NFL Sportsbooks 2019
The NFL, the most popular sport in the USA, is also unsurprisingly the most popular sport to bet on. It’s a sport that everyone loves to bet on, from the experts to the occasional punter who likes to spice up the Superbowl with a cheeky wager.
"I have yet to be in a game where luck was involved." – Urban Meyer
Meyer’s words also ring true for betting on the NFL. Knowing what type of bet and when to place it, can massively increase your chances of winning. This will involve knuckling down and doing a little bit of homework before you get started. On this page, we have written a simple breakdown of the different types of football betting
Top Performer: Caesars
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There are some really strong contenders in this category, but ultimately it's the partnership between the NFL and Ceasar's that edges them to top spot.
What makes a great sportsbook for NFL
If it is just football and the NFL specifically that you are looking to bet on, then finding the right sportsbook becomes much easier for you. This is because you can really narrow down your search, and really focus on a certain set of factors.
If you are looking to primarily bet on one league you are most likely a big football fan, which will put you at an advantage as you'll really know your stuff. The more you know, the more you analyse the full range of odds offered on all the events, and you increase your chance of finding real value.
What range of NFL bets does the sportsbook provide?
Do they offer an extensive array of stats to go alongside your betting?
Are their value in the sportsbook NFL odds?
Does the sportsbook provide in-play betting for NFL matches?
Does the sportsbook offer NFL specific promotions?
Top Performer: DraftKings
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When it comes to finding value in NFL moneylines, then DraftKings just takes top spot. However, FanDuel and Caesear's are a close second.
Best NFL Sportsbooks in NJ
If you are based in New Jersey then you really are in luck. The Garden State is storming ahead of its rivals when it comes to online sports betting. This is thanks to unrestrictive legislation, which creates an attractive market for sportsbooks, and an existing base of betting aficionados.
The state is home to the New York Giants and the New York Jets.
Football is, along with basketball, the most popular sport in the state, which means that sportsbooks have focused heavily on offering a wide range of NFL bets.
You can check out our dedicated page to finding the best sportsbook in New Jersey but when it comes specifically to betting on the NFL in NJ we have a few top picks.
Our main contenders are DraftKings and FanDuel. The two sportsbooks have established themselves as the top two sportsbooks in the state, with a huge selection of bets, stats and generous welcome bonuses.
However, if you happen to be a New York Jets fan based in NJ, then we have two other alternatives for you. Both MGM Resorts and 888Sport sponsor the NFL team, which means you can often find special promotions and favorable odds offered for the Jets.
NFL Moneyline Betting
This is the most common form of betting on the NFL. When you place a moneyline wager you are backing either the underdog or the favourite to win outright. It’s the easiest type of bet to understand as a beginner and probably the first type of bet that people place.
Any sportsbook that offers betting on NFL, will offer moneyline odds as it’s the bread and butter of football betting.
NFL Moneyline (ML) odds explained
Moneylines odds are the type of odds used in the United States. In Europe, they use decimal odds, and in the UK they use fractions.
The underdog will be assigned a + symbol, whilst the favourite will be assigned a - symbol. In some instances, when the odds are even, both teams will be assigned a - symbol.
Numbers will appear next to the +/- symbols indicating how much you can expect to win according to your wager.
In short: A positive moneyline is the amount you will win if you put down $100 and a negative moneyline is how much you will need to bet to win $100.
How to calculate football moneylines
Working out how moneylines work, can be a bit frustrating at first. Everyone has their way of doing it, either in their head, online or on a bit of paper.
Eventually, you'll be able to calculate your payout in a second. Put the practice in now and we promise you it will be worth it.
To work out exactly how football moneylines work you can use the following formula to calculate potential winnings: which, after all, is what this is all about!
Let’s use the same example as above where you place a $20 wager on the New England Patriots at moneyline odds of -800
To calculate this you can use the following formula:
- Winnings = (your stake / minus moneyline odds) x 100
- Winnings = ($20 / 800) x 100
- Winnings = (0.025) x100
- Winnings = $2.50
Backing the favorite: moneyline betting on the New England Patriots
Let’s say you put down a $20 wager on the underdog, the Cleveland Browns, at moneyline odds of +500.
To calculate this you can use the following formula:
- Winnings = (your stake x plus moneyline odds) /100
- Winnings = ($20 x 500) /100
- Winnings = 100000 / 100
- Winnings = $100
When to place a moneyline on the NFL
Moneyline bets are great because they are straightforward and ubiquitous. You simply won’t find a sportsbook that doesn’t offer moneyline bets on the NFL. This can be both a blessing and a curse, however.
