Betting on football can make the game so much more enjoyable to follow. As it gains popularity all over the world, we are starting to see more and more people give it a try — even people who don’t know a whole lot about football. For those who want to avoid the confusing point spreads and moneylines, many sportsbooks offer betting totals.
If you’re new to football betting and are under the impression that it’s reserved for people in Las Vegas, then you’ll be surprised at the number of online sportsbooks that offer this. Websites like DraftKings even offer a DraftKings sportsbook promo code so you can make your first bets with confidence.
Whether you’re new to betting totals in football or just looking to better your strategy, there are several tips that can help you make more educated wagers. First and foremost, however, you must understand what betting totals are and how they work.
Betting totals in football, also known as the over/under bet, is a way to wager on a game without predicting the winner. Instead, you are wagering on the total amount of points scored throughout the game.
When a sportsbook lists the over/under for a football game, it will look similar to this:
- Buffalo Bills O 49.5 -110
- New England Patriots U 49.5 -110
As you can see, the number will be the same for both teams because you will be wagering on the total points scored by both teams. You can either select to bet over that number or under it, depending on how many points you think will be scored.
Using the example above, you would want to bet over if you expect both teams to score a lot. Likewise, you would wager the under if you expect a low-scoring game.
Sportsbooks might add a .5 onto the end of the over/under to avoid the game ending in a push — which happens if the score ends exactly on the over/under number. In that case, you would be refunded your wager with no additional winnings.
In the third column, you’ll see the odds for that bet. For the most part, the odds will stay the same at -110, meaning you would have to bet $100 to win $110. You can increase the profit, however, by wagering a parlay bet — which is where you bet on several games in one bet.
Betting totals can be beneficial to anyone not confident in the end outcome of the game, while still making it enjoyable to watch until the very end. If you’re interested in building up your strategy for these types of bets, we have some tips and tricks to help you better understand them.
Know The Important Factors Of The Game
For each game, there will be a variety of factors that could have an effect on the number of points scored. Before you place your wager, you’ll want to consider every one of these factors and use that information in your final decision.
Let’s take a look at some of the more important factors to research on. They will include some of the best advice when placing a bet.
Injuries: It’s going to be rare for a team to go into a game fully healthy. Make sure you check the injury report leading up to the game, as it’ll tell you whether players will be full strength, questionable to play, or listed as out.
Injuries to star offensive players can lead to fewer points for a team, while injuries on defense can lead to more points for the other team.
Matchups: You’ll want to research the team matchups at large, but also the individual player matchups. Is their a strong secondary going up against a backup quarterback? What about a top-three wide receiver matched up with a newly signed cornerback? These matchups can be crucial in the team’s ability to score effectively.
Recent History: By looking at the recent history of the two teams playing each other, as well as how each team has been performing the past few games, you can get a sense of what you’ll see come gameday. If a team has been scoring 25-plus points all season, there’s no reason to expect anything else from them.
Weather: The weather has historically proven to have an effect on scoring outcomes. Although not always true, harsh weather conditions normally result in lower-scoring games as teams elect to run the ball more. Likewise, they will often air it out when playing in a dome since there’s no wind.
In addition to the above factors, the situations and scenarios can play a large role in the score — more specifically, the motivation behind each team. Some teams that have already clinched a playoff spot might elect to sit starters in favor of younger guys. Other teams might’ve just fired their coach and have a new guy at the helm.
These things can affect the gameplan for each team, which could lead to different results compared to their recent history.
Don’t Place Your Bets Too Early
Many people will place their bets four to six days before the game is scheduled to start. We’re all anxious to place our bets every week, but doing so too early can lead to a massive headache down the road.
There’s a lot that can happen in four to six days: Injuries, change of weather, trades, signings. The world of football is always moving, and teams are always trying to get better.
When betting totals in football, making your bets once the rosters are more secured can give you more confidence in your wager.
Avoid Biased Bets
We all have our favorite team that we root for every week, but we must learn to keep those emotions out of our final decision when betting. Although seeing our team score 40 points would be the best-case scenario, it can also be highly unlikely in the real world and not worth betting on.
If your team is going up against a great defense, be logical, and don’t give your team more credit than they deserve.
Research, But Use Some Gut Feeling
Whether we like it or not, betting will always involve a little gut feeling — and betting totals are no different. Some of the best advice to give is to do your research, look at the facts, form an educated opinion, and then let your gut do the rest.
Betting totals in football can be a great way to spice up your football weekend — or weekday — without worrying about a winner. Just guess the correct over/under, and you can find yourself with some quality winnings.