The football section of our website, OnlineBetting.com, has a great deal of football betting strategy articles written by professional sports bettors. The information contained on this page here is far simpler than any of the others. Here I discuss betting systems, which are meant as advice for the casual bettor who doesn’t care about efficient market theories or boring betting math and just wants to learn a few systems for the purpose of cutting bookmaker advantage. As a professional sports bettor, I thought long and hard over this guide, and then refined and refined it some more. I’m now rather confident this is the best list and explanation of the internets top football betting systems.
System #1 – Shop Against Pinnacle Sports
PinnacleSports (no U.S. players) is where the largest and most successful bettors make their wagers. They operate on the lowest margins and offer the highest betting limits and fastest payouts. www.pinnaclesports.com is no doubt the benchmark website for seeing what the fair betting price is on a football game. Meanwhile recreational online betting site www.bovoda.lv (US players allowed) services mostly sports fans betting on their favorite team. Bovada charges a lot more juice and often shades the line in such a way that juice is distributed disproportionately with more of it going to the most popular teams. A solid betting system for those in the US is to only make wagers where you can get within 3 cents of the Pinnacle price. This means if you’re betting at -110 the price at Pinnacle must be -107, -108, -109, or -110 on up. When doing this you have no greater than a 3.1% advantage to overcome, which is much better than the 4.55% advantage you would need to overcome otherwise.
To make sure I’m clear if the lines at Pinnacle are Jets +4.5 -107 / Patriots -4.5 -101 and the US betting site you’re using has Jets +4.5 -110 / Patriots -4.5 -110, under no circumstances should you bet the Patriots. Even if you love the Patriots and think they’re going to crush the Jets in this game, the largest and most successful bettors in the world controlling the market at Pinnacle disagree. Now if you like the Jets for some reason than this is a perfectly fine price. And, to note from here: this system alone is not strong. It’s an overall system you should adopt and then use with other systems. For example if a team that falls under another system shared on this page and they also meet this system here, then you have a much stronger bet.
System #2 – Play The Motivation Factor
This system here suggests teams who are blown out the week before, and teams that lose late in a game due to 4th quarter heroics of the opponent (or their own costly mistakes), are far more motivated the following week. These teams spend the week hearing it from each other, their coaches, family, fans, etc. and don’t want to experience it again the following week and therefore practice hard and with focus. So, if a team lost 38-10 the previous week this week you should consider betting them. Also, if a team was winning in the 4th quarter, but then lost the lead with 21 seconds left, this is another team you should be looking to bet. Now meanwhile vice versa is true but only applies to underdogs. If an underdog blows out an opponent or comes from behind and wins with 21 seconds left this is a team you should be looking to bet against. This is because these teams are partying and celebrating the win, get back to practice emotionally charged with a slight bit of overconfidence to contend with. Follow these factors week to week and match them up with system number one, meaning only bet when within 3 cents of the Pinnacle price and you’ll start drawing much closer to having an edge.
System #3 – Purchase the Correct Half Points
I cover a bit of the reason behind this system on the page containing our NFL Half Point Calculator. As you’re probably aware many online sportsbooks allow bettors to purchase up to three half points at ten cents each. Meaning if the line is -6 -110 you can buy to -5.5 -120, -5.0 -130 or -4.5 -140. The only exception is point spreads involving 3 or 7, these are either restricted or costs more. My system for half point buys is this. Start with system #1 on this page, and then if the point spreads are -10.5, -14.5, -17.5, +9.5, +13.5 or +16.5 always purchase two half points.
When to Purchase Half Points:
- -10.5 purchase to -9.5 by purchasing two half points 20 cents
- +9.5 purchase to +10.5 by purchasing two half points 20 cents
- -14.5 purchase to -13.5 by purchasing two half points 20 cents
- +13.5 purchase to +14.5 by purchasing two half points 20 cents
- -17.5 purchase to -16.5 by purchasing two half points 20 cents
- +16.5 purchase to +17.5 by purchasing two half points 20 cents
This is very strong system when combined with System #1, #2, or #4. It becomes even stronger when it meets system #1 and at least one additional system.
System #4 – Correlated Parlays
In cases where the over under betting total is 35.5 or less with a point spread of 7 or large, AND in cases where the betting total is 49.5 or more and the point spread is 10.5 or larger – you should consider betting in parlays instead of straight bets. Your bet should be either favorite/over or underdog/under. The reasons why are covered in my article on football parlays. This is perhaps an important article to read before using this particular system as you need to make sure you’re getting the maximum payouts. Now to be clear this system on its own is not profitable. However if you match it with any of the other three systems on this page you end up with an excellent bet.
System #5 – Wong Teasers
While the first four systems on this page work together, the final one here is independent and currently works only at www.bovada.lv and only for NFL football. This system is to tease all underdogs between +1.5 and +2.5 (or +3 -125) and all favorites between -7.5 and -8.5 in 3-team 6-point teasers. However there is a catch, before using this system you should compare odds at two other US friendly betting sites (example: betonline.com and bookmaker.eu) to make sure that the team you’re about to tease at +2.5 (or +3 -125) is not listed as +3 -110 at either of these sites or that the favorites between -7.5 and -8.5 cannot be found at -7 or less at another site. These are merely cross checks; the instruction is eliminate those selections when found.
If all checks out with line shopping and there are three point spreads in a given week that meet this criteria this is the best football betting system that you’ll ever find. I warn though it only works for NFL football, and also this only works at Bovada. This is because Bovada pays +180 on 3-team 6-point teasers while Intertops pays +170, Bookmaker +160 and BetOnline +150. This system is referred to on forums as Wong Teasers, for reason the logic behind it was shared in the book Sharp Sports Betting by Stanford Wong. Our own website takes this strategy even deeper in our article on teaser betting strategy.
Thinking Outside Betting Systems
The football betting systems on this page are very easy to follow. If you get some time however and want to take it slightly to the next level, I suggest reading my article on fade the public and then the contents of our no-vig calculator page. From here you’ll start to gain new ideas about sports betting and end up well equipped to assimilate teaser betting strategy mentioned earlier. Next if you want to get into the early stages of handicapping, football prop betting is a great place to start. No matter if you stick to these top 5 football betting system or learn from our more advanced strategy articles, I, on behalf of everyone here at OnlineBetting.com, wish you the best of luck.
Author: Jim Griffin