There’s a single event that brings the most eyeballs to the screen year after year. That same event is also the biggest sports betting event on the annual calendar. We’re of course talking about the Super Bowl, which is the capper of the always entertaining NFL season.
When the two very best teams that pro football has to offer for the year square off, around 100 million folks across the US tune in. Across the globe, it’s another 50 million or so sets of eyeballs that are glued to the screen.
For betting, it’s estimated that a whopping $6 billion is wagered annually on the Big Game worldwide. That staggering number includes both legal and illegal means. Here in the US, the legal portion of that sum will only continue to skyrocket.
That’s because it’s now completely legal and safe to bet on sports in a number of states, including right here in Michigan. In this complete guide to betting on the Super Bowl, we’re going to cover everything you need to know to get in on the fun.
We’ll go over all of the different bets you can make, explain how Super Bowl odds work, and share some tips you can use to your advantage, among other things. Let’s begin by taking a look at the top places where you can legally and safely place your bets.
Our top picks for Super Bowl betting apps all feature smooth platforms that are a breeze to get started with. To create an account, click through on our exclusive links. You’ll be eligible for exclusive sign-up offers just for doing so.
Next, enter a few simple details and complete the registration process. After first checking things out, take the time to download the app for your device from the sportsbook website. Once you log in on mobile, you’ll have a sportsbook in your pocket whenever you need it.
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Sports betting has been legalized in Michigan since 2020. Naturally, it took a good deal of effort to get to that point. Back in May 2018, the matter of legality was deemed to be a state issue by the Supreme Court of the United States.
That was the proverbial green light that many states were waiting for. A handful of sportsbooks came online in 2018, and more have followed since then. As for Michigan, legislation was finally passed towards the end of 2019 with the official rollout happening the following year.
Residents now have a number of options to explore for legally and safely placing bets on the Super Bowl and other sporting events. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need to understand further before doing so.
Once the matchup for the Super Bowl is official, sportsbooks will quickly release odds for the game. Generally, the odds will be front and center at online and mobile sportsbooks, but you can also click on the NFL or Super Bowl link to find them as needed.
Since there’s usually a good span of time between the time odds are released and the actual kickoff, there will be plenty of chatter and discussion about the super bowl betting lines. Here’s an example of what the listing will look like:
The basic listing will show you the team names followed by a series of numbers. In order, these numbers are the moneyline, point spread, and total. Here’s what you need to know about each of them:
The moneyline betting odds tell us which side is expected to win. The favorite in the contest will be represented by negative odds. For the underdog, the odds are positive. If the range is tight like in our example, then oddsmakers are expecting a close game.
The point spread is a very popular way to bet on the NFL. For each game, sportsbooks install a spread which represents an estimated difference between the two sides. With spread betting, bettors can pick the favorite minus the points or go with the underdog plus the points.
A wager on the total requires you to choose a side based on a benchmark number provided by oddsmakers. The sportsbooks set the bar with an estimated number of points, and bettors then get to pick the Over or Under.
An important note to keep in mind for NFL and Super Bowl betting lines is that not all listings are created equal. There may be differences at other sportsbooks, so you can shop around to find the best odds.
For the Big Game, the majority of operators will be right in range, but it’s still possible to find a few ticks of difference here and there. While small shifts in the odds might not seem like much, they can certainly add up.
Now that we understand how the odds work, it’s time to make sense of the different types of Super Bowl bets you can place. Let’s take a closer look at how three of the most popular wager types for the Super Bowl work.
The moneyline is one of the simplest and most straightforward bet types that you will find. For this wager, you are simply picking which side you think will win the game between the favorite and the underdog.
As mentioned, the direction of the odds points us to the favored side – negative odds for favorites and positive for underdogs. The return for winning wagers will also be based on the odds.
Using the numbers from our example, a $100 winning bet on the 49ers at odds of +120 would return a total of $220, which is the initial amount of the wager plus a return – or profit – of $120.
A $100 winning bet on the Chiefs at odds of -110 returns $190.90 – the stake plus a profit of $90.90. When shopping for Super Bowl odds, the moneyline is an area in which you can sometimes find differences.
For the point spread bet, you need to go deeper than just trying to figure out which side will win. The spread is akin to an estimated margin of victory that needs to be factored into your handicapping.
You can go with the favorite minus the points or the underdog plus the points, and whichever side you choose will have to cover the amount of the spread. In our example, we had the Chiefs listed as a slight 1.5-point favorite.
To cover the spread, that means the Chiefs have to win by an amount greater than 1.5 points. A 30-28 victory for Kansas City gets it done and means that side covered, but a 30-29 win for the Chiefs does not and results in losing tickets for those bettors.
For the 49ers, the opposite applies. If they only lose by a point, then they have covered the spread. If San Francisco loses by two points or more, then they have failed to cover. The 49ers could also cover the spread by winning the game outright.
The totals bet is another Super Bowl wager that attracts a ton of attention and is also easy to understand. However, the ease of understanding the concept doesn’t mean it’s a simple bet to win.
Oddsmakers will set the bar with an estimated total for the game, and bettors then have to decide if they expect the total points to be Over or Under that number when the final whistle blows.
In our example, we set the bar at 49.5 points. If the total final score works out to 50 points or more, then Over bettors will have winning tickets. A score of 28-27 gets it done, but a score of 24-21 does not.
