The sportsbook betting public has this impression that the point spread is an absolute, unchangeable number placed on the football games by the odds-makers. However, what you need to know is that with the sportsbooks providing the number each week, you can create your own line. With it you can take control over which team wins, reduces exposure to the action as well as protect your bankroll. The Adjustment process, as the name implies, is the process of making changes to a football betting line when circumstances change. Normally the first thing you should do is to determine a standard betting line, from where you can get a read on what the oddsmakers are thinking.
Typically the first thing to do is to determine the starting point spread for the game. This is the point spread that is used in the final football game of the season. Often you will see it referred to as the “money line”. The starting point spread will often change during the week. Often you will see it listed as a “line” spread. However, you can also see it listed as a column or a teCraps number.
The starting point spread will be determined by the oddsmakers based primarily on the public betting patterns for the week. To explain why this is important, if more people bet on the favorite the oddsmakers will recognize that they are creating more wagering opportunities for the favorite to win by setting the line higher, relative to the most popular bet on the best bet. If more people bet on the underdog the sportsbooks will recognize that they are creating more wagering opportunities for the underdog to win by setting the line lower, relative to the betting on the favorite.
Therefore, what you do is to determine which way the line will be set, the favorite or the underdog. If more people are betting on the favorite the line will eventually be set higher, relative to the betting on the underdog. If more people are wagering on the underdog the line will be set lower, relative to the betting on the favorite.
Therefore, you can take the sports bet of those who like the most or the least as it relates to the point spread. If more people are betting on the favorite than the underdog, the line will be set higher. If more people are betting on the underdog than the favorite, the line will be set lower.
Public Betting Percentages
One of the keys to successful football handicapping is understanding the public betting percentages and using them to your advantage. The majority of people simply bet on the favorites. According to the research group You foreclosure, quoted at the Las Vegas Review-Journal, over ninety percent of the people place bets on the favorites in the NFL. Only about ten percent pay attention to the “moneyline” books, regarding who they think will win the game, the point spread, or both.
For example, the Chicago Bears are great underdogs at home, according to the Las Vegas Hilton. Therefore if you placed a bet on the Chicago bears, you are betting against the betting number. On the other hand, if you place your wager on the Indianapolis Colts, you are betting for the betting number to come in.
Where you bet on the betting number depends on your risk appetite and preferred football betting format. Let’s consider the Chicago Bears game played last week.
The point spread was Chicago favored by 2.5 over the Green Bay Packers. This means, in order to win, the Bears need to win the game by 3 points or more. The oddsmakers who act at Vegas sportsbooks probably handicapped the game in their favor, setting the line at say -3.5 points. This means if you bet on Chicago and they win by 3 points or more, you will win the bet.
If you bet on the underdog than you will win the bet if they win by 2 points or less, but they will lose if they lose by 3 points or more.
Playing the Money Line
Another way to bet football games is to bet the money line. In this scenario, the odds are proverbially set at -110. This means you have to bet $110 to win $100. If you pick the favorite, you will have to risk $110 to win $100. If you choose the underdog, you will win $110 for every $100 you wager if they win the game by 2 points or less.
The best way to cash in on the money line is to bet the favorite. The reason is that the sportsbooks who set the money line odds will want to attract as many bets as possible on the favored team. The opposite is true if you pick the underdog. The lack of action on the underdog will create more money for the sportsbook if there is more betting on the favorite.
In the NFL, home underdogs are about a 70 percent favorite.