Here we have listed some advantages and disadvantages with placing moneyline bets on the NFL:
Advantages with NFL moneyline bets 👍
- They are always available. Every sportsbook that offers NFL betting will offer moneyline bets.
- They are easy to understand. You will be hard-pressed to find a bettor who hasn’t placed a moneyline bet.
Disadvantages with NFL moneyline bets 👎
- Sportsbooks will have invested a lot of resources into perfecting their odds. You will find it hard to find really great value in big game moneyline odds.
- There are three outcomes to a moneyline bet, but it can feel like two. Just like the green on the roulette table, it’s easy to forget that there is a third outcome, a draw. Moneyline bets are unforgiving from this perspective if it’s a draw you lose.
- Emotions can play a part in moneyline bets. Many sports fans enjoy betting on their own team, which although understandable is not always the best idea. Sometimes your heart will trump your brain in this regard. We advise against betting on your own team when it comes moneyline betting.
- Neither team is the clear favourite. If one team is almost certain to win then the moneyline odds won’t offer you any real value.
- If you strongly believe that a team, that you do not support, will win and you feel that the market has undervalued them.
- It is your first bet. A moneyline bet is a great way to kick off your NFL betting experience. Start simple, and with a small wager.
NFL Spread Betting
Congratulations, you’ve reached the next skill level! Spread betting is where you can really hone your football betting skills. It’s also where you can start to find some really great value odds.
This form of betting is popular with high scoring sports as it is decided by the point spread. These type of bets adds a points element to the outright bet and can help reduce the differences between the favourites and the underdogs.
Like with moneyline betting, the underdog will be assigned a - symbol, whilst the favourite will be assigned a + symbol.
Ironically, with spread bets, it is the favourite that is handed the handicap.
Your sportsbook will look at all the factors that will lead to one team being considered the favourite. These factors will include; form, home/ away advantage/disadvantage, weather and more.
Once it has been decided how much a team is a favourite or underdog, a numerical value will be attached to the teams reflecting this.
The Superbowl is the most popular event to bet on in the US
The New England Patriots (-8) Cleveland Browns (+8)
This number will then be added to the odds. Which will look like this:
The New England Patriots -8 (-100) Cleveland Browns +8 (-100)
This means, in effect, that your sportsbook rate the New England Patriots as 8 points better than the Cleveland Browns.
So, say you decide to back The New England Patriots.
There are three different outcomes that can occur:
- The New England Patriots win by more than eight points. You win.
- The New England Patriots win by exactly eight points. You get your wager returned.
- The New England Patriots lose, or they win but by less than eight points. You lose.
Bettingscanner recommends for NFL spread betting
Top Performer: Pointsbet
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The Australian company arrived on US shores with one target in mind - to dominate the spread betting market. With a focus on point spreads, rather than traditional forms of betting like moneylines, this sportsbook is the go-to place for spread betting.
Placing a spread bet takes practice. You should not only fully understand how they work but also be comfortable with your sportsbook’s site. Make sure you start with small wagers with spread betting.
Spread betting is usually a good option if there is one strong favourite.
If this is the case, the value in a moneyline bet isn’t that attractive. Placing a spread bet, shortens the win/loss expectation. This will mean that backing the favourite will offer you more in return.
NFL Halftime Lines betting
Halftime lines are an example of in-play betting and are only available during half time. These odds will take into account what happened during the first half of the football game when they are set, but the outcome of the bet is actually unrelated to the first half.
With this type of betting you should really think of the second half as its own game.
When you use this form of betting, you’ll start to see the football game differently. For example, you could bet on a team to win the second half and win your bet, but they actually lose the game as a whole.
Halftime betting has increased in popularity over the years, especially in Europe where there are fewer restrictions, thanks to the use of your smartphone.
This is something to keep in mind when choosing your sportsbook even today, as you will need a highly mobile-optimized site or app.
We would suggest that you only use this form of betting when you are in no way emotionally involved. Placing an in-play bet at halftime on a game which involves a team you support is not always a good idea. Betting should never be done in the heat of the moment or when you are not thinking straight.
Having said that, halftime betting can be a great option for a neutral who is actually attending a game. At an NFL game, you’ll be able to pick up on things that the cameras and stats - which is what your sportsbook use - won’t.
