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BTSC Bookie: Parlaying the Steelers and betting the rest of the NFL Week 9 games

It’s time for the BTSC community to show they could cash in betting on NFL football games, this time doing a parlay bet on items from the Steelers’ game

NFL: Indianapolis Colts at Pittsburgh Steelers Photo: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It is time for the Week 9 installment of BTSC Bookie! This is a chance for the BTSC community to collectively choose games in which to place an imaginary wager of “BTSC Bucks.” Each week I will remind everyone of the rules and explain an aspect of betting in order to further educate those interested about the process.

Before I get into the procedure of things, I want to remind everyone that gambling addiction is a serous problem numerous people face. Like many things in life, gambling can be a fun and safe exercise if done in moderation, while obsessive gambling can have destructive and life-altering consequences. If you or anyone you know is suffering from a gambling addiction, help is available HERE.

The Process

  • We will start with $500 in BTSC Bucks for the season. If we bust, we may borrow from the BTSC Bookie, but will have to pay 20% interest each week it isn’t paid. It’s a steep price, but there are consequences to failure.
  • Games this week will be betting against the spread with commission on two NFL games, and a parlay bet on the Steelers’ game wagering on the spread or moneyline, and over/under.
  • There will be a set of 8 betting lines for users to place a vote on games against the spread and a second set to parlay bets on the Steelers’ game. The values are as of Tuesday evening and they are locked in throughout the voting. The polls will run until Saturday night at 11:59 PM. The top two results for NFL games will have a $100 and a $50 wager placed respectively. A separate poll pertaining to the Steelers will have a $25 parlay bet this week.
  • A write-in campaign can be staged for voting. If any comment in the weekly article brings up a different game in the comments to make the wager and can receive enough recommendations to place it in the top three vote-wise, it will be calculated accordingly. I know it’s highly unlikely for a comment to receive that many recommendations, but if it does it will count.
  • Thursday games will not be included due to obvious time constraints.
  • Some games may have the two opposing lines as an option. If so, only the higher vote-getter will be eligible for the wager.
  • Betting both for and against the Steelers will always be an option, this time in the parlay bet.

Last Week’s Wager

For Week 8, we turned it around in a big way! In the first poll, the majority of the users voted for the Miami Dolphins to cover the +14.5-point spread against the Steelers. Although the Steelers won the game 27-14 , they had no reason to attempt to win by the 13 points they were up so we made $43.48 on our $50 bet. The second poll was for the Philadelphia Eagles to win straight up against the Buffalo Bills at +105. With the Eagles winning 31-13, our $50 wager earned another $52.50.

As for the final wager, users selected the Steelers and Dolphins to go UNDER the 42.5 point total. With only 41 points combined, we earned another $45.45 on the final $50 wager. So on our $150 worth of wagers, we earned $141.43. But what was really impressive was our $25 wager to parlay the three bets which paid us another $157.92 in profit! So by winning all three, our $25 netted more than our $150.

Week 7 Balance: $603.51

Week 8 Net Gain/Loss: +$299.35

Week 8 Total: $902.86

Placing a Parlay Bet

If you are interested to turning a small wager into a big payout, one option is to place a parlay bet on multiple betting opportunities in which all wagers need to be in your favor in order to win. To better understand, there was a rundown on parlay betting that was included in Week 7’s article which can be seen HERE. For this week, we will look at placing a parlay bet on as many items within the same game as would be permitted.

Moneyline vs. Spread

It seems that Week 9 is an option to experiment with learning the strategy of a parlay bet entirely on the Steelers game. With the spread only being one point in favor of the Steelers, it makes a bet against the spread or on the moneyline almost exactly the same. The only difference between the two bets would be if the Steelers win by one point because they would push against the spread and win on the moneyline. Other than that specific instance, the two bets would have the same result.

The only real difference when it comes to the moneyline versus the spread in the Steelers-Colts game is the payout for each. If betting on the Steelers, the moneyline has a payout of -115 and the spread has -105, so it would be beneficial to bet the spread since a $50 bet would pay $97.62 and the moneyline would pay $93.48. The $4 difference is enough take the chance to not have a push with a 1-point Steelers victory. As the spread would increase, the more of a chance the final result could fall between the two numbers so the odds will accordingly change.

