As a sleepy and messy Thursday Night Football game between the New Orleans Saints and Arizona Cardinals drew to a close, the San Francisco 49ers made late-night headlines by trading for RB Christian McCaffrey from the Carolina Panthers. The move had immediate sports betting implications, as the 49ers saw their Super Bowl odds shift significantly.
NFL Futures bets take months to pay out, but they can be extremely profitable thanks to favorable odds in exchange for the long play. If you were able to place a wager on the 49ers before the McCaffrey trade, you were probably able to find odds in the +1800 range. Immediately after that deal, the 49ers dropped to +1400, jumping over the Ravens, Chargers and Vikings in the process.
.@BettingPros Consensus Super Bowl odds for the 49ers before the Christian McCaffrey trade:
+1800 (and up to +1900 at @FDSportsbook)
After the trade: +1400 📈
They jumped the Ravens, Chargers, and Vikings with one move.
— Mike Maher (@mikeMaher) October 21, 2022
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Advantages of Futures Bets
One of the advantages of futures bets is that they are impacted less by variance. When betting on a team to win one game, the outcome can be heavily swayed by a variety of random events – a ball bounces the wrong way, a bad call, weather, etc. Over the course of a season, there are more opportunities for these things to even out. Sixteen games is still hardly a large enough sample size to guarantee any sort of outcome, but it’s better than one game.
You can also place wagers on multiple options within the same category and still potentially profit. If you were to bet on Player A at +500 and Player B at +700 to win MVP this year, even though you obviously can’t win both, as long as one of them wins, you would secure a profit (assuming you bet the same amount on each one). The flip side, of course, is that there are many more outcomes than Player A or Player B winning MVP, such that the most likely outcome is you lose both.
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