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Finding the Best NFL Betting Lines
When looking for the best NFL odds, there are a few things you need to look for depending on the bet type. I will go over each below.
What to Look for in NFL Moneyline Odds
Football moneylines allow you to wager on the winner of the game. It is the easiest and most simple sports bet to make, although the payouts can seem confusing.
NFL teams are rarely evenly matched. Because of better rosters, injuries, home-field advantage, and other factors, there is usually a clear favorite. As a result, the favorite has minus money odds (-240), and the underdog as plus (+200) money odds.
For example, you could have a favorite with a spread of -7.5 where they have to win by 8 or more points in order to cash the bet. If you bet that team to cover the spread at -110 odds, you would have to bet only $110 to make $100. However, that same team has -280 moneyline odds meaning you would have to bet $280 to make $100.
In that same game, the underdog could lose by 7 or fewer points and cover the spread. However, if you think that team could win and you bet on their money line at +225 odds, your $100 bet would net $225 dollars. That would buy you more lobster for dinner than a spread bet.
What to Look for in NFL Spread Lines
NFL spread bets are the most popular American sports bet around. The NFL is the biggest American betting sport, and spreads are the top choice. What makes NFL spreads great is that they are simple, and they are theoretically the median result of the game.
A spread bet is a bet on the margin of victory and a side is signified by a plus (+) or minus (-) symbol. If a team is a favorite their spread is preceded by a minus symbol, and if they are an underdog by a plus symbol.
For example, if a team is a seven-point favorite, they will appear as -7 on an odds board while their opponent will appear at +7. Typically, both sides are priced at -110, but occasionally they are priced slightly differently. Generally, you need to bet $110 on a spread to make $100.
If a team is a -7 favorite, they must win by 8 or more points for your bet to win. If you bet on the +7 favorite, they must either win or lose by fewer than seven points for your bet to win. If the favorite wins by exactly seven points, your bet is settled as a push.
For NFL spread betting, you need to figure out each team’s coaching tendencies. Some teams are aggressive when in the lead, while other teams play conservatively. Each team has the same goal of winning, but different strategies for preserving leads or coming back from behind.
What to Look for in NFL Totals
NFL totals, like spread bets, are simple. For an NFL total bet, you are betting on the total combined points between both teams. It’s a bet on how the game will go scoring-wise, and not a bet on who wins.
There are only two choices to make with an NFL total bet, over and under. If you are betting over on a total, more combined points need to be scored than the total. Similarly, for betting an under, fewer points need to be scored than the total for your bet to cash.
For example, an NFL total has been set at 47 points. If you bet over and the final score is 20-28, 48 points were scored, your bet would be a winner!
What makes the NFL Odds Comparison Tool useful is that books frequently differ by half a point. If a consensus NFL total is set at 45 points, but a bookmaker is offering 44.5, that lone bookmaker is best for over bettors.
If the final score for that game is 21-24, exactly 45 points are scored, and the over bet is refunded as a push at most books. However, if you took the over at 44.5 points, your bet would have won.
What Other NFL Lines are Available?
The great part about the NFL aside from watching the games, is that when betting on it there are hundreds of betting options on each game. Even though bets on point spreads, moneylines, and totals are the most popular, sportsbooks offer different betting options to keep their customers entertained.
You can bet on games as they are going on which is referred to as live or in-game betting. Say a team just opened the game by scoring a touchdown, you can bet on them covering a -13.5 spread. Or the weather changes, you could bet on the in-game point total under.
Another popular bet type is alternative lines. For an alt line, you can adjust the spread or total to a different number and get a different payout. For example, you can make a +3 -110 underdog, a -2.5 +150 alt line bet and get $150 for a $100 if the underdog wins by more than 2.5 points.
NFL futures odds are another type of market you can wager on. These are long term bets as you are betting on a season result, for example. You can place a bet on who will be winning the AFC Championship or who will raise the Vince Lombardi Trophy on the Super Bowl night. These type of bets can result very lucrative if you do your homework by assessing all statistics and information available at the moment.
Lastly, NFL player props are popular among bettors who are more interested in player performance than the game result. You can bet on the number of passing yards a quarterback has, rushing yards a player accumulates, receptions a receiver has, and more with player props.
