Around the rest of Sunday’s NFL slate, oddsmakers reported a fair amount of give-and-take. Perhaps surprisingly, the South Point sportsbook in Vegas — always loaded with Raiders fans — actually needed the Silver and Black in their road game against Chargers, who were 6.5-point favorites.

Right after watching the Raiders blow the game by throwing a late interception deep in the red zone, South Point sportsbook director Chris Andrews said: "That was bad. We had a lot of money on both sides, but more moneyline parlays and teasers on the Chargers. We could’ve used a Raiders win. That would’ve been really nice."

In the most anticipated game on the NFL Week 4 odds board, the Buffalo Bills routed the Miami Dolphins 48-20. Buffalo was a three-point favorite, and multiple bookmakers said pregame that the ideal outcome would’ve been a Bills win/Dolphins cover. In other words, a very close Bills win, by 1 or 2 points.

So BetMGM and The SuperBook, among others, took it on the chin in that game. But Andrews actually fared well to it.

"They bet us Miami and the Under. We got Buffalo and the Over," he said. "They also bet the Saints and Over, with big plays on both. So Bucs outright and Under was good."

Tampa Bay breezed to a 26-9 victory as a 4.5-point road underdog, and the Under hit on a total of 41.

Back to School

In the college football week 5 odds market, sportsbooks got a windfall from Colorado bettors for the third straight week. Even in the midst of Coach Prime’s 42-6 loss at Oregon in Week 4, bettors were still firing on Buffaloes moneyline against heavy favorite USC in Week 5.

Colorado was in the +800/+900 range on the moneyline, meaning a $10 bet would profit $80 to $90 — provided the Buffs won outright. The game actually hit a sweet spot for most oddsmakers, who reported heavier point-spread play on the 21.5-point favorite Trojans and extremely heavy moneyline play on the Buffaloes.

USC held 27-point leads at three junctures Saturday, but big home ‘dog Colorado rallied to make it interesting. The Trojans won 48-41, meaning all those USC spread bets died, as did all the Colorado moneyline plays.

"The result was perfect for us in terms of moneyline/spread liability. We couldn’t have scripted it better," TwinSpires’ Lucas said.

Should USC be concerned after holding off Colorado 48-41?

Joel Klatt analyzed No. 9 USC Trojans vs. Colorado Buffaloes.

I Like Big Bets and I Cannot Lie

While the Chiefs got there for moneyline parlay/teaser players, the Jets helped pad a Michigan bettor’s bankroll in a big way. Caesars Sports took a $240,556 bet on Jets +8.5. The bettor’s profit: $218,687, for a total payout of $459,243.

Right near kickoff, Ben Fawkes reported an even larger Jets +8.5 play at Caesars from a Nevada bettor: $350,000. That customer turned a profit of $318,182 for a total payout of $668,182.

Another Caesars bettor perhaps had an inkling that Sunday night’s game just might be close. So the customer put $150,000 on Chiefs alternate spread -3 (-294). No, the bettor didn’t win, but also didn’t lose. With a push in K.C.’s 23-20 win, the $150,000 goes back into that customer’s account, living to fight another day.

Other major wagers at Caesars over the weekend:

  • $240,000 on Steelers -2.5 vs. Texans (loss)
  • $240,000 on Saints -3 vs. Buccaneers (loss)
  • $220,000 on Panthers +4.5 vs. Vikings (loss)
  • $220,000 on Raiders +5 vs. Chargers (loss)
  • $164,835 on Jaguars -3 vs. Falcons (win)
  • $110,000 on Ravens-Browns Under 40.5 (win)
  • $110,000 on Auburn +15 vs. Georgia (win)
  • $55,000 on Auburn +14.5 vs. Georgia (win)
  • $51,500 on Georgia -14.5 vs. Auburn (loss)

Patrick Everson is a sports betting analyst for FOX Sports and senior reporter for He is a distinguished journalist in the national sports betting space. He's based in Las Vegas, where he enjoys golfing in 110-degree heat. Follow him on Twitter: @PatrickE_Vegas


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