The Super Bowl and sports betting have enjoyed a strong link with each other for some. It’s only natural. Both are popular, and it was only a matter of time before the two coincided. What once started out as an exhibition matchup between the NFL and the AFL has grown into something much bigger.
Now there are lots of different markets for Super Bowl betting. You can bet on standard features such as who will win or how many points will be scored during the game, or you can place quirkier bets on who will be the MVP, the result of the coin toss, whether the President will sing the national anthem or other random aspects of the event.
In this article, we cover some tips on how to place a good bet on the Super Bowl in Chicago, which was legalized last year before March Madness.
It would be nice to have enough money for it not to matter whether you win or lose, but you may well not, so here are some tips on betting strategy:
Analyze the stats
When two teams come up against each other in the Super Bowl, both are strong enough to have gotten there, so it’s hard to assess who’s better. You’ve got to look at individual matchups and the performance of individual players, which will give you an idea of the strengths and weaknesses of each team and allow you to make an informed bet about the overall strength of the team.
Think about the schedule
Not a lot of bettors think about this when considering their strategy, but the schedule can have an impact on how you bet.
Did one team have a tougher journey to the playoffs than the other? They might be better than you think if they’ve played against a lot of tough opponents and are still there when the playoffs start.
Perhaps one team has had a mild schedule and a slightly easier journey to the playoffs. This could have left them less prepared for the challenge ahead. Be sure you’ve not overestimated them before you bet.
Evaluate the depth of the team
The regular season isn’t especially long, but it’s intense. The hours on the field can catch up with the players. Some will become prone to injury and not have time to recover, and their replacements will step in.
So look at the quality of the backups. Assess how well likely they are to perform well if they do have to step in.
- Are they versatile?
- Do they have much experience?
- How much time did they spend on the field during the regular season?
- How have they performed on the field already?
Once you have your strategy in place, think about what kind of bet you’d like to place. There are so many types. Here are some you could try:
Betting straight on the money line
This is the simplest form of bet because you’re betting on who will win the game. Betting on an underdog will win you more if they win, whereas the betting operator won’t reward you with very much if you bet on a massive favorite and win.
The betting operator will normally display the moneyline odds for the favorite with a minus sign, whereas the underdog will have a plus sign in their odds. This shows how much you must bet to win back your stake plus $100.
Betting against the spread
Betting against the spread is one of the most common forms of betting on the Super Bowl. It’s a little like spread betting on the stock exchange, in so far as you win so much back for every dollar you bet.
You win when the team you’re backing wins by a certain number of points or more than the spread. For instance, if the operator runs the odds at -1 for the Chiefs, the Chiefs must win by at least two points for you to win, whereas if they run the odds at +1 for the 49ers, you’ll win your money back even if there’s a tie because the betting operator sees the 49ers as the underdogs.
If the Chiefs were to win by one point, an event which is called a “push,” you’d get your money back.
Over / under betting
Here you bet on the total number of points that will be scored during the game. The betting company will set a total, and you bet whether the score will be under or over that. If you bet the total will be higher, you’ll be “taking the over.” If you bet it will be fewer, you’re “taking the under.”
Note that in the case of over and under betting, and of against-the-spread betting, operators will sometimes shift the odds to encourage equal betting on both sides and protect themselves against heavy losses. For instance, if a lot of people are betting on one particular team or result a lot more than the other, they may increase the spread or the over/under total and the teams may have to do more on the grid for a winning bet to come in.
The beauty of betting on the Super Bowl is there are so many ways to do it. If you don’t fancy these traditional betting types, you may prefer prop betting, which means placing a bet on random aspects of the Super Bowl; in-play betting, which involves betting as the events on the grid unfold; or even betting on future Super Bowls.
As a reminder, if you want to place bets in Illinois online or on your mobile phone, you must first register in person at a sportsbook or sports venue.