How To Bet On Football in the USA

Football is the most bet on game in the United States.  Football and betting go hand in hand with each game being so meaningful and the scorelines lending themselves very well to spread betting.  The passion the football fans have here in America translates to strong opinions and putting your money where your mouth is through betting.  The NFL and NCAA are two of the most bet on sports leagues in the United States.

On this page I’ve provided all the information you need to start betting on football from here in the USA.  I’ve recommended three great sportsbooks for Americans, provided examples of the three most popular football wagers and included a 3 step guide you can follow to get you started betting on football online.

Where To Bet On Football From the USA

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These are our three top rated betting site for US residents.  All three of these sites is committed to serving the sports betting market in the United States and has built a strong reputation among American bettors over the past decade.

Check out the reviews of any of the sites to see a detailed overview of their bonuses, promotions, deposit/withdrawal options, customer service and more.

Football Betting Options

Below I will look at the three most common types of football bets (point spread, money line, and over/under) and use examples to explain them in detail.

Point Spread

Spread betting is the most common type of bet on a football game.  The oddsmaker sets a spread, which attempts to put the two teams playing the game on an even playing field, where a bet on either side of the spread would payout the same amount.  You will typically see odds of -110 on either side of the spread indicating that you would win $100 for a $110 bet.

The favored team must win the game by more than the spread amount for a bet on them to win, while the underdog must either win the game outright or lose by fewer points than the spread to be the winning play.

Let’s look at an example:

  • Houston Texans +6.5 (-110)
  • New England Patriots -6.5 (-110)

In this example the Patriots are 6.5 point favorites over the Texans.  To win a spread bet on the Pats they would have to win by 7 or more points.  If the Pats win by 6 or fewer points, or the Texans pull off the upset, then the Texans +6.5 is the winning side of the bet.

Money Line

A money line bet is simply wagering on which team will win the game straight up.  Instead of using a spread to even the playing field, the oddsmakers set odds for each team which indicate the potential risk/reward of the bet.

Let’s continue with the Texans vs Patriots example to really understand the money line:

  • Houston Texans +235
  • New England Patriots -295

The Patriots are the favorite, so a bet on them will win less than a bet on the Texans.  In this example you would need to bet $295 on the Pats to win $100.  Meanwhile, a $100 bet on the Texans would win $235 if they pulled off the upset.

Check out our understanding sports betting odds page if you’re confused by how we get to these numbers from the above odds.

Over/Under (Totals)

The last popular football bet is the over/under, also known as “Totals”.  With this bet you are wagering on the total number of points to be scored in the game by both teams combined.  The oddsmakers will set a total number of points and you can wager on whether there will be more (over) or fewer (under) points scored in the game.

Here’s the example from the Pats vs Texans game:

  • Over 51 (-110)
  • Under 51 (-110)

If 52 or more points are scored in the game then a bet on the over would win.  If 50 or fewer points are scored in the game then a bet on the under would win.  If exactly 51 points are scored then the bet would “push” and all wagers on this bet would be refunded.

3 Step Guide To Betting on Football Online

Follow these three steps to start betting on football online within minutes.

#1. Open a Sports Betting Account

The first step is to open an online betting account.  You can choose between any of the sportsbooks we have recommended above.

For the purposes of this 3 step guide I will be using, which is our top rated betting site.  They offer a wide range of odds on all football games from the NFL, NCAA and CFL and they accept players from across the United States with no State restrictions.  Whether you live in California, Texas, Florida, New York or elsewhere you can bet on football at SportsBetting.

Click here to visit and fill out the short form on the home page to open your account.

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#2. Deposit

Next you will have to deposit to have funds to bet on football.  Click on ‘Cashier’ in the top right corner of the screen, select one of the deposit options and complete the instructions to fund your account.

Use promo code SB1000 when making your deposit to opt-in to the 50% up to $1000 first deposit bonus.

#3. Place Your Football Bets

Now that you have money in your account it’s time to place your bets.

Click on ‘Sports’ from the top navigation bar and open the ‘Football’ drop down menu on the left sidebar.  From here you can select which league you want to bet on (NFL, NCAA or CFL).

Here is a screenshot showing some of the clicks to make to find the NFL betting lines.  You will notice the spread, money line and totals betting lines featured for each game.

Choose the bets you want to make and complete your wager in the ‘Bet Slip’ on the right sidebar.

That’s it.  You’re ready to bet on football online!  Click here to visit

And check out our betting guide section for a few more articles to help get you started.

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