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The NFL regular season is about to kick off which means top sportsbooks will be hopping for the next several months. The National Football League’s shortened pre-season has already prompted punters to place futures bets and other prop bets on the NFL regular season. There is plenty more NFL betting action to come.

This guide will give you all the information you need to prepare yourself for an exciting NFL betting experience. You’ll learn about reading betting odds, the types of bets you can place, how to choose the best NFL betting site, and much more.

This year, each team’s NFL season schedule now features 17 games. This is one more game than they have had to play since the league moved to a 16-games schedule way back in 1978. Instead of the schedule having a total of 256 games on it, there will now be a total of 272 NFL regular-season games. Seeing how top sportsbooks for NFL betting often give punters over 100 different betting options to choose from for a single game, the number of wagering opportunities throughout the NFL season will be astronomical. And that’s just the pre-match betting options. NFL live betting gives you even more opportunities to find favorable betting spots.

For those unfamiliar with the National Football League, there are 32 NFL teams spread out in 8 divisions. Four of those divisions are in the American Football Conference, and four divisions are in the National Football Conference. To make it into the NFL playoffs for a shot at the Super Bowl, a team must either win its division or make it in as a Wild Card team. For example, in the AFC last year, the Buffalo Bills, Kansas City Chiefs, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Tennessee Titans won their respective divisions earning each of them a ticket to the post-season. The Indianapolis Colts, Baltimore Ravens, and Cleveland Browns made it in by having the three best records outside of the division winners.

BrandTotal SportsCash OutBet BuilderFree Bet ValueVisit Site
26 Yes Yes 50
31 Yes Yes 100
34 Yes Yes 300

How to bet on the NFL

Before you think about placing NFL bets and Super Bowl futures, you must first learn how to read the odds. Think of the odds as a price tag. NFL odds tell you how much you have to pay to win a certain amount of money. Let’s look at the Week 1 season opener between the Dallas Cowboys and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. One of our favourite bookmakers has the Cowboys at 4.06 on moneyline while Tampa is priced at 1.27.

So, what do these odds mean? Well, if you want to bet C$100 on the Cowboys to win the game, and they win, you would receive a payout of C$406. This includes your stake. On the flip side, those who back the Buccaneers would have to risk about C$363 to win C$100 (C$463 including the stake). Betting on a favourite may be less risky, but the payouts are lower. Betting on the underdog is riskier, but the payoff is higher.

In our example football bet above, we showed you the odds in what’s known as Decimal Odds. However, there are a few different ways to express the odds. American odds are displayed in terms of “+” and “-“. The team with the “-” number is the favourite while the team with the “+” number is the underdog. In this case, the Buccaneers are -363 while the underdog Cowboys are set at +306. The -363 tells you that you need to wager C$363 to win C$100 and the +306 tells you that a C$100 stands to win C$306. While decimal odds and fractional odds are commonly used in North American sports betting, fractional odds are standard at European-based online bookmakers.

In addition to telling you which team is favored and how much you need to risk in order to win a certain amount, the odds also tell you how much commission your bookmaker is charging you to place the bet. That’s right! Bookmakers make their living by charging commissions on each bet they accept. This commission is sometimes called vig, juice, or the betting margin. While odds margins are a topic for another day, we can tell you that the commission for betting on the Tampa – Dallas game at this particular bookmaker is 3.06%. That’s a low odds margin which means you stand to win more money if your bet wins.

BrandFree Bet ValueLoyalty ProgrammeFree Bet ExpiryBonusVisit Site
300 Yes 7 Days Deposit C$300, Get C$300 in Free Bets
100 Yes 7 Days 100% Welcome Offer up to C$300 + 50 Free Spins
19+. T&C Apply
100 No 7 Days 100% Sportsbook bonus up to $500

NFL Betting Options

The best NFL betting sites give you a huge selection of pro football wagers to choose from. Here are some of the most popular bet types.

NFL Moneyline Betting

NFL moneyline betting might not be as popular as betting against the spread, but it is the easiest and most straightforward football bet. You have only two options. You can either bet on Team A to win or Team B to win. It’s as simple as that.

NFL Point Spreads

A point spread is the great equalizer of NFL betting. Going back to that Dallas – Tampa game, we know that the Bucs are favored. The moneyline told us that. Not only are they favored, but they are favored pretty heavily. So how does the bookmaker get people to be on the big underdog? Well, they add a point spread which, in this case, is 8. So, if you pick the favored Tampa Bay to beat the spread, you need them to win by 9 points. A win by 8 would be a push. If you bet on Dallas, you need them to either win straight up or lose by no more than 7 points. It’s a push if they lose by 8.

NFL Totals Betting (Over/Under)

Betting on totals is another straightforward process. Let’s say the Cincinnati Bengals are playing the Chicago Bears and the game total is set at 41.5. You can either bet on the total combined final score exceeding 41.5 points, or falling short of it. If you bet the Over, then you need a combined total of 42 points or more. Those who take the Under win their wagers if the combined total score is 41 or less.

It’s worth mentioning that there are a few different totals to be on in NFL games. The total combined score for the entire game, the total combined score for the 1st or 2nd half, and even team totals. In fact, you will find that most prop bets are based on the Over/Under concept.

NFL Futures Betting

NFL Futures betting requires a certain amount of patience because they play out over the course of a full season. What is a futures bet? Well, getting betting action on the Seattle Seahawks to win the Super Bowl is a futures bet. So is wagering on Zach Wilson to win the Rookie of the Year award. These bets won’t be decided until after the season is over.

