Understanding Line Movements
Just like American football, the Canadian football lines shift depending on the action. This applies to the main markets: the point spread, moneyline, and totals. The lines may look very different from when they release.
For instance, Calgary opened at -6.5 to over Hamilton. But due to some CFL news, such as an injury to a key player, the public bet heavily on Hamilton’s line. The line then moved from Calgary -6.5 to Calgary -3.5 due to the action.
Choosing Between Spread and Moneyline
As such, winning and losing on the spread is dependent on knowing when to bet. And the other part is knowing if the spread or moneyline has better value.
Calgary at -3.5 may be a better bet than Calgary to win on the moneyline at -190. Spreads are almost always lined at even odds of -110 or -115 each. Wagering $110 or $115 can be better than wagering $190. But of course, the Stampeders will need to cover the 3.5 points so they have to win by four or more points.
Look up Calgary’s betting history. If the Stampeders, for instance, are 5-1 in their last six games but just 2-4 against the spread (ATS), taking the moneyline might be better. This means that while Calgary wins games, it tends to lose on the spread. So it is winning games but not by as much as the oddsmakers expect.
The live betting market is also an underrated way to bet. Some teams could overcome deficits and win while some are frontrunners and could fade down the stretch. As such, if a favorite starts slow, the lines could offer them at a longer price. This could be an opportunity to earn more out of a favorite.
The Power of Totals
Alternatively, the best Canadian football odds may be on the total. This is where fans can bet whether a game goes “over” or “under” the book’s total. In the Calgary-Hamilton game, the total was set at 44.5 points.
While it can be hard to choose a side on the spread or moneyline, the totals can be an easier read. Calgary has a high-powered offense that averages 27.5 points while Hamilton’s defense is allowing over 26 points per game. There is consistency here that could lead to high-scoring.
Also, researching the weather conditions prior to each game is a must for Canadian football just like in the NFL or NCAA. Most Canadian teams are experienced playing in cold or wintery conditions. But if there is a winter storm or windy condition, it may be harder to score points. So the total may be worth betting to go under.