Betting on the NFL is big business, making up a staggering 40 per cent of all sports betting in Nevada, the home of Las Vegas.
Super Bowl alone can reap in $8 billion in betting each year alone. So how can you beat the bookies in a sport where so much money is tipped in?
Here is the EziSports guide to taking on the bagmen and getting maximum bang for your buck in the NFL.
The common handicapping method used in most team sports, and the most popular betting option in the NFL. Bookies will give the unfancied team a head start of x points, which means they can lose and you can still win.
This is the best market to focus on if your research determines an underdog is a serious chance on multiple levels. This way you hedge your bet, in a way, by giving yourself a headstart and a buffer against the favourite.
This is the basic odds, where one team will have shorter odds than the other. If you believe an underdog is a ripping chance, this is your opportunity for value.
This is the market where you are looking at how many points will be scored in a match. Bookies will set a line and you can choose to go over, or under. Look at all circumstances when placing your bet. Rain and snow can halt the flow of points, as can injuries to key touchdown receivers and quarterbacks. Assess history and matchups between the two sides as well, as sometimes they can both grind and other times it is regularly a shootout.
This is where you can have a bit of fun, but be careful you don't blow your stack. The NFL will toss up hundreds of unique betting markets based on individual and team performances. If your research shows that a single player stands out in a certain category against a certain team, you can make money easily using this market. If you just want to have fun, the Super Bowl delivers a ridiculous volume of props which can including how long the national anthem will be. Yes, seriously.
Like Australian football codes, you can gaze into your crystal ball and look deep into the future of the NFL season. When it comes to predicting division winners and Super Bowl combatants, we recommend extensive research. This means watching drafts, trades, injuries and rehab stories very closely. Watching how an underdog team has been improving can be a key indicator. But what you really need to look for is their weaknesses and how they have strengthened these areas.
This can be quite a lucrative market for the savvy and those willing to put in the work.
Like with all sports, we recommend having accounts with all the major bookies in Australia.
This is because some are faster (or slower) to move their lines than others, offer different bonuses and promotions and the lines in general will vary. This way you can always ensure you are getting the best odds, price or even a middle bet if you are fortunate.
And make sure you read the terms and conditions of the bookmakers when it comes to pushes, injuries etc. Don't let them get you with the fine print.
Josh Alston is a hack with over 12 years industry experience, covering sport across all codes for newspapers and online agencies. Known to frequent grade matches because of their cheap tinnies. Eventually graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism and a Masters in sitting on the hill when the local cricket side was playing. Softball premiership winner, rugby league legend in Year 10 and no stranger to Doomben Racecourse.