While the gap has closed with other professional leagues becoming more and more popular from a sports betting perspective over the years, the National Football League has dominated that landscape for decades now. The excitement leading up to Week 1 of the NFL regular season can be overwhelming at times for the biggest fans of the sport. It can also influence bettors to act a little reckless as a result of finally getting some action once Week 1 eventually comes around. We took a look at some of the biggest mistakes that NFL bettors tend to make in the opening week in order to make sure we put it out there so that you can avoid running in to the same issues. Here is a look at the mistakes to avoid for Week 1 of the NFL season.
Failing To Do Your Homework
The biggest mistake that NFL bettors tend to make is that they haven’t done their homework heading in to Week 1 of the regular season. With so much time to study in the offseason, there really is no excuse for not being ready once for the games that actually matter.
However, the reality is that a good percentage of casual fans don’t take the necessary time to review offseason changes including coaching hires, free agent signings, draft picks and so on. Then once Week 1 arrives they end up betting on teams that they aren’t actually as familiar with as they should be. Of all the mistakes that NFL betting fans can make, failing to do their homework before the regular season is one of the worst and yet still it is somehow very prevalent.
Not Watching Preseason Football
One of the best times to do the necessary research for an upcoming season is during the exhibition schedule. While the star players don’t tend to play much in the regular season, the game broadcasts usually do an excellent job of dissecting the teams in action including the changes both teams made in the offseason, how they have evolved and what their expectations for the upcoming season look like.
By studying the preseason action, you can get a good idea of current team projections at that point in time. While you might not appreciate the quality of the football, preseason games are one of the best times of the year to do your homework for the upcoming regular season.
Overlooking Injuries And Suspensions
Another mistake that football fans tend to make is overlooking key injuries and suspensions heading in to Week 1. While minor injuries to depth players might not count for much, the suspension of a star player or a nagging injury that a star player is dealing with heading in to Week 1 could have tremendous impacts on the games.
Casual fans tend to assume that teams are at 100 percent heading in to a new season when the reality is that a number of teams will more than likely be dealing with injuries to key players. By tracking potential roster issues, you won’t be caught betting on a team that isn’t at full strength.
Avoiding The Reality Of Change
Every season there are 12 NFL teams that qualify for the postseason including six from the AFC and six from the NFC. However, on average since the 1991 playoffs, the average number of returning teams to the playoffs is only 6.4 per season. Essentially, only half of the teams that made the playoffs the previous season will be good enough to make it back to the postseason the following year. With that in mind, we can bank on the idea that a number of quality teams will not perform nearly as well as they did the previous season. It’s important not to wait until the actual season begins to start factoring this reality of change in to your sports betting approach.
Betting Too Big Out Of The Gate
The NFL season is a marathon, not a race. However, the fact that there is 17 weeks in the regular season as well as an entire postseason and the Super Bowl isn’t enough to keep casual fans from risking big amounts of money on teams they haven’t seen play a meaningful game since the previous season. Why do some fans risk so much money right out of the gate? Part of the equation is likely the fact that they have waited so long to actually bet on the NFL and another part of the equation is probably the fact that they are so confident that they know what to expect from the teams playing in the games that they bet on.
The reality is that with 17 weeks to bet on the league, the fact that football fans had to wait so long for the NFL season should actually inspire patience with the knowledge that there are so many games that will be available for them to bet on in the coming weeks. The more tape and information that you have available at your disposal, the more accurate that your sports betting wagers should be.
Betting On NFL Week 1
It’s easy to understand why football fans get so caught up in the hype that comes when Week 1 of the regular season arrives. After so much time off, a full slate of games to bet on can be completely overwhelming. However, the reality is that patience is a virtue and the more you know the better your chances to win should be when betting on the NFL.
If you do your homework, study the preseason tape, track injuries and suspensions, accept the reality of change and take a deep breath knowing how many weeks you have ahead of you to bet on football before Week 1, then you should end up in a much better position than if you missed on any or all of those steps. Don’t make the same mistakes that have haunted bettors in the past. If you follow these simple rules, you will end up with a much more legitimate shot to break the bank betting on the NFL over time.