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Raiders, Bears bail out sportsbooks: ‘Only reason we’re still standing’

After the Raiders came up short in their bid to upset the heavily favored Dolphins, interim coach Antonio Pierce said there are no moral victories.

But there are victories against the spread, and the Raiders easily covered it after closing as high as 14-point underdogs in a 20-13 loss at Miami, a popular favorite.

The Raiders and Bears, who covered as 8-point underdogs in a 31-26 defeat at Detroit, bailed out sportsbooks on an otherwise losing day that saw 10 of 12 favorites win.

“If you had told me only two underdogs were going to win outright, I would’ve said we’re probably going to have a bad day then,” Westgate SuperBook vice president Jay Kornegay said. “The Raiders and Bears are the only reason we’re still standing at this time.”

Miami shot up from an 11½-point favorite to -14 as bettors were all over the NFL’s highest-scoring team.

“We moved it pretty aggressively, as we could see the bets were coming in heavily on the Dolphins,” Kornegay said.

Station Casinos also rode the Raiders, who covered despite turnovers on their final three possessions, to a winning day.

“The three monster early games we needed were the Raiders, Bears and Panthers, and we got two of the three,” Red Rock Resort sportsbook director Chuck Esposito said. “The Raiders really seem to be a different team. They’re playing so much better and seem more spirited and more energetic under Pierce.”

Caesars Sportsbook was a small winner on the Raiders game but lost on the day overall. Sharp bettors beat the book out of $200,000 on a wager on the Raiders +14 and $100,000 at +13½.

“You figure that might have been a better game for us,” Caesars assistant director of trading Adam Pullen said. “Sometimes when you get to those high point spreads, sharps jump in and take those points. It’s not surprising that the sharps jumped on the Raiders. They have looked OK since the coaching change.

“Bettors definitely rebounded (Sunday). We’re not down that much, but we didn’t win that many games.”

Favorite things

Three big favorites cashed for bettors in the Cowboys (-11, beat Panthers 33-10), Bills (-8½, beat Jets 32-6) and Jaguars (-6½, beat Titans 34-14).

“The biggest game for the public was the Jaguars,” Pullen said. “That was our big loss.”

Caesars took bets of $210,000 and $175,000 on Jacksonville -6½.

Dallas dealt the SuperBook its worst result of the day.

“I don’t think we wrote more than three tickets on the Panthers,” Kornegay said.

Station gave back some of their profits from the morning games to Bills and 49ers bettors in the afternoon.

Missed it by that much

Bettors who wagered on San Francisco at the closing line of -13½ lost by the hook in its 27-14 win over Tampa Bay. But Esposito said the book took a lot of action on the Niners at -11, -11½ and -12.

Likewise, those who bet on the Rams at the closing line of -2 lost when Los Angeles settled for a late go-ahead field goal and held on for a 17-16 win over the Seahawks when Jason Myers missed a 55-yard field goal with three seconds left. Seattle was a 1-point favorite last week before the line flipped.

Houston bettors who laid the closing line of -5½ also were burned by the hook in a 21-16 victory over the Cardinals. The Texans opened as 4-point favorites.

Under armor

Underdogs went 8-4 against the spread with outright upsets by the Giants (+7½, beat Commanders 31-19) and Packers (+3, beat Chargers 23-20).

Washington was the most popular pick in the Circa Survivor contest, eliminating 235 $1,000 entries. Only 372 entries remain from a starting field of 9,267 in the quest for the $9.2 million prize.

Unders continue to be a cash cow, as they went 9-3, including 4-0 in the afternoon and night games, when the Niners-Bucs scraped under 42 (41), the Bills-Jets stayed under 39½ (38) and the Broncos-Vikings stayed under 43 (41).

Contact reporter Todd Dewey at tdewey@reviewjournal.com. Follow @tdewey33 on X.