How to Place a Football Bet

There are many ways to place a football bet. Whether you’re a newbie tracking live odds, a fan of the game building moneyline parlays, or a regular bettor placing point spreads and Over/Unders, there are some basic rules that should help you be more successful.

Understand the importance of key numbers for point spreads. Also be aware of the vig (or juice) that sports books charge on each bet.

Point spread

Football point spreads are a great way to bet on NFL games. They’re designed to level the playing field between two uneven teams, and they offer higher payouts than a moneyline bet. However, you should keep in mind that a point spread does not always mirror the final result of a game. As more money flows in on one team, the point spread will shift to encourage more action on the other side.

To determine your potential payout, look at the odds listed next to each point spread. These are expressed as American odds and appear just like the odds on a moneyline bet. You can also check the current injuries on both teams and analyze their recent performance. This will help you identify any key injuries or trends that might affect the outcome of a game. It’s important to take all of these factors into account when betting on football. Otherwise, you may end up losing your bets.


A moneyline is the simplest way to bet on NFL football games without having to worry about a point spread. It is also commonly used in soccer matches and MMA fights where ties are possible. However, it is important to know the difference between 2-way and three-way moneyline bets. Two-way moneyline bets grade as winners if the team wins the game outright, while 3-way moneylines grade as losses if the game ends in a tie after regulation.

Unlike point spreads, moneyline odds are always correlated and will shift as action comes in or newsworthy events occur. These changes might not be dramatic, but they can have a significant effect on payouts and the likelihood of winning bets. For example, a heavy favorite’s line might move from -250 to -350 as more betting action came in. This might mean that a $100 bet will win $3.50, while a losing bet will lose $4.50. This is why it is important to bet smart and shop lines at different sportsbooks.


Over/Under betting is one of the most popular wagers in sports. The total is set at an estimated value and accompanied by odds (just like point spreads). Over/Unders can be placed on anything from the final score of a game to individual player performance.

When betting on a total, over bettors are predicting that the teams will combine to score more than the applicable total of points, sets, goals or runs. A bet on the under reflects that you expect fewer points to be scored. The key to successful over/under bets is figuring out how teams will attack each other. For instance, if a team with an elite pass rush is facing a team that can’t run the ball, this could push the total higher than expected.

Another important aspect of over/unders is determining how predictive early possessions are. If a team looks dominant in the first two minutes of a game, the total can move quickly from under to over.


Football parlays allow sports bettors to combine multiple NFL odds into a single wager with the promise of a sizable payout. They are a popular choice for NFL Sunday betting, but they can be risky. For a parlay to pay out, all of its picks must win. If one team loses, the whole bet is lost.

The best way to increase your profits when making NFL parlays is by looking for related bets that can be combined together. For example, if you’re betting on a game that has a high over/under total, you may want to include a moneyline bet on the winning team.

Another way to increase your profits is by using a teaser bet. This bet allows you to shift the lines by 6, 6.5, or 7 points, depending on the sport. However, it’s important to note that the payouts are significantly lower than those of a parlay bet. This is why you need to carefully consider the risks before placing your bets.