Research is the key and in a truly American way life has been made easy for the punter. For anyone serious about spread betting on American football, the annual NFL Record and Fact Book is a must. The game is run on numbers like no other. The average yards rushing a particular player makes per game, a team’s average number of first downs, how likely they are to have penalties—almost any detail of the game can be put into statistics and they are nearly all available in the yearbook.


The individual teams’ websites and the league’s own bkeep the figures updated throughout the season. The latter will even break down the trends for a team coming into a game depending on the circumstances. So, for instance, the figures are available on whether a team has a record of playing well or badly when it plays on grass in temperatures below freezing after winning the previous week. This is taken even further with individual player performances extrapolated from their previous five weeks’ form.


As with most sports, individual game betting revolves around total points and supremacy. One good indicator is to follow the ‘Vegas line’, a handicap mark for each game which usually comes out on the Tuesday before the weekend games. The Racing Post includes the figure in their preview of the games, but it is worth five minutes on the internet tracking down the handicaps when they are first published. What particularly is worth noting are any major changes in the Vegas handicap mark over the week.