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What are Key Numbers in Sports Betting?

by February 6, 2022
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When it comes to sports betting, there are a handful of terms and strategies that every sports bettor should be aware of. Key numbers, or numbers that are critical when determining the outcome of a winning bet, are one such idea.

Let’s take a look at what a key number is, and lay out some examples of how to exploit them.

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What is a Key Number?

When it comes to the idea of key numbers, American football reign king. With the numbers of three, six, and seven being the most common increments of scoring, it should be no surprise that those are considered key when handicapping and making odds for the sport.

With those being the starting point, multiples and additions to those numbers also fall under the “key number” category. An example of those would be 10, 14, 21, 24, and so on down the line.

The margin of victory, of course, is at the heart of the key number and just implies the difference that Team A beats Team B by.

One thing to keep an eye on moving forward is the push towards teams going for two-point conversions more often than they have historically. As analytics progress, the number 8 could very well be a number to keep an eye on as far as being “key.”

How Often Do Key Numbers Land?

From 2015-19, the aforementioned key numbers reign true when looking at the NFL.  The top three highest frequency margins of victory landed 3 (14.4%), 7 (9.9%), and 6 (7.3%).

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Whether you’re new to sports betting or a betting pro, our How To Bet and Sports Betting Strategy and Advice pages are for you. You can get started with our 101 section — including How to Bet on Sports — or head to more advanced strategy — like 10 Tips to Become a Sharper Sports Bettor — to learn more.

Johnny Perun is a featured writer at BettingPros. For more from Johnny, check out his archive and follow him @JohnnyCovers.

Betting 101, Betting Tips