Injuries are a part of football and all sports, no matter how unfortunate they may be. That means bettors must always consider injuries whenever they place a wager on a football game in college or the pros. But, keep in mind not all injuries are created equal, as some injuries are more impactful than others and should be contemplated differently depending on who is set to miss a game.
Quarterback is the most crucial position in football, as they pace the offense and deliver it to skill position players on every snap. Therefore, quarterback injuries are the most significant in football, as an offense can entirely fall apart if they are missing the starting quarterback on the field. Bettors will often see the point spread shift dramatically when a quarterback is ruled out due to injury.
Bettors should always strive to know who the backup quarterback is on a roster and how effective they can be when it comes to quarterback injuries. That understanding can help them conclude if any changes to the point spread are justified or an overreaction to a big-name starter going down.
Skill Position Injuries
Skill position injuries are probably the most overvalued in football betting, as skill players carry star power that doesn’t match how replaceable they are. The running back position is particularly replaceable, as evidenced by teams that refuse to pay players at the position in many cases. We see something similar with the Wide receivers, as the rules of today’s game make it easier for receivers of all different skill levels to produce.
There are exclusions to this rule, of course, as there are some players whose usage rate is high enough to justify line movements for crucial games. Players like Christian McCaffrey, for example, have proven to be relevant enough for the team to where their absence would dramatically impact their team’s offense. But contrary to what most bettors would think, those players are further and farther between.
While skill position injuries are possibly the most overvalued in football, injuries to offensive linemen, on the other hand, may be the most undervalued. Offensive line play is more important than most of what goes on during a game on a football field, as it tiles the way for offenses to pass and run effectively. Without key offensive line members, both of those phases of an offense can grind to a complete halt.
It is essential to consider where on the offensive line injuries happen relative to a team’s strengths. For example, the teams with the most injuries to their offense guards are the ones that use the running game more effectively than the passing game. On the other hand, a more pass-heavy offense will have the most trouble with a loss to its offensive tackles.
Injuries on defense should not be overlooked either, as playing defense in today’s NFL is difficult for even the best players in the league. Defenses work best when every player on the field is in sync to handle every possible situation. When even one piece of the defense has to be replaced, the chances of missed assignments increases.
And it doesn’t have to be a star player on defense being injured to throw off the ability of the defense to get stops. The loss of anyone at any level of the defense can have a negative effect on the efficacy of an entire defensive scheme.