Betting on the NFL is undeniably thrilling and can actually become a profitable pastime. And for that, it continues to attract millions of football and betting fans. But while it is an exciting adventure, football betting needs to be approached with caution. You need to have a working knowledge of how everything works, and more crucially, avoid losing your money due to simple and common mistakes.
Today, we’ll look at the top 5 NFL betting mistakes that can easily change your betting experience from exciting to a nightmare.
Failing to Do Your Research
Betting is about taking a risk, but it shouldn’t be just any risk – it should be a calculated one. To be successful, you will need to make informed decisions based on research. Before you place any bet, ensure that you understand the strengths and weaknesses of each team, as well as how you think the game is going to look like in terms of tactics.
For the analysis, use historical data. You can look at the win-loss records of both teams, their home and away performances, head-to-head matchups, and recent trends. Beyond that, consider other factors such as injuries or recent coaching changes.
In most cases, the team being termed as the favorite will win. However, this is not given, and the NFL has lots of upsets throughout the season. Betting on the favorite team usually means wagering a huge amount of money for a small profit, as the odds are not favorable. As such, sometimes the risk may not be worth the reward. Looking at other bets such as point spreads may offer you much better value.
Overvaluing the favorite goes hand in hand with ignoring underdogs, which is another common mistake, especially among new betting fans. There are teams that may be performing quite well but are undervalued by betting markets. Always be on the lookout for such, as they offer great value.
Failing to Shop for the Best Odds
It’s not a good idea to only have a single sportsbook. This is because each one of them is different, and they also offer different odds based on their own assessments and strategies. The odds may also be affected by how other people in that sportsbook are betting. As such, always compare odds from different sportsbooks. While the difference may look like it’s small, it can mean huge differences in the long term.
Shopping for odds is quite easy as there are lots of online tools that compare odds from different sportsbooks in the US and across the world. This will save you time and effort while at the same time ensuring that you get the best value. If you have two or three sportsbooks that you like, you can also do a manual comparison using their mobile apps.
Ignoring Bankroll Management
If you ignore bankroll management, you can easily end up in a financial crisis or not being able to gamble anymore after depleting your allocated amount. The principle behind bankroll management is that you should only bet what you can afford to lose. To get started, determine the amount of money you are willing to gamble over a period, such as a month. You can then divide this into weekly deposits.
Now, every bet you place should be a unit of your entire bankroll. According to many experts, a single bet should only be 1% to 2% of your entire bankroll. This kind of management helps you absorb losing streaks (which are inevitable) without getting in a crisis. It also helps keep away emotions from your decisions.
It’s natural to feel that you need to recover something you’ve lost. But if that recovery is in betting, it is called chasing losses, and it’s one of the worst things you can do. First, recovering your money immediately means that you will have to wager an even larger amount or place a much riskier bet. Second, these bets are usually not well analyzed as they are driven by emotions, so the chances are that you’ll lose more money.
Chasing losses is based on emotional decision making, which can lead you to quick losses. It also goes against the principle of bankroll management. If you lose, ensure that you maintain a level head. Remember that takings risks means that you can lose, and that your profits should only be analyzed over the long haul.