He Did His Job: Belichick Nominated For Emmy

March 26th, 2020|0 Comments

Bill Belichick <a href=”https://www.sportsintel.com/brady-bids-adieu-to-patriots-new-team-tb-a/ “>may have lost</a> Tom Brady, but the New England Patriots head coach could win big elsewhere. As one of the all-time greatest coaches in the NFL, Belichick’s reputation and expertise related [...]

For Now, NFL Free Agency, Draft Still On Schedule

March 14th, 2020|0 Comments

The coronavirus is the biggest penalty the sports world could have ever encountered.  Unfortunately, the virus won’t ever be fined for its egregious attack.  While all major sports leagues have <a href=” https://www.sportsintel.com/sports-world-screeches-to-halt-as-coronavirus-spreads/”>already called it [...]

NFL CBA In Hands Of Players For Final Vote

March 5th, 2020|0 Comments

The fate of future football seasons is now in the hands of the players.  The collective bargaining agreement (CBA) prepared by NFL team owners and approved by the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) and player representatives [...]

Jones Responds To Aikman’s GM Comments

December 18th, 2019|0 Comments

Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and current FOX NFL analyst Troy Aikman would love to become a team’s general manager some day.  Aikman shared his interest in a recent interview and sees it as the next [...]

Week 15 NFL Playoffs Breakdown

December 14th, 2019|0 Comments

It’s Week 15 in the NFL and the countdown is on.  For the first time since 2005, only 20 teams remain in contention for a playoff spot and many are looking at certain elimination this [...]

NFL Week 14 Betting Rewind

December 11th, 2019|0 Comments

The NFL regular season is winding down but with the playoffs on the horizon, the betting season is just getting started.  Let’s check in on how the books did this weekend against the betting public. [...]

Bettors Win Big In NFL Week 14

December 10th, 2019|0 Comments

With only a handful of games left in the NFL regular season, gamblers are working to take advantage of every opportunity they have remaining to get in on the betting action.  There’s also postseason and [...]

Monday Night Preview: Welcome Back, Eli

December 9th, 2019|0 Comments

There’s not much of any guarantee on anything in tonight’s NFL game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New York Giants.  The only certainty is the Eli Manning is coming back in for the Giants [...]

Dogs Had Big Day In NFL Week 13

December 2nd, 2019|0 Comments

The NFL saw a lot of shakeups in week 13, especially with the NFC.  Those shakeups amounted to a big win for the books with underdogs barking loud on Sunday. The Underdogs made a lot [...]

Week 11 NFL Recap: True Story With Trubisky?

November 18th, 2019|0 Comments

Week 11 has been pretty solid in the NFL with, fortunately, no one else using a <a href=”https://www.sportsintel.com/browns-garrett-suspended-for-rest-of-season/ “>helmet as a battering ram</A>.  The intensity wasn’t any less than before; it was just without all [...]

NFL Week 8: Three Things We Learned

October 28th, 2019|0 Comments

1. “Neck injury” is the new term for “punished” in Denver Maybe it’s just a coincidence. Maybe the fact that Denver Broncos’ quarterback Joe Flacco tore his coach a new one for the team’s ultra-conservative [...]

Week 7 NFL Props: Go Gaga For Goff

October 19th, 2019|0 Comments

Week 7 of the NFL season is upon us and we have a few exploitable prop bets for your consideration this weekend. Derrick Henry (TEN) 48.5 rushing yards (-115) Los Angeles Chargers vs Tennessee Titans [...]

NFL Week 7 Odds: Early Edition

October 16th, 2019|0 Comments

It’s hard to believe, but we are almost at the halfway point of the 2019 NFL season as Week 7 is upon us.  So let’s go over the opening NFL odds for this week’s action [...]

NFL Waiver Wire: Week 7

October 15th, 2019|0 Comments

The NFL season is finally settling in and calming down on the injury front. But that doesn’t mean that the waiver wire isn’t any less stocked with widely-available players who could make big impacts now [...]

NFL Week 6: How About Those Cowboys?

October 14th, 2019|0 Comments

The NFL season hasn’t disappointed this year, delivering some big hits and big surprises.  Week 6 was no different, with several games delivering action that many fans weren’t expecting to see.  Sitting down as an [...]

NFL Week 4 Recap: Saints Remain On The March

October 1st, 2019|0 Comments

As expected, Sunday’s NFL lineup offered thrills and excitement, as well as some expected results.  Even some of the less noteworthy games still saw at least a few awe-inspiring moments, making the day’s ticket completely [...]

