Betting public bests sportsbooks with Dolphins, overs in Week 2

David Purdum, ESPN Staff WriterSep 18, 2023, 10:15 AM ET

Close Joined ESPN in 2014 Journalist covering gambling industry since 2008

It’s hard to beat the dry wit of a bookmaker on the rare losing NFL Sunday. The Las Vegas guys who have been doing this for decades have it down to an art form.

Veteran bookmakers know any public remark about suffering a loss will bring out the calls for the world’s smallest violins. They know that there is more sympathy for the devil than the bookmaker. But they also know that getting a little marketing out of a rare losing NFL Sunday only helps their bottom line.

That bookmaker’s humor was on display after an uneven Sunday for sportsbooks that began with a potentially historic run of overs and ended with the most profitable game of the first two weeks for the betting public.

Caesars Sportsbook and the Westgate SuperBook were among the bookmakers who reported winding up with big decisions on the Sunday night game between the Miami Dolphins and the home underdog New England Patriots.

“We need New England,” Adam Pullen, assistant director of trading for Caesars Sportsbook, said Sunday night as the prime-time game kicked off.

John Murray of the SuperBook

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