Football Betting Odds and Rules

If you are looking to bet on football, it is important to understand the odds and rules of the game. This will help you place smarter bets and avoid making mistakes.

There are three main betting markets in football: spreads, totals and money lines. Each of these has a different payoff scale and offers varying levels of risk.

Straight bets

A straight bet is a single wager at a sportsbook on one direct event. It can be a money line on, against the spread or total. It is the most common type of bet and is also the easiest to win.

In football, a straight bet can include point spreads or money lines. With a point spread, oddsmakers handicap each team based on their expected winning margin.

The favored team will be noted with a minus sign, and the underdog team will be marked with a plus sign. In a point spread, the favored team needs to win by at least three points for the bettors to win their bet.

A team that wins by exactly the pointspread is graded a "push" and all straight bets on that team are returned. This rule is important because it prevents you from losing money on a team that has a slight advantage over the other team.

Parlay bets

Parlays are a popular type of betting that allow you to combine multiple odds and bets into one wager. To win, each of the odds and bets must be correct for the parlay to pay off.

Unlike straight bets on, which pay out based on a specific outcome, parlays have a positive expected value. This means that you can earn a higher payout by placing a parlay than you can by making individual bets on each of the selections.

In addition to moneyline, spread and total bets, you can also make parlays involving prop bets and futures markets. These can be a great way to maximize your winnings on the NFL without risking too much of your own cash.

Parlays are a risky bet that require a great deal of skill and patience. But they can be lucrative if you have a high tolerance for risk and are confident in multiple picks.

Over/Under bets

Over/Under betting is a popular type of wagering that is available in almost every major sport. It can be confusing at first, but once you get familiar with it, it’s easy to make money.

To determine a total, bookmakers look at several factors, including team performance, pace of play, weather and injuries. They also consider the game’s specific circumstances, such as whether a team is playing on a short week or if a key player has suffered an injury.

A bet on the over is a prediction that more points will be scored than the total number set by the oddsmaker. An under bet is a prediction that less points will be scored than the total number set.

Future bets

Futures bets are a popular way to increase the excitement of a sport. They can be placed on outcomes that are determined weeks or months in advance, and they can also be hedged (betting on another outcome when your first one is close to hitting, such that you’ll still make a profit).

In football, there are many different futures bets available. You can bet on who will win the Super Bowl, whether a team will make it to the playoffs, and which teams are favorites in their divisions.

There are even futures on awards like the MVP and Rookie of the Year. These bets are typically more difficult to predict and are worth a higher amount of money when you do get them right.