A Quick Guide to NFL Betting in 2020


Now the 2020 NFL season is past the half way mark, we’re already getting for the finale. For many of us, wagering on the outcome of games can bring some added interest, as we stake on the winners and losers each week, play the points spreads or even try to predict which players will make the biggest impact.

Betting on the NFL can be fun, although it can sometimes be tricky to understand fully, if we’re not entirely familiar with the terminology or the way odds are presented at sportsbooks. With that in mind, this quick guide aims to point novice bettors in the right direction, focusing on “Futures” and “Game Lines” as two of the most popular betting options.

Team & Player Futures

Arguably the easiest of all NFL betting to understand, “Futures” are simply a way of predicting how any given team or player will perform through the course of the season. It’s worth taking note of what the handicappers at OLBG have to say, as they are bound to have researched into areas you won’t have begun to consider! “Futures” are always popular at the start of a new campaign and in the opening weeks, they are almost like a ranking with betting odds, as everyone attempts to predict which teams and players will be the most successful.

One of the favorite NFL betting lines amongst fans is the Team Futures market. This year the New Orleans Saints and the Kansas City Chiefs are considered to be the leading teams. 

For added value, most of the leading sportsbooks also offer odds for Conference Winners, Division Winners, and the chance to back which teams will make the playoffs. Win Totals can also make for interesting betting, with the chance to predict whether teams will achieve over or under a certain number of winning results during the regular season.

In addition to predicting how teams will fare, there’s also the chance to back our favorite players with Awards betting. The big individual prize each year is the NFL Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award, presented in conjunction with the Press Association. Quarterbacks often dominate and amongst the favorites for the 2020/2021 award are Patrick Mahomes, Kyler Murray, Russell Wilson, and Aaron Rodgers.

Game Lines

Whenever you’re delving into the Game Lines area of NFL betting with most of the leading sportsbooks, you’ll typically find three main options. The easiest to understand is the Moneyline, which is essentially a straight up bet on which team will win the game, regardless of how many points are scored and the margin of victory.

As opposed to picking an outright winner, NFL Point Spread betting is a way for oddsmakers to level the playing field a little, while also making things a little more exciting. Points are added (+) to the final score for the underdogs and subtracted (-) from the final score of the favorites. 

The aim of Total Points betting is to predict the final score of a game. Essentially, what we’re betting on here is the combined score of both teams, rather than a winning points margin or an outright winning team.

Presented as Over (O) and Under (U), the aim here is to successfully back one or the other, based on the combined score offered by the sportsbook. 

Playing Safe

The best tip when betting on American football is to do plenty of research, before placing your bets. Make use of useful NFL statistics websites which feature lots of information, study which players are in form and how teams are performing, as this will always help you to judge whether odds offered by sportsbooks are good value.

Set yourself some limits when betting, including a starting bankroll that you’re comfortable with. Try to avoid emotional betting as that can often lead to mistakes, keep to the data and let statistics be your guide, even when your favorite team is playing. Finally, always make sure your betting is fun and if at any point it isn’t, stop for a while.