Thursday, February 22nd, 2018

Football Parlays

Published on August 20, 2014 by   ·   No Comments

One of the most popular forms of betting for both college and NFL football is the parlay. Football parlays are big business, especially online, where parlay are offered in virtually every sportsbook around. Football parlays are so popular because they let the bettor risk a very small amount of money to gain a large return.

Sportsbooks in Las Vegas and around the world make a special effort to seek out and find the gamblers that want to bet football parlays. In Las Vegas, some sportsbooks have three or four different parlay cards every week. You will see the regular football parlay card, the half point football parlay card, the multi-dimensional parlay card, and of course the Monday night football parlay card. Offshore sportsbooks are just as aggressive in their marketing of football parlay cards as they offer special comps, bonuses, etc.

So why is the football parlay so attractive to both bettors and sportsbooks? It is rare in sports gambling to see both sides of the counter favoring the same thing. Sportsbooks love their football parlay cards because their hold percentage is so high. Bettors love them because they can risk their five dollars and turn it into a lot more. Football parlays are one of those things in sports betting that satisfies virtually everyone, and that is a rare thing indeed.

Parlays are especially popular during the Super Bowl. This is because there are so many different wagers that can be placed on this one game. In addition to the spread, money line and total, you can bet on any number of props which makes parlays a no-brainer. You can learn more about betting on the Super Bowl at

How a Parlay Works

As we begin to break down football parlays let’s look at the appeal from both the book’s and the player’s perspective. Sportsbooks love the football parlay because it gives them the best of the odds. Bettors are asked to win more than one game to make it a winning ticket and the odds are always more favorable for the book than for the player.

It is easy to see why football parlays are loved by the sportsbooks, but why do bettors have the same love affair with football parlays? Bettors like parlays because they can do so many different things with them and because the risk – reward ratio is so high. They forget that the real ratio is tilted to the sportsbook, all they see is the possibility to turn a little into a lot. I am just as guilty as every other sports bettor out there in playing parlays.

They are attractive because the risk of 10, 20 or 30 dollars has the potential to turn into hundreds. Let’s take an example. Say on a busy college football Saturday we have three teams we really like. We parlay these three teams together and risk say, 50 dollars. A small risk compared to playing each of these games straight up. The 50 dollars turns into 300 dollars plus our original 50 if we win.

We get 6-1 odds on our parlay and need each of our three teams to win. This parlay makes it so we don’t have to risk 330 dollars to win 300. We are only risking 50 dollars. That is the upside. The downside, obviously, is that we need all three teams to win for our parlay to pay. You can see the attraction that parlays present. Even if you are a seasoned professional, the football parlay can give you some value. Now it is easy to understand why the football parlay keeps both the sportsbooks and the players happy.

When I am playing a football parlay I look at a few things. First, I look at usually only playing a three teamer. It gets harder to hit parlays as you add teams. The three-team football parlay gives us 6-1 odds and asks us to win three games, something that is reasonable. If I start adding and making it four or five teams it is much more unlikely. I like to have a decent chance at hitting the parlay and the three-team football parlay has worked out the best. If you read “A gambling story” you will see why I learned my lesson in regards to football parlays.

Bettering Your Odds

Another option when betting football parlays is to put your strongest selection of the day in more than one parlay. For example, let’s say we want to play three different three-team parlays. We put our best play in all three parlays. That is called keying, putting your top play in all three spots. If it wins, we are in pretty good shape to win at least one of the three parlays, and if we can manage that, we show a nice profit for the day.

Playing football parlays can be profitable if things are going your way. They can also save you money when things aren’t going well. When you are losing, the parlays make the risk level lower, when you are winning, they can increase the profits. Football parlays are just another tool to add to your busy college and NFL betting menu.

You can also use them to combine your strongest college and NFL selections and stretch that parlay all the way from Thursday night to Monday night. If you are one of the many people around the world that love to bet football then a football parlay is one way to keep you in action all weekend long for a very small investment. Football parlays will always be popular and let us hope to use them to the best advantage that we can and increase our profits.

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