Parlay, Teaser, And Pleaser Bets Explained

By now you may understand the main wagering categories like the point spread, point total, and moneyline. You may even be familiar with the idea of parlays. But there are so many additional bets available, and the number continues to increase as legal sports betting continues to spread across the United States. Now that Arizona sports betting has been legalized, this page will explore some of the more distinctive bets, such as teasers and pleasers.

These may seem more like sideshows than a traditional sports betting sheet to some bettors, but others will want to give these wagers a shot. Sportsbooks are looking to attract as many customers as possible. If you enjoy parlays, you will likely at least find teaser and pleaser wagers intriguing. Some experts call these bets fool’s gold, but it’s up to you if you’d like to give them a try. Additionally, we will go over some of the special options that sportsbooks may offer to new and existing bettors.

What is a teaser bet?

A teaser bet is similar to a parlay, but with a twist. A teaser must feature multiple wagers, but instead of simply taking the sportsbook’s lines, you can manipulate the lines in your favor by moving the point spread or point total for each of the bets.

Just like with a parlay, each leg of the wager must be correct for a payout. The teaser, however, can make it easier to get each bet correct. Because of this, payouts are not nearly as high as they would be if you were placing a traditional parlay.

Teasers are still difficult to win consistently because of the difficulty in predicting multiple outcomes correctly no matter how much the lines move. And the line moves will have a limit depending on the sport. Still, some bettors may find success using this strategy. For others, though, it may be less than ideal in returning a long-term profit.

How a teaser bet works

Teasers differ depending on the sport, but they are most popular in football because there are so many key numbers bettors must take into account when betting on the NFL. Because of how scoring works in college football and the NFL, common margins of victory are three or seven points.

Typically, sportsbooks will offer teasers of six, 6.5 and seven points for football games. The odds will be worse for a seven-point teaser than they would be for a six-point teaser.

For example, consider matchups between the Arizona Cardinals and New Orleans Saints as well as the New England Patriots against the Denver Broncos. The oddsmakers set their lines at Cardinals -3 and Broncos +6, and those are the teams you will be betting on in this scenario.

If you are confident both teams will cover their spreads, it might make sense to parlay the two for a larger potential payout. However, if you are somewhat less confident and want to give yourself a better shot at getting both games correct, you could opt for a teaser.

By placing a seven-point teaser, both sides will move by seven points in your favor. The Cardinals betting line at -3 changes to Cardinals +4. The Broncos at +6 goes to Broncos +13. By doing this, you give yourself a much better shot at hitting both sides.

Assuming the original odds were the standard -110 for both sides, a simple parlay with the original lines would have odds of +264. This means you would net a $26.44 profit on a $10 wager if you got both picks correct. However, with a seven-point teaser, the overall odds could move to -140 depending on the sportsbook. At those odds, a $10 wager would result in a $7.14 profit if you get both games right. That is a massive swing in potential payout, and it is the downside to betting on teasers.

Are teasers a good bet?

It is up to you if you think a teaser is the right move. As mentioned earlier, this is typically not a betting style that will likely lead to long-term success. Predicting multiple outcomes correctly can be very difficult, especially on a consistent basis. Teaser bets may appear easy to win, but they are still challenging, and the low payouts can make them not worth touching. Sportsbooks offer teasers because they stand to make a decent chunk of money from them.

If you are going to place a teaser bet, it makes a lot more sense in football because of how the scoring breaks down. In the above example, we set the lines at an optimal point to place a teaser bet. Many games will end with a margin of three or seven throughout an NFL season, so those are important numbers to identify in a teaser. By changing the odds of the Cardinals from -3 to +4, now a three-point loss would still cover the spread for Arizona. By changing Denver from +6 to +13, a seven-point loss is still a winner for the Broncos.

How to place a teaser bet

Now that you have the basics down, let’s walk through exactly how to make the wager using DraftKings Sportsbook as an example. Using the online sportsbook is likely the easiest way to place this bet.

After signing up to the app, find the sport you are looking for. In this example, we’ll go with basketball. Once you click on the NBA page, you will see a number of NBA wagers available. Let’s go with the Phoenix Suns +2.5 against the Los Angeles Lakers and Utah Jazz -9.5 against the Memphis Grizzlies.

After selecting each of those options, click on the bet slip, where you will see all the bets together. Toward the bottom of the slip, you will see a “Teaser” option. Click on that, and from there you can decide how many points you would like to tease. We’ll go with four points, so the Suns are now getting +6.5 points, while Utah will now only need to win by more than 5.5 points. Then, place the bet.

How do sportsbooks limit what you can tease?

Most sportsbooks will limit the options of which bets and sports are available for teasers. Oftentimes, sportsbooks will not offer any sort of teaser for baseball, hockey or soccer because the final scores are too low. Because of this, football and basketball are the main options for teaser betting.

