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Point Spread

Spread picks are one most popular bet type especially in NFL, and NBA. These two particular sports score higher point averages. When reading point spread picks, you have the two options, (-)represents the “favorite” (+)represents the “underdog.” These symbols are usually followed by a number shown here: (-5.5) or (+5.5). Let’s take a closer look at (-5.5), the (-) is the “favorite” or team with the high odds of winning.

The Breakdown

The 5.5 represents how many points the team has to win by. When reading this it would translate into Chiefs need to win by at least 6 points. For (+5.5), the (+) is the “underdog” or team that is more likely to lose. The 5.5 represents how many points they need to lose by. The translation would be, Bills need to lose by 5 or less points. Let’s use a real game example.

These examples are using American odds, but can be converted into fractional, or decimal if you prefer to use those formats.

Reading Point Spreads

If you placed your bet like this (-5.5) Chiefs then you would have won. Now, if you were to place your bet like this (+5.5) you also would have won, because you are betting that the Bills are going to lose by at least 5 points.

Now let’s apply this with money. I’ve noticed that a lot of sportsbooks use -110 on their odds sheets so we will use that for the example. Sportsbooks take a 10% commission or “juice” off any bets that are placed. For every $1 you bet, you risk $1.10. If you want to win $100, you have to bet $110. Let’s take a closer look.

Point Spread Example using the NFL

SPORT: NFL AFC Divisional Kansas City Chiefs vs. New York Buffalo Bills

  • FAVORITE: (-5.5) Chiefs need to win by 6 or higher
  • UNDERDOG:(+5.5) Bills need to lose by 5 or less
  • FINAL SCORE: (42-36) F/OT
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Don’t place any bets based on score predictions alone. ALWAYS pair your score predictions with another indicator or factor. Combine your score predictions with other automated systems. Follow the expert predictions and recommendations and compare what the experts say for maximum results.

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Calculating Spreads

Point and Goal Differentials

Point Spread Examples

These examples are based off American odds, but can be easily converted into fractional or decimal odds if you prefer to follow those formats.


point spread

Odds sheet for betting on the favorite. When reading odds sheets, (-) followed by the number is how much you have to risk or bet to win your profit.

  • -110 (bet)
  • $100 (profit)
  • $210 (payout)

point spread

Odds sheet for betting on the underdog. Reading odds sheets with (+) followed by the number is the potential profit when placing your bet.

  • $100 (bet)
  • +200 (profit)
  • $300 (payout)

Mathmatical Breakdown

The numerical gap between points scored and points given. Wins in close games tend to not reflect a team’s true skill. Teams that start the season with a better record than their point differential tend to slow down and vice versa. Point differential is also a better predictor of future performance than win-loss record.

This is how to calculated the point difference mathmatically:

(Points Scored)-(Points Allowed) = Point Differential Formula

Goal difference (or points difference) is calculated as the number of goals (or points) scored in all league matches minus the number of goals or points admitted, and is sometimes known simply as plus–minus. This is pretty much identical to calculating the point differentials. Goal difference is used as either the first or, after tying teams’ head-to-head records, second tiebreaker. 

This is how to calculated the goal difference mathmatically:

(Goals Scored) – (Goals Allowed) = Goal Difference Formula

FREE Preconfigured Winner Predicting Charts

Suggested betting systems for these bet types are:

Scores Predictor, Totals Predictor, Soccer Buddy Tool, Playoffs Simulator.

Each tool calculates every prediction using 80+ parameters along with historical data for optimized results. Easy to read color coded charts on all major sports, and value bets indicators for maximum profit potential.

Point Spread Forecasts

Get FREE 5 star verified daily picks and predictions on MLB, NHL, NFL, and NBA and more. Now with BRAND NEW AI Forecast! Click the: Check AI Forecast to get full analysis predtictions.

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Place your bets with accurate over/under and line differentials. These predictions are based on numerical systems on a preconfigured chart. Take the survey and walk-through all the features.



This tool predicts the winner, possible final score and the spread. Take the survey to see all its features. Free to use on selected sports and teams. VIP memberships get FULL ACCESS.



This simulator predicts the anticipated playoffs brackets and the series winners. The closer to playoffs the more accurate it gets! Take the survey to see all the features. Free for all major sports.

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