Will Saquon Barkley rush for over 1,249.5 yards this season? Will the New Orleans Saints make the playoff? Will Patrick Mahomes pass for 4,000 yards? These are all examples of futures bets. One of the biggest benefits of placing futures bets is that they give you plenty of hedging opportunities down the road.

NFL Prop Betting

Prop bets generally pertain to random events that can happen throughout an NFL game. They are usually categorized as player props, team props, and game props. Furthermore, they are usually Over/Under bets. For instance, a Week 1 prop bet in the Steelers – Bill matchup asks if Ben Roethlisberger will complete over 24.5 passes, or under 24.5 passes. If he completes 24 passes, then the Under is a winner. If he completes 25 or more, then the Over cashes.

Bookmakers offer a wide variety of NFL prop bets. Those who want to place Super Bowl bets can wager on such props as:


As you can see, prop bets have little to do with which team wins. Instead, they focus on events that can happen within, and sometimes outside the game.

NFL Parlay Betting

As opposed to placing a single selection on your betslip, parlay bets have multiple selections. The upside to wagering parlays is that they have the potential to pay out large sums. However, every selection you add decreases your chances of winning. You see, you need to get all of your selections right to win a parlay. A single losing selection kills the ticket.

While you will see your selections, the odds, and the potential payout on your betslip, you can calculate the payout manually by multiplying all the odds and the stake together. Let’s say you parlay the following plays and stake C$10.

Green Bay Packers Moneyline 1.50

San Francisco 49ers -3.5 1.91

Jets/Patriots Over 40.5 1.93

To calculate the combined odds, simply multiply them together. 1.50 x 1.91 x 1.93 equals 5.53. You then need to multiply the stake amount into that which gives you a total payout of C$55.30. Of course, that adds up to a profit of C$45.30 when you subtract the stake amount from payout.

BrandCash Out SportsCash Out In-PlayCash Out - AutoCash Out - PartialVisit Site
31 Yes Yes Yes
19+. T&C Apply
34 Yes Yes No
32 Yes Yes Yes

Choosing a Sportsbook for NFL Betting

Sportsbooks aren’t created equally. While some are very good for NFL betting, others should be avoided at all costs. We must also recognize that punters aren’t created equally either. Some look for the biggest bonuses while others put more stock into the odds. Many experienced punters will take the best odds over the average welcome bonus any day.

No matter what your preferences are, the easiest way to find a great NFL bookmaker is by reading our expert reviews. If you want bonuses and promotions; we have the best ones right here. If you want a bookmaker with the best odds; we’ve got that too. Our dedicated sports betting aficionados closely examine all facets of online bookmakers and deliver unbiased and honest assessments.

Some of the most important things to look for in an NFL online bookmaker include:


Competitive NFL Odds

We’ve mentioned the importance of getting the best odds, but you might not appreciate just how crucial this is. Imagine you are at a department store looking for a new pair of shoes. You find the pair you are looking for and see they are C$129. However, that exact pair of shoes is on sale for C$99 at the department store next door. Which pair will you buy? Most reasonable people would go for the C$99 pair next door and save themselves C$30 in the process.

Betting odds really aren’t any different. Let’s say you want to bet on the Jacksonville Jaguars to beat the -2.5 spread against the Houston Texans. One sportsbook has Jacksonville -2.5 priced at 1.85 while a competitor is offering Jacksonville -2.5 at 1.93. Placing a winning C$100 wager on the spread at the first bookmaker would result in a profit of C$85. However, that same wager at the other bookmaker would net a profit of C$93. That’s a pretty big difference. It’s easy to see how this difference in the odds can add up over an entire NFL season. In short, getting the best NFL odds can be the difference between making money and losing money. This should also illustrate why experienced punters value great odds over bonuses and promotions.

Mobile Betting on the NFL

Mobile betting has had an enormous impact on sports betting. Thanks to technology, sports punters can now check odds, place wagers, and even live stream the sports action while they are on the go. It doesn’t get any more convenient than that!

While most sportsbooks offer apps, you don’t need to download one because modern online sports betting sites are configured for mobile devices. All you need is a good wireless internet connection and a mobile browser. This is like having a 24/7 bookmaker in your pocket.

Free Bets or NFL Bonuses

As much as welcome bonuses and NFL promotions are an effective way for bookies to attract customers, they can also be very beneficial to punters. Claiming welcome bonus cash, free bets, or risk-free bets can help punters fatten their bankrolls. Those perks can be a lot of fun too.

While some bonuses and promotions may look like good deals, you have to make sure you read the terms and conditions to find out how great they really are. A C$100 welcome bonus is worth claiming if the wagering requirements are reasonable, but high wagering requirements and other limitations will put a damper on it.

Remember to regularly check back here to find the best cash bonuses, NFL free bets, and other NFL deals like cashback, enhanced odds, and other valuable offers. You’ll find them right up to Super Bowl Sunday.


Check Out: Legal Alberta Sports Betting sites and major sports to bet on.


Safety and Security

Many people are hesitant to send sensitive information over the internet. And rightfully so. There have been several cases of hackers and other malicious ne’er-do-wells gaining access to all sorts of delicate personal and financial details. This is why the best bookmakers pay special attention to using the most modern and effective internet security technology.

The online NFL bookmakers we endorse all use state-of-the-art tools such as SSL encryption and advanced firewalls. In layman’s terms, this is the same kind of technology used by major financial institutions like banks. You can be confident that our recommended bookies provide punters with a highly secure and safe environment.

Contributors

Contributors

Hi, I'm Dean Ryan

"A passionate sports betting broadcaster and journalist with over 15 years spent in the gambling industry."

Interests
  • Sports Betting
  • Odds Compiling
  • Horse Racing

Reviewer since June 2016

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