Let’s say that the Houston Texans play the Jacksonville Jaguars.
At half time the score is:
Houston Texans 20 vs. Jacksonville Jaguars 15
Your sportsbook offers you the following odds:
Houston Texans -3 (-100) Jacksonville Jaguars +3 (-100)
After analysing the first half you predict that the Texans will continue to outplay the Jacksonville Jaguars, so you place a wager on them to win with a spread of -3.
There will be three possible outcomes:
- The Texans win the second half by more than 3 points. You win.
- The Texans win the second half by exactly 3 points. You get your money back.
- The Texans win the second half, but by less than 3 points or The Jacksonville Jaguars win the second half. You lose.
NFL Parlay betting
This form of betting, known as an accumulator in Europe, means you add bets together to achieve a higher payout.
These type of bets can seem attractive as they can generate great returns.
With some sportsbooks, you can smash together around 15 bets
So you can imagine the amazing payoffs you can get. However, you have to ask yourself, how often in football can you predict 15 outcomes correctly?
However ‘safe’ you feel your bets are, each time you lay a parlay (excuse the pun) you eat away at the probability of each of your bets coming off.
It might seem less fun, but you are often much better off placing individual bets. Parlay betting, in our opinion, is much more relevant for office pools and amongst friends.
Remember bookies will always offer you their odds before you place your bet. We recommend you open a wagering slip for each individual bet, look at what you could win and then open up a slip for a parlay that includes the same bets.
Then you can compare how much value there is in going with the parlay compared to the individual bets. It might take a little more time, but it could win you a few more dollars in return!
A teaser bet is, like parlay betting, a collection of two or more bets, but with your line adjusted in your favour. To what extent depends on how many points your teaser has; there are three main NFL teasers 7,6.6 and 6.
Sound complicated? Here is an example:
You want to bet on the New England Patriots +5 and the Cleveland Browns -4.5
If you are given a 6.5 point teaser the spread will shift to New England Patriots +11.5 and the Cleveland Browns -2.
The fact that you are given a point teaser means that the payout will be less than for a parlay. Each time you add a bet to your teaser the odds will increase.
NFL Over/Under or Totals
This type of bet is pretty straight forward. Here you will simply be betting on whether there will be more or fewer points scored than a predetermined amount in a football game.
The Kansas City Chiefs are playing the New England Patriots.
Your sportsbook have set the predetermined over/under points total at 40.5.
They are offering over 40.5 at -100 and under 40.5 at -120.
This means that you can bet on only two outcomes:
- 41 points and more
- 40 points or less
The addition of decimals can seem confusing at first, but it’s simply there to eradicate a third possibility: the exact number of points being scored. Think of it like eradicating the 0 in a game of roulette.
NFL Future betting
Believe it or not, these are bets that will occur in the future!
They are often released just after an event has finished. So you will be able to place a future on who will win the 2020 Super Bowl right after the 2019 Super Bowl.
Don’t put down too much on a future. It can be a really great way to spice up a whole season, but they are some of the most unpredictable bets around.
You really can never predict a season in advance. You can find some of the best odds on the underdogs an NFL season in advance, but with such good odds, you really don’t need a very high wager.
Does the NFL consider betting legal?
The NFL, had been the most resistant to change after the Supreme Court ruled the federal ban on sports betting unconstitutional compared to the NBA, NHL and MLB. However, eventually the lure of extra revenue pushed them over the line and this year they signed an official partnership with Caesars Entertainment.
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Caesars signed an official partnership with the NFL in 2019.
The NFL had been reluctant to follow a similar path when the NBA, NHL and MLB signed with MGM Resorts. The NFL had argued that allowing sports betting on their league would threaten the integrity of the league. But the need to be seen as the wholesome all-American league was trumped by the lure of the big bucks.
Although they do not want to be openly seen as promoting sports betting, the partnership with a major betting company made it obvious that they had opened up the league to sports betting.
Your ability to bet on the NFL now will depend on what state you live in. Currently, you can bet online on the NFL in New Jersey, Nevada and Pennsylvania.
NFL sportsbook apps
Mobile sports betting has been popular for some time. Almost all reputable betting sites have optimized their service for mobiles as well as desktop. However, like any site we often visit on our mobile, things are always easier on an app.
In the US we use a number of sportsbook apps, including the Draftkings and Betstars NJ app for betting on the NFL.