There are those who believe that sports betting is the ultimate something-for-nothing activity. But in reality, betting pro football to win is a business and must be treated like one to be successful.
The basics of making money at this business are that the lines put out by the oddsmakers are made not to predict the actual outcomes of games, nor to educate the public about the relative strengths of teams, but to try to split the betting public by making one team as attractive as the other. Since the public’s view of a match-up is occasionally incorrect, lines are sometimes incorrect in terms of the real differences between two teams.
A professional bettor looks for these incorrect lines. When he finds such lines he wagers on them—and that is the only time he wagers.
And how does a winning handicapper find those inaccurate lines?
By dispassionately viewing as many games as possible, as well as post-game coverage of match-ups you couldn’t tune in to. By keeping records of scores, lines, injuries and game statistics for later research. By analysis of game stats and the tracking of motivational factors. By educating yourself on how oddsmakers set lines so you are able to detect real value. And most important, by shopping aggressively for the best possible lines on games you’ve decided to bet.
Virtually all of the successful sports bettors I know work hard at handicapping. We don’t just roll out of bed and make bets. We don’t go by “inside information.” The information I use is available to anyone who makes the effort to get it. To profit from handicapping the NFL, you should expect to make a similar effort. ´
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