Before placing a bet on the NFL, it’s crucial to understand how to interpret NFL odds and how they operate. You need this fundamental knowledge to place wise bets. Before wagering, read this “Reading NFL Odds with Minus & Underdogs” article, and make sure you also take a look at our content about the Top Football Betting Sites: Where to Bet on NFL.

You will need to understand the meanings and how to use the rotation number, point spread, moneyline, and over/under. These phrases might all go under other names. The moneyline is also known as the line, the point spread is now known as the spread, and over/under is also known as the total. The rotation number is frequently referred to as the number or the rotation mark. When it comes down to it, these are the main concepts that fall under the odds category.

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By leveling the playing field with NFL odds, bookmakers can encourage bettors to place wagers on both sides of the line. Despite the NFL’s overall parity, certain clubs are wealthy and others are not. Indianapolis still has an advantage over Cincinnati, but when the two teams play, the bookmakers must persuade nearly half of the bettors to wager on the Bengals. Being that way, the bookies are making sure they would profit significantly from almost every game.

How to Read NFL Odds and Understand Rotation Numbers?

When reading NFL odds, the date and time of the game will be displayed on the left, followed by two numbers with the names of each club next to each number. This rotation number is what’s known as that number.

The rotation numbers used by sportsbooks are all the same. Without saying the team’s name, the number serves as a method to allude to the game and the team. It’s a form of abbreviation. The rotation number also enables each book to list the games numerically in the same sequence. In essence, it’s a technique to maintain order among all the games posted daily and throughout the week. This simplifies things for both the bettor and the bookmaker.

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For example

Let’s use a game between the Indianapolis Colts and the Cincinnati Bengals as an example. In this context, the Colts, the visiting club, will be placed first on the NFL odds slip, while the Bengals, the home team, will be listed last. If Indy’s rotation mark is 101, Cincy’s rotation mark would be 102. It is as follows:

NFL odds

Date/Time Rotation Number Team Point Spread MoneyLine Total
Sep 15 101 Indianapolis -10.5 -380 37.5
1:00 102 Cincinnati +10.5 +255 37.5

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How to Read Spread NFL Odds

The various NFL odds are displayed to the right of the team’s name. The spread will typically come first. The moneyline and over/under are shown after.

The favorite team is marked with a minus sign and a number on the point spread, which is the most common sort of wager. The underdog is marked with a plus sign and the same number.

The favorite team, which is represented by the negative sign, have points taken away from its final score, while the dog, represented by the plus sign, has points added. To succeed, the favorite must surpass the point differential. If the underdog wins outright or loses by less than the spread, they will profit.

For example

Cincinnati is at +10.5, and Indianapolis is at -10.5. If you wager on the Colts at -10.5, which indicates that they are the favorite, they must win by at least 11 points to get your money back and win. Cincinnati is the underdog in the game. Thus, betting on them will pay off if they win handily or lose by fewer than 11 points.

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In our hypothetical scenario, if the spread is adjusted to 10 and the Colts win by 10, the game has been deemed a tie, or what bettors call a push. All bets are off in a push, and the sportsbooks refund all stakes to the bettors.

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How to Read Money Line NFL Odds

You will typically see a number next to each spread. For example, your stake could be indicated by the number -110. In this case, the figure indicates the minimum wager required to win $100. You can win $100 if you wager $110 on that team. You can win $10.00 if you wager $11.00, and so on.

A number with a minus sign is displayed next to the favorite. The amount of money that must risk to win $100 is represented by that number. On the other hand, the underdog is indicated by a plus symbol before the number. That figure displays how much you will win if you bet $100.

Following our example, Indy would be listed at -380 and Cincy at +355. A sports bettor would need to put $380 on the Colts, the favorite team, to win $100. A $100 wager on the Bengals, who are the underdog, has a $355 profit potential.

There is a connection between the money line and the spread. Depending on the sportsbook, the precise relationship may vary slightly, but the correlation is as follows:

Point Spread Money Line
-1 -120/+100
-2 -130/+110
-2.5 -140/+120
-3 -155/+135
-3.5 -175/+155
-4 -200/+170
-4.5 -220/+180
-5/-5.5 -240/+190
-6 -270/+210
-6.5 -300/+220
-7 -330/+250
-7.5/-8/-8.5 -360/+280
-9/-9.5 -400/+300
-10 -450/+325
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Deposits and Withdrawals:

and much more

How to Read Over/Under NFL Odds

The total or over/under is the final primary wager you’ll see listed while looking at NFL odds. The over/under forecasts how many points both teams will score. The total is typically displayed as a fraction or decimal.

The over/under for NFL odds can change, but it typically ranges from 35 to 47 points. Let’s assume that the total for the Colts vs. Bengals game is 37.5. The over would win if Indianapolis scored 27 points and Cincinnati scored 13, bringing the total to 40. However, if the Colts score 25 points and the Bengals 10, the 35-point total would be lower.

The outcome might be a push if the total is listed as a whole number, as it occasionally is with the spread. Consider a scenario in which the Bengals score 13, the Colts score 24, and the total is exactly 37. If this occurs, all wagers are paid out.

If you can comprehend NFL odds and understand the meanings of the various items, such as the rotation number, point spread, moneyline, and over/under; you will have a basic knowledge about what you’re betting on, and you’ll be prepared to start placing your bets!