NRL Betting Tips & Previews

NRL Betting Tips

The NRL is one of the world’s biggest and best rugby league competitions, dominating the sporting landscape in its Queensland and New South Wales heartlands.

Played from early March to early October each year, the league comprises 16 teams in four different states and a franchise in neighbouring rugby-mad New Zealand.

The pinnacle of the NRL Season is the Grand Final played in early October, but the most passion from the fans is certainly reserved for the legendary State of Origin battles between the Queensland Maroons and New South Wales Blues.

As one of the nation’s most-watched and dearly-loved sporting codes, the NRL is a huge favourite with punters.

Read on through our comprehensive betting guide to get a complete picture on what makes the code a favourite, what bookies can offer and how the history of the league and stats can inform your bets going forward.

NRL Previews

NRL Bookmaker Odds & Promotions

When half the country is watching a sport over the course of a weekend, you better believe the bookmakers are going to deliver a suite of promotions and offers to compete for your punting business.

These promotions can be ongoing throughout the season, or pop up weekly for specific games and huge match-ups like the State of Origin.

Sportsbet, TAB, BetEasy and our other recommended bookmakers offer their NRL punters with exclusive, unique promotions — we recommend taking a look at their offerings before you place a bet.

NRL 2019 Premiership Betting

After winning the 2018 NRL premiership, the Sydney Roosters are the favourite with the bookies to do what no other NRL side has done since the Brisbane Broncos in 1993 — win back-to-back NRL titles.

Hot on the Roosters’ heels are the side they vanquished in 2018, the Melbourne Storm, and the Sydney Rabbitohs and Cronulla Sharks are all in the race and in the top echelon of betting.

NRL Betting Options

NRL will often have in excess of 130 betting markets to choose from in a regular season game and that figure can jump considerably for finals, when bookmakers and punters jump on even more exotic options.

Like most major sports, head-to-head and margin betting are the most popular and easy options, but player exotics, first try scorer and most tries are also a common staple of the NRL punter’s diet.

Let’s take a look through the major markets and how you can turn them into money spinners:


You pick the winner of an NRL game, you win the head-to-head bet, it’s as simple as that.

Be warned, the longer the odds in a H2H market, the less chance the bookmaker thinks the team has of winning.


Line betting gives punters the opportunity to bet on a game that bookmakers have handicapped to create a more even contest.

How does a line bet work? Here’s an example:

Cronulla -6.5 vs. Melbourne +6.5

The lines given above mean that bookmakers believe Cronulla is 6 points better than Melbourne before the start of the game. So, if you gamble on Melbourne at +6.5, that as long as they don’t lose by 7 points or more, you’ll win the bet.

The odds on a line bet will start at $1.90 for both teams, but can come in if punters bet heavily on either side of the ledger.


Margin betting provides punters with the opportunity to not only pick a winner, but also the margin of that victory.

First Try:

If punters can select the first player to score a try in an NFL game, there’s some handy odds on offer. With 13 players taking the field for each team, there are 26 opportunities to bet on. It pays to do your homework and see who does the most scoring for each side, especially early in the game, but there are some big odds on offer for the guys who sneak under the radar.

Most Tries:

Select which player is going to score the most tries in a game and you’ll turn a tidy profit in any NRL game. Again, you’ll have 26 opportunities to pluck the biggest scoring contributor, but some players will offer much better value than others.

NRL Futures Markets and Medals Betting

The NRL season is filled with enormous marquee events, individual awards and huge fixtures that punters love to dissect and bet on throughout the year.

There are few sporting leagues throughout the world that provide such interesting futures markets, so let’s take a look at them:

Dally M Medal:

The Dally M Medal is awarded to the NRL player of the season, voted on by journalists at the NSW newspaper, the Daily Telegraph.

At the end of each game, 3 votes, 2 votes and 1 vote are awarded to the best players on the ground — the player with the most votes at the end of season wins the coveted award, which was established for the first time in 1980.

An interesting quirk of the Dally M is that the leaders are published in the newspaper up until Round 16 and then for the next nine weeks, the results are kept secret to add to the mystery on presentation night.

Punters are given a good idea of how the market looks for the first 16 weeks and can frame their wagers thereafter.

