As the most popular professional sport in the United States, betting on NFL games is a favorite activity of many sports fans. However, for those who like to add more excitement to their Sunday afternoons, there are many different ways to bet, especially using the NFL schedule point spread.
NFL Betting Odds & Lines
Understanding NFL Point Spreads
How Do NFL Odds Work?
When looking at NFL schedule point spread odds on any online sportsbook, they are represented as a number that is either positive (+) or negative (-). The minus sign in front of the odds means that the team is the favorite to win the game, while a plus sign represents the team that is the underdog or the team that has a lesser chance of winning.
The odds also indicate how a winning wager will be paid out. A minus before the odds show how much needs to be wagered to win $100, while a plus sign indicates a bet on the underdog with the number indicating the amount won for every $100 wagered.
Types of Betting
- A moneyline wager is a bet on the team that will win the game outright, without any lines involved. The odds are shown as a three-digit number with a plus or minus before them to indicate the favorite and underdog for the matchup.
When looking at the most popular bet -the spread- the team with the negative number is the favorite. For example, if Pittsburgh is -6 against the Cowboys, who are +6, a bet on Pittsburgh means they must win the game by seven points or more to win the wager. A bet on the Cowboys means they would have to either win the game outright or lose by less than six points to win.
As an example, when betting on the total, or over/under, let’s say the Steelers and Cowboys’ total is 44. To win taking the over, the total points scored by both teams must be at least 45 points. For the under bet, the total points score must be less than 45 to be a winner.
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