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How to Bet on NFL Games and Win: NFL Betting Tips and Advice

How to Bet on NFL Games and Win: NFL Betting Tips and Advice

NFL Betting Trends for the Best Sports Bets

The NFL season is the one that gets American bettors the most excited. Starting with the NFL Draft all the way up to the Super Bowl, the sport is by far the most popular in the U.S. with 15% of Americans placing wagers on it throughout the season.

If you are looking to get in on the action, we have good news, as our NFL betting tips, trends and advice will teach you how to bet on NFL games with success in no time. 

To gain a better insight into just how popular NFL betting is, here are the top five biggest sporting events for betting in the U.S. in 2018: 

  1. Super Bowl 52 (Nevada alone raked in a record $159 million handle. 

  2. March Madness

  3. Kentucky Derby ($225.7 million wagered)

  4. NFL Thanksgiving

  5. World Cup Final

How to Bet on NFL Games 

Betting on NFL games is surprisingly easy. Even most international sports betting sites not based in America will offer NFL betting lines on games. 

NFL games are played on Monday, Thursday and of course on Sunday, when all but two games are played. 

The NFL betting lines will likely be listed days or maybe even a week before the actual game. If you are in a state that allows mobile betting, many of the bookmakers in the state will have mobile applications.

Choose a sports betting site to register at. Once you have registered an account and made a deposit, simply make your way to the NFL section, choose a market and place your bet.  

Placing a bet is one thing but winning your wagers and making money is what we are all after. Now let’s investigate how to beat the bookmaker with our excellent insider information. 

NFL Betting Tips/ Advice 

When it comes to NFL betting, there are a plethora of strategies that both beginners and experts like to use. There are also peculiarities about the sport that lead to opportunities for bettors. 

The first thing that a player should do after deciding to bet on an NFL game is to look at how the two teams match up against each other. You can even do see matchups multiple weeks in advance by looking at the NFL schedule.

Most teams in the NFL every season are either primarily offensive or defensive, with very few being able to balance them out.

Best Defensive and Offensive Super Bowl Winners:  

Offensive 

  • 1993 Dallas Cowboys (eight consecutive wins leading up to the Super Bowl by an average margin of 16 points)

  • 1994 San Francisco 49ers (Ranked fourth in passing, second in total offense and first in scoring)

  • 1998 Denver Broncos (Elway-led passing yielded two 1000-yard receivers)

  • 1999 St. Louis Rams (Quarterback Kurt Warner threw for 4,300 passing yards and 41 TDs)

Defensive 

  • 1973 Miami Dolphins (Allowed the 12th-fewest points in league history)

  • 1985 Chicago Bears (Led the NFL in yards, first downs and points allowed, takeaways)

  • 2000 Baltimore Ravens (In four playoff games, the team allowed only 23 points)

  • 2002 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Led the league with 31 interceptions)

  • 2008 Pittsburgh Steelers (Led NFL in yards and points allowed) 


Knowing which side each team leans to will give you a massive advantage in multiple NFL betting lines, especially on the totals.

If two offensive teams are playing each other, you can expect there to be a high-scoring game and total over whereas two defensive teams will be close to a stalemate and therefore warrants a total under. 

The current form of a team is also something you can take into consideration. Especially if a team is coming off big wins with a large difference in points. They will be entering the game with a confidence that the other team may not be able to match. 

In addition, you should always keep track of injuries. Unfortunately, they are a major part of the NFL and can happen to any player at any time. 

Another tip is to completely avoid the betting line in the NFL known as futures. The NFL is much too unpredictable of a league to be throwing down money on long-term bets. Injuries, as written above, in the NFL are also quite common, and just one injury can change the dynamic a whole team.

In the playoffs, even the best teams only need to lose one game to be out, as compared to a series where better teams have a much bigger advantage to win.

Flukes and upsets happen, and when they do you could be left stunned that your dominant team has just had their season ended by a team who barely snuck into the playoffs. 

Hopefully you didn’t make these “sure” bets on the favorite in these historical upsets: 

  • Seattle Seahawks 27, Miami Dolphins 20 (1983): Although the team was led by Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino (in his rookie season), the Seahawks were able to go to Miami and knock the 12-4 out of the playoffs. 

  • Washington Redskins 27, Chicago Bears (1986): The Bears were just coming off a Super Bowl-winning season with a team that is considered the best defense ever by many and will forever be immortal in the NFL. However, they were outscored 20-0 in the second half and sent home, dashing any hopes of being back-to-back champions. 

  • Jacksonville Jaguars 30, Denver Broncos 27 (1996): This is the team we are talking about. The 1996 Jaguars were only in its second year of existence and squeaked into the playoffs with 9-7 record and a wild-card spot. That did not stop them from taking out the great John Elway and the 13-3 Broncos, after coming back from a 12-0 deficit to advance. 

  • New York Giants 17, New England Patriots 14 (2007): Everyone knows this one. The Patriots were an absolute force, led by quarterback Tom Brady in his prime the team went 16-0 in the regular season. However, the younger Manning and lesser renown Eli made a name for himself here, upsetting Brady and the Patriots to keep the perfect season to only 1972 Miami Dolphins. 