State of Origin:

The traditional three-game series fought out between New South Wales and Queensland brings together the best players in the NRL, fighting for nothing more than bragging rights and a place in the history of the game.

State of Origin is one of the highest-rating and most-watched NRL events on the League calendar and a betting phenomenon with futures markets available 12 months out and hundreds of individual markets come game time.

NRL Premiership:

The pinnacle of the NRL season takes place on the first Sunday of October and pits the best two clubs of the finals against each other.

Premiership betting markets open immediately after a champion has been decided, so this is an event that some punters will wait 12 months to come to fruition.

NRL Wooden Spoon:

Like most sports, there is almost as much interest in failure as there is in success. The NRL wooden spoon market can be a hotly-contested one and gives punters some interest in the bottom half of the ladder.

Be warned, some bookmakers will call this ‘least amount of wins’, because of the League’s history in handing out big penalties to clubs that are immediately banished to the bottom of the ladder. 

NRL Multi Betting

Multi betting is a popular option for NRL punters looking to grow their odds across the weekend.

You can choose to accumulate your bets together in the same bet slip, increasing your returns like the example below:

Melbourne to beat Sydney @ $2
Cronulla to beat Brisbane @ $1.40
Canberra to beat Sth Sydney @ $1.67
NZ to beat Manly @ $2

Combined multi odds = $9.35

Most bookmakers will not allow you to accumulate legs in your multi that conflict or could influenced other results within the same bet. The exception to this rule is the bookmakers that allow the Same-Game multi.

Ladbrokes, BetEasy and Sportsbet offer punters the chance to place a same game multi.

That means you can accumulate bets within one game and pull them all together.

For example, this is how a same-game multi could work:

Cameron Smith to score first try @ $9
Melbourne Storm to win from 1-10 @ $3

Melbourne to lead 1st half/2nd half @ $4

Combined multi odds = $108

NRL Bet of the Day and Free Tips

There are eight games over a weekend of NRL action, giving punters a substantial opportunity to find real value in the many, many markets available in each and every game. readers can look at our free tips section to follow our expert analysis on each game in which we’ll identify where the best bets are.

NRL Predictions

Our team of NRL pundits pick their best selections for each match day and share their predictions each week here on the site and on the Facebook page.

NRL Fixtures

Following the NRL fixture and understanding how teams fare throughout the season cannot be underestimated when it comes to your weekly NRL betting.

Starting early March, the NRL season goes for 25 rounds and culminates in a four-week finals system that finishes with the NRL Grand Final in the first week of October.

Games can be played from Thursday night all the way through to Monday night on some weeks, with matches also scheduled for certain mid-week public holidays throughout the year.

NRL Live Streaming

If you can’t get in front of a TV to watch the NRL game you’ve punted on, or your significant other has done something criminal like organise a night out when your team is playing, you’ll still be able to watch the game on your smart phone with a number of live streaming options.

Subscribers to both Kayo and Foxtel have smart phone streaming options and the NRL Digital Pass costs just $3.99 a week or $99 for the year to watch every single NRL game online.

Bonus Bets
    Risk-Free 1st Bet

    Must use BETMGM bonus code NEWWORLD1. Place a wager of $25 or more and PlayMGM will match it up to $500 in free bets. 21+ only. T&Cs and wagering requirements apply.

    Claim Now
  • No Deposit
    Risk-Free Bet

    Sign up with the Sportsbook and get 2 x $10 free bets AND a Risk Free Bet up to $250. Try Unibet's sportsbook today for free! T&Cs apply. 21+ only.

    Claim now
    Deposit Bonus
    $100 Bet Credits

    New customers only. 21+ T&Cs and wagering requirements apply. Sign up using the bonus code NEWBONUS, deposit £5 or more to your account and bet365 will match your qualifying deposit in Bet Credits when you place qualifying bets to the same value and they are settled. Min odds/bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. T&Cs, time limits & exclusions apply. Over 18s.

    Claim now
    up to $500

    New customers only. 21+ T&Cs and wagering requirements apply.

    Sign up
  • WORLD50
    Deposit Bonus

    New customers only. 21+ only. T&Cs and wagering requirements apply.

    Sign up
More bonus bets