How to bet on the Canadian Football League

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/

Want to know how to bet on the CFL and improve your chances of picking winners?

Use this guide to learn how to bet on Canada’s flagship football league.

Canadians are known for many things, including their politeness, friendly nature, grizzly
bears, and delicious maple syrup. But they are also known for loving their sports,
particularly football which has been part of Canadian culture for over a century. When two
professional football leagues combined forces around six decades ago, the Canadian
Football League was born and has become the go-to place for Canadian football
fans refusing to look south of the border at the NFL.

This is not to say Canadians don’t enjoy the NFL. Both leagues are popular in Canada
because they run on different schedules. This also makes the NFL and CFL big players in
the Canadian sports betting market, along with hockey, tennis and even soccer betting and odds can be popular topics among gamblers haunting Canadian sports bars.

But if you want to bet on the CFL, there are a few things you need to know. Consider this post as your essential 101 to CFL betting.

How to bet on point spreads

Point spreads are the most common and fundamental form of betting on the CFL. They
work like this…

Bookmakers offer odds on favourites to win by a certain number of points, while also
offering bets on underdogs to lose by a certain amount of points. When betting on these
lines, the gambler is betting that the favourite will win by the stated number of points or
more, or the underdog will lose by the stated number of points or less.

The bottom line is that if either team underperform to what is expected, even if they are
expected to lose anyway, then the gambler will lose. They are a fun way of making betting
on the CFL more interesting.

Betting on CFL moneylines

Moneylines are a more straightforward form of betting where the fan will just bet on which
team they think will win, irrelevant of their winning or losing points margin.

For Europeans who have just moved to Canada, the way the potential returns are written
may confuse you. Instead of odds that show up like 7/2, these money lines display odds as
a + or – to denote the favourite and underdog, which is then simply followed up by a

CFL total betting

If you think a game is too difficult to call and want to experience a different type of CFL bet, then you may be interested in betting based on totals. Unlike the previous two types of bets, totals bets do not concern themselves with who will win the game.

Instead, totals bets revolve around how many points the team will score within the match,
regardless of the outcome.

Canadian bookmakers use the letters O or U to mean over or under a certain number of
points on these betting lines.

Other CFL bets

You may also want to learn about betting on parlays and teasers to enhance your knowledge of what is possible in CFL sports betting.

Game on!