NFL Betting Basics Every Beginner Should Learn

NFL Betting Basics Every Beginner Should Learn
NFL Betting Basics Every Beginner Should Learn

NFL betting is a lot more complicated than it looks. Even the most experienced bettors still have some losing streaks here and there because, after all, gambling is based mostly on chance and luck.

Not only that, but football itself is highly unpredictable, and there is no way for you to know who will win the game, not to mention that comebacks are highly common in the NFL. For a beginner, the NFL can be a bit scary to get into because it seems like you have to up your game in terms of researching to be a bit fair with your chances.

However, that’s not the case. The basics are pretty easy to understand, and if you finally learn them, you’ll instantly get the gist of how NFL betting works. Yes, extensive research is necessary if you want to win more bets, but that is only optional unless you want to win more.

Still, it never hurts to have the knowledge and information necessary to win bets because, after all, who doesn’t like winning? That said, if you are a beginner and are looking to brush up your game before the Super Bowl starts, then you are in the right place. Here are some of the basics you have to learn in NFL betting.

NFL Spread Betting

In the NFL, the best teams often win the most games. That said, sportsbooks handicap them by making a fair point spread for both the favorite and the underdog. This will allow players to consider betting on the underdog just as they do with the favorite since an equal chance will be given to the underdog, so all of the bets won’t be covered by the favorite.

  • Green Bay Packers -3 (-120)
  • Minnesota Vikings +3 (+100)

Spread betting means that the sportsbook will give a range of scores for the favorite to cover. This is called handicapping in sports betting. For you to win the bet, the favorite must end up with points over the handicap given by the sportsbook. On the other hand, the underdog must lose with points in the range of points that the sportsbook has given them or outright win the game.

In the above example, the sportsbook deems that the Packers will cover the point spread, which is three points, thus making them the favorites. For you to win your bet with them, the Packers should win with more than a 3-point difference.

The -120 means that you have to bet $120 to win $100. If you trust the Vikings to lose the game within 3 points or make an upset and win the game, you will win your bet with them. The +100 means that you will win a hundred dollars if you bet the same amount.

NFL Moneyline

While not as popular as spread betting, the money line is the easiest bet to understand since it will only require you to bet on the team you think will win. Let’s get back to the previous example.

  • Green Bay Packers -200
  • Minnesota Vikings +150

The numbers signify the odds tied to the teams but with different functions. In this example, the favorites are still the Green Bay Packers, as it is shown that they have a negative number beside their team name. This means that for you to win $100, you must bet $200. For the Vikings, the number beside their name signifies the payout if you bet $100 on them.


Betting totals means that you have to beat the sportsbook in its prediction. This type of bet will predict how many points the game will end on with both the teams’ points combined. The sportsbook will publish its prediction about the total points the game will end up on, and you have to bet if the points will go over or under their prediction. For example, the sportsbook publishes 51 points by the end of the game.

  • Over 51 -110
  • Under 51 -110

If you think the total would be under 51 points, then you should bet under, or if you think the opposite will be true, bet on over.

NFL Prop Bets

Prop bets are the most hype bet as the Super Bowl approaches. Prop bets are diverse, meaning that they can be about anything related to the event. Prop bets will range from which team will score first on the game to how many total touchdowns will happen during the game. However, it isn’t only limited to the game itself since prop bets can also be about who will sing the National Anthem, who will be the main act in the halftime show, and so on.


Betting odds and Lines is pretty easy to get into if you just put effort into your research. Not to mention it’s super fun, especially as the Super Bowl approaches. During the Super Bowl, or even before the Super Bowl, you will see the ridiculous bets being placed in the sportsbook. With the right amount of research and a little bit of luck, you’ll have more fun watching the games while being a few dollars rich at the same time. Good luck.

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John Smith
An engineer by degree and blogger by choice. Interested in writing the latest updates happening around the world. Loves to binge watch tv-series and movies.


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