Point Spread

A point spread (a.k.a., spread or line) is a linesmaker’s prediction of the margin of victory in a given event.

In sports, point spreads have a plus (+) or minus (-) sign, depending on whether the team is favored.

A point spread of -7 for example, means that the favorite is expected to win by 7 points.

A point spread of +7 means the underdog is expected to lose by 7 points.

If a team wins or loses by the exact spread, it’s a push and all bets are refunded.

Point spreads are set by linesmakers using mathematical models and their knowledge of public better tendencies. The line is adjusted as bets come in, in an effort to balance the action and ensure the sportsbook/bookie a profit from the vigorish (i.e., the fee they charged for accepting a bet).

In DFS, the point spread is a key consideration when drafting players. With running backs, for example, the more favored their team is, the more they tend to accumulate fantasy points.

As with over-under, point spreads are factored in by DFS players. In other words, offensive players on heavily favored teams tend to be higher owned with higher salaries, often making it harder to find value in those players.