Gaining an edge against the online sportsbooks when betting on the NFL should always be part of any serious sports bettor’s overall strategy when it comes to maximizing a return on investment. While most sports bettors would agree whole-heartedly with this statement, how many of them are constantly looking for ways to find that edge?
The early results this season in the NFL have been heavily weighted towards the underdog with an unexpected winning percentage of close to 60 percent. Since the betting public as a whole has the strong tendency to naturally lean towards favorite, most of the big online books have been cleaning up at the betting window so far.
Moving forward, this trend could change at a drop of a dime especially with the oddsmakers constantly making any necessary handicapping adjustments as the season wears on. Just because something happened three weeks in a row, does not mean that it will happen again. You always have to keep in mind that any sportsbook is going to tweak their betting lines to move money one way or the other. Most time these moves are just as much based on public perception as they are on the early money coming in. If the books want you betting on Dallas this week, they will act accordingly to move money that way.
As a smart NFL bettor you always need to be aware of the opening line of a game, the closing line of a game and all the different movements in between. By using the early betting trends as a guide and tracking the current betting line moves with the books you might be able to see a certain pattern emerge. You need to distinguish between which NFL games the betting public has shifted towards the underdog and which games they are clinging to the favorites to finally come around.
Rest assured that the sportsbooks are doing the exact same thing so they can move the betting lines accordingly. It is never smart to bet games on trends alone, so the real key to gaining that all important edge against these books is to start thinking just like they do. Going against the betting public is a strategy as old as playing the No Pass line in craps, but to be successful at this over the long haul, you need to know which games to jump all over and which games to completely walk away from.
To the untrained eye, making decisions such as this may appear to be a tall task, but you would be amazed to find out just how much you can learn by comparing these early season betting trends to the current line moves at the books for the next week’s games. The trends will continue to shift over time and before you know it you will find both the underdogs and the favorites much closer to a winning percentage of 50/50 ATS. That is why early in the season when things are out of balance is one of the best times to try and win big.
Another good way to create an edge between the early trends and the current line moves is to track them across a wider spectrum of sportsbooks in the range of five or six of the biggest. This can expand the picture out dramatically as to what is really going on behind the scenes as the betting money comes in all week long. You job as a smart bettor is to use these movements to find the one or two games where the public is dead wrong and the books know it.