Why Teaser Bets Are Your Friend In The NFL Divisional Playoff Round

When it comes to the NFL’s divisional playoffs, teaser bets are that betting pal who has your back. 

Over the past six seasons in this round, underdogs are a combined 20-4 against the spread on 6-point teaser bets while favorites are 19-5 against the number in the same spot. That makes for an 81.3 percent winning rate when you combine the two, which is way above the profit mark. 

Betting 6-point teasers will typically run you a price of -120, so in order for them to be a profitable venture, you need each leg of the teaser to win at a rate of 72.3 percent. The NFL divisional playoff round is way above that rate in recent seasons and as you can see by the numbers below, it doesn’t really seem to matter much whether you tease the fave or the dog. 

(Note: SU = straight up, ATS = against the spread)

Betting Performance In The NFL Divisional Playoff Round
YearSU (Faves)ATS (Faves)Faves on 6-point teasersDogs on 6-point teasers
Total: 18-611-12-119-520-4

Sportsbooks, understandably, have come to be wary of these wagers around this time of year. So much so, Sportsbook didn’t even offer teasers at its Las Vegas properties in the conference championship round in 2016.  

Faves and underdogs went a combined 8-0 on teasers in the divisional round that year, meaning every single against-the-spread teaser ticket that rolled across the counter paid out. It came after a wild-card round where faves also went 3-1 against the spread on teasers and the public tends to like favorites with teasers a little more than underdogs.  

When you think about it, it makes sense that teasers pay out this time of year. The lines should be at their sharpest with a season’s worth of information to work with. We’re also talking about the eight best teams in the NFL at this point, so the odds of one of them laying a complete egg get smaller. Throw in some January weather and suddenly an extra 6 points on top of a spread becomes a big deal. 

This weekend, I’m sure we’ll see a mountain of Patriots-Steelers teasers flooding in. They’re the two biggest spreads on the board and on a 6-point tease, it means bettors would need New England -6.5 and Pittsburgh -0.5 (odds as of Wednesday). 

But hey, if you like the underdogs in any of these games, it hasn’t really seemed to matter which side you go with on these bets in the divisional round lately.

The only thing I’ll leave you with is that it’s a common rule of thumb not to tease across the middle or the pick line – for example, teasing the Falcons from -3 to +3. If the underdog wins by a field goal, remember that a push is graded as a loss with teaser bets. 

Follow me on Twitter @JonnyOddsShark

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