As well as being the biggest sporting event in the world, Super Bowl XLIX is the biggest gambling event in the world. You can bet on the game, the coin flip, the national anthem, the half time show, the colour of the Gatorade shower. If it happens on Sunday night, you can bet on it. But where to start with such an array of options? Here’s a newbie’s guide to avoid losing all your money on Super Bowl XLIX.
DON’T BET ON THE COIN TOSS
Betting on the pregame coin flip is the most tempting, yet most futile of all Super Bowl gambles. The odds of winning are 50/50, yet the returns are lower. There’s no skill, no advantage. It’s utterly pointless. A sneakier bet, is for the Seahawks to get the first possession and/or score first. The odds on this shouldn’t be overly weighted, but New England Patriots’ coach Bill Belichick (yes, him of the deflated balls) will always defer the kickoff and give the opposition the ball. (And if you really want to bet on the coin toss, remember, tails never fails.)
GO ALL IN ON SAFETIES
The odds on a safety appearing in a Super Bowl are always monstrously high (+500 with Intertops.eu) and yet in two of the last three Super Bowls, there’s been a safety. With pressure as high as it gets, mistakes are possible, and with late tactical tweaks from two of the smartest coaches around in the offing, we may even see a repeat of Baltimore’s deliberate safety from two years ago.
CLOSE GAME HEROICS
A couple of minor prop bets here: firstly, have a look at their being a score in the final two minutes of the first half (-300 with AllYouBet.ag). In Tom Brady and Russell Wilson we’ll see two of the smartest QBs in football match up, and both possess fine clock management skills which could see you cashing in on this. The other one is this: we’ve never seen a Super Bowl go to overtime, but this looks like being one of the closest games in years, and may well end up being a pick’um. With that in mind, overtime is a definite possibility.
There are two ways to approach MVP betting – the smart, QB focused approach, or the fun, ‘who’s going to become a hero’ approach. The QB approach is to back the quarterback of whichever team you think will win – as the QBs, more often than not, come away with the individual prize. Alternatively, you could look for other possibilities. Marshawn Lynch, in possible his last game as a Seahawk, is a strong shout for Seattle, but why not look further down the list. Last year’s MVP Malcolm Smith has barely been heard from since, but saw two turnovers land in his lap. Kam Chancellors’ big play ability may give him an outside shot at the award, and he possibly should have won it last year. For the Patriots, have a look at the Gronk, Rob Gronkowski. The big tight end is Tom Brady’s favourite weapon, and covering tight ends is one of the few weaknesses of the fearsome Seattle defense.
Betting Instinct tip – Rob Gronkowski to be named Super Bowl MVP is +1000 with Intertops.eu
It’s not too late to grab your ticket to London’s biggest and best Super Bowl party – happening at Bloomsbury Lanes. Tickets and details at bloomsburylive.com/superbowl
JAMIE CUTTERIDGE (jamiecutteridge) is a journalist for a real magazine, but spends an inordinate amount of time writing about NFL. He’s the editor-in-chief of anygivensundaynight.co.uk and its associated twitter feed @UKNFL