How often are NFL Point Spreads correct?

When it comes to NFL betting, there are many things to consider in order to make the entire process more profitable. It is very important for you to understand clearly how to read the odds and how they work.


This is why you’ll need to know how the rotation number, point spread, money line, and over/under are used in the process of betting. Bookmakers use the odds to even out the bets, enabling gamblers to place bets on both sides of the line by leveling the playing field. 

NFL Points spread
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In today’s article, we will talk more about the spread of sports betting. The point spread is one of the most popular types of bets in the NFL and lists the favorite team with a minus sign and the underdog with a plus sign. If both teams are equal, they will be listed as even.

When we talk about the spread, which is often referred to as the line, it is used to even the odds between two unevenly matched teams. So, this got us wondering, how often the NFL point spreads are correct and are the bookmaker system right all the time? Let’s find out.

How Bookmakers Use Spreads

Bookmakers usually set a spread with the hopes of leveling out the playing field and getting equal action from both sides of the game. For example, the Texans are a -3 points favorite against the Colts. The minus sign, as well as the number, represent the spread.

If you want to bet on the Texans, it would mean that they need to win by at least three points in order to get your profits. So, if the match ends up with the Texans winning the game by two points, you won’t win your bet.

Such spread suggests that both teams are fairly equal and, in such a case, the favorite team is the one playing at home. Since bookmakers see both teams in such a scenario as equal, they hope to receive an equal amount of money from bettors.

In a spread bet, the odds are usually set at -110 on both sides, depending on the sportsbook you choose. This means that whichever bet you place, you’ll end up winning the same amount of money.

Basically, the team with the minus sign, which is considered the favorite, has points deducted from its final score, while on the other hand, the underdog, has a plus sign in front, where points are added. The favorite must beat the spread, and the underdog must win outright or if they lose, they have to lose by less than the spread.

Even though most people think that the spread bets are even, paying 1:1, that is not entirely true. The actual odds are 0.90:1 which means that you are getting 90 cents back for every $1 you spend.

How Accurate are NFL Spreads

In order to find how accurate NFL spreads are, we need to study some statistics from the last couple of seasons. If we take the last four NFL seasons, we can see that the median spread of these games was 4, and the median outcome was 27-17.

In all of these games, the favorites won 66% of the games, which is surprisingly lower than other sports.

The average variance against the spread was 8, but there were many games with less than 5 points and games with more than 30 points.

In other words, spreads are pretty accurate but not as perfect as most people think.

Why are NFL Point Spread Bets So Popular?

Well, the most obvious reason why NFL point spread betting is so popular is because of the variety it offers. Unlike a traditional moneyline bet, with point spreads a team can win the game and still lose the point spread bet, or a team can lose the game but still win the point spread bet.

Winning the point spread bet is called covering against the spread, and only one team can have a winning point spread bet.

Additionally, bettors love spread bets just because they get an equal chance of winning the bet no matter which side they bet on. As we mentioned before, point spreads in the NFL are not always right, but in most cases, bookmakers set the perfect scenario to balance out a match. That way bettors can place a bet on either side and have very close or sometimes identical chances of winning the bet.

Final Words

The odds for the point spreads in the NFL and every other bet option that the bookmakers offer are run through a complex system that analyzes both teams, their form, previous matches, injuries, and all kinds of reports just to be able to accurately make the odds.

The odds basically represent probabilities in a match, and by analyzing teams and keeping records on all of their previous matches, bookmakers are able to create very accurate odds and paint the perfect scenario that is about to happen. With that said, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t a chance for the bookmakers to miss the point spread drastically. However, on average, spreads in the NFL are pretty accurate.

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