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NFL Betting Glossary

NFL Betting SitesThere are always some more specific terms one must get acquainted with when entering a new sphere. In this case, the NFL betting world includes some words that most punters will understand but if you are just a beginner, then you should find this glossary most useful.

You should not get involved in sports betting if you do not understand the terminology. It can be a bit complicated at first but you will easily get used to it. Here we have compiled some of the most commonly used terms to refer to different things in the sports betting industry. Of course, this is not all of them, but these are the main ones you need to know to get by and start reading more advanced punter material.

You will find some less common terms explained here as well because you might just encounter them. The key to success in this industry is knowledge and we shall provide it to you. First, we will go over some basic punter terminology which includes different sportsbook terms as well. Then, we will explain some of the terms concerning the different betting options when it comes to NFL betting. Lastly, we will give you some basic definitions required to understand NFL odds and make good use of them.

General Punter Terminology

General Punter TerminologyThese are the terms that you will need to get started in this industry. That is to say, in order to begin learning about it, you first need to understand the terms listed below. There is nothing too complex as we are simply trying to clarify the basics as much as possible and not confuse anyone further. There are some less frequently found terms included here as they are mostly synonyms to other, more general ones.

SportsbookThis is the general term used to refer to a company that can legally take wagers on sports events from the public. This can refer to both land-based and online betting venues.
BankrollThe sum total of the money you have set aside for betting.
BettorA person who places bets on sports, also referred to as a punter.
BookieThe shortened variant of bookmaker.
BookmakerA person or organization that takes bets from the general public.
UnderdogA player who is expected to lose. Sometimes also referred to as simply ‘dog’.
FavoriteA player who is expected to win.
Dog PlayerA punter who often bets on the underdog player.
ChalkTo bet chalk means to bet on the favorite player.
EdgeAn advantage of one sort or another.
FieldA term used to refer collectively to all participants in a sporting event.
VigorishThis is the cut the sportsbook gets from all bets. It can also be referred to as ‘edge’, ‘over-round’ and ‘juice’.
BeardA beard means someone who is placing a sports bet on someone else’s behalf.
IBASThe Independent Betting Adjudication Service is based in the UK and is meant to help resolve conflicts between sportsbooks and bettors.

NFL Bets Terminology

nfl understanding the betsBelow you will find some betting-specific terms. You can encounter different ones based on your geographical location and sportsbook of your choice. You can also encounter even more exotic bets that are simply too many to list. These are the main terms concerning sports bets that you need to know in order to understand this, or any other, NFL betting guide.

BullseyeA £5 bet.
FinA $5 bet.
BuckA $100 bet.
DimeA $1,000 bet.
GrandA £1,000 bet.
PushThis is what a bet that has tied is called.
AccumulatorA wager consisting of at least two other wagers.
Exotic WagerAn uncommon or sport-specific type of bet.
Point SpreadThis is a bet on the number of points by which a team will win or lose. There is a set number of points provided by the sportsbook.
TotalBetting on whether the total score of a game will be over or under a number set by the sportsbook.
MoneylineThis is a bet on the team you think will win an NFL game.
FuturesThis is a bet that can be placed only at the beginning of the season. It is a bet on the team you think will win a given American Football event.
PropsThis type of bet is on a very specific outcome that is not always related to the outcome of the game. For instance, a bet like ‘will player X score a touchdown’ is a common NFL prop bet.
Pleasers & TeasersThis is a more advanced set of bets. Pleasers move the line in your favor while Teasers do the opposite. This is applicable to bets such as totals and point spreads.
If BetAn if bet is a bet with multiple selections. Unlike an accumulator, though, if you lose one of your bets you do not lose all unless that was your first bet. Order matters when it comes to if bets. If your initial stake is $110 and you win your first bet, you will get your payout while your initial stake rides onto the next selection of the if bet. If the second one wins, then onto the third, and so on.
Reverse BetThis is a bet that basically covers all different position outcomes of an if bet. For instance, if you were to place such a bet that consisted of bets on 3 games, you would have 6 bets in total each in a different order. You need to pay for each of them separately.

Odds Terminology

Odds TerminologyAs you should know by now, odds play a very important role when it comes to NFL sports betting. We have already explained most of these terms but we will simplify and summarize everything here for your convenience. The terminology surrounding odds is quite simple and you should have no problem understanding it.

OddsThe odds displayed for a sports betting event determine how much a winning wager would return.
Odds OnOdds that are shorter than evens are referred to as Odds On.
Odds AgainstOdds that are longer than evens are referred to as Odds Against.
Even MoneyThis means that the odds are exactly 1:1.
EvensShort for Even Money.
MoneylineType of odds format, also referred to as American.
DecimalThe most common odds format. Also referred to as European.
FractionalA less common odds format, sometimes referred to as UK odds.
LineThe odds or point spread offered on a sporting event.
ArbitrageThe odds in such a situation mean that you are able to place two or more bets and make a guaranteed profit.
DriftingSuch are called odds that continue to get bigger.
Fixed OddsThis means that the odds at the time of your wager will remain the same for you, regardless of how they change as the game progresses.


ConclusionCongratulations, you now know all you need to get started in the NFL betting world! It is absolutely essential for any green punter to understand these terms and know them by heart. They can be found in almost every single NFL betting website or guide. This is an important part of becoming a successful sports bettor. In order to understand the complete depths of NFL betting, you need to first understand these terms. Remember to bet responsibly.