Sports gambling betting on the moneyline

When to use the NFL money line in a betting strategy

Sports investors often use a variety of techniques when selecting their NFL picks and betting on the game. Having a few different techniques in your betting arsenal is crucual to improving your overall chances at success.

As with any sports betting investment strategy, the key to success is always contained risk.  Spread betting is one way to reduce risk when sports bettors go down a line of games. By contrast, using the Money Line is a higher risk– and one that provides higher returns. Because of this, using a Money Line betting strategy is actually more useful in football games where spread betting would work against you or have no effect at all.

Money Line Betting is straightforward. It’s not based on a spread: it’s simply win-lose.  (The only case for a push— ensuring your money returns to you– is the rare NFL tie.) Because of this, sports bettors use money line in a few situations, but the strategy often isn’t where inexperienced bettors think it is.

Even in the Money Line, Pay Attention to the Point Spread

To use money line betting successfully, the first thing to remember is you’re not betting on the game. You’re betting against the house’s assumption of who’s going to win the game. Thanks to the parity between most teams in the NFL, it’s sometimes a smart move to not take the book’s assumptions at face value. While bookmakers can use various programs, statistics, and simulations to make their decisions such as to determine the point spread, the ultimate point to remember is that it’s still subject to human error. This gives the sports bettor an advantage.

Since the bettor knows that in the end, the bookmaker is making an educated guess, looking at the point spread will reveal games where bookmakers haven’t determined a clear advantage. Oddsbook.com, for example, notes that if you see a game with a 3-point spread (ex. moneyline versus the point spread), you know that the game will be close– but less than 10% of games are actually decided by three points. So in this case, a slight underdog is often a smarter bet than simply taking advantage of the spread: if you choose correctly on the underdog where the house has failed to do so, you’ll make a considerably better return.

Moving Targets

The line will always adjust according to where people are betting and try to even it out. Because of this, it’s important to spot wild assumptions on the part of less informed beginner recreational sports bettors . In fact, if everyone’s “gut” is collectively telling people to run in one direction the house will try to continually even the odds to break even. This is where the public consensus data can work to your advantage, and/or be aware how the sports media (ESPN, CBS sports, FOX sports, etc.) can influence the public opinion, thus where they put their money at the sportsbook, and influencing the bookmaker to move the line to attract bets on the other side. Thus is quite often a smart bettor can take advantage of “the wisdom of crowds” or public consensus data by simply by not following it.

Advantages to Money Line versus Spread Betting

As mentioned earlier, the money line in sports betting produces a higher rate of return– when you’re right. However, it’s an “all or nothing” proposition, which to be successful should be used when only the sports book guidance is unclear, or appears to simply attempt to cover cost.

By contrast, spread betting introduces a greater chance of success for sports investors at the cost of limited returns. Used wisely, a Money Line strategy can be employed to increase a bettor’s rate of return substantially.

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