Football: Don’t Forget The Situation

I’ve noticed that the situation (not the guy above) is playing a larger role in football betting than ever before. This may not be anything new but I’m noticing it more often now.

Baseball is my numberĀ one love in life and baseball is probably my favorite sport to bet on. That’s followed by the NBA. I think I like the grind of the long seasons. Football (college & pro) betting stresses me out because most of the games are on the same day and it falls 3rd on sports I like to wager on.

That said, I may still enjoy the football season more as a fan. Strange, I know. Here are some examples of the situation playing a role in football winners and losers:

  • Home teams on night football games. This is something that goes back to Monday Night Football when I was growing up and carries over to Saturday Night college football games along with Thursday & Sunday night NFL game.
  • NFL non-conference road games. These games matter less to better NFL teams because they weigh a little less in playoff tie-breakers. TeamsĀ can be ripe for an upset or not to cover the spread when playing in this situation.
  • Look-ahead games. This is similar to the example above, but seems to effect colleges more. Last week’s USC loss to Arizona may have been because they were looking ahead to a bigger game this weekend against Oregon.

There are more examples of situations playing a role in football betting and I’m noticing myself looking at the schedule more than ever to see if there are games that are a place where a team may not have their head in the game.

This may not be anything new to experienced sports bettors, but it is relatively new to me. I’d rather the games be more about data like baseball and basketball but it seems the mental part of football is a bigger part of the game than ever and it’s something to pay attention to.

Even if it’s nothing especially new, I figured I’d share my revelation. If you know of other situations we should look out for leave a comment below or tweet me and I’ll pass it on.

photo: VH1


  1. JMP

    one rule I used to live by is look for the road underdogs who win outright in week x and then are favored at home the next week. They almost always fail to cover.

    that said, I’m not sad I gave up picking games. there are too many variables. Home-field advantage has evaporated due to the new stadiums (w/ the exception of Seahawks Stadium) being too nice and quiet. Stars who get hit in the head probably won’t return to the game. I could go on; It’s just too unpredictable.

    • Marc

      JMP, That’s a let downs are a great one to attack. You’re right about home field playing less of a role in the NFL outside of Seattle. It still can play a large role in CFB…especially for those night games.

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