There are NFL Draft betting lines as well on some sites. These can be a little easier to predict, although they are still not cut n dry. The best way to make these is to look at a team’s main need and the player that matches that need. 

However, there are two main obstacles. NFL managers love taking players that they don’t really need, and other teams can take that player before the team you bet on does. 

In general, it is best to avoid these NFL betting lines. 

NFL Betting Trends 

The most important trend to know for the NFL, when betting against the NFL spread, is that 30% of all NFL games are won by either three or seven points. Betting against the spread is one of the most popular forms of NFL betting.

In short, each team will either have points added or subtracted from their final score that day, depending on whether they are perceived to win or not. Your bet will be won or lost based on the final score with “the spread” factored in. 

Since the most common margins of victory as written above are three and seven, you should think twice when you see a spread of 3.5 or 7.5. Though the favorite may be able to beat the other team, there is still that very good chance the spread will keep you from a win.

Any spread can take out even the best of teams, some of the biggest NFL spreads in history that weren’t safe enough or were beaten soundly: 

  • 1968- Baltimore Colts (-18) vs. New York Jets (+18) | Final Score: New York 16-7 (Playoffs)

  • 1978 – Dallas Cowboys (-15) vs. Atlanta Falcons (+15) |Final Score: Dallas 27-20 (Playoffs)

  • 1995 – Washington Redskins (+17.5) vs. Dallas Cowboys (-17.5) | Final Score: Washington 24-17 (Week 14)

  • 1997 – Green Bay Packers (-11) vs. Green Bay Packers (+11) | Final Score: Denver 31-24 (Playoffs)

  • 2009 – Pittsburgh Steelers (-14.5) vs. Oakland Raiders (+14.5) | Final Score: Oakland 27-24 (Week 13)

Another trend that is well known in all sports is that the home team has an advantage over the away team simply due to playing in familiar surroundings.

In the NFL, the home team will win the game between 55 and 60 percent of the time. It’s a small advantage, but an advantage none the less and one that holds up.

However, this advantage is lowered when two teams from the same division are playing each other. This is not only because they will play at the divisional opponent’s stadium at least once a year. 

Rather it is about the proximity in which divisional rivals play. Right now, in the NFL, there are 15 divisional matchups where either team will travel less than 450 miles to the other team. Since 2002, home teams playing close proximity divisional rivals have won less than 50% of the time. 

Close Proximity Divisional Rivals: 

  • Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns, Cincinnati Bengals (AFC North)

  • Buffalo Bills, New York Jets, New England Patriots (AFC East)

  • Philadelphia Eagles, New York Giants, Washington Redskins (NFC East)

  • Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers (NFC North)

  • Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers (AFC West)

  • San Francisco 49ers, Los Angeles Rams (NFC West)

Another one of the big NFL trends is the difficulty of playing in cold weather for teams that are based out of a warm state. For example, the Arizona Cardinals making their way to Green Bay to play in -28-degree weather are at a big disadvantage. 

The turnovers will skyrocket, and the points scored will fall. The home teams will have a major advantage in these cold weather games, as the average margin of victory for the home team goes from 1.6 points in warm weather games all the way to 9.4 points in games played in under 10-degree weather. 

Where can I bet on NFL Games Legally

With the nationwide legalization of sports betting in America in 2018 (Learn more here: https://legalbet.com/us/), legally placing bets on NFL games and events has never been easier for Americans.

If you are in a state that allows for legal sports betting, then it is almost a guarantee that all the legal sports betting sites will have NFL betting lines on their sites. 

Here are a few of the most popular (in the most states) online sports betting sites in America that feature NFL bet lines:

  • FanDuel (NJ, PA, MS, IA, IN, WV)

  • DraftKings (NJ, PA, NH, IN, WV, MS, NY)

  • WilliamHill (NV, NJ, IA, MS, WV, IN, NM, RI)

This goes for over/under bets on NFL scores, moneyline bets on NFL games and some will even offer wagers on the NFL Draft, among others. 

Many of these states will have legal mobile sports betting with bookmakers able to feature mobile applications and if so, you can follow the instructions outlined in the “How to Bet on NFL Games” section at the top of the page. 

However, if your state has legal sports betting but not mobile betting you will have to use different options. In this case, you can visit the bookmaker’s physical locations which are mainly located in their partner casinos. 

Some bookmakers will also have sports betting kiosks throughout a state where you can quickly stop by to turn in a bet. 

As new states begin the process to legalize sports betting, newer ideas are being thrown out. These include betting in bars or restaurants, taverns and even at sports stadiums. 

NFL Bet Online 

Although now all the states with legal sports betting have mobile or online betting, many of them do. This includes many of the biggest sports betting markets. 

Here are all the states where mobile betting is currently allowed: 

  • New Jersey

  • Pennsylvania 

  • Nevada

  • West Virginia

  • Iowa 

  • Indiana

  • New Hampshire

  • Tennessee

  • Rhode Island 

  • Oregon