How to Bet on Football

Learning how to bet on football is important for anyone beginning to bet on sports. Football betting offers a wide variety of wagers and the highest limits available for betting. Football is the most popular sport bet on in North America. How popular? Well, Las Vegas sports books received $98.9 million in bets for Super Bowl XLVII. One day, one game, one city: $98.9 million received in bets.

As far as betting limits go, once the season is in full swing, Pinnacle Sports offers limits around the $40,000 mark for NFL betting action. On Super Bowl Sunday, you can expect to see limits of around $120,000. This is exceptionally high compared to other sports. UFC limits are usually less than $3000 at Pinnacle, and some sports books have NHL limits of less than $500.

How to Bet on Football Point Spread

Betting the spread is the most common type of all football bets. (If you need to more info about point spreads and how they work, click here). Remember, the favorite must cover the spread by scoring more points than are taken from them (ex: -6.5 means a favorite must win by at least 7 points), and the underdog must lose by no more points than are given to them (+6.5 means an underdog must lose by no more than 6 points).

Point spreads are assigned by the bookmaker, with the goal of setting the spread at a number in which the bookmaker feels will make betting action even on both sides. After the lines are released, depending on the amount of wagers on each side, the line will adjust accordingly.

The betting public almost always bets in favor of the favorite, and usually bets “over” the total. For instance, a favorite may open at -6.5, but may be -8, or -8.5 or even more by game time. This can provide great value for underdog bettors, as the underdogs points go up, using the same example, +6.5 may increase to +8 or +8.5 or further. Furthermore, a total may open at 38.5 but could increase to 41 by game time. 

You can bet the point spread for a game, 1st half, 2nd half, and even individual quarters at most sports books. Missed the start of the game? No problem, because any major sports book will offer Live Betting. You can bet live as the game is happening right before your eyes.

New Parlay Odds at BetOnline

How to Bet on Football Totals

Football totals are another popular wager amongst football bettors. Some bettors feel they are easier to predict than picking a team to cover the spread. Note that sports books tend to offer “totals” limits around half of the amount of spread betting limits. a $40,000 limit for a spread wager may only be $20,000 for a totals wager.

When you wager on a football total, you are wagering on the total points of the game ending either under the total or over the total. If the total is set without a .5, there is also the potential for a tie.

Betting on the total points scored by both teams is not the only totals option available for betting. Here are some of the other totals bets one can make:

Team Totals- You can wager on either team to go over or under a total listed by the sports book. You are wagering on just one team in the match to score over or under a specific amount of points. Ex: New England Patriots Over / Under 24.5 points.

Quarter Totals- This type of wager means you are betting over or under both teams total combined points for a certain quarter.

Half Totals- Again, if you select to wager on half totals, you are wagering over or under the total for both teams total combined points in either the first half or second half.

How to Bet on Football Teasers

A teaser is similar to a parlay in that it is a combination of two or more bets. However, there is one major difference. When you bet on a teaser, you are moving the line (either the spread, or the total) in your favor to increase your chances of winning. The number of points being added (or taken) depends entirely on the amount of points in your teaser. how to bet on football teasers

If you look at the photo above, you can see that there are all kinds of football teaser options available.

Take a look at the first category, COLLEGE 2-6 TEAM, 6 pts, 6 1/2 pts, 7 pts. The odds will change based on how many teams you have in your teaser, and by how many points you decide to use. 6 Points will have the highest payout, 6.5 points slightly less, and 7 points will be the lowest payout. Naturally, the other factor determining the payout is the amount of teams in your teaser. (2 teams will have the lowest payout: usually around -110 odds, and 6 teams will have the highest payout).  To have the maximum payout in this scenario, you would have to choose a 6 team, 6 point teaser.

How the points are used: Once you select your points (either 6, 6.5 or 7) you must now make at least 2 team or total selections. Note: You can select a combination of totals and or spread bets; your teaser does not have to be comprised of only one type of bet.

In a 6 points teaser example:

All favorites will have 6 points removed from their spread. Example: A favorite of -9 in a straight bet, now becomes -3 in your 6 point teaser, and only has to cover 3 points to win instead of 9.

All underdogs will have 6 points added to their spread. Example: An underdog of +9 in a straight bet now becomes +15 in your 6 point teaser.

All “Over” totals now have 6 points taken from them. Example: A total of 40 in a straight over bet now becomes over 34 in your 6 point teaser. (making it easier to hit the over)

All “Under” totals now have 6 points added to them. Example: A total of 40 in a straight under bet now becomes under 46 in your 6 point teaser. (making it easier to stay under)

You are adjusting football lines in your favor depending on how many points you select for your teaser. Favorites have “x” amount of points taken, underdogs have “x” added, Overs have “x” taken, Unders have “x” added.

Super Teasers: This is another type of teaser bet offering more points (10 points/3 team and 13 points/4 team) and a lower payout.

 Football Parlays

Parlays are two or more bets combined as one. Both selections must win for your parlay to pay.  Football parlays work the same as any other sports parlays. You are simply combining two or more bets into one. When you combine these bets, your total return will be the odds for all bets multiplied by each other, multiplied by your wager. Parlays must  have a minimum of two selections and depending on your sports book may go up to 8 or 15 possible selections.You can combine parlays across more than one sport.

Buying/Selling Points

Most sports books offer the ability to “buy or sell points” on football games. What this means is that you are not buying the posted odds, but buying other odds at other prices. You do this by selecting different lines at other prices from a drop-down menu listed beside the selection. If a team was favored at -6.5 points and listed at odds of -110, but you feel they can cover 7.5 or 8.5 points, you can select one of those options for a higher payout. The same rules apply for totals. Think of Buying/Selling points as “customizing your bet”.

New Parlay Odds at BetOnline