A very big step to becoming a winning sports bettor is to make sure you are shopping for the best lines. What this means is that you will have to have an account at a couple of different online sportsbooks and when you are ready to make a bet on a certain team or outcome you check the different sportsbooks and find which book is offering the best line for you (this ties in with our advanced how to find max value article). For example, if you are looking to bet on the New England Patriots on a 7 point spread, you would want to check a couple different sportsbooks to see if any of them are offering the Patriots at 6.5 points, or at the very least find the best price you can get them at 7 points at. Over the course of a sport betting season you can win yourself a lot of money from shopping the lines that would otherwise would not be one. Line shopping is definitely one of the best sports betting strategies used by winning sports bettors. To see a list of sportsbooks we recommend signing up for visit our Online Betting Sites section.
Some of this is easy enough to read. The Redskins -4 means the Redskins are favored to win and must do so by at least 5 points for a bet on the ‘Skins to pay out. The next number (-200) is the moneyline, in this case the Redskins are a 2/1 favorite. The last number (38) is the total, the over/under of the expected number of points scored in the game.
Betting on your favorite teams or players in the case of some propositions is one of the biggest traps that amateur bettors fall into when betting sports. Sure, we can understand the appeal of betting on your favorite team, kicking back and rooting them on, but if you’re trying to win money at sports betting, this is far from optimal. Not only is wagering disproportionally on your favorite teams a –EV decision, but it’s also an area where bettors are missing an important edge because of their bias.