The Super Bowl is arguably the biggest and most exciting sporting event of the year. An incredible amount of money is put on the line, not only by sportsbooks but also by bettors, as the outcome of the game can have a significant impact both financially and emotionally.
That being said, the odds of winning money are not necessarily great. In fact, the betting odds for the Super Bowl are among the highest of any sporting event.
This is mainly because there’s so much uncertainty surrounding the game. The last several years have seen countless questionable calls and non-calls by officials that have kept the betting public on edge. This was especially the case last year when the lines shifted so dramatically in the final moments that even the most diehard football fans had to keep asking themselves “Did the Titans really win the game?”
With all that being said and done, let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of what the betting odds for the Super Bowl actually mean.
Understanding The Odds
When dealing with betting odds, the first thing to keep in mind is that they are not actual odds of winning the Super Bowl. They are simply the odds the bookmaker is willing to accept as part of the wager. Keep reading for more details.
Additionally, many people believe that the spread, or the margin by which the money is won or lost on a true wager, is a fairer way to judge the odds. A bet of $100 on the game would net the bettor $185 (185 * 1.05 = $185). However, the bookmaker is taking in a $100 bet and paying out $105 (105 * 1.05 = $105). This is how Bookmakers & Casino’s make money at the expense of less sophisticated bettors. The theory is that most people are better at avoiding losses than they are at winning big bucks. Thus, the spread is a more objective and accurate way to judge the true odds of winning big when betting on the Super Bowl.
The Bookmaker’s Edge
Another thing to keep in mind when considering the odds of winning the Super Bowl is that the bookmaker has an edge over you, the bettor. When placing a wager on a sporting event, you are essentially putting your money on the line, and bookmakers are generally more willing to risk losing your money than they are willing to risk losing their money.
Additionally, in the case of the Super Bowl, if you look at the spread and compare it to the over/under (the amount of points you think the game will be decided by), you have to assume that the favorite is going to have a significant advantage. This is mainly because NFL fans tend to be more inclined to bet on their beloved team rather than on the game’s favorite team. Additionally, it’s very difficult for an outsider to truly understand what is going on during the game, as the pace is frantic and the outcome can switch in a matter of minutes. All of this said, the bookmaker still has to make a profit, so they have to give the advantage to the favorite.
Finally, when considering the odds of winning the Super Bowl, it’s important to look at the favorites, or the teams that are deemed to be stronger and more likely to win the game. Simply put, the favorite is usually the side that is listed first, or the team that is perceived to be most likely to win the game. The theory is that people are more likely to bet on a team they believe is going to win, rather than on a team they think is going to lose.
When it comes to the Super Bowl, there are typically two main favorites. The first is the New England Patriots, who have won the last five Super Bowls, and the other is the Los Angeles Rams, who are the most recent champs, having won in 2019.
Where Do The Vegas Odds Come From?
The main factor that puts the odds of winning money in the Super Bowl so high is that there is so much uncertainty surrounding the game. Simply put, because it’s such a popular and exciting game, and because there are so many variables that can shake the outcome. Some of these variables include:
- Whether or not the officials will call the correct number of penalties during the game.
- How many points each team will score.
- Whether or not players will stay healthy.
- How well both teams perform under pressure situations.
These are just some of the many factors that can change the outcome of the game. In light of this, it’s very difficult to accurately calculate or predict what the final score of the game will be. This is why, generally speaking, the spread is typically so much in favor of the home team.
More Than Meets The Eye
Also, keep in mind that in addition to the spread and the over/under, there is also another way to judge the odds of winning the Super Bowl. Most people are not aware of this, but there is also a futures market for the Super Bowl. This market allows for bets to be placed on the final score of the game, and in some cases, on any other event that may transpire during the game. For example, if you bet on the game being won in the 4th quarter, but New England scores a touchdown and wins in the 2nd quarter, your bet will refunded, minus the juice (takeout). This is one of the few spots where you can get truly excellent odds on anything, including the Super Bowl, without being considered a sportsbook.
What Are The Most Popular Bets On The Super Bowl?
In order to gain an understanding of what types of bets are most popular on the Super Bowl, one has to look at the history books. The last several years have seen countless bets placed on the outcome of the Super Bowl game, and based on the records, it’s quite clear that there has been a trend toward wagering on the Patriots.
In the last three years, 64% of bets are on New England to win the Super Bowl, with an additional 28% putting their money on the Rams. Only 7% of bets are on the opposing teams, with the remaining 3% being on the spread, or on the total number of points that will be scored.
As for why people are putting their money on the Patriots, it’s not hard to figure out. Based on the records, they are the greatest under-dogs ever, having never been favored to win a Super Bowl. This is undoubtedly why most people are so keen on wagering on New England in the first place. Additionally, the Patriots have been a popular choice among sports betting fans because they are the most successful team in the history of the Super Bowl, having won 13 out of the last 18 championships. This makes them the prohibitive favorites to win the next one, as well.
How Does Wagers On The Super Bowl Impact Financial Betting?
One of the most significant impacts that wagering on the Super Bowl has had on sportsbooks is that it has made them a more attractive option for high profile individuals planning to bet big money. As briefly mentioned, the Super Bowl is often the scene of some huge wagers being placed, with one of the biggest and most profitable wagers being the one-on-one NCAA Football Championship between the University of Michigan and Ohio State. This game alone accounts for 6.9% of the total money wagered on the Super Bowl, or about $60-million, in 2019.
As for why this particular game is so significant, it’s actually quite simple. The winner will receive the Heisman trophy, and the loser will have to settle for the Little Brother award, which is presented to the player who is competing in his first year of college. This is one of the biggest sporting events of the year, and it’s closely followed by the MLB Playoffs, meaning that it serves as a sort of pre-season for the upcoming Major League Baseball season. Additionally, the NCAA Football Championship game pits two of the most formidable and successful college football programs against one another, and it’s a battle of the brothers, as the two schools are named after the first and the second sons of one of our most beloved presidents, George Herbert Walker Bush.