NFL Football Handicapping
by Predictem.com Staff
Before we get into this long-drawn out article please let us issue a disclaimer here. There are OODLES of ways to handicap and bet on a football game. We're going to go over a few that we like to use. That does not mean that yours or any other method of handicapping will not work. These are just a few of many variables we use. In all candidness, we could write a 300 page book about the topic, but we're relegated to cramming as much as we can in one page here with hopes of sending you down the road of becoming a winning football handicapper.
Fading the Public: Let's kick off the conversation by saying that the NFL spread is based on public perception. Few football games land on the spread. Have you ever noticed that? The oddsmakers put out a number each week with hopes of getting action on both sides. It rarely ever goes down that way though. The public is like a dog humping a leg and seems to chase any and all favorite point spreads year in and year out despite the fact that they get creamed year in and year out.
The idea here is to wait till late in the week to see what the public is betting. You can find this information in the consensus picks section of Wagertracker.com or Wagerline.com. If the public is one siding a game and the point spread is moving in the other direction, that's because sharp action (wiseguys) are betting the other side. This is a great way to coattail football picks or at least use this info as supporting info when making your own plays. Hence the term "fading the public."
Turnovers: Some teams are susceptible to turning the ball over more than others. This may be because their QB is a dipstick or they have a running back who has stone hands and tends to fumble more than the norm. It can also be because an offensive line is undersized and getting dominated by a defensive line which isn't giving the QB enough time to find open receivers which forces him into mistakes that lead to getting hit and fumbling or passing into coverage that he might have otherwise seen had he had time to to setup in the pocket and make a nice clean throw. Nonetheless, you need to find teams that make more turnovers than other teams because this stat is a gamebreaker.
Solid Defense: There's an old saying you may have heard in the past. It goes a little something like this "defense wins Super Bowls." It does! It also wins regular season games! As much as we love offense and have great passion for seeing the ball fly 60 yards in the air the truth is that a good defense will override a good offense 6 out of 7 days a week. This may result in you betting on some real low scoring games which is boring, but if you stick to the good "D's" out there your wallet won't be empty which is not so boring at all!
Streaks: Don't confuse this with trends! Streaks is a team playing well together. Team chemistry. A finely tuned machine that plays well together and produces wins once the final buzzer sounds. Trends are old stats from years past. Streaks are things happening in the current year and much more true and valuable. This goes for both good and bad streaks. They don't last forever, so you almost have to spot them at their midway point in order to use them to your advantage. Conversely don't forget that good teams win games and bad teams cover!
Using Stats: Many handicappers out there use stats. This is great as long as you know what is useful and what is crap. Let's mention trends again here. Trends are great supporting information, but no play should be based on stats involved in trends from games that were played 20 years ago! They sound great but are absolutely worthless!
Read Sports Betting Forums: There is a plethora of information in sports betting forums. A forum is a gathering place for people from across the world to meet and share information. There is abundant regional info that your not going to get because you don't live on the other side of the states. What's better than Barry the Bear from Chicago coming in to announce that he's just heard the starting Center is out for the Bears? Info that you'd have to dig deep for but that he heard on his radio because he's in that market and is a forum member who comes to share info! Conversely, if your in L.A. there's lots of Raider/Niner/Charger info that you may have that Barry surely doesn't. Share! It's free and it's wonderful! We have forums right here on this site and their high traffic as well! Check it out: Predictem Sports Betting Forums.
Weather Reports: Check the weather. Bitterly cold temperatures and precipitation can mean lots of running and low scoring calling for an under play if the line hasn't already moved down a ton. (See: NFL Weather Reports)
Injury Reports: Injuries happen! Stay tuned to these weekly if not daily to make sure that your not missing a key player! (See: Injury Reports)
There are MANY more methods of capping football games. We just covered a few here. Be sure to keep an eye on the main NFL page as we're constantly writing new articles!For more ideas on handicapping football games, check out our tips, strategies and advice articles!
Editor's Picks - Each week our in house pro's tackle the week's card and make predictions on the week's games ATS! Best bets, top plays, premium selections, etc. FREE!
Expert NFL Picks - Free premium plays from the "real" expert football handicappers from around the web. Don't fall for second rate picks from ESPN, the NFL Network, Hank Goldberg or the screaming touts on TV.
Underdog of the Week Pick - We forecast the loudest barking dog of the week. Expect a 60% winning percentage with these plays.
Favorite of the Week Play - We examine "the chalk" and determine the safest bet in which who you should lay the points with. Forecasting winning favorites long term isn't easy, but we've had some pretty good luck with it over the years.
Line Movement Plays - We report all the major line moves from the gridiron and forecast whether it's public money or sharp action causing the move. Who will cover the spread this week? Our line move plays!
NFL Consensus Picks - See what the general public is betting on. We use this info to fade the public to the tune of big profits over the course of the season.
Bookies Picks - Each week, we'll post which side the bookies are on. Please note: These are not OUR picks. We're simply reporting the teams the bookies need to cover the spread in order for them to win. Games receiving equal action on both sides will not be factored into these records.
Office Pool Picks - (Coming in 2015!) You asked for it and you got it! Each week, we'll post our predictions to win each game straight up so that you can RULE your office pool!
NFL Trends - Don't ever let anybody tell you that the trend is your friend. These picks make great fades which is exactly what we do with them.
NFL Computer Picks - We enter the statistics into the database and the computer crunches the numbers and gives final score predictions. These should be used for entertainment only!
Monday Night Football Picks - The ultimate bailout play. Our MNF picks are golden and have hit 62% or better 3 out of the past 4 years. (Last season was a disaster!) Did we mention that their FREE?
2014 NFL Predictions - Badger makes projections on each team's record and whether or not they'll go over or under their posted season win totals at the sportsbooks.
Super Bowl Picks - Everybody here in the Predictem office takes their best preseason shot at predicting the winner Superbowl 49. Pride is on the line here! Oh, and LOOT too!
5Dimes - Bet your NFL football picks at -105 odds every day of the week! 15 team parlays! 20 point teasers! Pleasers and huge point buying opportunities as well!
Bovada - Tired of deposit hassles? Bet on football using your credit card at a sportsbook where your Visa CAN and WILL work for deposits! Offers a 50% sign-up bonus up to $250 FREE!
MyBookie - Credit cards work GREAT here! Get a massive 50% bonus up to $2000 in free cash!
GTBets - You get to select 2 NFL teams and get a FREE half point every time you bet them! Offers a generous 100% bonus on deposits of $100 to $500! One of the best at accepting credit cards for deposits!
Super Bowl Betting - We explain all the different types of wagers you can making including point spread bets, totals, moneylines and prop bets. No need to go to Vegas! You can bet the big game online!
Weekly Fantasy Football - If you drafted a crappy team or the injury bug has bit you and wrecked your season, we've got something really cool to turn you on to that will change the way you play fantasy sports forever!
Famous Football Quotes - From the inspirational to the greatest touchdown calls of all time. We've got them!
Pro Football Hall of Fame - A full list of NFL players who have been inducted into the NFL HOF.
The Spread - Offers free NFL football predictions, matchups, stats including both offensive and defensive and more!
Fantasy Football Sites - Get recommendations on where to find weekly updated player news, depth charts and legit websites that offer the best stat and record tracking for your fantasy football league.