NFL Betting Lines – How it Works – Where to bet – Updated Daily

NFL Betting LinesThe NFL can be considered as one of the most lucrative business in the world, despite the fact that it is solely a sports league. As football in the US gained popularity of massive proportions and was unified under the National Football League, people focused all their attention to events related to it.

Nowadays, it is estimated that the NFL brings in between $300 and $400 billion in revenue from betting only. There is a whole different statistic drawn up for other aspects of the matter, such as tickets, live television broadcasts, interviews or simply advertisements. It should not come as a surprise that amounts of that magnitude are accrued by this league through sports betting.

Bear in mind that US soil is quite restrictive in this matter, as sports betting in its true form is solely limited to Las Vegas residents or visitors, whereas only a handful of remaining states allow some types of sports bets. The onset of online gambling and thus, online sports betting only complicated things further, as stringent US legal regulative has limited it to even fewer territories. Nonetheless, offshore operators are always open to any kind of NFL bets willingly made by football enthusiasts, resulting in profits beyond imagination.

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It is only natural that regular sports fans and especially football aficionados want to get a piece of the action and make a quick buck out of their hobby. Placing a wager on practically any aspect of the season has great potential, especially when combined with careful reasoning and a touch of pure luck. Still, many of these are left behind the lines, desperately waiting for someone to let them in on the secret that is ‘a genuine NFL bet’. While this may sound all too complex, once you are done reading the rest of this text, you should be ready to put your recently acquired knowledge to the test by going to your nearest sportsbook or simply clicking the NFL sports betting section at one of the recommended online operators.

Types of NFL Bets

The NFL is the perfect opportunity to make use of all game elements, as practically every single one can be the subject of a bet. Starting from the point spread, arguably the most fundamental and widely used bet in the NFL, all the way to futures which allow bettors to predict the outcome of an even long beforehand, there are all kinds of wagers to be made.

Point spread

This bet is offered by most sportsbooks and basically allows you to forecast the number of points by which the favorite will beat the underdog-labeled team in a duel. This bet is simple and does not require bettors to calculate any complex mathematical enigmas, as you are generally betting $11 to win $10.For instance, let’s say that the favorite team has a point spread of -5 whereas the underdog has +5.

While this may seem excessively simple to the connoisseurs, interpretation is necessary for the NFL ‘uninitiated’. If you bet on the favorite, its point spread of -5 means that they need to win by more than 5 points so that you can get you payout. You also get paid when betting on the underdog and its point spread of +5, as long as they manage to lose by less than 5 points. The final case scenario is a push – if the favorite wins by precisely 5 points, you get your wager money back without any profit.


The second type of bet that gets much attention in sportsbooks is the moneyline. This bet is considered the most fundamental example of American odds, which will be discussed further on, along with the two other predominant ways of expressing chance. A distinction between a favorite and an underdog is made once again – the former’s odds are marked with a minus, while the latter’s odds are marked with a plus sign.

Just as an example, we could say that the odds are set at -150 and +140. This means that if you bet on the favorite (whose odds are -150), you would need to wager $150 in order to win $100, whereas a bet on the underdog would cost you $100, and get you a payout of $140, considering that the odds are +140.Although it might seem a bit more complex than the previous betting format, as soon as you realize the value of each bet you should be able to accurately estimate your own chances.

Even Bets

There are only a few bets as simple as betting on evens. Bettors who choose to go with them are basically betting on one of the two parties in a game to win, where both of them have the same odds. If your team wins, your payout is double the money you wagered in the first place.

Due to the particular way in which even bets work, they are a perfect opportunity for novice bettors to get some practice before turning to more difficult endeavors. Just set up your bankroll and determine a certain percentage of it that will be your single wager amount.

This way, losses won’t damage your financial stability too much, but you will have some profits from winning. If you are truly dedicated to the cause, it is also advisable to keep a respective record of each bet, win and loss. Even bets and their unifying character are the perfect opportunity to calculate your statistics and determine your winning rate – after all, that’s much better than throwing your money and hoping your luck will turn around.


After the point spread and the moneyline, which are definitely proven to be the most widely used NFL bets, totals are the third-runner. This bet definitely beats the point spread and the moneyline in terms of simplicity, while still getting enough variety to make substantial profit. Totals are bets made on the overall outcome of the game, i.e. how many points have been scored in total, by both teams, throughout the match.

At a sportsbook, totals are presented by stating both opponents, their odds of winning the game against one another and a third number that marks the total.

This way, the odds of the team that you put your money on determines your payout in case you win the bet. In totals, you make an over/under bet. This means that if the total for a given duel is set at 40 by the sportsbooks, you can bet that both teams will score over or under that amount. A push is also possible, provided the total is equal to 40.

Since totals are fairly easy to master, you can quickly upgrade your NFL betting experience and combine these bets with other ones. A point spread would go quite well with a totals bet, as you are both betting on your preferred team to win the game by a certain amount of points and for both teams to score a different set number of points.


Futures bets are a specific type, mentioned earlier, which allows bettors to speculate on events that are yet to happen. In futures, the Super Bowl finale is definitely one of the most sought after games of the season, along with the other semi-final games.

The odds for such bets are mostly rewarding, but there are a lot of factors that need to be considered when placing them. If the event is further away, you could not even predict the weather forecast, let alone plan how the team will react if one of their leading players suffers an injury.

