What is a Sharp in Sports Betting?

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What is a Sharp?

A very skilled bettor might be somewhere around 55%, and some could even approach 60%. Bettors who hold such a win rate over a long period of time are called sharps.

In sports betting, a sharp is a long-term winning bettor whose opinion is well respected by sportsbooks.

When a sharp bettor places a wager, sportsbooks take notice and might even move their lines as a result. If several sharp bettors come down on the same side of a game, the line will almost certainly change — even if that side is not the popular one.


How can you tell what Sharps are betting?

There are a few ways to gauge sharp action (what sharps are betting on). Some of the easiest include comparing bet percentages to money percentages as well as line movement, and from locating steam.

Our PRO Report highlights sharp action on specific games, and our Bet Signals at Sports Insights give you detailed market moves in real-time, including steam, reverse line movement and more.


Should you follow Sharp action?

Since sharps are long-term winning bettors, the simple answer to this question is yes, but what makes the answer not-so-simple is that truly following sharp action is almost impossible.

Because sharp action usually results in line moves, it’s difficult to make the same bets that sharps are making.

Another danger of trying to follow sharp action is that some seemingly sharp moves can wind up being part of a greater “setup” to create a more favorable line for the bet that the sharps actually want to place.

For example, a sharp bettor or sharp syndicate (group) may attempt to cause a steam move by placing bets on a given team, only to come back with even bigger bets on the other side once the line has moved to a more desirable number.

But in any case, whether you choose to follow the sharp money or not, knowing how the pros are betting given games can only help your betting ability in the long run.


In the world of sports betting, the fun of predicting game outcomes and potentially winning big can be truly captivating. However, it's essential to remember that responsible gambling is the key to a safe and enjoyable betting experience.



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