Ever notice how good the oddsmakers are at making lines? Ever think they might be so good that you’d like to bet that they get it exactly right?
An example of this is when a team is favored by 7 points. You are betting that the favorite will win by exactly 7 points, and getting odds on your money if they do.
While exactas can be tough to hit, you can get huge odds on your money for a relatively small bet.
In this article we’ll explain general spots when exactas are smart bets, how to manipulate the odds you’ll get on your money, and how to be ready to bet exactas when those perfect lines occur.
General Spots To Bet Exactas
The best example of when and why to bet an exacta is when an NFL game has a 3 point line. This is because approximately 15% (1 in 6) of NFL games end in a 3 point difference.
7 point lines are also good lines to bet exactas in the NFL, as approximately 10% of games end in a 7 point difference.
10 point lines are the 3rd most common point differential followed closely by 4 and 6. All of these point spreads are good lines to gamble on an exacta, primarily when you can get 20-1 odds on them.
College football games with 3 or 7 point lines are also good spots for exactas.
These are all generally great spots to look to bet exactas. In other sports such as basketball, you may want to bet exactas when the line is 8 points or lower, and you can get at least 15-1 on your money.
How To Bet Exactas & Get The Best Odds On Your Money
To get the best odds possible, you should have access to multiple sportsbooks, as well as be paying attention throughout the day or week as the lines move. Here at Betsome.com we keep you updated on the best possible exactas every day.
Exactas With 20-1 Odds
This occurs when the oddsmakers set a line, and you are able to find it on different sportsbooks for 1/2 point lower AND a 1/2 point higher. You then bet both sides. Your risk is 1 vig, and your reward is winning both bets when the line is perfect.
Most of the time you will need 2 different sports books to get 20-1 on an exacta, but every now and then you can execute it with only one sportsbook, if the line moves around enough.
Example of a 20-1 exacta:
On one sports book they are -3.5, but on another they are -2.5.
You bet $100 on the underdog (Broncos) +3.5 on the first book. You then bet $100 on the favorite (Packers) -2.5 on the other book.
If the Packers win by exactly 3, you win both bets for a total of $200.
If any other score results, you lose only $10. This is because you win $100 on your bet that wins, and lose $110 on that loses.
This is how you get 20-1 on an exacta.
When you see opportunites to get 20-1 on your money on a perfect line, take them. Especially if it is a good spot to bet exactas in the first place, such as a 3 or 7 point line in football.
Exactas With 15-1 Odds:
The basic difference between the 15-1 exacta and the 20-1 exacta is that you are buying a 1/2 point on one of your bets in order to force the exacta. You are simply paying double the vig if the side you force loses. 15-1 is still great odds on your money on the right lines, so it is advised to take a 15-1 exacta on reasonable spreads.
Example of a 15-1 exacta:
On one sports book they are -3.5, yet on another they are only -3.
So you bet $100 on the underdog (Broncos) +3.5. You then buy a half a point and bet the Packers -2.5.
You now lose either $10 if one side loses, or $20 if the side you buy the half a point on loses.
Yet you win both bets for a total of $200 if the Packers win by exactly 3.
You can almost always find a way to get at least 15-1 on your money if you have more than one sportsbook available. Many times you can get 15-1 on an exacta with just one sportsbook as well if you are paying attention and the line moves a little bit.
Exactas With 10-1 Odds
This is when you bet exactas with just 1 sportsbook, and have to buy a 1/2 point both ways. This is what we call “forcing” an exacta. It does not mean it’s a bad play, it simply means that you think it’s a good enough play to force it and only get 10-1 odds.
Example of betting a 10-1 exacta:
You make the Packers -2.5, and the Broncos +3.5, and bet $100 on each.
If the game ends with the Packers winning by exactly 3, you win both bets for a total of $200.
If the game ends in any other score, you lose $20. This is because you win one bet for $100, but lose the other for $120 (the extra vig for buying the half of a point).
You can do a 10-1 exacta with only one sportsbook available.
How To Be Ready For Exactas
To get maximum value and odds on your exactas, it is smart to be prepared. Here are a few ways you can do this.
Have multiple sports books
Being ready to bet on multiple different sportsbooks is essential to getting maximum odds on your exactas. While it is possible to get 20-1 on an exacta with only one sportsbook, it is far more difficult and much less frequent.
Pay attention to lines as they move
In order to get 20-1 on your money, you will have to watch the lines across a few different sites so you will not have to force it one way or another by buying a half of a point and doubling your vig. When the line moves a half a point on one site, snap it up and bet.
Hit all of the major lines
As we discussed earlier, certain games end in certain spreads with remarkable accuracy. In football, these lines are simply 3, 7, 10, 4, and 6.
Other sports such as basketball is a bit more wide open, but anything less than 8 is not a bad play to bet an exacta if you can get the appropriate odds.
If NFL games end in 3 points 1/6 times, why not take 20-1 on that every time?