There are both Over/Under options, like Patrick Mahomes Over 290.5 passing yards, or those with odds, such as Derrick Henry Anytime Touchdown at +110.
NFL parlays are great because you can combine two or more wagers for a chance at a higher payout, which depends on the odds of each pick along with the number of selections. The key with parlays is that you should limit your picks to five or fewer — any more than that, and it becomes almost like a defacto lottery ticket.
You can combine several heavy favorites to reduce their risk since you bring down the juice. For example, taking the Chiefs -200 and Chargers -200 would pay +125 odds — much more palatable than risking -200 on a single wager. Another option would be to combine a few underdogs to try to swing for the fences.
Teasers give you an opportunity to bring down the point spread or total to a more favorable number. While this reduces the payout, it increases your win probability. Using teasers to hedge against your parlays is a prudent play. You also want to make sure that you’re getting past key numbers when teasing point spreads.
For example, you can tease the Cowboys -7 down to -1 or bring up the Raiders from +3.5 to +10.5. You want to avoid teasing games that cause you to “cross over." For instance, teasing the Packers down from -4.5 to +2.5 is a bad value since you still lose your bet if they lose by a field goal.
Round Robins are another way to cover yourself against a bad beat from parlays. For example, let’s say that you like the Chargers -3 + Cowboys -7 + Saints +3 for a three-team parlay. Instead of putting $10 to return $60, a round robin allows you to make three separate two-teamers.
In this case, each mini-parlay would pay $26 on a $10 wager. In total, you’d be risking $30 to return $78 if all three hit. If you get two of three, you’d still recoup $26, putting you at a smaller loss. In summary, it’s a great way to get back some money if your parlay only loses by one.
Finding the Best NFL Betting Lines at US Online Sportsbooks
When finding the best sports betting odds, you are doing the same thing that you do when shopping on the internet. You are comparing the best prices online for what you are looking for. Just like how you want to buy the cheapest Samsung 32-inch tv, as a bettor you want the cheapest spread on the favorite or lowest total on an over.
If the average bettor uses only one book for NFL spreads, they should expect to lose $4.55 for every $100 bet as -110 on both sides represents a 4.55% house edge. However, if they find one book that has -102 on the favorite and -105 and the underdog, the house edge has been trimmed to only 1.69% for an expected loss of $1.69 per $100 bet.
If you can save $3 on a Samsung TV by price shopping, you would take the savings. That is why you should line shop.
One reason why each sportsbook has different lines is that there are different line providers. Companies like Caesars, PointsBet, BetMGM, and FanDuel create their own NFL betting lines and adjust them based on either other books or their own betting activity.
However, other companies hire an odds provider who comes up with betting odds and manages trading (aka betting) activity. Kambi is one of the most popular odds providers and they handle odds and trading activity for Twinspires, BetRivers, Unibet, Sugarhouse, and many other sportsbooks. SBTech which is owned by DraftKings handles odds for many other sportsbooks as well such as Betway.
When you are ready to bet, make sure you use the sportsbook’s signup bonus like the Bet $5, Win $200 DraftKings promo.
Best Sportsbooks with NFL Odds
How to Use the NFL Odds Comparison Tool
With the NFL Odds Comparison Tool, it is easy to find the best odds to help you bet on the nfl. Each game is listed, and you can simply choose between the best spread, total, and money line bets on each game. You can also search through the best player prop wagers as well.
A big advantage of the odds comparison tool is that if you don’t have an account with the sportsbook that has the best odds, it is easy to sign up. Rather than look for the sportsbook, I can click on the odds that I like and be directed on my phone to sign up and deposit with that sportsbook so I can have another outlet for line shopping.
When looking for a bet that you would like to place, simply find the matchup, and we do the hard work for you. The football lines from all the top sportsbooks are listed with the best odds on that game are conveniently displayed in the first row. If you already have an account at the book with the best odds, go ahead and sign in and place your bet. If you are not already signed up, just click through the image at the top of the odds tool for the best new player offer at the aforementioned sportsbook.
