What is NFL Public Consensus?
NFL Consensus betting means the percentage the betting public has chosen for an upcoming spread or point total. These can also refer to NFL futures bets and player props . The NFL betting consensus gives bettors an idea of how much action online bookies are taking on either side of a bet. These numbers are usually expressed by percentage (%), showing the percentage of money and the percentage of bets wagered on one side versus another. By using the NFL consensus presented on our page, you can decide whether you would like to bet with or against the public on a given bet.
Should the NFL Consensus Affect Your Betting Decision?
While the public does get some bets right, more often than not, it’s best to fade the public. Too often, public bettors, which includes everyone from new bettors to seasoned bettors, will bet on popular teams or exciting matchups, which presents value on the other side of a bet. That’s why “sharps” look for opportunities to go against NFL public money. You can check out these weekly NFL expert picks as we look to point you in the correct direction.
Remember, the average public bettor loves to bet on the favorite and for the “over” to hit on the point total. The best sportsbooks in the US know this and often will inflate a spread or point total if they expect heavy action from the betting public. Expect that to be the case in primetime games or contests featuring big market teams, such as the Dallas Cowboys or Pittsburgh Steelers.
While it’s not always the right move to fade the public, be sure to check the NFL lines and the public consensus before placing your bet on any game. By betting against the public from time to time, players can see a win increase of anywhere between 1-5%, which can be significant to a bankroll.
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Should I Bet With or Against the Public?
There are two types of bettors “the sharps” and the “public.” A sharp is a professional bettor who typically wins a majority of their bets. Sharps will often bet the opposite side/team that the public likes, which is how they become so successful in this field.
However, sharps aren’t betting the opposite side to be contrarian, but rather to find value. If the public heavily bets on one specific team, that will only increase the NFL odds and the payouts for the others. Sharps pick their spots and know how when it’s appropriate to bet with the public and when it’s time to consider another possible outcome.
Sharps typically will bet as soon as lines are released or just before the start of the game to create an advantage. They prefer to bet earlier on games/outcomes to get better or more accurate lines before the public can influence them. This is just another example of how sharps find value in a line or a bet.
The “public” bettors are your everyday fans who look to bet for the fun of gambling, rather than making it a career. Public bettors are often betting on their favorite teams, rather than a game or a line that appears to have value. Usually, the public bets with their heart, rather than their brain. For example, a Cardinals fan in Arizona or an Eagles fan in Pennstylvania will be biased and is likely to bet on their team no matter the spread.
“Public” bettors tend to make bets closer to kickoff or whenever convenient. They often don’t search for the best “lines” and are likely to be bet “big” games or night games, rather than a 1 p.m. kickoff. Unlike sharps, they aren’t betting for an income, but rather, for entertainment value, mostly.
NFL Consensus Picks
Make no mistake about it, the “public” will still get a lot of their fair share of games correct, but sharps are more likely to be right in the long-term. The goal of a sharp is to make a profit over many events, not necessarily in one game. If a sharp can win over 50 percent of their bets over a year or several years, they are accomplishing their goal.
Another difference between sharps and public bettors is that sharps tend to stick to betting NFL over/unders and moneylines, where the public will often bet on player/team props or on parlays. While parlays have significantly bigger payouts, they are often too risky for sharps. Sharps prefer to win a bunch of smaller bets, rather than swinging for the fences on a big parlay.
You can look ahead at the NFL schedule to plan these parlays ahead of time. Some books will let you place NFL wagers weeks ahead of time with future lines. However, prop bets are designed for the casual fan to give them a rooting interest in a team or a player in a given game. NFL consensus picks are worth looking at, but shouldn't be used as everything. You can check out our NFL week 7 odds here, along with analysis for each game.
To find value, take a look at where the public is betting and consider when to bet with them or go against the grain. Is the public following a particular narrative or the "hot" team? If that's the case, it may be wise to look at their opponent. You can pay attention to the NFL consensus all the way up until the NFL Super Bowl, where you will still hear a lot of talk about which team the "public" is on.
However, do not blindly bet the opposite of the public. As mentioned before, the public will get games and lines right. But it's important to pick your spot and know against the grain. Before betting on a game, make sure to look where the NFL consensus is putting their money and placing their bets.
I’ve Taken Note of The NFL Public Consensus. What Happens Now?
Once you have made your decision as to whether you want to bet with or against the public, make sure to check out our NFL betting hub where you will find the best football sites to place your bet. If you're not sure which online sportsbooks operate in your State, make sure to check out our map of the legal sports betting sites in the US .
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NFL Consensus FAQ
What is the NFL Consensus?
The NFL Consensus is a combination of two numbers that indicate how much action is on either side of an NFL matchup. Those two numbers are the overall percentage of bets and the percentage of money. When that number is separated by a wide margin, it's safe to assume that sharp bettors are seeing the game from a different lens than the average fan.
How Should the NFL Consensus factor in my NFL betting decisions?
While the NFL consensus is far from a tell-all, it's certainly one of the many useful tools to use when making NFL bets. You can either fade the public money and go against the consensus or ride with the public and fade the book. Finding games with a large difference between the % of bets and % of money is a strong indication of where sharp money is.