If betting on the Colts, the odds just so happened to be switched with the current payouts. So the moneyline would pay the extra $4 on the Colts, but a tie game would mean the moneyline would push while a bet on the spread would still win. Since the difference is only one point, betting the better payout is usually the better option.

Correlated Betting

Correlated betting is placing two or more bets on items that are directly related in the same game. Using the example of the Steelers and Colts this week, a correlated parlay bet would be to bet on the Steelers in both the moneyline and the spread. Since a one-point victory is the only situation where both bets wouldn’t give the game outcome, hitting both correctly would be almost certain if one was correct.

While this type of betting is highly desirable, it’s also very uncommon as sports books would stand to lose a lot of money on parlay bets. If a two-bet parlay was permitted in this circumstance, the payout on a $50 bet would be $182.51. If permitted, placing two different correlated parlay bets, one on each team, would be an almost guaranteed win (as long as the game isn’t a tie or one-point win). By placing this bet, you would make more than enough profit on one wager to cover the loss on the other.

Sometimes a spread and an over/under can be considered correlated. For example, last week when the Steelers were favored by 14.5 points, a bet on the Steelers to cover would increase the odds of the two teams going over the 42.5 points. Even after a bet is placed, some sports books will deem a bet as correlated and cancel the bet with a refund. While betting the Steelers and the over could be considered correlated, betting the Dolphins and the under may not be labeled as much because Miami could cover in either a high scoring game or a low scoring game. Generally, betting on a large spread to be covered and betting the over in the same game is considered correlated if multiplying the spread by three gives a number higher than the over/under.

So what can we bet?

Since the spread and the moneyline are very much correlated, we will have to chose one or the other. With a small spread, we will be free to parlay an over/under bet as well. If you ever find a sportsbook who will allow you to parlay bet the moneyline and spread as two separate bets (especially with a low spread), jump on it as fast as you can and hope they don’t cancel the bet!

Week 9 Options

Here are the options chosen for the Week 9 betting exercise. Make sure you cast your vote in each poll. If you want to play your own game, leave your choices in the comments below and keep track of your total throughout the season.

For this week, payouts are listed in parenthesis. We will place a $100 on the top vote-getter and a $50 bet on the second choice. Just to stay consistent, I stuck with only spread options this time. The other poll will be for a $25 two-bet parlay on the Steelers’s game. The amount of the parlay bet profit will depend on the payouts on each choice, so choosing a large negative number will hinder the winnings. If you wish to vote more than once, clear your “cookies” on your browser and vote again.


Which game do you want to place your BTSC Bucks against the spread?

This poll is closed

  • 35%
    Green Bay (-3.5) at Los Angeles Chargers (-110, 67%)
    (25 votes)
  • 25%
    New England (-3.5) at Baltimore (+100, 58%)
    (18 votes)
  • 9%
    Cleveland (-3) at Denver (-120, 57%)
    (7 votes)
  • 11%
    Denver (+3) vs. Cleveland (+100, 43%)
    (8 votes)
  • 1%
    Dallas (-7) at New York Giants (-110, 55%)
    (1 vote)
  • 4%
    New York Giants (+7) vs. Dallas (-110, 45%)
    (3 votes)
  • 2%
    New York Jets (-3) at Miami (-110, 50%)
    (2 votes)
  • 9%
    Miami (+3) vs. New York Jets (-110, 50%)
    (7 votes)
71 votes total Vote Now


Which two bets do you want to parlay in the Steelers game?

This poll is closed

  • 20%
    Steelers (-1 ATS, -105) vs. Colts; OVER 42.5 (-110)
    (14 votes)
  • 29%
    Steelers (-1 ATS, -105) vs. Colts; UNDER 42.5 (-110)
    (20 votes)
  • 7%
    Colts (+1 ATS, -115) at Steelers; OVER 42.5
    (5 votes)
  • 10%
    Colts (+1 ATS, -115) at Steelers; UNDER 42.5
    (7 votes)
  • 11%
    Steelers (SU, -115) vs. Colts; OVER 42.5
    (8 votes)
  • 11%
    Steelers (SU, -115) vs. Colts; UNDER 42.5
    (8 votes)
  • 2%
    Colts (SU, -105) at Steelers: OVER 42.5
    (2 votes)
  • 4%
    Colts (SU, -105) at Steelers: UNDER 42.5
    (3 votes)
67 votes total Vote Now

(ATS = Against The Spread, SU = Straight Up)