The NFL is one of the most popular sports leagues in the world, and boasts one of the largest followings as well. It’s tough to find a league out there that gets excited about things like the NFL Draft, training camps, and preseason games. The NFL currently consists of 32 teams, and is divided into the American Football Conference (AFC) and National Football Conference (NFC). The regular season for the NFL is seventeen games long, with each team playing sixteen games and one bye week. The NFL is the most attended sport in the world based on average attendance per game, at 66,960 fans per game last season. On top of the popularity of the NFL to fans, the NFL is very popular to sports bettors. The National Football League is followed very carefully by sports bettors and has been debated as the most profitable sports season out of any for bettors. The NFL Playoffs gain even more attention than the regular season by both fans and sports bettors as well. The playoffs are a 12 team, single elimination playoff with the final two teams playing in a pre-determined location for the Super Bowl. The playoffs and Super Bowl are some of the tougher games to bet on, and also draw quite a bit of attention to big time sports bettors opinions on the games.
Odds and Betting Types
There are multiple different betting options for the NFL, starting with betting a team with the point spread. When betting a point spread, you’re typically going to get the same odds on both sides of the bet. For example, say that the Dallas Cowboys are playing the Carolina Panthers and the Cowboys are favored by -5.5 points. You’re going to get odds of -105 for betting Dallas -5.5, or Carolina at +5.5. Another option that you have for NFL Betting, is straight bets, which will only pay off well if you’re betting on the underdog. So if you have the Pittsburgh Steelers taking on the Cincinnati Bengals, and the Steelers are favored to win, betting them straight may pay -600, while betting the Bengals straight pays +400. This means that if you bet the Steelers and they win, you’ll get 1/6 on your money; while if you bet the Bengals and they upset the favored Steelers you’ll get 4/1 on your money.
Another option that you have for NFL betting is total betting. Total betting works similar to point spread betting, in which you’ll get the same odds on both sides of the bet. Total betting is placing a bet on whether or not you think the total points in a game will go over or under the line. So for example, if the Green Bay Packers are playing the Kansas City Chiefs and the total spread is 47, you’ll get the same odds on betting either the over or the under there.
Unlike most sports though, in NFL betting, prop bets are very popular. They aren’t just popular for major sports bettors though, but also fans who want to dabble in sports betting a bit, mainly because they can make games much more exciting as you watch them. Some typical prop bets that you may see are like “Aaron Rodgers vs. Ben Roethlisberger Total Yards” with Ben Roethlisberger being +25 total yards. This means that if you bet Aaron Rodgers to win, he has to pass for more yards than Roethlisberger by 25 or more. You’ll also find game props, which have two teams matched up against each other that don’t actually play that week. So if the Atlanta Falcons play the Baltimore Ravens and the Cleveland Browns play the New York Jets, a game prop bet would be which team would score more points between the Atlanta Falcons and New York Jets, with the Falcons being -5 points. In order for you to win that bet with the Falcons, they must outscore the Jets by more than 5 points.
Futures bets are the last type of NFL betting that is considered very popular. In futures bets, you’ll bet on a team to win their division, or win the Super Bowl very early in the season. If you feel very confident about a team to win their division or win the Super Bowl, it can be a great way to make a good amount of money, because you’ll always get great odds on that bet. Typically, the worst odds you’ll get with a pre-season Super Bowl bet, is around 6/1 on your money. With all the betting options that are offered for NFL betting, it’s easy to see why the NFL has one of the largest followings from sports bettors.
Major NFL Events to Bet On
In the NFL, there is no bigger event to bet on than the Super Bowl. It’s one of the most watched programs year round, with the 2011 Super Bowl pulling in an amazing 111 million viewers. The Super Bowl’s spread betting line is also talked about quite a bit, even on big time news telecasts. The Super Bowl is not just one of the most watched programs now though, it’s also one of the most popular events to bet on. With the Super Bowl offering not only the spread bet on the game, but also a ton of prop bets to go with them. While you’ll have the normal options of betting the line of the game, betting a team straight, and also betting the total; you’ll also get options to bet on player vs. player at their position, also bets on player to score the first touchdown, and many more bets on the actual game itself.
The Super Bowl even has bets that don’t really relate to the actual game play itself. On most sports betting sites, you’ll have the option of betting on whether the coin flip will land on heads or tails, and also an over/under on how long the singer of the National Anthem will take to sing it. The sports betting options on the Super Bowl attract all different types of fans, not just major sports bettors, and make betting on the Super Bowl not just fun, but interesting as well with the many options you have.
Tips and Betting Strategy
When betting on the NFL, there are quite a few things to keep your eye on before placing your bet. If you’re placing a spread bet on a game, don’t let a line that looks wrong fool you. If the Giants are favored by 2 over Lions, there’s probably a reason behind it; so read up on the game a little bit before make your bet, and see if it actually is a good bet. The best tip offered on betting straight bets, is to not get too crazy with your bet. If a team is -500 or -600, it’s probably not worth placing the bet. And also, just because a team is +500 to win, don’t risk too much money betting on them if you have no angle on it, there’s no reason to waste money.
Now when placing a bet on the total of a game, there are quite a few things to pay attention to, but it could also make for a great bet because of these factors. Always watch the weather. Even if you have two teams who can score quite a bit, if they’re playing on a field in a blizzard with crazy winds, check out the under and see if it’s been adjusted for the weather. If not, it’s a great spot to place an under bet. Another spot to keep your eye out for, is if one or both teams are missing a key offensive or defensive player. If this situation comes up, you can place your bet on the over/under feeling confident about your bet.
The last bit of advice, is to be careful with prop bets. There are a ton of prop bets out there offered on games, and it can be a bit overwhelming when you look them over. You could find a ton that look amazing, which is why research is very important. Check your stats carefully, and remember that just because you get an over/under on a great running backs yards at 85, they could be playing the best running defense in the NFL. Always research and read up before placing any bets and you’ll be a profitable NFL bettor.
So check the lines weekly for some good bets, and don’t forget to look at ALL the options that you have for NFL betting!
Best NFL Betting Sportsbooks