Want to bet smart and win a little money this Super Bowl Sunday? We thought so.
You’re going to sit down on February 1 and watch the Super Bowl because you love football and the big game is the greatest sporting event on Earth. Plus, if you live in the US it’s basically unavoidable. You’ll have a hard time finding a bar, restaurant, or even a home that isn’t showing the game.
• The underdog has won seven of the past 10 Super Bowls
• Online sportsbook Bovada offers a $250 Super Bowl betting bonus
• Oddsmakers favor the Patriots by a slim margin
But you’re also tuning in because you’re a football bettor. You bet on NFL games as a fun leisure activity, but you also want to win big money on Super Bowl XLIX. Who wouldn’t want to?
We’ve put together a savvy bettor’s guide on how to work the point spread, betting lines, and props to your favor and wake up with a crapload of money in your pocket on Monday morning!
Bet on the underdog
The underdog doesn’t win all the time, but when it comes to the Super Bowl, they win most of the time. Over the past 10 Super Bowls, the team with the odds against it won seven.
The only instances in which the favorite won were in 2011 when the Packers beat the Steelers 31-25 as 3-point favorites; in 2007 when the Colts beat the Bears 29-17 as 7-point favorites; and in 2006 when the Steelers beat the Seahawks 21-10 as 4-point favorites.
Some of these seven upsets netted major wins for bettors who displayed the balls to pick the underdog. In 2009 the Steelers beat the Cardinals as 7-point dogs, putting a lot of money into bettor’s pockets. And who could forget 2008, one of the greatest Super Bowl upsets ever.
The Giants were 12-point underdogs against a Patriots team dubbed “the greatest team in NFL history.” Somehow they pulled it off, winning by 17-14.
In Super Bowl XLIX the Seahawks are slight underdogs with a +1 spread and 1.95/1 money line. It’s the closest line we’ve seen since Ronald Reagan’s first term, when the Niners and Bengals played in 1982.
Pick out the top props
Arguably the best thing about living in the internet age is the proliferation of prop bets. As football bettors, we have so many more choices than we used to. Let’s say that your favorite player is Tom Brady, and you want to place a wager specifically on “Tom Brady’s performance in Super Bowl XLIX.”
Log onto any online sportsbooks in the US, Canada, or UK, and look up top props. You can bet on how many touchdowns Brady will throw, whether he will throw for more touchdowns or yards than Russell Wilson.
Let’s say you want to place wagers on which players will score touchdowns over the course of the game. Marshawn Lynch is the current oddsmaker favorite at 3.50/1, with Gronkowski following at 6.50/1. If you’re looking to make money, bet on Gronk. At those odds, do you really think he’ll play an entire game without scoring?
Bet on Super Bowl futures
Those who stand to make the most money betting on Super Bowl XLIX are those who placed wagers long before the season started. In today’s world of real-time information and live updates, Super Bowl futures betting lines came out the day following the 2014 Super Bowl between the Seahawks and Broncos.
If you recall, oddsmakers tabbed the Seahawks as the favorite to repeat at 5.50/1. Contrast that with the current odds: 1.95/1. If you’re placing a bet on the Seahawks this week, don’t you wish you had done it about nine months ago?
The disparity is even bigger when it comes to the Patriots, a team that didn’t get a ton of love from oddsmakers prior to the season. The Pats preseason Super Bowl futures odds were given 6.50/1 odds, behind both the Seahawks and Broncos.
If you want to bet on the Patriots now, you’ll receive just $1.86 for every dollar you put up. The moral of the story? Take the futures bet. It’s more risky, but the potential payoff is infinitely larger.
Hunt for the best online sportsbook bonuses and promos
Online betting sites offer perks you simply won’t find at any sportsbook in Vegas or on the London high street. There’s the variety and convenience of betting from the comfort of your own home or on the go with your mobile device, but really I’m talking about the bonuses.
Bovada has a great bonus for anyone betting on the Super Bowl for the first time with their site. They call it a “50% welcome bonus,” and it means they’ll bankroll half of your wager up to $250 if you bet on the big game with them.
BetVictor has a great bonus as well. The leading online and mobile betting company will match 100% of your initial deposit up to $25. It’s not a ton of money, but it is free. BetVictor has great betting lines and props to boot.