More Surprises In Store For NFL Week 4?

September 28th, 2019|0 Comments

After the Philadelphia Eagles scored a surprise win against the Green Bay Packers Thursday, this Sunday could see more shockers on the NFL gridiron.  There are a couple of key matchups in store and a [...]

The NFL’s Betting History

The NFL was founded nearly a century ago, and it has taken almost 100 years for betting on the sport to become more accepted, following the recent repeal of PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Act) in the United States. Moving forward, betting on NFL games will not seem so forbidden or taboo in the U.S. or around the world, as it is already becoming more mainstream, with corporate sponsorships coming in from casino resorts and legal wagering opportunities continuing to expand across the globe.

In fact, the planned move of the Raiders from Oakland to Las Vegas in 2020 signifies how far the league has come in terms of embracing a city best known for its roots in gambling, dating back to legalization there in 1931. Vegas had been previously viewed in a very negative light, but Raiders owner Mark Davis did not care and followed through on his father Al’s dream to bring the team to Sin City. The Raiders already have a partnership with Caesars Entertainment, and others may soon follow with similar deals.

With the Super Bowl also continuing to be the most heavily-wagered sporting event on the planet, there is unlimited potential for NFL betting in the U.S. and beyond. Sportsbooks will compete with each other to offer the most creative props and betting options, giving the public a bigger menu to wager than ever before. The debate on whether or not fantasy football should be considered a game of skill or another form of sports betting will be cleared up at some point as well, and it will not matter what you think eventually because it will all be one in the same. NFL betting is only growing.

The league’s history is well-documented, but not so much from a betting perspective. The goal here is to provide you with as many details as possible regarding when wagering on the NFL came to fruition, discuss current betting options and reveal handicapping tips that can help you beat the oddsmakers at their own game.

NFL Betting History

First and foremost, football fans will always remember Joe Namath’s famous guarantee 50 years ago that his New York Jets would upset the heavily favored Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III. You did not even have to be alive at that time to realize the significance of Broadway Joe’s prediction and how he successfully backed it up, leading the Jets to their lone Super Bowl victory against the Colts, 16-7, as 18-point underdogs. This is a player who was later elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1985 based mainly on this one huge accomplishment, as the rest of his injury-ravaged NFL career was pretty forgettable.

The New England Patriots (14-point underdogs in Super Bowl XXXVI) and New York Giants (12-point underdogs in Super Bowl XLII) are two other notable champions who beat the NFL odds with big upsets, thanks to the play of future Hall of Famers at quarterback. The defenses of the Patriots and Giants both slowed the game down and limited prolific offenses that are still known as some of the best of all-time. But it is New England’s Tom Brady and New York’s Eli Manning who we remember the most, just like Namath, even though neither of them was bold enough to guarantee a Super Bowl win.

While those three are probably the most memorable Super Bowls based purely on the point spread, the history of betting on NFL games obviously goes back much further. Before the Super Bowl even existed, there was the NFL Championship Game between 1933 and 1966. The Giants and Colts participated in “The Greatest Game Ever Played” in 1958 for the NFL Championship, with the latter winning 23-17 in the first sudden-death overtime game in league history.

The first Super Bowl then took place in 1967 between the Green Bay Packers and Kansas City Chiefs, as Packers head coach Vince Lombardi and quarterback Bart Starr both became legends by helping take home the second of their three straight titles overall.

Of course, there was wagering on those earlier championship games too, but many bettors used illegal bookies instead of going to Vegas, so it is hard to say exactly how much volume was involved back then, compared to today. Betting on NFL games was not even discussed publicly in the media on a regular basis until Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder had a regular segment picking games on the popular CBS pregame television show The NFL Today with Brent Musburger, Irv Cross and Phyllis George in the 1970s and 80s.

In 2017, Musburger, whose love of gambling was always evident in his broadcasting style, quit his job as a play-by-play broadcaster and moved to Vegas to help start the Vegas Stats & Information Network (VSiN), which has provided comprehensive coverage of sports betting. More and more media networks focused specifically on gambling have been created since then, and the NFL has been a heavy emphasis for many of them due to its popularity.

While betting on the NFL has always existed, it is being covered now more than ever before. That has also made it easier to re-trace the history, which is being told to us by those who lived it and appreciated by a younger audience who can learn from it.

