It’s almost football season, which can only mean one thing: It’s almost football betting season! The NFL preseason is in full swing, and the regular season will get underway in early September. While betting on game outcomes is still the most popular way to bet on the NFL, prop bets have become incredibly popular, too.
In case you’re unfamiliar with the concept, a prop (proposition) bet is similar to a futures bet. Prop bets are wagers focused on individual players or a specific event taking place over the course of a game. Prop bets burst into the American mainstream back in the mid-80s when sportsbooks started to offer odds on whether Chicago Bears defense tackle William “The Refrigerator” Perry would score an offensive touchdown during Super Bowl XX. Betting odds on the prop soared as high as 75-to-1 during the week leading up to the game, and it wound up paying out after Perry plunged into the end zone in the third quarter to put the Bears up 44-3.
Prop betting has been synonymous with the NFL ever since. The best NFL sportsbooks on the web offer all sorts of different prop betting options throughout the course of the season and into the playoffs. While most associate prop bets with the Super Bowl, you can find props for just about everything when it comes to pro football these days.
If you’ve never tried NFL prop betting before, what are you waiting for? Here’s why you should try NFL prop betting this season.
Prop Bets Are Fun
Betting on game outcomes and over/under totals is entertaining in its own right but doing so can become a bit stale after a while. The vast majority of money bet on NFL games comes in on the spread or on the moneyline. However, if you’re willing to risk a little more while a game is ongoing, why not try a prop bet or two?
If nothing else, wagering on a prop during a game will provide some additional entertainment. One example of a prop could be “Will Tom Brady throw for over/under 250 yards during the game?” Watching Tom Brady work his magic is even more fun when you have money on him to put up massive numbers.
While most prop bets involve individual player statistics and scoring plays, some sportsbooks will even have a little fun with their offerings. Prop bets for the Super Bowl tend to be even more over-the-top. For example, one popular prop every year is whether the opening coin toss will land on heads or tails. Another prop may be whether the pregame national anthem will take over/under 2 minutes to sing in full, while you can even bet on what color tie the play-by-play man may be wearing.
Prop betting has become an industry in and of itself, but the activity’s roots are based on having fun. The main reason to try NFL prop betting this season is that you will enjoy yourself, especially if you happen to win.
Football games tend to last a while. Most NFL games typically last anywhere between 2 ½ and 3 hours, so if you’ve placed a bet on a game prior to kickoff you’re going to have to wait a while before cashing in those winnings. However, because most prop bets will hit or miss prior to the end of a game, you can cash out more quickly if you take shots on some props.
Using the aforementioned prop regarding whether Tom Brady will top 250 passing yards in the game is a good example. All games are different, but it’s not unfeasible to suggest that a player could go over 250 yards at some point as early as the third quarter of the game. If that happens, you’ll be able to collect your winnings sooner than you would if you had to wait for a game’s final result.
While most game outcome bets have to be finalized before kickoff, there are still some prop bets available after a game has started. “Which team will be the next to score a touchdown?” or “Will either team kick a field goal during the third quarter?” are prime examples of props that can be wagered after a game has already gotten underway. So, if you’ve missed the chance to place a bet on a game before it starts, you can always try your luck on some in-game props instead.
While sportsbooks will employ countless experts and data analysts in order to generate the most accurate point spreads, moneylines, and game totals as possible for every NFL game, they don’t spend nearly as much time or as many resources on prop bets. So, there is a certain edge to be had in prop bets that you won’t necessarily find in more traditional forms of NFL betting.
Because most of the money comes in on things like the spread and moneyline, bookmakers generally don’t spend as much time on figuring out the best odds to slap on some props. Frankly, most “over/under” statistical props are generated by oddsmakers that happen to look at a player’s statistical averages. It’s hardly a scientific process.
Keeping an eye on injury news is one excellent way to gain an edge. For example, if a player is listed as “questionable” to play due to injury, there is a good chance his backup will benefit from the starter’s potential absence. The odds may be slow to adjust to a player being listed as unavailable to play, which is a perfect time to strike as a bettor. The probability of the injured starter’s backup hitting the over on a number of statistical props just got a whole lot better.
If you do the proper research as a bettor, you can use the lazy bookmaking methodology to your advantage.
New Props Every Week
While your hopes of winning your fantasy league may be dead by Week 5, fresh prop bets are generated each and every week. And, best of all, the best sportsbooks offer countless prop betting options on each and every game. There’s an old adage about how putting some money on the line may make an otherwise unremarkable game more interesting. Prop betting is getting bigger and bigger every year, but there is still plenty of money to be made.
The NFL is the most popular sports league in the United States by a comfortable margin. The fact that you can watch literally any game on any given week is nice, but nothing beats the experience of getting invested in a game via prop betting. Given the wealth of options at your disposal and the amount of money you stand to make, why not try betting on NFL props this season?