As for bets, you’ll typically find teasers only for point spreads and totals. And as with just about every wager, football is the most popular sport for teasers because of its popularity in general and because the game’s scoring system lends itself to teasers.

Pros and cons of teaser bets

The pros and cons for teasers are simple to identify. They are appealing because you have more control over the betting lines instead of relying on what the oddsmakers say. Even just a 0.5-point difference can be crucial, so when you can change lines by up to seven points in football, it is a significant movement.

The obvious downsides are that the payouts can be so small as to not be worth it, and they can be difficult to win even if they seem simple. Some sportsbooks will offer better teaser odds than others, so it’s important to do your homework. You may want to consider using multiple sportsbooks to ensure you can shop for the best lines.

More teaser bet examples

Going back to the NFL, let’s mix it up by looking at a teaser with totals rather than point spreads. In this example, let’s say you take over 45.5 in the Arizona Cardinals vs. Green Bay Packers game, over 42 in the Tennessee Titans vs. Houston Texans game and under 51.5 in the Baltimore Ravens vs. Indianapolis Colts matchup.

With a six-point teaser, the Packers and Cardinals just need to reach 39.5 points for that leg to be a winner, the Texans and Titans need to reach 36 points, while the Ravens-Colts final score needs to be less than 57.5 points.

Three-team teaser (NBA)

In this example, let’s place a teaser bet on three-point spreads. Here’s what it might look like:

  • Toronto Raptors vs. Milwaukee Bucks: Raptors +5.5 @ -110
  • Indiana Pacers vs. Miami Heat: Pacers +4 @ -114
  • Denver Nuggets vs. Los Angeles Lakers: Lakers -5 @ -110

This is a fairly standard bet slip as we are taking the Raptors and Heat as slight underdogs with the Lakers as the favorites. Sports bettors confident in all three may decide to place a parlay or teaser on these options, and there is a significant difference in the payout between the two.

In a straight parlay, the odds are going to come out at +584 if you get all three legs right. The profit would be $584.17 with a $100 bet. As you may know, parlays are extremely difficult to get right consistently, but this is a fairly significant payout.

However, with a teaser, here are the odds and potential payouts on a $100 wager for teasers of four, 4.5, and five points.

Teaser PointsOddsProfit Potential

Whether you are placing a four- or five-point teaser, the payout is nowhere close to where it would be if you decided to use a parlay. Is getting a few points on your side worth the smaller payout? That’s the big question when considering a teaser.

By using a parlay, you are getting odds as a nearly 6:1 underdog. However, even at a lower tease rate, bettors are only 8:5 underdogs. NBA teams are often no worse than two baskets away from the spread, and spotting each team a few points is nearly enough to turn the bet from an underdog to a favorite.

What is a pleaser bet?

A pleaser bet is a lesser-known term, but it is the opposite of a teaser. In a teaser, the lines shift in your favor. In a pleaser, the numbers move in the sportsbook’s favor. This makes pleasers significantly harder to win, but the payouts are much larger than teasers and regular parlays.

If you wanted to make a pleaser bet in the NFL, you could take the Arizona Cardinals at +3 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Las Vegas Raiders -4 against the New York Jets. After a seven-point pleaser, the Cardinals move from +3 underdogs to -4 favorites, and the Raiders go from -4 favorites to -11 favorites. Bettors must be extremely confident in these bets to place them, and as difficult as teasers and straight parlays are to win consistently, pleasers are tougher than both by a large margin.

Should you ever bet a pleaser?

Parlays, teasers, and pleasers can be an entertaining way to bet on sports. Many professional sports bettors, however, will avoid them because of how difficult it is to win multiple outcomes in a single bet. The odds you’ll be getting are simply not going to be worth it. Especially in the case of pleasers. Some of the best sports bettors can correctly predict outcomes at a 60% clip, and that’s just single-game wagering. Moving the lines in the sportsbook’s favor and still winning consistently is about as difficult as it gets in sports betting. A pleaser will pay out at a high rate because of the unlikelihood that you’ll get it right, but many consider pleasers a sucker’s bet designed for sportsbooks to take advantage and profit from.

Special bets

As sportsbooks try to become more creative to drive interest in their product, they may offer different special bets. This can go for just about anything other than the main betting categories, but the Super Bowl is the king of special bets. One example is that you can bet on what color the Gatorade will be that is dumped on the winning coach’s head. One special that you may find during the NFL offseason is who will start at quarterback in Week 1 for a particular team. Specials can also fall under the prop bet category, and they can be based on skill and luck depending on the offer.

Boosted odds for a better price on sports bets

Sportsbooks are in a highly competitive business right now. Each of the top companies is doing everything it can to lure in new users and keep existing ones satisfied. One way sportsbooks will try to stand out from the rest is through odds boosts. These can be key to check out to give yourself a bit of an edge if you find a boost for a wager you like anyway. Be sure to check the promotions page on your preferred sportsbook to see what’s available.