The XFL has had a couple of false starts, most recently due to COVID-19 related shutdowns, but it seems like the league is alive and well despite these setbacks. The XFL was originally conceived as a professional rival to the NFL, taking advantage of the public’s desire for more football after the end of the larger league’s season.
The original XFL played only one season in 2001, but the newly-launched competition aims to remedy some of the missteps of the past and take its place as a real professional football league. Having done away with the flashy spectacle of its first run, the new XFL will seek to be a serious contender, and betting is expected to be a big way of capturing public attention.
As a new league, XFL has only eight teams to the NFL’s thirty two, but there is still a lot of potential for wagering. Much like online gambling for real money, there are some guidelines to follow if you want to make the most of your XFL wagering. So, as we approach the new season, let’s take a look at some of the advantages and pitfalls you could face when betting on XFL.
Do: shop around
It’s not that often that a major professional league gets established, and sportsbooks will be excited about the new market. This means that there is likely to be some competition between providers looking for new sports betting customers. Rather than simply going with your usual bookmaker, look around for who is offering the best odds and the widest range of betting options. Many sites will also be promoting the season by giving away bonuses and free bets, so it’s well worth spending a little time to compare your options.
Don’t: assume you know the game
It would be all too easy to assume that football is football, and that if you know your college rules and NFL then XFL is basically the same. When WWE chief executive officer Vince McMahon conceived of the new league, it was in part because he wanted to change things up and provide a faster and more accessible game than the sometimes staid and stuffy NFL.
There are a good few differences in the rules of XFL, most of which can affect the outcome of the games significantly. If you place your bets assuming that the play is identical to NFL, then you are bound to make some mistakes. Familiarize yourself with the point scoring system, passing, overtime penalties, and all the other ways that XFL and NFL differ from each other.
Do: keep up with the injury report
XFL is still a relatively small competition, so injuries have the potential to have an even greater impact on the league than they do elsewhere. Sharp-eyed bettors should keep an eye on injuries sustained in practice matches as well as live action games. It’s quite likely that sportsbooks will fail to factor in players missing due to injury. However the various providers choose to compile their odds, the novelty and size of the league could throw them off during the inaugural season. Use the lack of experience to your advantage.
Don’t: focus only on total bets
A league in its infancy is sure to be full of surprises, and the tendency is to rely on totals bets as easier to gauge than individual sides. What with players who are yet to be discovered, sides that have seen little action as a team, and the new rules, it may be tempting to stick to the big picture. The brief previous seasons, including the one that had to be abruptly canceled due to the pandemic, saw a predominance of totals bets. But don’t rule out all the other markets available, as totals bets won’t get you far in the long run.
The bottom line
Having said all this, if you have some experience betting on the NFL then XFL is not a completely different animal. The basic betting types, such as totals, moneylines, spreads, and props, are the same for XFL as for other types of football. As the seasons go on, and the number of teams on the roster increases, bettors should get more of a sense of how to place wagers.
Wagering is poised to be an integral part of the XFL experience, in contrast to the more traditional NFL which has resisted the rise of sports betting. In fact, McMahon and others within the XFL have made no secret of the fact that they aim to be the most betting-friendly sports league in the US.
As legal sports betting becomes more popular and widespread, it will become an essential component of any major league. By putting betting fans first, XFL is establishing itself in the market and – hopefully – ensuring its longevity as an annual competition.
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