American Football Betting
Amongst the most popular sports in the United States, American Football betting is a massive market for sportsbooks and US bettors alike.
The football market spans several different types of bets, and with such a short season (in comparison to other sports) there is often a frantic, hectic, mad dash to get wagers in while the market is hot. Don’t forget to check other sports on Sportsbetting Usa.
If you aren’t familiar with betting on the NFL and other football competitions, though, this is where our guide comes in.
What Competitions Can I Bet On?
There are several American football competitions in the United States which you can decide to wager on. Naturally, the most popular of these is the NFL (National Football League).
Almost all US-friendly sportsbooks will offer NFL betting, provided it is the right time of the year and the season is active. While most players already know how the season works, it is worth pointing out the basic rules for amateurs who are thinking of betting on the NFL for the very first time.
- National Football League (NFL): There are 32 teams in the NFL, divided up into two conferences, the NFC (National Football Conference) and the AFC (American Football Conference). Each of those conferences is divided into North, East, South and West divisions. Each team plays 16 games, with each of the division winners (8 teams) advancing to the playoffs, along with the next two best teams in each conference (wildcards).
- The Playoffs: The wild cards in each conference, play the third and fourth-ranked teams in their conference. The winners join the second and first-ranked teams in the Divisional Round. The winners of those two matches in each conference then face off against each other in the Conference Championship Round, to determine the winner of each conference.
- Super Bowl: The winners of the AFC and NFC conferences play in a final match, known as the Super Bowl to determine the season’s NFL winners.
Know that you know a little bit about the league system works, it is time to have a peek at the types of bets you can make in American Football.
Types of American Football Bets
Most US sports betting fans stick to the three most common bets when it comes to American football. These are known as Money Line, Handicap, and Totals. Take a little look at each one, and see how they can work for you.
- Money Line: A simple little bit, ideal for beginners, it is basically a bet on who will win any particular game. This bet is common for all sports amongst American players.
- Handicaps: Naturally, some teams are stronger than others, and a handicap bet reflects that. Known as “the spread” this handicap bet is the bookie’s way of levelling the playing field for punters. Handicap bets are usually placed with a margin. For instance, betting on a team to win or lose by a certain number of points. If your bet and the result falls within that margin or spread, you win. The more significant the difference between teams, the higher the points spread will be.
- Totals: With totals, punters can wager on how many points (or other aspects) will be scored by a team in a game. You will primarily be betting on whether the points total will be over or under a marker.
- Other Bets: Plenty of other bets can be wagered on NFL games, too. These include coin toss winners, first touchdown scorer, outright division, conference and Super Bowl winners, the MVP (most valuable player), and more.
Doing Your Homework
Many seasoned NFL bettors like to develop their own strategies or pinch strategies from websites and experienced veterans of sports betting. There are quite a few betting strategies out there which you can start to learn to help you start out when placing NFL bets.
One of these is known as Spread Betting Strategy. Primarily, it involves looking at numerous variables in a handicap bet, to try and understand just how and why one team might beat another.
Many of these pro bettors will also develop their own databases and point scales, known as power ranking systems, to better understand the variables involved in a handicap bet.
Other Things to Consider
Even if you think you’ve got a good handle on your NFL stats, there are plenty of other variables which can throw a spanner in the works. It is always advisable to keep tabs on these potentially unforeseen events before you decide to wager on a game. A few of the things you may wish to consider here include:
- Yardage Differentials: If you’re going to be building your own power ranking system, you may want to look at Yardage Differentials. These specify the difference between the offensive and defensive yards gained per play.
- Playing at Home: The home team has the backing of the crowd, and like in any sport, that makes a difference. Many bettors look at the number of points conceded to away teams over a period of time, to estimate just how strong a team’s home advantage is.
- The Weather: Funnily enough, the weather can play an essential part in the outcome of a game, too. Teams from certain climates are likely to be fazed by hot weather conditions and vice-versa. Wind can also play a part in disrupting the game, so you may wish to keep tabs on that, too.
- Last Minute Events: The NFL is notorious for last minute events changing a game. Given that over 30% of NFL matches are decided by 3 or 7 points (3 points for a field goal, and 7 for a touchdown and conversion) there is every chance that a last minute event could change the outcome. Some bettors – those with access to in-play betting – may wish to wait until the handicaps are altered later in the game before making their bet, to counter this event.
Where Can I Bet on American Football?
American football (specifically the NFL) is readily found in virtually every major American sportsbook. Truth be told, NFL bets can also be staked at pretty much any online sportsbook, American or otherwise.
Although trickier than some other types of sports bets, NFL betting can be very rewarding if you’ve done your homework. Even rookies can get started rather quickly, though, with simple Money Line bets.