The early Week 6 NFL betting trends  

October, 11, 2011
10/11/11
11:19
AM ET

Every Tuesday during the NFL regular season, Dave Tuley of ViewfromVegas.com will provide an update on the Hilton SuperContest.

LAS VEGAS -- You've likely heard by now how the sports books here took a beating over the weekend.

The public loves to bet the favorite and the over, and they had a banner weekend as college football favorites went 32-20 against the spread -- including all the popular top-ranked teams covering. Then NFL chalk went 8-5 ATS, with the over going 9-4, including all the major decisions going against the books and made worse when the public parlayed those winning favorites together.

Now, the Hilton SuperContest is a different animal. Players come with more of a tendency to look at underdogs and they're usually following the sharp money, which is often fading the public. So, while the squares were cashing tons of tickets this weekend, the SuperContest field was muddling around .500. In fact, the consensus plays went 6-6-1 overall and were remarkably close to .500 with all selections at 1,185-1,186, with 209 pushing on the Jets-Patriots game. Sharp contest players (and bettors in the real world) took the Jets plus-9 while those that followed the steam and took the Jets plus-8.5 or lower took a loss when the Patriots prevailed 30-21. There was some plus-9.5 available earlier in the week, so those bettors got a win, but for the 158 who took the Jets in the SuperContest, they picked up a half-point when they otherwise would have been stuck with a loss.

The Jets were the third-most selected team by SuperContestants in Week 5, but that only helped the top five consensus plays go 1-3-1 ATS. The Bengals' plus-2.5 came through for 162 players, but big losers included the Eagles minus-2.5 (taken by 174 SuperContestants), Falcons plus-6 (157) and Titans plus-3.5 (148). For the season, the weekly top five consensus plays are just 11-11-3.

But the leaders have been able to avoid those landmines. Sans Souci entered the week at 16-3-1 and holding a 1.5-point lead. After Sunday's day games, he was 1-1-1 with a win on the Vikings minus-2.5 versus the Cardinals (which was actually the highest-percentage play as 145 SuperContestants were on the Vikes and a mere 16 on the Cards), a loss on the Buccaneers plus-3 versus the 49ers and the push with the Jets. It was looking like he might lose the lead, but our leader prevailed in both the Sunday and Monday night games to improve to 19-4-2 (20 contest points) and maintain a 1.5-point lead on Samswins.com2, who has a record of 18-6-1 for 18.5 SuperContest points. Azzurri.99 is also at 18.5 points after going 5-0 with the Raiders, Panthers, Steelers, 49ers and Lions. Four are tied for fourth place with 18 points: Samswins.com (yes, he has two entries on the leaderboard), Pagermager, Iced Tea and Gameanalysts.com.

Where the money is going in Week 6?

Even though the official contest lines don't come out until Wednesday, the Hilton posts its openers around 4:30 p.m. Sunday, so we can usually see what the wiseguys have been betting early and project what the popular trends will be for the coming weekend. SuperContestants might have a harder time finding five plays they like this week, with six teams on byes and only 13 games on the schedule after the 16 we've enjoyed each week so far.


To see the early betting trends for Week 6 in the NFL, plus how the familiar names are doing so far in the Hilton SuperContest, become an ESPN Insider today.

Dave Tuley has covered the Las Vegas race and sports book scene since 1998 and runs his own website, ViewFromVegas.com.

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