There is little probability of these bets coming true, but it all depends on careful observation, analysis and prediction. Still, the distinction in their odds is the most realistic indicator, as some offer smaller payouts while others lure players in with their massive payout potential.

Player Props

This is the shortened version of player proposition bets, a type of NFL wager that allows bettors to bet on a certain player to do a particular move/score a point/ make a touchdown pass etc.Since football took on a completely new dimension and turned into a global phenomenon and an American cultural symbol, the myth about the real MVP has started to circulate.

An MVP is short for Most Valuable Player, meaning the player that is practically indispensible for the team’s overall function and ultimately victory. These players are often the target of player props, as people bet that on anything that the player might do alone, or in relation to another teammate. One type of player props allow bettors to wager on Yes/No, Over/Under bets or Head-to-Head. The other type of wagering simply separates each individual player by providing them with odds on who is most likely to be declared MVP of the season.

Team props

If you thought that betting on each individual player is stretching it thin, then just wait until you learn about all the other things you can bet on in the NFL. Team props are the same as player props, with the difference that they relate to the entire team’s performance.

Sportsbooks which offer team props usually go by the same format as the previous type of bet – Yes/No, Over/Under. They are presented with a totals number for that team, and you are supposed to determine whether the outcome will be above or below that amount. Each of these results has its distinctive odds of happening, so your payout mainly depends on them.

In-play Wagers

This is the most recent addition to the group, as it appeared alongside advances in technology. In-play wagers are basically bets that are created during the actual game, and as the flow changes, so do the odds. One type of in-play betting is the interactive wager, made possible through online sportsbooks.

These bets get regular updates of the game progress and form their bets (totals, moneylines) based on the action on the field. The other type of in-play bet is known as live NFL betting. This betting is not only interactive, but it is further expanded to include virtually every play performed on the field and respective odds, so that you can bet on any following move made on the field.

Types of Odds

Now that you are aware of the major types of wagers that can be made in the NFL, you can definitely determine that there is more than simply placing the bet. Just as crucial as knowing the particulars of each bet type, is reading the odds. These odds are basically a numerical representation of the team’s likelihood to end the game in a particular fashion. Whether these odds will be for a win, a draw, a specific point spread or even an exact result, it is up to the bet you have made.

The best thing to start with is to learn the different types of odds distinguished among sportsbooks worldwide. Once you understand what each of them signify and you are able to read and use them to your advantage, there should be nothing in your way towards the perfect NFL bet.

American Odds

American Betting Line OddsSince the game was born in the US, it is only fair that they would be the first represented type of odds on this list. Bear in mind that these differences in the format are made on the basis of geographic coverage, hence the country and not the game determines the type of odds.

But if you are currently situated in the United States and want to make use of some great games coming up tonight, you could improve your odds by learning how to read theirs.

These odds are often identified as moneyline, and this is a relatively fair comparison considering that the moneyline bet is the most typical form of American odd sports betting.

American odds are represented with a certain number which denotes the likelihood of the respective team winning the game. In an NFL game, the favorite’s odds will be preceded with a minus and the underdog with a plus. In the case of the favorite, the number that stands as odds is practically the amount of money you would need to bet in order to get a $100 payout. On the other hand, the underdog’s odds represent the amount you will be paid if your $100 bet wins.

Decimal Odds

Decimal Betting Line OddsThese odds are also known as European or continental odds. They are predominantly used it that geographic region as well as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, and as soon as NFL took on global proportions, the decimals were also employed to bet on each football aspect fans could think of.

Decimal odds are regularly represented as a decimal number, rounded up to two decimals. This is how they work – let’s say the team you are cheering to win the game has decimal odds of 1.35 and you would like to calculate whether it will pay off to bet on them, even though you are fairly certain about that outcome.

The amount of your wager – $100, needs to be multiplied by the odds – 1.35. Hence, you get $135, or the $100 is your original bet and an extra $35 profit. However, things are not always that simple, as many NFL fans cannot decide on one single game when betting, so they wager a parlay bet (a combination of several bets on different games and outcomes). In such cases, your profits are calculated by first multiplying the decimal odds of all your bets, and ultimately multiplying that final result with the amount of your wager.

Fractional Odds

Fractional Betting Line OddsThe UK and Ireland are most dependant on this format of expressing odds, proving that there is some value in learning math in school. Fractional odds work the same way as fractions do, there is a numerator (the first number) and a denominator (the second number, after the slash).

If the numerator is bigger than the denominator, bettors choosing to bet on the outcome with such odds are looking to bet less and win a bigger payout. In other words, the denominator shows you how much you would need to bet to win the amount of the nominator.

For example, if a team has odds such as 5/1, it means that there might be less likelihood that they will win the game against a team whose odds are 2/1, but the payout amount is more than double. In the case of 5/1, you would need to bet 1 unit in order to win 5, or $100 for a $500 payout. If the denominator is a number bigger than the nominator, you will need to risk more for some profit.


The NFL has definitely taken on the looks of a global phenomenon, mainly due to the fun it brings. Betting on the NFL mainly expanded due to the payouts it can potentially provide. Still, in order to use the opportunity completely, you may need to know a bit more than last season’s champions. Learn the types of odds and employ them on the various bets presented above – start small with minimum wagers until you get enough practice to try your luck on the big events. If you do everything right, strokes of luck will only be an added perk of the trade.