Modern “live” or “In-Game” / “In-Play” wagering is becoming more popular across sportsbooks all over the globe. This new and exciting product allows the battle between bettors and bookmakers to continue live during the entire sporting event.
As the teams score, the numbers are adjusted and bettors are able to put down several wagers over the course of the game rather than the traditional pre-game and halftime bets only. This article will provide strategies for bettors on in-game wagering and tips on profitable wagers to place.
Firstly, in- game betting offers the same types of wagers as pre-match including moneylines, spreads, and totals. Early in the game first half options are also available. Some sportsbooks will also offer expanded menus giving props or actual play-by-play betting. An example of this would be:
“The result of the next play will be”
Pass Completion (+150)
Pass Incomplete (+320)
With so many options, new bettors can become overwhelmed. They place a few bad bets, and then begin to chase their losses resulting in a disastrous day. When you first begin to follow in-game wagering there will be lots of numbers flying and decisions have to be made quickly as the lines are only available for a short time.
Here are some tips to follow to help navigate these exciting wagers…
- When first learning in-game wagering, avoid the full Saturday College Football and Sunday NFL cards and choose to focus only on one or two games per time slot. Do not fool yourself into thinking you can keep up with betting 10+ games in-play at once. Write down all your wagers and all the results. Examine your notes post-game and improve your process.
- Also begin by sticking to betting sides and totals before expanding your game into various props or play-by-play betting. Bets that pay out after one play or one drive are thrilling to place and have instant gratification when you cash them, however a series of mistakes can happen quickly, turning an otherwise profitable day into a disaster.
- Use halftime to your advantage. You can see more details in our “Betting at Haltime” article on this topic as well. After some time you will be able to anticipate with relative accuracy what the sportsbook will post for a second half line. In the middle of the 2nd quarter, write down what you think the halftime number will be. Write down a few versions based on what might transpire in the final 6-7 minutes of the second quarter. Now compare those numbers to what the current in-play number is. Sometimes things will jump off the page at you, such as totals being off by a few points.
- Do not base your wagers strictly on “what you last saw”. This is what the public do over and over. ‘Team A’ gets the ball, scores on the opening drive and “oh it’s over they can’t stop Team A”. Then they proceed to bet ‘Team A’ at an inflated price and take worse numbers as more and more people do the same. This may work in some limited games but lines are rarely double digits in the NFL for a reason. ‘Team A’ may be rocking early on and establish a multiple score lead, only to play slow and run the ball all second half as they kill the clock. This allows ‘Team B’ back into the game and back door cover those inflated numbers all the bettors were taking in the first and second quarter. Each bet you place should be thought out and have good reasoning behind it beyond the team “looks good”.
- Don’t let frustration get to you and go “on tilt”. Remember the teams and coaches are not concerned with betting lines or over/under. Sometimes the interest of the team and your wager do not align and things will happen that cause you to lose that may not make sense. Another common cause of frustration with those unfamiliar is the rapid changing and taking down of the in-game lines. Sometimes you will really like a wager, attempt to bet it, and the bet may not go through or become unavailable. Then you watch the result play out and you were correct, you would have won. This will happen during live play, knowing this ahead of time and letting those frustrating moments go is a learned skill. Just like a real cornerback who lets his man make a big catch or a quarterback who throws a bad interception. Will you let it get to you and continue to be in your mind causing further errors and bad play? The real pros are able to let the mistakes go and continue to play at a high level and you must train yourself to do the same.
- Try to play both teams. This doesn’t work for every game but when you find these games they can be very profitable. For example a Sunday or Monday Night Football game between divisional rivals with a low point spread of around three. Your only goal is to be betting both sides all game, taking the “underdog” in every bet. These type of close divisional rivalry games frequently go back and forth with both teams leading at some point in the game, and are settled by a late FG or the last team with the ball. Each time a score is made, bet the underdog with the points. Try to have an equal number of tickets on both sides as much as you can. When the game is over and lands in that “close game” fashion, you will find yourself cashing many tickets. You can practice this strategy on paper without making any wagers a few times to see how it works for you.
In-game wagering is quickly becoming more popular as it provides exciting action throughout the entire contest. As you learn the details of live betting you will see pre-game as just a starting point. Good Luck on your bets!