A measurement, usually used for gambling, in which is determined the likely gap between the two teams in the final result. The point spread attempts to find which team is more likely to win, and by how much. Ideally, a point spread shall have an identical number of likely outcomes on either side of the spread.
An example of a point spread would be Green Bay Packers -7 Detroit Lions. This says that Green Bay is likely to win by a touchdown over Detroit. Someone betting on the game would have to pick one of the teams. If they selected Green Bay, then the team would have to win by more than seven points for the bet to be successful. If they bet on Detroit, then Detroit would either have to win or lose by six or less for the bet to be successful. A team can lose a game but beat the spread. For instance, in this example, a three point loss by Detroit would be considered to be "beating the spread". While most often used in gambling, it's also a way to show the competitiveness of a game.