Teaser Bets

In NFL betting, a teaser is when you take all the games you have in a parlay, and you adjust the point spreads (or totals) in order to make the outcomes more likely to occur. You’re also reducing your possible payout at the end – that’s the bargain you strike in order to lower your risk.

Teaser bets come in three different sizes when you bet on the NFL: six points, 6.5 points and seven points. The more points you tease by, the lower your payout will be at the end. Let’s take the Houston Texans example we used in our section on parlay betting:

  • Texans -4
  • OVER 48

If we decide to use a six-point teaser on this matchup, we’re changing the odds so they looks like this:

  • Texans +2
  • OVER 42

Those odds make it a lot easier for the Texans to cover the spread and for the over to exceed the posted total. However, your payout in this situation is -110, meaning an $11 bet will return $10 instead of $29.10 (using the multiplier of 2.645 for a two-team parlay). If you had bought a 6.5-point teaser instead, the payout would be -120. A seven-point teaser would pay out at -130.

Applying Teaser Bets

Teasers can be applied to any parlay up to 10 teams in size. The best time to use them is when you can move the point spread so that it crosses one of football’s “magic numbers” like three or seven, since more NFL games are decided by a field goal or a touchdown than any other margin. In the above example, the Texans wouldn’t have covered if they had won by a field goal, but they would have with the teaser in place. Is it worth the smaller payday? That’s up to you to decide.