The 2023 NFL season is only 48 days away! However, that doesn’t mean you have to wait that long to bet on some games! In fact, the 2023 preseason starts in just nine days! The Jets and Browns will face off for the Hall of Fame Game on August 3rd. So, there you are, asking yourself, how degen do you have to be to bet on the preseason? Don’t worry. We have you covered with some NFL preseason betting trends to follow.
What coaches are good in the preseason? Which are bad? Should you bet the totals? Keep reading to find out.
2023 NFL Preseason Betting Trends
Bet The Under In The Hall Of Fame Game
For all the glamor and excitement around the Hall of Fame Game, it doesn’t exactly scream fireworks when it comes to the scoreboard. Sure, there are concerts and a bunch of excitement over the first game of the preseason, but that doesn’t mean you’ll find yourself winning money taking the over. To start our list of NFL preseason betting trends, take the under in the Hall of Fame game.
The total always depends on the teams involved, of course. However, the average total for the opening game is 34. The game has only gone over this total once in the past six games. In fact, it’s only gone over 34 points seven different times since 2000. For those bad at math, that’s 23 years. This is a trend that should definitely help you win money.
Bet On John Harbaugh And Mike Tomlin
It’s possible some coaches just don’t take the preseason seriously. Maybe some of them take it too seriously. Who knows. Regardless, don’t tell John Harbaugh or Mike Tomlin it’s too serious. Whether favorites or underdogs, these coaches have performed significantly well in the preseason.
How good is John Harbaugh when it comes to the preseason? I’ll tell you how good. You have to go all the way back to 2015 to find his last preseason loss. Therefore, betting on the Ravens is almost a sure thing based on the last six years’ data (remember, no 2020 preseason).
Mike Tomlin isn’t far behind him. Tomlin is a little harder to predict because he hasn’t gone completely undefeated. Since 2015 Tomlin is 15-4. He went undefeated last year and has only lost one game out of four in the previous four years. Take the Ravens and the Steelers on the Moneyline is an NFL preseason betting trend that can make you some money. A fun bet each week? Parlay Ravens and Steelers.
Bet Against Sean McVay And Brandon Staley
While Harbaugh and Tomlin are either excellent at prepping all strings on their team or take the preseason far too seriously. Either way, when they’re winning the majority of their preseason games, that isn’t the case for both Sean McVay and Brandon Staley. Their tendency to lose the majority of the preseason games falls in the NFL preseason betting trends I’m following.
I’m not sure what it is about the LA teams, but they’ve only won one game each. Actually, while we’re at it, Pete Carrol, Dan Campbell, and Ron Rivera have all only won one game each the past two years as well. Fade all these teams in the preseason, and you’re bound to be in the green.
Take The Under The First Week of Games?
Up until last year, I would tell you to take the under for all games. Or, at the very least, take the first half under. In 2019 and 2021, the over only hit an average of 41.2% of the time. So betting the under would have won 58.8% of your bets. It’s not a huge number, but it’s still plus money.
However, last year all that changed. Did last year change how we look at our NFL preseason betting trends, or do we think it reverts back? Last year, the under only hit 19% of the Week 2 games (preseason Week 1 after the Hall of Fame Game). The first half did a little better, but not by much, hitting 38% of the time. That means over bettors would have cashed a very nice 81% of their bets.
So how do you determine if you’re following the new trend or the old one? I still like taking the under for the first half during the first week of games. However, I am leaning toward the over for the full game. Last year, an average of 20 points were scored in the second half, meaning most of those games hit their over due to high-scoring second halves.
In-Game Flow – Make A Totals Bet At Half
A weird trend jumped out when looking at the 2022 data, especially from the first week of games after the Hall of Fame Game. This trend involves making an in-game bet at halftime. However, it was intriguing enough I had to include it on the NFL preseason betting trends list.
Whether a game scored under twenty points in the first half or over twenty points in the first half, it did the opposite in the second half in 67% of the games. Meaning if the total of the first half went under 20 points, the second half went over 20 points. The same is true for games that went over 20 points in the first half. They went under 20 in the second half.
This is a really interesting trend to follow and can be used for either the total points of the game at the adjusted in-game total or for the second-half total points. Sure, it takes waiting until halftime to make the bet, but hitting 67% of the time is a nice profit.