AFL Betting 101: An Introduction to Betting on Australian Rules Football

AFL betting odds

What is AFL?

Australian Rules Football is a football code that is unique to Australia. The game evolved out of a version of Gaelic football that was played by Irish settlers and the indigenous game of Marn Grook with aspects of rugby included. 

The Australian Football League (AFL) is the main “Aussie Rules” competition in Australia with 18 teams spread across five states competing throughout the season which occupies a winter time slot. The game is high scoring and extremely popular in Australia’s southern states and Western Australia with high scoring a feature. 

The finals series consists of the top 8 teams with the Grand Final played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in front of a crowd of 100,000 on the last Saturday in September. 

Popular AFL Betting Markets

The explosion in sports betting in recent years provides great opportunities for hardened and novice bettors alike. The number of markets available in each game provides something for everyone and terrific opportunities to profit. 

Traditional Head-to-Head Betting and Line Betting remain popular and are simple to use. You choose the team that you think will win or cover the line and place a bet on them. If they win/cover you get paid out. 

Betting on Totals has emerged as another popular bet type recently. It is a bet placed on how many points the teams will score in the match between them. Well-researched bettors believe that they have an edge with this bet type as some coaches play a game plan that promotes attack while others focus on defence. Returning St Kilda coach Ross Lyon has long been regarded as a defensive coach and matches involving his teams tend to be dour matches. These games tend to go UNDER the points line.

Betting on Future Markets such as Premiership Winner, Top 4 and Brownlow Medal have always been popular but the range of markets has increased in recent years. Bets can now be placed on how many votes an individual player will poll in the Brownlow Medal or how many matches a team will win for the season amongst others. Once again, research is the key to success.   

Exotic & Proposition Bets are a great way to enjoy AFL matches. The betting markets are elaborate and include bet types such as first Goalscorer or leading disposals. Sometimes referred to as “novelty bets” these markets add excitement to the match and are a lot of fun. 

Same Game Multis is the most recent addition to the AFL betting space and has become extremely popular in a short period of time. They combine a number of bet types into one bet with a possibility of a good-sized payout. 

For example: 

Geelong is to win/Tom Hawkins is to kick 2+goals/Points margin is to be 15+ points/Patrick Dangerfield has 30+ disposals

AFL Betting Odds

Online betting agencies display AFL betting odds in decimal form. Below are the odds for the upcoming Port Adelaide and Geelong match:

Port Adelaide $1.59 – 10.5 @ $1.90

Geelong           $2.39 +10.5 @ $1.90

Total 167.5 

In this match, Port Adelaide is favoured to win. A $10 bet of Port Adelaide will return $15.90 ($10 x$1.59). If Port Adelaide wins by 11 points or more they will cover the line and pay $19 for a $10 investment ($10 x $1.90). 

Geelong is the underdogs in the match, with a $10 investment returning $23.90 ($10 x $2.39). If Geelong wins or loses by less than 10 points they will have covered the line and return $19 ($10 x $1.90).

The points line is set at 167.5. If the score is 167 or less, those who took the UNDERS will collect $19 for a bet of $10 ($10 x $1.90). If the score is 168 or more OVERS punters will collect $19 for $10 ($10 x $1.90).  

AFL Betting Strategies

With so much data and analysis available on the AFL, coming up with a betting strategy can be a lot of fun. It is best to use trial and error and small betting stakes when developing a method before raising your stakes. 

There are a lot of markets available on each match and the advantage that the bettor has is that they don’t HAVE to bet on them all! Whereas the bookie needs to have markets on EVERYTHING. 

It is prudent to choose a few markets to research and bet on these markets. They could be totals and head-to-head betting or even some of the exotic bet types such as disposals or goal scorer markets. 

A well-researched bettor will wait until they find the odds they like on the market/s they specialise in and place their bets. 

AFL Betting Tips

One thing is certain about AFL betting, everyone has an opinion! There is a dedicated Fox Footy channel with news and views 24/7 as well as countless podcasts and TV shows discussing upcoming AFL matches and providing betting tips. While these shows can provide good information it is crucial to develop your own strategies and to constantly evaluate results throughout the season. 


A Bet on the AFL is a lot of fun and can be profitable as well! Betting with a licensed and trusted online sports bookmaker is crucial to ensuring that your funds are secure and for that reason I choose Palmerbet. They are licensed in Australia and with three generations of experience you can be sure that they will be around into the future. Visit and start betting with them today. 

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