NFL betting lines begin with a favorite and an underdog. Let's start out with the myth that the better team is always favored in NFL betting. The reality is that inn many cases nothing could be further from the truth. Contrary to what is often put out by the media or at NFL online betting chat boards, just because a team is favored over another does not mean that the oddsmakers think the favorite is the better team. What the oddsmakers believe is that the public thinks they should be favored.
This may surprise you to learn that the NFL betting lines are not “pure” and based on the precise merits of the teams in a matchup. The reason that the NFL online betting line is not always what it should be, and why the wrong teams are sometimes favored, is because of public perception. NFL betting is no different than the open market with stocks, goods, and services. The public demand or lack thereof, is what will ultimately set the price in NFL betting.
Let’s look at an example. Let’s say that the New England Patriots hosted the Detroit Lions. Without a pointspread, everyone would bet the Patriots in NFL betting. That is why there is a pointspread, so that there will be relatively equal consumer demand for action on both teams. Even with the pointspread, however, it is likely that New England would still draw more demand than Detroit. This is because the mainstream public often thinks more in terms of “straight up” rather than with pointspreads. What this means is that New England would likely be favored by more than what is actually merited, since the public will still lean with them.
This, ultimately, is what leads to what a gambler should be looking for with the NFL online betting lines, and that is value. The public is going to take New England far more than they would bet Detroit. That doesn’t mean though the Patriots will cover the NFL betting pointspread. Sometimes the value might be with the Lions. True, the Lions would be an ugly underdog, but they could be an NFL betting pointspread winner. That is what it is all about in NFL betting. You want winners, and sometimes taking the perceived weaker team is the way to find them.