There are almost 400 prop bets at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook for Super Bowl LI. To get a better idea of what you should or shouldn’t bet, we hit up Todd Dewey, the sports betting columnist for the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Heads I win, tails you lose.
That’s essentially the position bettors are in against offshore sports book BookMaker.eu heading into the Super Bowl LI coin toss.
“Heads” opened at minus-103 on the proposition bet, “Player calling coin toss will call ___.” As the designated road team, the Patriots will call the toss in Sunday’s game against the Falcons. Smart bettors were aware that New England has called heads on every toss the last two seasons and pounded the prop, which was then taken off the board for two days.
The prop has since been reposted and heads was at minus-680 (with tails at plus-440) on Wednesday, according to BookMaker.eu spokesmanScott Cooley, who said there’s a $2,000 limit on the wager.
This one looks like a — dare we say it — lock. But, of course, you have to risk a lot to win a little on that one. Most of the betting public prefers to risk a little to win a lot, and there are plenty of options on the 400-plus-item Super Bowl prop bet buffet offered by most Las Vegas sports books.
Here are some of the savviest plays.
Will there be a safety? Yes pays 6-1 odds at Westgate. That number is low due to the fact that there was a safety in three straight Super Bowls from 2012–2014, twice on the first score of the game. The odds are 40-1 that the first scoring play of Super Bowl LI will be a safety by New England, and the number is the same for Atlanta.
None of the previous 50 Super Bowls have gone to overtime, which is why betting that there will be overtime pays 7-1 odds. However, the professional bettors — aka sharps — are betting that there won’t be a safety (minus-900) and that there won’t be overtime (minus-1100).
The most high-risk, high-reward wager a bettor can make is picking the final score for each team. The odds are 9,999-1 on the Patriots to finish with two points and 9,999-1 that they’ll finish with four. The odds also are 9,999-1 on the Falcons finishing with four points and 5,000-1 that they’ll end up with only two.
A selection of cross-sport prop bets on the board include everyone from Alex Ovechkin to LeBron James to Tiger Woods to Lionel Messi. Hell, boxing and even rugby are in the mix in case anyone wants to wager that the combined points between Italy–Wales (-11.5) will best the distance of the first made field goal of the Super Bowl.
There’s also a prop for the very patient hockey fan, who will have to wait until after next year’s Super Bowl and into the summer of 2018 before learning the final result of the prop bet pitting the expansion Vegas Golden Knights’ 2017-18 regular season point total (minus-20.5) against Falcons running back Devonta Freeman’s rushing yards.
Or you could keep it simple and bet that the largest lead by either team will be under 14.5 points (plus-140). The Patriots’ six previous Super Bowls with coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady have been decided by four points or less, and 14 points was the largest lead by either team in any of them.
Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images