The National Football League, better known as the NFL, has ramped up their efforts to expand their support outside of their home in the US. Thanks to the NFL International Series, regular season games are now being played in places like London and Mexico City. But what does that mean for NFL bettors and their approach to the market?
When betting on the NFL, there are certainly a few strategies worth considering to ensure you find value wagering traditional "football" games played in the States. But when the world's largest professional American football league takes its talents across the pond, or even the globe, there are unique factors to consider!
The continental US, which excludes Alaska or Hawaii, is home to four time zones, so NFL fans are no strangers to the affects of time change. A team from California might play a game across the country in New York at 1 pm EST, which equates to the California team playing the game at 10 am, or 3 hours earlier, back in their home state.
These factors are worth considering for games played on US soil but a few hours difference doesn't play the biggest role in terms of the game's outcome. Factor in that London is 5 hours ahead of New York and 8 hours ahead of California, and you realize teams that make overseas trips are a lot more susceptible to the time difference.
Also consider jet-lag to partner with the start-time change and teams can notice affects never experienced prior to international NFL gameplay. As NFL games continue to expand to locations all over the world, including throughout England, bettors should be wary of the time changes and the potential effects it could have on wagering.
The United States has long been close, at least in terms of sharing sporting events, to their boarding neighbors, Mexico and Canada. The three most powerful countries in North American continent even committed to hosting the 2026 World Cup together as opposed to a single country hosting all the games.
It should then come as no surprise to find out when the US started looking to expand it's NFL fandom, they immediately started with their northern and southern neighbors. Mexico City and Toronto were obvious targets and continue to be for future plans thanks to to their realtive proximity to major US cities featuring NFL teams.
Teams in Texas and California, which border Mexico, already have a solid following of Mexican and Mexican-American fans while teams along the northern border, like the Bills of Buffalo, have attracted Canadian and Canadian-American fans. So due to the fans familiarity and the lack of time zone changes, their is no real difference between US games and games played in Mexico or Canada.
If the time zone changes and jet-lag were factors for NFL games in the UK, you better believe they play an even more influential role in games to be played in Asia, other parts of Europe or even Australia. For comparison to the 5 to 8 hour difference in the UK, China and Australia see 8 to 15 hour differences depending on the home state of the competing NFL teams.
So as discussed in regards to games in London, the time changes can have a huge impact on the outcome of the game or the freshness of a star player. But there's more; Asian and Australian bettors are not as familiar with the NFL as say the UK, Mexico or Canada, which could mean a lot for betting markets, like more wagers, heavier coverage, and unique circumstances.
Take one look around all the top online bookmakers and you'll be hard-pressed to find one that doesn't feature a wealth of coverage on NFL odds. That's because betting on the NFL can be a very lucrative endeavor if you use odds from a reliable bookmaker and utilize a proven betting strategy, like checking the player props.
But despite the league's massive presence among the top betting markets, the NFL's heavy US concentration has limited its ability to reach the interest level world-wide as say the EPL or IPL. Thankfully, when the NFL heads overseas, like to the UK, the interest is spiked, meaning more interaction and potential for betting value.
Whether you're betting on NFL games in England, China or even the US, be sure to consider a solid betting strategy. Understanding what factors may affect the game's outcome or the abilities of key players is vital to long-term betting success. Head over to bet365 anytime to find odds on all the latest international NFL games!