The Basics
3 Min
how to bet

Each year, the NFL tops the list of most bet on sports leagues in the USA and it’s easy to understand why. I mean, what’s not to love about a sport that can be as physically violent as a UFC fight, but has the tactical and strategical subtleties of a game of chess? It’s no wonder millions of Americans love to enhance the experience with a small wager on NFL games every Thursday, Sunday and Monday. The good news is, it’s easy to join in the fun with our Bet Basics five-step guide for gambling on the NFL!


Before we start with our 5 step guide, there's one important thing you should ALWAYS do -

We know it's basic, but we also know most problems begin when we're trying to chase wins. Set a budget aside, one that if you'll lose, won't completely ruin your day/week/life… Our team at Bet Basics is here to will help you make the most out of your set betting budget, but please, gamble responsibly and keep it fun. OK, ready to get started? ;)


A little bit of research can go a long way when it comes to gambling on the NFL. While not everyone can be an expert analyst for ESPN, having a small understanding of what you’re investing your hard-earned moolah into is always a sound strategy. I mean, it’s certainly a better option than picking teams based on an interesting name or because you think their uniforms look cool (although I kid you not, my mother once won a family NFL Pick ‘Em competition using this system). Anyway, here’s a few basics to out look for:

  • Check the standings to get an overview of each team’s win/loss record.
  • Check recent results to see who the form teams in each Division are, the score-lines from recent games and how teams have performed against their opponents in recent matchups. 
  • Check the injury report to make sure you’re across which players will be sidelined for the games you’re betting on. The average NFL game has more big hits than a Beatles album, so line-ups tend to change from week to week as players get hurt. This can have a major impact on the outcome of games! 
  • Check out our Bet Basics expert picks and predictions for the NFL. We dive into the NFL research rabbit hole and do the heavy lifting for you so you can spend more time watching games with a beer in hand and earning real money from your bets today!



Now you’ve got a bit of knowledge under your belt, it’s time to choose what type of bet you want to make. Here are a few of your options (click the links below for more info):


Money line - Pick the team you think will win the game.

Spread - The sportsbook applies a points handicap to the favourite to level the playing field.

Totals - Bet over or under the total number of points the sportsbook anticipates will be scored. If you take the over, expect confused looks from non-bettors as you cheer when both teams score!

Props - Bet on specific elements within a game such as individual player performances or what colour Gatorade is going to be dumped on the Super Bowl winning coach (yes, this is a real thing you can wager on).

Live Betting - Place bets in real time while the action on the field is already taking place.

Parlay - Combine multiple picks from separate games on the one bet slip.

Futures - Bet before or during the season in advance of an event taking place, such as picking the Super Bowl winner.


It’s important to understand how the odds are displayed in each of these markets. For newbies visiting an online sportsbook for the first time, it can kinda feel like you’re trying to decipher the code from the Matrix. Luckily for you, the team here at Bet Basics makes it easy with our detailed guide on how to read and interpret NFL betting odds.



Shop around for a sportsbook to wager with starting with our Bet Basics list of 100% licensed and regulated legal sportsbooks.


Be sure to do an odds comparison and go with the bookmaker offering the best odds for your chosen bet. The higher the odds, the bigger the return on your wins. The odds differences between sportsbooks might seem minimal, but it will add up over time!


It’s also worth keeping an eye out for any promo offers such as bonus bets, bet matches and odds boosts for NFL games. I’m not sure about ya’ll, but I absolutely love freebies and while these promotions come and go, they are a great way to maximise your potential return on investment.



Once you’ve found the sportsbook with the best odds, place your bet. Stick to your budget and never wager more than what you’re willing to lose!



There’s no shortage of ways to bet on NFL games and it’s a great way to add an additional level of excitement as a spectator as well as an opportunity to turn a cheeky profit. You might even find yourself rooting for your favorite team’s biggest rival if it means a winning bet! Have fun with it, gamble responsibly and good luck!


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