UNITED STATES—COVID-19 has changed how we live our lives. It brought so many changes to the things we were used to, including sporting events and betting. It is a huge step back for most bettors, and some bettors have entirely stopped betting on their favorite sport due to various reasons.
One of the sporting events that is currently happening in the NFL, and it is also one of the biggest sports in the United States. It is also one of the most famous sports to bet on. But what is the impact of COVID-19 on NFL Gambling? Does it change the way people bet on sports? To further understand, here is the undeniable impact the COVID-19 had in sports betting, particularly on the NFL.
There Is No Home-Field Advantage
Every NFL matchups in history has a home-field advantage, but this isn’t like any other season in the NFL. Bettors in the past seasons have considered home-advantage when choosing which team to wager.
The home-field advantage has been a golden rule not only in Football but also in other sports. However, bettors should realize that this rule is not as important this season due to the COVID-19 restrictions imposed in all sporting events.
Home audiences are one of the factors of a home-field advantage. Spectators add up to the confidence level of each player, which often results in victory. But with the restrictions due to the pandemic, home fields are empty, and home players will play without the cheering crowd, which will affect their confidence.
Experts observed that players in any sports increase performance when playing on their home field due to their fans’ support. The more people watch the game, the more they feel alive, and the more likely they will win the match. If spectators have a great effect on a player mentally and can make players perform better, they also can distract the players in the opposing team so that they can lose concentration. This is the power of home-field advantages in sports.
Impact On Betting Odds
Unpredictability is normal in betting. Injuries and weather are some of the most common and regular unpredictability that happens in betting. However, in 2020 a new factor unexpectedly arises, the COVID-19 pandemic. In this season, there have been many changes that happen in betting odds as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Multiple players in the NFL are tested positive in COVID-19 that affects the betting odds of each team in the league. One day your favorite team is at the top of the odds list, then the next day, they fall to third place or fifth place because a player is a COVID-19 positive. This is one of the circumstances you should look out for and expect in this season’s betting odds.
Another factor that can impact betting odds this season is game postponement and cancelation. There have already been numerous games that were postponed or, worst, canceled associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The oddsmakers work double-time to adjust odds based on news breaks about games postponed or canceled and players being sidelined to cope with the current situation. They need to consider any factor that can affect the result of the game in adjusting the odds. If they fail to do it properly, oddsmakers can face huge trouble.
In addition to players who can be infected with the virus, another factor that increases the risk of uncertainty in betting for this NFL season is the limited offseason programs and the preseason games’ cancellation.
The cancelation of the preseason due to the COVID-19 outbreak increases the unpredictability of the regular season results. Preseason games help bettors identify the strongest team that will qualify in the National Football League’s regular season. And now, without the preseason games, there is no way bettors can predict what team will dominate this season.
We are almost at the end of this season, and there have been so many unpredictability that happened already. However, we still have more games to go, and COVID-19 is far from over. The results and schedules of every game are still uncertain.
The Rise Of Online Sports Betting
The Gambling and Betting Industry is not exempted from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. When the US Government issued an order to close all non-essential establishments, it forced bettors to use alternative sports betting options.
One of these options is online sports betting. Online sports betting provides bettors an option to continue their sports betting activities at the comfort of their home, away from other people that may infect them with coronavirus.
Online sports betting has been around for years, and it had increased attention when the pandemic began. COVID-19 has opened new doors and opportunities to bettors and bookmakers via online sportsbooks. It is expected that bettors will continue to patronize online sports betting even after the pandemic.
The risk of betting in the NFL this season is high. All bettors are aware of all the changes the current situation has made in the sports betting industry. With the given list of what to expect in the NFL betting this season, bettors can act accordingly and expect some risk associated with their decisions.