What is a Moneyline Bet?
You have probably made this type of bet with a friend and not have even known it. If you are betting on the moneyline, you are betting on which team will win the game, straight up. What’s attractive about moneyline bets is that they are not complicated and easy to understand for new bettors. Although this type of wager is straightforward, there are some things to consider before placing one.
The Odds Associated With the Moneyline
If you wanted to make a moneyline bet with a bookie rather than your persistent coworker who claims Jared Goff is a good quarterback (he’s not), you're not going to receive the same 1:1 odds. Depending on the teams that are playing each other, there are three terms associated with the moneyline. There are underdogs, favorites, and the pick’em.
Underdogs: The team that is least likely to win the match is considered an underdog. If you plan on wagering on this side, you'll be welcomed with plus odds. This can vary from +101 to as high as +900 or more. It all depends on how lopsided the match is.
Favorites: This is the team that is more likely to emerge victorious and that's why they are the favorites. If you want to wager on this side, you're going to run into some less desirable odds. You will see odds ranging from -150 to -1000, especially if the two teams are extremely unbalanced.
Pick'ems: This term is used when both teams have equally-skilled players, and it’s a true coin flip. Both teams have the same chance of winning and the odds reflect that. With a pick'em, you will usually see +100 odds or the word EVEN.
It's important to remember that these three dynamics are subjective. Just because a team is deemed a favorite, it’s not a guarantee that they will win. There are plenty of situations where a team was thought to be the underdog but showed up and surprised the public. In situations like this, you will often hear more tenured sports bettors say “the wrong team is favored here” when looking at a line.