Do Trends Matter in NFL Preseason Odds?

December 1, 2010 NFL Football

Are trends helpful when you bet NFL preseason odds? What trends would be worth looking at for NFL preseason betting?

Here are some numbers to consider as you get ready to bet preseason games for 2010.

NFL preseason odds begin with the Hall of Fame Game which is an extra game for both Dallas and Cincinnati.  They will play five preseason games while every other NFL team will play four.  The Hall of Fame Game is a neutral site game so many trends don’t apply to that game.  The first week of the preseason is where you can start looking at home and away trends.

You would think that home teams would win more often vs. the NFL preseason odds than road teams but you would be incorrect in that assumption.  Home teams actually don’t win more often than road teams. In fact, they are not a good bet at all when laying points in NFL preseason betting.  You can almost do well enough betting against home favorites to make money on a consistent basis in the preseason. Road underdogs are at about 54% vs. the spread the past decade.  When you examine this number a little further another trend comes into play. Many times when you think of a big home favorite you think they do well.  That is not the case in the preseason.  Big preseason home favorites are a very poor bet against the point spread.  They lose vs. the number about 60% of the time.  In the preseason the starters rarely play the entire game so covering a big number is tough to do.

What about taking a team at home when they are an underdog in the preseason?  This is one trend that makes sense and that has worked over the past decade. When a team is getting points at home in the preseason they have been solid vs. the point spread, winning over 60% of the time.  It really has not mattered how many points a team is getting at home. Small home dogs and large home dogs have done equally well. This makes sense since many times in the preseason the points are the way to go.  Home teams don’t do well as favorites but as underdogs they have been a profitable bet in the preseason.

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