I’m not a betting man. Never have been. And still not one today.
But when tasked by MetroBet to review a couple of online New Jersey sports books and write about my experience, I was all in.
Since New Jersey’s Supreme Court legalized sports betting in May, the market has been booming — with both physical sports book locations and websites — and more than anything, this would be an opportunity to do a service piece for people curious about wagering on their favorite sports, but who haven’t taken the plunge yet.
That being said, I’m from New York, so to do these reviews, the first step was making the trek to New Jersey. Once in The Garden State, I flipped open my laptop and delved into the reviews, beginning with DraftKings and then 888Sport.com.
Once I arrived on DraftKings.com’s homepage, I was immediately hit with their current promotion, which is, “Get your first bet matched instantly up to $200.”
And I was pleasantly surprised at how quick the sign-up process was for DraftKings. Registration includes the norm as in name, address, phone number, etc. I mean the process should be easy, considering DraftKings’ stature as a major daily fantasy site player alongside FanDuel, but still … the signup took about a minute, if even that long.
Once I signed up and logged in, I was hit with a very busy board of sports, dominated by college football, which had a slew of games Saturday. Lot of activity on one screen. Switching between different sports’ game lines was pain-free, as I left the college football board and clicked onto NFL.
After taking a long look at the Week 4 matchups, I zeroed in on the Buffalo Bills-Green Bay Packers matchup. More than any other NFL game on the schedule, I thought that one had the chance to be most lopsided, with the Bills being as hapless as they are and the Packers being at home with the baad man himself, Aaron Rodgers, at quarterback.
I specifically eyed a singles Packers’ point-spread bet (-112), in which $10, would have netted me $19. (Listen, I’m sorry it’s not a higher, more thrilling amount. I told you I’m not a betting man).
Now, I could have placed that bet in a matter of seconds. And I should have done just that, but being that this was DraftKings and it’s a daily fantasy platform, I said to myself, ‘Why not give readers the true DF experience by betting on a lineup?’
So, I decided to do just that.
The first step in that process?
Choosing the sport you want to create a lineup for, the game style and contest start time.
Since the NBA is still a couple of weeks away from its Oct. 16 tip-off, I went with the NFL, classic game style and with a Sunday 1 p.m. start, meaning the Thursday Night Football game prior wouldn’t be counted. Only Sunday’s games and the Monday Night Football game.
Classic game style rules are pretty straightforward and standard for fantasy players, in that I was tabbed to pick 1 quarterback, 2 running backs, 3 wide receivers, 1 tight end, 1 defense/special teams and 1 flex position. DraftKings gives you a faux $50,000 salary cap to disperse amongst the players you choose.
That being said, I spent the biggest chunks of that salary cap on Rodgers, New York Giants rookie running back Saquon Barkley, Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and Cincinnati Bengals wideout A.J. Green, expecting big performances from all of them Sunday.
How did they and the rest of my players do?
From there, I made a $25 deposit — in what was a very quick credit-card number input — and chose my contest, which was an “NFL Single Entry $25 Double Up” that had a max field of 459 players and a max payout of $10,000.
Once selecting that, I was done. I would say the entire process took about 10 minutes and that’s only because I took a while deliberating on how to properly allocate the $50,000 in salary cap amongst my fantasy players. But that’s the fun part, right? I didn’t win anything, but DraftKings makes the process so fun, easy and seamless that I’d implore those interested who have never tried it to give it a shot.
To be really honest, I would have to be nitpicking to come up with a single negative about the DraftKings’ registration process and/or gameplay. Both are top-notch, smooth and seamless, making it easy to understand why DraftKings is where it’s at with its daily fantasy platform. Great experience.
4.5 out of 5 stars