Sports betting is a massive industry, with hundreds of books taking wagers on the latest games. However, all the jargon and terminology can make it difficult for new bettors to get started. This article will help you understand the basics and get ready to bet on your favorite sport.

The NFL is the country’s most popular sport, and hordes of fans can be found cheering on their teams. Some states have multiple NFL teams, and it isn’t uncommon to see a football game being played at every local bar and restaurant in the US.

There are several different types of betting in the NFL, including money lines and totals. The money line is the odds that a bet will win, while the total is the sum of all points scored in a game. The total may also include extra points, or point spreads. The money line is updated constantly, so the number you see when placing a bet may be different from the number on your ticket.

Professional bettors run their betting enterprises like businesses, and are always running computer models and staring at the odds to capitalize on soft or mispriced lines. They often work together in groups, or “syndicates,” to take advantage of this pricing and increase their profits. They are also known as bookmakers or oddsmakers, and can be seen at the racetracks and on television.

The NBA and the NHL have a strict ban on gambling on their games, while MLB has a more relaxed policy. Players, managers, and club or league officials who are caught betting can be permanently banned from Major League Baseball.