Introduction to NFL Futures Wagering

Each February, the NFL season concludes on an epic stage. The spectacle of the Super Bowl marks the end of one journey but the beginning of another. For football bettors, the next Super Bowl quickly becomes the focus once a season is in the books. Bookmakers like promptly post the odds for an upcoming Super Bowl right after the conclusion of an NFL season. There are many factors for the bettor to evaluate in an NFL futures pool.

There are three main NFL futures pools. The main one is on the Super Bowl. There are also pools for conference and division titles. While bookmakers have to be extremely focused to set an accurate NFL point spread, there is more leeway in a futures pool.

Super Bowl Futures Pool

For a Super Bowl pool of 32 teams, only one club is going to win. So, there is a good deal of flexibility that is available to the oddsmaker. Because of this, the Super Bowl odds for the upcoming year can be released at the conclusion of the season. Initially, the odds will be greatly influenced by what has occurred in the prior season after all, the opening odds have been set before any offseason personnel moves have been made. When the odds are first released, the savvy bettor will be looking to find some teams that could have some upside for the coming season. Because of the structure of the league, bad teams can become playoff contenders from year to year.

In the previous decade, many squads went from a last place team one year to a division champion the next. The Miami Dolphins posted a woeful 1-15 record in 2007. In 2008, a rejuvenated Miami club went 11-5 to win the AFC East. Since 2001, nine different franchises have represented the NFC in the Super Bowl. These are examples of how quickly things can change in the league from one year to the next.

Coaching Changes – A Variable to Consider

As a new season approaches, the bettor should be aware of a few important issues pertaining to each team. Coaching changes can be significant. Usually, the moves involve some of the worst teams in the league. However, there are occasions when an established coach for a winning organization may step aside. Depending on the circumstances, a new head coach can end up being the ultimate difference maker for a team.

On the flip side, some coaches end up being flops in the NFL.

Personnel Changes – Opportunity for Change

Once the coaches have been set for an upcoming year, the focus will turn to the personnel for each team. In April, the NFL Draft gives all 32 clubs in the league a chance to add some young talent to their respective rosters. Because the weakest teams get to pick highest in the draft, there is a decent opportunity for bad clubs to narrow the gap. Established veterans can be added through free agency and trades. From year to year, no specific NFL is exactly the same. While several will be able to play at the same general level for a few years, many will be widely unpredictable each season.

Scheduling Variables

The schedule is a subtle factor that can be quite important for a team’s success or failure in an upcoming season. While teams will always play six divisional games each season, the other ten contests are a little different every season. Clubs from one division in a conference will face all of the teams from another division in the conference every three years on a rotating basis. The same formula is applied for interconference games on a rotating basis of four years. Also, several other conference games are determined by where a team finished in the standings during the prior year. Based on the level of play in a certain division, a team may win or lose a few more games than expected because of the schedule.

NFL Futures Strategy

When all of these aspects are considered, the bettor can focus in on the proper strategy to attack an NFL futures pool. While a bettor is locked in on a point spread bet, he can make several wagers on an NFL futures pool throughout the season. It may seem difficult to choose one Super Bowl winner out of 32 options. However, the odds are high enough in these pools to choose more than one club and still turn a profit. For the conference pools, there are just 16 teams to analyze. To select a division winner, the bettor has to handicap just four clubs. While it takes some patience to wager on these kind of NFL pools, the rewards can be worth the wait when the next Super Bowl champion is crowned.