When we talk about sports betting, most people will probably immediately think about wagering on a game winner or on the champion. But the truth is that sports betting has a wide range of markets available. Proposition bets, or prop bets for short, are one of these markets – and a very profitable one at that.
Now if you’re just getting started, it’s only fair to ask: what is a prop bet? While moneyline, over/under, point spread and future bets are the most common betting markets, many punters also enjoy wagering on props.
Let’s take a deeper look into prop betting, how they work, and the best way to make use of them.
Prop Bets Explained
The first thing to know about a prop bet is that it isn’t necessarily related to the match result.
It is called a proposition bet for a reason: the bettor will wager on a proposition, usually related to a game event:
- Individual player stats: touchdowns, number of yards, rebounds, goals scored, and so on.
- Will both teams score in a soccer match?
- Which player will win the fourth game in a tennis set?
- Which team will get to 50 points first in a basketball match?
Prop bets have grown in popularity recently, as bettors look for new, profitable markets. As a result, bookmakers have expanded their prop bets, offering even more props while also extending them to different sports.
Is betting on props a good strategy? The answer is yes. It’s always nice to spread your bets among as many markets as possible, and props are another alternative. Not only that, but props are a great option to bet on if you can’t find competitive odds on the other popular markets.
Don’t like the moneyline odds? Don’t feel particularly confident about the over/under? The point spread is a bit too close for comfort? Then prop betting is always an alternative. With a thorough search, you are almost guaranteed to find a good prop with a decent potential payout.
Tips for Prop Bets
Here are some useful tips if you want to bet on props:
- Keep track of team and individual stats through the season. You will be able to spot a good matchup right away. When a team with a poor defensive record takes on an explosive offense, it will likely reflect on player stats as well. In football, you can then bet on a star quarterback to throw for over 300 yards. In basketball, you can wager on the team’s top scorer going for 30-plus points, and so on.
- Even bad teams can shine when it comes to props. Some of them do have one or two very good players, who will light up the scoring sheet and pile up good stats. Speaking of individual numbers, stat padding can be your best friend for props. During the final stretch of a game, with the result very much decided, some players will take the opportunity to put some better numbers on their stat sheets – which can also help you to win on your props.
- On the other hand, garbage time can also ruin props. With the game already settled, coaches will usually pull their star players to preserve them. In betting terms, it also means that they won’t be improving their individual stats, which can completely ruin your props. Don’t forget to take the possibility of garbage time into account when placing a prop bet.
Examples of Prop Bets
- Football has many different props available to bet on. Individual props include whether a quarterback will throw for 300 yards, a wide receiver will go over 100 receiving yards, or a running back will rush for more than 100 yards. There are also other props such as the first and the last team to score, whether the match will go to overtime or not, or which side will be leading the score at halftime.
- In basketball, props include over/under for a player’s individual stats (points, rebounds and assists), total points, points at halftime, 3-pointers, total points, if the game will go to overtime, among many others.
- Of course, prop bets aren’t restricted to football or basketball. For baseball, prop bets include over/under for runs and strikeouts, whether the game will have a homerun, total number of hits, which player will suffer the most strikeouts, who will score the most runs and so on. In ice hockey, you can bet on which team will score first, the over/under for how many goals a player is going to score, and total penalty minutes, to name a few props. Tennis is another popular sport in betting, and that’s largely because of its incredible number of prop bets. You can wager on which player will score the next point, who will win a specific game during the set, the number of aces scored, among many other bets.
Pros and Cons
- Props are a great way to make a decent profit, particularly when you can’t find good odds on other popular betting markets. With enough research, it’s possible to win even more money compared to moneyline, over/under and future bets.
- If you are looking for a way to diversify your bet, props should be one of your priorities. Since stats lines aren’t necessarily related to the game outcome, props have some sneaky-good payouts that can easily go unnoticed by punters.
- Beware of props that look too good to be true. Bookmakers obviously hate losing money, and these props often have a catch or two. Pay attention to the wording: 100 rushing yards or 100 receiving yards aren’t the same thing as 100 total yards, for example.
- Props can be hit-or-miss as well. Remember that a single point or a single yard could be the difference between winning or losing a bet. Think well before including props into parlay bets unless you are absolutely confident.
Props are one of the fastest growing betting markets, and for very good reasons. Bettors looking to diversify their wagers can look at prop bets as a very good alternative. Sportsbooks are keeping up with the times and offering a great variety of props. As betting becomes increasingly specialized, punters can make a significant profit on props. While they naturally carry some risk, it’s always a good idea to look through the props available for the day before placing your wagers.
Prop Bets Explained – FAQs
1. How Does a Prop Bet Work?
2. What Is Prop Bet Short For?
3. What Are NFL Prop Bets?
4. How Do Prop Bet Payouts Work?
5. Can I Parlay Prop Bets?