What is point
spread, how point spread works, what ATS means
What does "point spread" means
in football and sports betting, how does the spread works and
what does "ATS" mean is all answered below.
Many people all over the world love sports and many of
them want to start sports betting, but a small obstacles, such
as "point spread" and "ATS", make them uneasy with the whole
sports betting thing. Here we will try to give you the easiest
possible explanation of what is the point spread, how it works
and what does ATS mean.
In sports betting, the major sports
which use point spread as a form of wagering are football and
basketball. Let's take the NFL football games as an example,
once you've understood the point spread, basketball and other
sports are the same, only more points on the spread. So what is
the point spread? The point spread is an adjustment to the
final score made by the bookmakers. Let's look at an example.
At the online sportsbook
Bodog Sports, the point spread on NFL game between
the Dallas Cowboys and the Detroit Lions is as follows:
Dallas Cowboys -11 (-105)
Detroit Lions +11 (-115)
Or simply, the point spread on this NFL game
is -11 points chalk the Cowboys. This means that if you bet the
spread on the Cowboys, Dallas need to win the game by 12 points
in order for your bet to be a winner. Here is where the ATS
comes to play, ATS means "against the spread", so the
Cowboys are 11 points ATS. If Dallas wins by 11 points, the bet
is "no action" and now one wins or losses. (See more
spread examples and what they mean here)
From the above example, if the final
score is Dallas 27 - Detroit 10, the Cowboys cover the point
spread, since they won the game by 17 points (17 > 11), and if
the final score is Dallas 21 - Detroit 14, the Cowboys fail to
cover the spread ( 7 < 11) and you lose the bet. If the Cowboys
lose the game, you automatically lose the bet as well, no matter
the final score. For clarity, +11 point spread on Detroit means
that you can win, even if Detroit loses, as long as they lose by
less than 11 points. In the most basic form of the point spread,
you simply add or subtract the spread from the final score.
On the above example, the numbers in the
brackets are the payout odds on the event. For example, the -11
point spread on Dallas pays out -105 (i.e. you have to bet $105
to win $100 + your $105 bet) and the +11 point spread on Detroit
pays out -115. For more on how the betting lines work, follow
the links at the bottom of the page.
The football team expected to win the
game (the "better" team) is called the "favorite" and is the one
with the "minus" sign in front of the point spread. The "weaker"
team gets the + point spread, i.e. gets extra points added to
the final score. That's it, now you know what the point spread
is, how it works and what "ATS" means.