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Making Big Wagers in Big Games

NFL Betting: Making Big Wagers in Big Games

By Loot, NFL Handicapper,

When we are betting on NFL football, we need to bet the same amount on all the games. That seems like basic and overstated advice, as you will hear that time and again whenever football wagering is discussed. But it really bears repeating. A lot of betting men make the mistake of betting bigger when the games are more important. Remember, we're not on the team. Just because the players, coaches, and fans are putting everything into the game doesn't mean we should follow suit.

It can be hard for a bettor to put in all into perspective. Each game is an opportunity to beat the spread. We maintain high standards and make our picks the best we can. Regardless of how hyped a game is, it should be looked at as simply another game that we may or may not bet. The fact that it is a big game is something that affects the players and their fans. The betting man has to be above that.

For the players, a week two game will just not have the same importance as a playoff game. But for us, it's really the same thing. Just because the stakes are higher for the team does not mean we should increase our stakes. A lot of guys who had good seasons betting get sideways during the postseason. They see that instead of 15 NFL games on the board, there are only a few. That shouldn't be an invitation to go hog-wild.

A lot of bettors will more heavily weigh playoff games. Perhaps a bettor bets an average of $1000 a week on NFL games, about $200 a game. Now that it's the postseason, he might keep bet his normal weekly allotment on one game. It's like he thinks he's in the playoffs!

Not that there aren't bettors who do extremely well in the postseason, but on paper, it's really the worst time to start increasing bet size. NFL lines are known to be among the toughest in the sports betting industry. And that's just in the regular season, where there are over a dozen games for the oddsmakers to sort out. In the postseason, there are far fewer games and they have the full and undivided attention of the best in the business. Those postseason spreads can be extremely tough.

So why double or triple bet amounts at that point? When the value is at its hardest to come by, that would seem like the last time a person would want to get involved. Do shoppers flood the stores when the prices are at their highest? Of course they don't. So why do bettors go so big at the betting window when the value is as its worse? Doesn't make sense, does it?

This is a good way to determine if a bettor is truly serious or if he's more of a thrill-seeking type of betting man. A serious betting man is all about value. He is not looking to have a stake in the glamorous games, he's looking to make money. A guy who has been showing profits over the course of years does not bet according to how popular an event is.


The sage betting man knows that the more an event is hyped, the worse of a proposition it actually becomes. He sits there shaking his head as the bettors pour into the book trying to slug it out with the oddsmakers when they're at their best. A bettor who is concerned with value would be more likely to go big in a preseason game, where soft spreads can be exploited, as opposed to a postseason line that leaves little to be desired.

It's understandable why bettors flock the windows in the postseason. Some of this enthusiasm comes from a good place. After all, you're at least betting on teams you can figure will be at their best, or at least feeling the urgency more than in the regular season. You may figure that it's the safer bet, being that the peaks and valleys you see from a team in midseason are not as likely to manifest in a playoff game. But remember, the other team has the same thing going for them as well and it sorta cancels out. At the end of the day, making your biggest bets of the year when the lines are the toughest and the value is at it's worse is just not a good idea in the long run.

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