Believe it or not, there are serious sports bettors out there who merely wager on futures betting and nothing else. It’s hard to fathom tying up your money for a long period of time for a reward, but those players are out there, and generally speaking, they’re pretty sharp.
Sharp Players Can Take Advantage of Sportsbooks
Futures actually give bettors the best opportunity to take advantage of even the top sportsbooks. When you’re talking about any given game on any given night, any number of factors can play into your bet. A pitcher with a 2.25 ERA can give up nine runs.
But when you’re talking about futures bets, these random events tend to level themselves out quite nicely. Sure, when Tom Brady tore his ACL on the first drive of the season back in 2009, Patriots bettors of all kinds were more or less screwed, even though Matt Cassel was serviceable replacing him.
For the most part, though, random events help and hurt every team relatively equally over the course of a season, particularly if you’re talking about any sport aside from football, which plays a tremendous amount of games.
How to Take Advantage of Futures Bets
The most popular futures bets, though, feature just one winner. Super Bowl odds, odds to win the National Championship, and odds to win the Stanley Cup are amongst the chief futures bets placed. For the most part, you can bet online on these any time over the course of the calendar year, whether the sports are in season or not.
Sportsbooks will get massive handles over the course of the year on odds to win the Super Bowl, for example, and the prices are generally as good as they’re going to get at the start of the year. However, 31 of the 32 teams you could possibly bet on end up as losing wagers.
Take the 2015 NFL season as an example. The Panthers opened up at +3000 odds to win in Super Bowl futures betting. Clearly, that turned out to be a fantastic price on a team which went 15-1 and was favored to win the Super Bowl against Denver. In the end, though, even that great bet turned into a loser.
What Is Futures Betting, Really?
So how do bettors end up making so much money off of futures bets? Think of a futures bet like buying a stock. That stock goes up or down over the course of the season. Invest in the Panthers at 30 to 1, and six months later, you have the chance to hold that stock or sell it by betting on the Panthers to not win the Super Bowl somewhere down the line.
Buy at the wrong time on the Cowboys at 15 to 1 and watch them go into the tank? Your stock is worthless. But that’s why it’s called gambling. Even if you play your cards right, have a solid gambling strategy, luck can still be the deciding factor at the end.
Regular Season Win Totals are Most Profitable for Bettors
The most profitable futures bettors really like regular season win totals. Win totals are really where bettors can make some great money if they know what they’re doing, and it’s really due to the fact that most common sports fans know who will be good and who won’t be good for the most part on a year in, year out basis.
Though teams surprise both positively and negatively, any Joe Schmo can pick out at least 14 winners out of 32 to bet on sports online when it comes to regular season win totals in the NFL. The sharpest bettors will find value all over the board when it comes to regular season win totals and realize that the gain the sportsbooks really have is in holding money for the course of the entire season.
More Futures Betting Options
There are definitely other futures options across all sports. You can wager on teams to win series in the playoffs for the sports which play best-of series to determine winners. Or you can wager on who you think will win the Heisman Trophy or be the first MLB manager fired.
Each market can be carefully analyzed, and the fact of the matter is that you, as the sports bettor, have the ability to spend more time and put more of your personal resources into finding winners in futures betting than sportsbooks, who are more worried about the day-to-day grind of lining every single game on the board.
Futures Offer Great Value
Futures bets require patience, of course, and just like anything else, you have to pick up on great value more than anything else in order to win. But in the right setting, the futures betting advantages are that they can be incredibly profitable. If they aren’t a part of your regular arsenal of wagering because of the long-term waiting period to get your money back, you should think twice about it and add futures to your normal betting habits.
To learn more about futures in sports betting, check out Futures Betting in Sports: An Introduction