What is over/under betting? Examples of how to bet on totals

So you want to bet on a game, but you don’t have a good feel for the spread. The over/under might be for you.

Instead of betting on who wins, you’re betting on the amount of scoring. If you bet the over, you’re basically rooting for a fun, high-scoring game. If you bet the under, you think it’s going to be a defensive battle.

If that sounds enticing, then check out The Post’s guide to over/unders below.

What does over/under mean in betting?

Over/under refers to the point total, either for an individual team or for both teams combined. If the combined point total in a football game is 41.5, for example, that number refers to the added score of both teams in the game.

What does it mean to bet the over or the under?

That you’re either betting on teams to score more than the total, or less than the total. If the combined total is 41.5 and the game ends 28-21, the over would win, since the combined total would be 49 points. If the game ends 13-10, the under would win, since the combined total would be 23.

For individual teams, it’s the same thing, just without adding the scores together. You could bet the Ravens to score over 27.5 points, for example. If they score 28 or more, you win. 27 or fewer, you lose. If you were to bet the under, it’d be vice versa.

How is an over/under determined?

Bookmakers set odds by using computers to project the outcomes of games. Part of that includes projecting the score. Odds will move based on where the money is, but you can often see a correlation in the spread and the total for this reason. In the Baltimore-Miami Week 10 game, for example, the Ravens were favored by 7.5 with the total set at 46.5. That means bookmakers had likely projected the scoreline to be in the range of 27-20, Ravens.

Thinking of it like that can help you decide how to bet. Maybe you thought the Ravens could beat that total against Miami’s defense, or that the Dolphins wouldn’t be able to get to 20 points because their quarterback situation was a mess. In the first case, you’d want to take the over, in the second, you’d want the under.

You can also cross-check the overall total with the team totals. Interestingly, in the Ravens-Dolphins game, the totals were 27.5 for Baltimore and 17.5 for the Dolphins. That only adds up to 45 — 1.5 points less than the total for the game. Though it’s marginal, winning money is often because of marginal outcomes, and a discrepancy like that could give you a slight edge if you play it right.

How to bet the over/under

If you think it’s going to be a particularly high-scoring game, take the over. If you think it’ll be a defensive grind, take the under. The total, of course, will generally reflect what the game is expected to look like, so it’s not always quite that simple. But if you think a game will be higher or lower-scoring than public perception dictates, then bet accordingly.

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