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BTSC Bookie: Betting the moneyline for the NFL Week 4 games

It’s time for the BTSC community to show they could cash in betting on NFL football games, this time “straight up” against the odds

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

It is time for the Week 3 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.
  • All games this week will be betting straight up against the moneyline.
  • There will be 10 betting lines for users to place a vote. 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 and the top three results will have wagers placed: $100 for the top choice, $50 for the second choice, and $25 for the third.
  • 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. For example, if betting on the Steelers in Week 3 earns the most votes while betting for San Francisco is the second highest, only the bet for the Steelers will be placed.
  • Betting both for and against the Steelers will always be an option.

Last Week’s Wager

For Week 3, the majority of the users voted for the Rams to cover the 3 points against the Browns on Sunday Night Football. With Los Angeles winning 20-13 at -105, we earned $95.24 towards our BTSC Bucks.

As for the other two games, the Pittsburgh (+6.5) at San Francisco game had a $50 wager at -110 on the Steelers for coming in second place in the voting. Since the Steelers covered the spread, we earned $45.45. The New England (+22.5) vs. the New York Jets game had a $25 wager on the Patriots where they did not cover the spread. In all, we earned a $140.69 profit on the first two games while losing our $25 on the last game.

Week 1 Balance: $500

Week 1 Net Gain/Loss: +$115.69

Week 2 Total: $615.69

Betting the Moneyline

One other thing to consider while placing a bet is whether or not to bet the spread. One option is to place a wager against the moneyline for a team to win straight up. To better understand, here is a rundown on betting the moneyline according to

Moneyline Explained: How to Make a Straight-up Bet

One of the most popular ways to bet on sports is the moneyline. It can be confusing for first-time bettors to see the symbols commonly used by oddsmakers on the betting board, but we’re here to give you a better understanding of how sportsbooks display the odds. This page will show you how to bet the moneyline for your favorite sports and how it differs from the point spread.

What is the Moneyline?

A moneyline bet simply involves you picking a winning team. Instead of seeing a team favored by 2.5 points like in football and basketball spreads, the two teams will each be given a separate numerical value. These are the moneyline odds you will need to understand.

Let’s pretend it’s the Super Bowl and the New York Giants are taking on the New England Patriots, as they have done in the past. At Odds Shark we use American odds because the majority of betting sites use them, especially when displaying moneyline odds.

Odds for this NFL game would look something like this:

Patriots -120

Giants +200

In this scenario the Pats are the favorite, which you can tell by the minus sign (-). The Giants are the underdog – you can see this because of the plus sign (+). This is universal across all sportsbooks. These numbers signify what you’d have to bet to win $100. For the Giants, you would need to wager $50 to win $100. For the Pats, you would need to bet $120. You don’t have to wager $100 exactly. The amount you bet is completely up to you.

Let’s break it down further:

Let’s say you wager $120 on the Pats. A winning bet would give you a payout of $220 – your $120 comes back along with your winnings of $100. On the other hand, if you were to bet that same $120 on the Giants and they won, you’d get a payout of $360 – your original wager comes back with your prize of $240.

Betting on the underdog is considered a bigger risk, which is why the payout will be higher. The favorite is considered a lock (even though they don’t always win), which is why there’s less risk with a smaller payment.

Our Odds Calculator will show you how much you’d win based on the amount of money bet and the odds.

NFL moneyline betting continues to gain popularity as many begin to understand the value of moneyline bets, especially in betting the underdogs. In many cases, betting moneylines offers better value and can provide a bigger profit for less risk. Check out our NFL Betting Guide to learn more about when you should bet a moneyline instead of a point spread.

Week 4 Options

Here are the options chosen for the Week 4 betting exercise. Make sure you cast your vote in the 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 based on the moneyline, which will be in parenthesis after each selection. Remember a “+” moneyline has a higher payout while a “-” moneyline pays less than 1/1 odds. I tried to give a balance of getting a big payout on an upset and some closer games where the negative moneyline wasn’t too low.


Which game would you like to place you BTSC Bucks for Week 4?

This poll is closed

  • 23%
    Pittsburgh (-210) vs. Cincinnati
    (26 votes)
  • 6%
    Cincinnati (+175) at Pittsburgh
    (7 votes)
  • 8%
    New Orleans (+120) vs. Dallas
    (9 votes)
  • 6%
    Buffalo (+260) vs. New England
    (7 votes)
  • 8%
    Cleveland (+260) at Baltimore
    (9 votes)
  • 6%
    Miami (+775) vs. Los Angles Chargers
    (7 votes)
  • 6%
    Washington (+125) at New York Giants
    (7 votes)
  • 11%
    New York Giants (-145) vs. Washington
    (12 votes)
  • 21%
    Jacksonville (+150) at Denver
    (23 votes)
  • 1%
    Denver (-170) vs. Jacksonville
    (2 votes)
109 votes total Vote Now