NFL Online Betting Options

There are all types of betting options already available with NFL games, and the number of opportunities just keeps growing. From game point spreads and over/under totals to futures like odds to win the Super Bowl and season win totals to props such as who will score the first touchdown, NFL online betting options are at an all-time high. If you do not know much about any or all of these, you are definitely in the right place.

First, it is important to understand how NFL lines work in terms of betting on sides in individual games. If you look at the NFL odds on any game, you will see three different pregame betting options, the point spread, moneyline and total. The point spread is a number oddsmakers set at a sportsbook that shows the difference between the favorite and underdog, based on power ratings or other rankings between the teams.

The favorite must win by more than that amount of points to cover the spread, and the underdog needs to stay within that number or win the game straight up to cash. For example, if the Patriots are listed as 9.5-point favorites against the Raiders, then they would need to win by 10 points or more in order to cover. If Oakland loses to New England by nine points or less or wins straight up, then the underdog beats the number.

Meanwhile, moneylines are designed for NFL bettors who do not want to worry about covering the spread and would rather just wager on which team they think will win the game instead. But in that same game between the Patriots and Raiders, you would need to pay a hefty price on the favorite to win, although you would get rewarded with a much bigger payout on the underdog. For New England, the price would be -450 (bet $450 to win $100), and Oakland’s payout would be +350 (bet $100 to win $350).

Game totals involve the combined number of points scored between the two teams. So if the total is set at 45.5 points and you bet the over, you would need 46 points or more scored. Likewise, there would need to be 45 points or less scored to cash the under.

With point spreads and totals, you can also wager on them for smaller parts of the game, like quarters and halves. NFL online betting offers many of these types of additional game options, so it pays to have an account to ensure you do not miss out.

In addition, futures have become increasingly popular as more of a long-term investment over the course of the entire season. They can pay off nicely if you have a long shot bet like the St. Louis Rams in 2000 when they won the Super Bowl behind little-known former Arena Football League quarterback in Kurt Warner, who remains the last player to take home the NFL MVP and Vince Lombardi Trophy in the same year. The Rams cashed at 200/1 for the biggest future odds payout in Super Bowl history.

Season win totals are much more of an investment though because you are simply wagering on how teams will perform during the regular season, again going over or under a certain number without the benefit of getting astronomical odds. Instead, you generally bet on a moneyline, with either the over or under favored at a price like -140.

Finally, props and live wagering round out the different NFL betting options. Props can involve different events that happen before, during or after a game, especially in the Super Bowl. Will the coin toss result in heads or tails? Will Brady throw a touchdown pass or interception first? What color will the Gatorade be that is poured on the winning head coach? These are examples of Super Bowl props widely available over the years.

Then there is live wagering that continues to evolve despite being the most difficult NFL lines for oddsmakers to book. Think about it, sportsbooks need to be able to follow every play and react in real-time to set new numbers every few seconds. Live wagering is the present and future of NFL betting, and more and more sportsbooks will offer it.

NFL Handicapping Tips

Now that you know the many different NFL betting options, it literally pays to know how to wager on them successfully. If you think about NFL betting like playing the stock market, then you can probably understand why research is so important. Handicapping games before wagering on them is essential unless you are just betting blindly or letting others spend your money. If you want to win money betting the NFL, you must earn it.

In the Internet age, there is so much information out there that you have to go through it with a fine-tooth comb on a daily basis and consider the sources very carefully. Even the media can be tough to trust sometimes, so having more than one source is always advised before placing a wager. You certainly do not want to throw your money away, and there are a lot of so-called experts out there who claim to know more than they do.

That said, following newspaper beat writers on Twitter is one of the best first steps you can take to keep track of NFL teams. They are the ones watching practices, talking to players and coaches and forming opinions on what they see and hear from teams. It also helps to follow others who you believe to be true experts with a history of accuracy.

Speaking of history, looking back on what happened in prior seasons can actually help you the most. Studying past game logs for teams can tell you how they fared against the spread (ATS) along with their over/under total results. You will also see all of their scores versus their opponents, and then can use your own judgment to determine if they are worth betting on this time. From there, you can even choose to narrow down your focus to a particular division so that you do not have to handicap all 32 teams.

Having a specialty might be the best NFL handicapping tip you can get. Do you like to wager on teams ATS or prefer handicapping totals? Have you followed the NFC North more than any other division to the point that you yourself feel like an expert? Ultimately, being confident and trusting yourself is the best way to win at NFL betting.