Super Bowl XLVIII: “Normal” Prop Bets for Sunday’s Big Game
Yesterday we examined the myriad of “crazy” prop bets (the weather, the length of the National Anthem, etc.) that are being wagered on for Sunday’s Super Bowl contest between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks. For the multitude of “crazy” bets, there are almost the same number of “normal” prop bets that are getting some action. Today we’ll look at some of these bets which, while not having an effect on the game overall, still have the potential to give a gambler some betting options other than the outcome of the game itself (lines courtesy of Bovada.lv, but other online sports betting sites and Las Vegas also have their various betting options).
Prop Bet #1: Who Will Be First To Score a Touchdown?
This is always an interesting bet because of the number of players who have the chance to take the first TD over the goal line. On the Bovada boards, the player actually has to make the score, however; for example, if Seahawks QB Russell Wilson or Broncos QB Peyton Manning tosses a TD pass, the receiver gets the credit for the score. With this in mind, wide receivers are dominating the line.
The odds-on favorite at Bovada is Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch, who currently has odds of 11/2 for him to be the first to spike the ball in the end zone. Right behind him, however, is Broncos WR Wes Welker (13/2) and the remainder of the Broncos receiving corps. Eric Decker and Julius Thomas (8/1) and Demaryius Thomas and RB Knowshon Moreno (9/1) are the next bets on the line. You don’t find another Seahawk on the list until Wilson (12/1) and ‘Hawks WR Percy Harvin (14/1).
While it might be fun to lay some money on Manning to rush the ball into the end zone (40/1), we’re here to make some money. As such, I would put my bet on one of the two Thomases for the Broncos. They are a favorite target of Manning’s and, with their current odds, offer a nice payout for the bet.
Prop Bet #2: The Individual Players
You could bust your entire sports betting bankroll on the list of individual player prop bets that you could make. Not only do the quarterbacks have their lines but running backs, receivers, kickers and even several defensive players have over/under (O/U) lines set for their performance. With this in mind, let’s take a look at a couple of these options.
The legendary Manning is naturally one that many bettors will be looking at. After blowing up the NFL record books for quarterback performance during the season, Bovada has laid some challenging stats for him. As to his total passing yards for the game, the O/U is 290.5 (over -105, under -125). Manning averaged 339.3 over the entirety of the 2013-14 season and I would have to agree to take the over here (with both bets being negative, meaning you’d have to wager that amount to win $100, it’s better to stay away from them, though).
Manning also has lines set on how many touchdown passes he’ll throw. The current favorite is two, with odds of 2/1, with three (5/2) and one (7/2) right behind it. I like three as the bet here but, if you wanted to be adventurous, you could wager on zero (10/1) or five or more (also at 10/1).
Lynch is also another fascinating player to be able to bet on. The Seahawks powerhouse running back has churned up 1506 rushing yards over the entirety of the season and Bovada has set his total rushing performance for the Super Bowl at a 90.5 O/U. His average for the season is 83.6 per game, so taking the under (+105) is a good bet against the over (-135).
Prop Bet #3: The Most Valuable Player
This is the bet that everyone wants to get their money in on. Of the previous 47 Super Bowls, quarterbacks have won the MVP trophy (officially known as the Pete Rozelle Trophy) 26 times. Thus, it looks like a good bet to have either Manning (11/10) or Wilson (15/4) on your radar. It is also important to have a look at the team who wins the game having the inside track to the MVP honor; only once in the entire history of the Super Bowl MVP has it gone to a player from the losing team (Chuck Howley of the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl V).
If you want to add some spice to your MVP wager, look down the board, though. Lynch (running backs have won the MVP seven times) is getting the same odds as Wilson (15/4) and Seattle CB Richard Sherman would be a fun bet (at 20/1) if he bedevils Manning during the game (a defensive player has won it seven times also). I like the 20/1 odds on the Broncos Moreno, but I don’t like the 25/1 that both Welker and Demaryius Thomas are getting. If it comes down to passing performance, it’ll be Manning who gets the award and not the receivers.
Going for the long odds, however, there is one that I found on the Bovada lines that I could get behind. Broncos RB Montee Ball is currently sitting at 75/1 for winning the MVP. As a goal-line vulture (taking TDs after the work of his fellow RBs), Ball could slide in here if he has two or three touchdown runs. Taking into account the weather conditions for Sunday’s Super Bowl, a wager on Ball might be a good investment.
As we stated yesterday with the “crazy” prop bets, these are only a few of the highlights of prop betting on Super Bowl XLVIII. Every online site (and live location in Sin City) has its own ideas as to who are the favorites, so be sure to shop around and find the best action you can!
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