Football is one of the most popular sports in North America, and its popularity, particularly in the NFL, is at an all-time high. People all over the world analyze data, matchups, NFL stats, and patterns to obtain an advantage on betting lines from numerous sportsbooks that provide NFL markets every Sunday, Monday, Thursday, and sometimes even on Saturday’s.

Betting on teams that aren’t necessarily their favorite team throughout the football season is a pastime that keeps many fans intrigued. If you are savvy with your betting and understand the game of football, this is a fun but difficult way to make money. 

What Types of Bets Can I Make?

The point spread, moneyline, and total are the three most popular football bets made on an NFL game. Below I take a look at the various types of bets that you can make on football in sportsbooks.


Point Spread

In football, a point spread is a figure calculated by oddsmakers for sportsbooks to offer a team an advantage or disadvantage based on the projected margin of victory or defeat. 

The “favorite” team would be at a disadvantage since it would have to win by a particular number of points, whereas the “underdog” team would be given an advantage because they would not have to lose by a certain number of points or win outright. 

Typically, an NFL game’s point spread would look like this: 

New York Jets +7 Houston Texans -7 

This signifies the Texans have a 7-point or greater advantage over the Jets. Each team is usually given a “-110” odds designation (or vig) for the spread at the sportsbook in order to make the matchup equitable and level the playing field for bettors while also profiting the sportsbook. 

Before the game, bettors must decide whether they believe the Texans will win by more than seven points or if they believe the Jets will win or keep the game within seven points. If you bet on the Texans -7 and Houston wins 31-28, your wager loses since the Jets covered the +7 spread. 

What is a Total?

In any NFL game, the total is the expected final aggregate score of both teams. The total is determined by oddsmakers depending on how they believe a game will play out in terms of scoring. As a bettor, you must decide whether the final score will be over or under the predetermined total, and there are numerous things to consider before placing a wager on the total.

 Here’s how an NFL total might appear at your sportsbook before we look at research suggestions or online betting strategy:

The total for the game between the Indianapolis Colts and the Cleveland Browns is 48.5.

You choose whether the game’s final score will be OVER 48.5 points or UNDER 48.5 points as a bettor. So, if Indianapolis wins by a score of 27-20, the total score is 47, indicating that the game went UNDER the final score.

It’s critical to keep an eye on injury reports. The absence of a crucial player, like as a quarterback, could have an impact on the outcome of the game. Another issue to consider is the weather, which might have an impact on a team’s game plan. You’re ready to start placing totals bets after you’re satisfied with the information you’ve gathered.

Betting on the Moneyline

When you place an NFL moneyline bet, you choose the team you believe will win the game outright. Moneyline betting is also known as a straight-up wager at the sportsbook because it requires picking one team to win over the other. Because there are usually ability and talent gaps between the two teams, the odds favoring the “favorite” are usually higher because there is less possibility of them losing the game to the “underdog.”

For example, if the Chicago Bears played the Miami Dolphins, the chances would be as follows: 

Dolphins +140 vs Bears -160

If you win a $100 wager on the Bears, you will receive $162.50, which includes your original $100 as well as your winnings of $62.50. On the other hand, if you bet the same amount on Miami and they win, you’ll get $240 — you’ll get your $100 back plus $140 in profits.

Betting on underdogs, such as the Dolphins, is considered a riskier wager, but the payoff is greater. Betting on the Bears, on the other hand, is less hazardous, hence the payout is lower.

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