How to Sign Up to an Online Sportsbook
Signing up for a sportsbook is as easy as pie, in fact with the savings you will get from line shopping you can buy lots of pie. It is a simple three-step process for signing up for an online sportsbook
- Step 1 - Click the icon: Find the sportsbook you would like to join and click the icon on the page. You will be taken to the landing page with the best new customer offer available.
- Step 2 - Sign Up for the App: Usually in the top right corner is a sign-up option for the app. Once you click that button, simply enter in your personal information, put in your sign-up code, and wait to be approved.
- Step 3 - Deposit: After signing up, all you need to do is deposit money into your account from either Credit/Debit, Checking/ACH, or any of the other options available.
Besides being able to line shop, the best reason to sign up for multiple sportsbooks is that they have lucrative sign-up offers. Some betting sites give out deposit bonuses where your first deposit is matched 100% up to $250 or even $750. Other sportsbooks offer “risk-free” bets where if your first bet loses you are awarded either free bets or site credit.
For more information on welcome offers, I encourage you to check out the best NFL betting bonuses.
NFL Betting Odds
The NFL is one of the world’s most efficient betting markets and as a result, it is hard for David to beat Goliath, so you should be looking for every advantage that you can get.
However, with an odds comparison tool, you can increase your chances of being a winning NFL bettor. Sportsbooks must offer bets on every game, but as a bettor, you can pick and choose which online sportsbook you place your wagers at.
That is why an NFL odds comparison tool is important. Bookmakers have different odds, and using the best NFL lines is the easiest way to reduce the house’s edge. Additionally, the odds comparison tool has a lot of other great features. You can see what the line was originally posted at and how the lines have moved over time.
For example, a key player gets injured during practice during the week. While his team opened as 3.5 point favorites, they are now favored by 2.5. If you think that player’s injury is worth more than a point, knowing that the line moved only one point can be very useful when determining if you are going to bet against for or against that team.
Another rare opportunity for the NFL is in arbitrage opportunities where you can bet both sides in a game. While this is more common in other sports, occasionally these opportunities pop up in the NFL if you are quick enough, and an odds comparison tool makes you quicker as a bettor.
Lastly, if you want action on a game without doing much of your own research, you can check out our experts’ NFL betting picks. Then you can make your bets, order pizza, kick your feet up and enjoy the game.
NFL Odds Explained
NFL odds look intimidating to novice bettors, but when we break it down, it’s so easy a caveman could do it.
To easier understand NFL, let’s use the odds from PointsBet odds for the 2021 Super Bowl as an example:
- Point Spread: Kansas City Chiefs -3 (-115), Tampa Bay Buccaneers +3 (-105)
- Money Line: Kansas City Chiefs -171, Tampa Bay Buccaneers +145
- Point Total: 56 Points (Over -110/Under -110)
If you are new to betting and you have seen betting numbers like this, chances are you have been intimidated. The truth is the plus or minus odds are easy. If something is at plus money, that means you make that dollar amount if you bet $100. For odds that are minus money, that is how much you need to bet to make $100.
For example, if you bet $100 on Tampa’s money line at +145, you would make $145 plus get your $100 stake back. For KC’s money line at -171, if you bet $171 you would get your stake back plus $100 in profit. That’s it, NFL odds are easy.
The typical minimum bet is only $0.10, so you can bet whatever amount you are comfortable with, and the payouts will be properly adjusted.
The sportsbooks offer different odds on each game from each other for several reasons. The betting sites have oddsmakers who come up with their own NFL betting lines, and they move on action or on line moves by other sportsbooks. The sportsbooks that cause others to move their lines are referred to as market makers.
If a market maker sets a team as a seven-point favorite and takes big bets on one side, they may not move the line. However, they could take a smaller but larger bet from a well-known sharp bettor on the favorite, and based on their intelligence as a bettor they move the line to 7.5 points. Other books will see this line move and will either keep their line or move it based on the action from the market maker.
There is a myth that sportsbooks want equal action on both sides. This is false as they operate based on the law of large numbers. Sportsbooks take tens of thousands of bets each day and they have large bankrolls. They are willing to occasionally lose since they have an edge in every market based on the house advantage that is built into their betting markets.
NFL betting lines are moved based on sharp action, not on money bet.