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Betting NFL Point Spreads


Betting NFL point spreads is a favorite of all bettors.

Key Points

– Betting the point spread is one of the more popular NFL bets.

– Bettors should do some research before betting NFL point spreads.

Betting NFL Point Spreads

It is one of the more popular wagers in all of sports betting. Bettors flock to bet NFL point spreads all throughout the regular season and through the playoffs.

Betting NFL point spreads is popular because it evens the playing field between two teams and creates a favorite and an underdog. It’s also known as betting against the spread.

So, how do bettors have success betting NFL point spread?

What is the Point Spread?

Say you have two NFL teams - Dallas and Philadelphia. The Cowboys are deemed the better opponent and oddsmakers set the line, aka point spread, at -4.5. That means not only do the Cowboys have to win, but they have to win by more than 4.5 points in order for a bet on Dallas to win.

On the other side of the bet, the Eagles are listed at +4.5. That means that if you bet on Philadelphia, you need them to either lose by less than 4.5 points or just win outright.

The point spread is the equalizer as the two teams involved will usually have nearly even odds of covering the spread. You might see the bet listed as follows.

                        Dallas Cowboys          -4.5 (-110)

                        Philadelphia Eagles    +4.5 (-110)

The ‘-110’ in parentheses is the odds given for each bet. It means that, in either case here, a bettor must wager $110 to win $100. If you like Dallas to win by 5 or more, you put $110 on the Cowboys to cover. If the final score is 21-16 in favor of the Cowboys, the bettor wins $100.


Strategies for Betting NFL Point Spreads

NFL bettors can put a couple practices in place to help increase their winning percentage and, ultimately, their bankroll.

The first is to simply bet early. During the NFL season, odds for the next week’s games are usually released Monday morning after Sunday games. This is when the market is the most inefficient.

Football oddsmakers don’t have enough information just yet and that is why lines will adjust at times during a week. If a bettor likes a favorite, it is usually best to bet early. One reason is that the betting public tends to like favorites. When the public starts betting a favorite heavily, the line can shift in the wrong direction. That’s why you bet early on NFL favorites.

Another thing NFL bettors can look at is whether or not the matchup is between two teams from the same division. Remember, teams in the same division in the NFL play each other twice every season. For players and coaches that have been on a roster for a few years, that breeds a little bit of familiarity.

Take the Dallas Cowboys as an example. They are in the NFC East with Philadelphia, the New York Giants, and Washington. Over the last five seasons, the Cowboys are 44-38-2 in all games. Over the same period, Dallas is 23-7 SU and 22-8 ATS in their division games.

This is information that a bettor can use when getting ready for a new season. Do you know about in-game wagering? Learn about using live betting to hedge bets.

Prepare Each Week - Then Prepare More

Each week of the NFL season, there will be a number of key factors that bettors should check before placing a point spread bet.

The first stop is the weekly injury report. These reports are updated daily throughout the week and provide bettors with useful information they can use before placing a bet. If a team’s starting quarterback is out, that will have a huge impact on the outcome of a game. It will likely generate some changes in lines too. Stay on top of injuries as they can affect a team’s performance.

Where a game is being played is also important. Playing on a home field isn’t as much of an advantage in the NFL as it is in college. Still, there are some advantages to playing at home in the NFL.

Expand your betting prowess. Here’s how to bet on UFC.

Betting NFL Point Spreads

One has to do with sticking to a routine. Players at home can stay with their families and go through their normal pre-game routine. When a team travels, that all changes. Take teams on the East Coast traveling west and vice versa.

Again, it might not be as big of an advantage as one might think, but it is worth consideration before placing a bet. West Coast teams traveling east went 95-138 SU from 2003 through the 2020 season.

Looking at those numbers, you see an advantage for the team that didn’t travel. However, if you look at the ATS numbers, you’ll find that the West Coast teams actually went 115-111-7 ATS in those games.

When you look and find that since 2013 those West Coast teams have gone 58-40-4 ATS against West Coast teams, you realize that teams are getting better at traveling across the country. Again, travel and home teams are something to consider before making a point spread bet.

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