Straight Bets and How They Work

Straight Bets and How They Work

Straight Bet Football Gambling

Becoming familiar with sports betting terminology is vital to becoming an expert. With football season approaching, you might need to brush up on your football betting terms. You don’t want to be the one at the sportsbook and not know how to talk football betting.

So, what is a straight bet in football?

We begin with the most common wager in football. Another and probably more important reason for understanding your sports betting terms is when you might have to access customer support. Having no idea what you’re talking about doesn’t help your cause.

If someone asked you what is a straight bet in football, you’ll be well-prepared and informed.

Have you ever bet on a football bet before? It’s very likely that you’ve made a straight bet before. Straight bets are made in the millions every week on the gridiron. From college football Saturdays to the NFL on Sunday, the straight bet is the king of sports betting. Football betting sites do a fine job of updating odds with each passing week.

The Basics of the Straight Bet

A straight bet is an umbrella term for a single wager at the sportsbook. This is unlike teaser and parlay betting where there are multiple legs that have to be successful. In sports betting straight bets, you only make one bet for your ticket.


Our sports betting experts at The Sports Geek suggest straight bet wagering as your main bet for football season. You are going to get the best odds of winning with straight betting rather than going with the more exotic options.

Putting multiple bets in a parlay or tease is not a plan for long-term success. This can be used sparingly in spots, but straight bets should make up the vast part of your football betting strategy. What is a straight bet in football? There are three different types of wagers that are considered straight bets.

Point Spread Bets

The point spread is the most common straight bet that is made on a football game. You may hear if a team is going to beat the spread during football season. A bet on the point spread is what beating the spread is referring to on the football field.

Please Note:

There are superior talent advantages or other variables that make one team the betting favorite in a game. The point spread attempts to even things out. If you are betting the game straight up, you will have to pay a price on the favorite.

However, the point spread allows you to bet this team at a more affordable price, albeit, they’ll have to win by at least so many points. Let’s use the example of the Kansas City Chiefs against the Buffalo Bills in Orchard Park.

Kansas City Chiefs +3 (-110)
Buffalo Bills -3 (-110)

In this case, the Bills are the betting favorite. They are three-point favorites at home over the Chiefs. The Chiefs are the underdog and the oddsmakers have them as a three-point underdog.

When you see a point spread like this, it’s typically an even matchup with the three points going to home-field advantage. For your Bills bet to win, they must win by more than 3 points.

If there is a 3-point final score, then this is a push, and bets will be refunded. Conversely, if you bet the Chiefs and they win, or lose by less than 3 points, your straight bet on the spread is a winner.

Moneyline Bets

If you don’t want to mess around with a team winning (or losing) by a certain number, then you’ll want to play this straight bet. The moneyline is the simplest straight bet in football. If you’re asking yourself what is a straight bet, then this is the easiest concept to understand.

Who do you expect to win the game? That’s the only determining factor in a moneyline straight bet.

There is no point spread or point differential for moneyline bets. The only thing that matters is which team is leading the game at the end of 4 quarters or overtime. However, you will have to pay a price if you want to bet on the favorite.


Let’s assume the Bills are a 3-point favorite with a price of -110. This suggests that you’ll make a $100.00 profit in return for a $110.00 bet.

However, if you want to bet the Bills on the moneyline, you will have to pay -160 to -180 or thereabout. A $100.00 bet at -160 would return a total of $162.50 for a $62.50 profit.

Conversely, if you’re confident in the Chiefs winning at Orchard Park, this would be plus money. Let’s assume a moneyline price of +130. In this instance, a $100.00 bet will return a $130.00 profit for a total of $230.00 back from the sportsbook.

Over/Under Bets

Over Under betting is considered a straight bet because they are a single wager. Also known as the total in a football game, the Over Under bet is a prediction for the combined final score.

Who wins is irreverent for an Over Under bet. This football straight bet is only concerned with the final score.

The oddsmakers set the Over Under attempting to predict what the combined final score will be in a game. It’s your job to determine if there will be more or fewer points than the posted Over Under.

Over 47.5 (-110)
Under 47.5 (-110)

In this example, the Over is 47.5 points and the Under is 47.5 in the Chiefs and Bills game. If you bet the Over, there will have to be more than 47 points scored for your bet to succeed. Conversely, a bet on the Under will win if the final score has less than 48 points.

For a 28-24 final, there is a total of 52 points in the football game. Congrats to Over bettors, this is a winning bet. If it’s a low-scoring 23-20 game, then we have 43 points and the Under is a winning selection.


We hope this helped you understand what a straight wager is and clear up any questions regarding a straight bet in football. The next time you are asked what is a straight bet, refer back to this page to clear up any misconceptions.

Straight bets should be the meat and potatoes of your betting experience during football season.

You can mix in props, parlays, and teasers, but the most profitable football strategy has to include straight wagering as the primary focus.


Author: Tamara Kim