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Underdog winners continue to be trend

In his hyped return to Philadelphia, quarterback Donovan McNabb led the Washington Redskins to a 17-12 victory over the Eagles today. It was an upset, yet hardly a major surprise, because underdog winners continue to be the trend during the first month of the NFL season.

What is supposed to happen in the NFL rarely happens, and that’s how Las Vegas sports books like it.

Underdogs covered the spread in nine of 12 games in Week 4, contributing to the fourth consecutive winning Sunday for the books.

The other ’dogs to win straight up were Baltimore, Cleveland, Denver, Jacksonville and St. Louis. Big underdogs Carolina, Detroit and San Francisco each lost by two points.

The Jaguars, 7-point underdogs, stunned the Indianapolis Colts 31-28 on Josh Scobee’s 59-yard field goal as time expired.

The Redskins, who closed as 5-point underdogs, took a quick 14-0 lead and held on to knock off the Eagles.

It did pay to play a few favorites, and the betting public rode the San Diego Chargers to some success. The Chargers, who closed as 10-point home favorites, rolled over the Arizona Cardinals, 41-10.

“We did lose our biggest decision of the day, and that was the Chargers,” Las Vegas Hilton sports book director Jay Kornegay said. “It’s definitely a good day. If not for the Chargers, it would have been a great day.”

The New York Giants are 3 1/2-point home favorites over the Chicago Bears in tonight’s game.

X LATE-NIGHT GOLF — The Ryder Cup has been extended to a fourth day (or night) because of rain delays. So if NFL wagering was an unlucky proposition, the United States-Europe golf showdown offers another opportunity to cash tickets.

Here are tonight’s updated Ryder Cup matchups posted at the Hilton, and notice American players are favored in only three matches:

(All times Pacific)

1:05 AM MONDAY

STEVE STRICKER +120

LEE WESTWOOD -140

1:17 AM

STEWART CINK +110

RORY McILROY -130

1:29 AM

JIM FURYK EVEN

LUKE DONALD -120

1:41 AM

DUSTIN JOHNSON +120

MARTIN KAYMER -140

1:53 AM

MATT KUCHAR +115

IAN POULTER -135

2:05 AM

JEFF OVERTON +120

ROSS FISHER -140

2:17 AM

BUBBA WATSON +105

MIGUEL ANGEL JIMENEZ -125

2:29 AM

TIGER WOODS -170

FRANCESCO MOLINARI +150

2:41 AM

RICKIE FOWLER +105

EDOARDO MOLINARI -125

2:53 AM

PHIL MICKELSON -140

PETER HANSON +120

3:05 AM

ZACH JOHNSON -120

PADRAIG HARRINGTON EVEN

3:17 AM

HUNTER MAHAN +105

GRAEME McDOWELL -125

Contact sports betting columnist Matt Youmans at myoumans@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2907.

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