For the Under, bettors are hoping for 49 points or less to be scored. A final of 25-24 works just fine, but a 28-27 game means Under bettors lose. This is another area where you might find some discrepancies from operators in the run-up to the game.
Each of these bet types will attract tons of action for the Super Bowl, but it’s not the only way for you to get in on the action. Next, let’s look at one of the biggest categories of wagers you’ll find at legal online and mobile sportsbooks.
Prop bets are a popular choice throughout the NFL season, but interest goes through the roof come Super Bowl time. Since this is the only game on the docket, sportsbooks open the floodgates and offer hundreds of different Super Bowl prop bets for sports bettors to consider.
A Super Bowl prop bet revolves around something that may be to come during the course of the game or at its conclusion. Here are a few examples of what you’ll see:
The number of options you’ll have to consider may seem overwhelming, but there’s a way to get around that. For starters, scan the board and make note of the bets that jump out at you. From there, go through that list and reduce it down to the ones you feel best about.
You can then spend your time handicapping just those prop bets, and ultimately place your wagers on the ones you feel represent the best Super Bowl prop bets. Props open up even more ways to wager on the Big Game, and hopefully to cash some tickets when the final whistle blows.
This area of wagering has exploded in popularity in recent years. Live betting has to do with wagers you can place after the game has already kicked off. It’s a fast-moving market in which offerings will vary based on what’s going on, but here’s a sample of what you might see:
The live betting market is quick, so a mobile app is the best way to stay on top of it. This is a great way to get more action on the game and either hedge your Super Bowl bets or double down, but remember to bet responsibly and not to go overboard.
As soon as the Super Bowl for the current year is in the books, sportsbooks will begin releasing Super Bowl betting lines on which team may win the next edition. This is a popular futures market which stays active throughout the year.
The odds for Super Bowl futures will fluctuate as time moves along. This happens due to betting action that has come in, as well as other developments. For an example, here’s what the odds for the favorites might look like upon release:
Now, let’s say that the betting market sees things differently than the oddsmakers. That’ll lead to a shift in the odds as action comes in, and the favorites could then look something like this:
Futures betting makes for a great way to stay on top of who is perceived to be a serious contender for the Super Bowl all year round. It can be potentially profitable to boot, so take the time to scan the board for appealing opportunities.
The Super Bowl is a unique event and a huge spectacle, but you can still approach the game the same as you would any other. You’ll want to handicap the game and look for advantages and weaknesses for the two sides, for example.
That said, you do have to factor in the magnitude of the Big Game and the stage at hand, and also consider some other ancillary factors. Here are some key Super Bowl betting tips to keep in mind as you prepare to break down the Super Bowl:
The Super Bowl receives tons of media coverage, and opinions on how things will shake out are everywhere. It’s important to not let your opinions be swayed too much by all of the chatter. While it’s perfectly fine to take the advice of sources you trust, be careful not to be too influenced. Filter out the noise as best you can with a goal of making an objective call on the game.
Personal bias can influence our decision-making without us even realizing it. For sports betting, it’s important to remain as neutral as possible. While it’s natural to have rooting interests, they need to be put aside for handicapping purposes. If you can build a case for the team you like, that’s fantastic. However, if your assessment of the matchup tells you otherwise, don’t dismiss it because it’s something you don’t want to hear.
There’s an overwhelming amount of information that comes out in the run-up to the Super Bowl. A good deal of it is nothing more than noise and talking points, but there are times when something that really moves the needle comes up. This is when you want to really pay attention. Examples include noteworthy coach and player commentary, injury or playing time concerns, or any off the field distractions that could impact performance.
Once you’re all done handicapping the game, it’s time to enjoy the festivities and let the chips fall where they may. If you have made the best possible decision that you can, it’s time to live with the results. Hopefully, you’ll be able to cash some tickets when all is said and done.
The Super Bowl has been held in the state of Michigan on two separate occasions. Here are the details on the two contests:
As for the Detroit Lions, the club has never been able to make it to the Big Game. The club managed to make it as far as the NFC Championship game after the 1991 campaign before falling to the Washington Redskins by a score of 41-10.
There’s a tie atop the win list between the Pittsburgh Steelers and New England Patriots with both clubs having won six Super Bowl titles. The Steelers have been to the Big Game two other times and lost, while the Patriots have come up short on the grandest stage five times. The Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers are tied for second place on the list with five wins each.
Tom Brady is the all-time leader with six rings, all of which he obtained while playing QB for the New England Patriots. His last ring came after Super Bowl LIII when the Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams by a score of 13-3. Charles Haley is second on the list with five rings which he won while playing for the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys.
From a historical perspective, the New York Jets stunning the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III by a score of 16-7 was one that sent shockwaves through the world of professional football. There have been a number of other surprising outcomes in the Big Game, including New England Patriots over the St. Louis Rams in SB XXXVI, and the New York Giants upending the Patriots in SB XLII.
It’s a relatively short list. Of the 32 franchises in the NFL, just four have never made it to the Big Game: Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Houston Texans, and Jacksonville Jaguars. Three of these clubs – Browns, Lions, and Jaguars – have at least made it as far as a conference championship game during their history.
For the time being, the Miami metropolitan area is alone atop the list with 11 Super Bowls hosted, the last of which came in 2020. New Orleans is second on the list with 10, but the city will move into a tie with Miami in 2024 as the Super Bowl is headed back to the Big Easy. The Los Angeles metro area is third on the list with seven, but that number will be eight once the 2022 Super Bowl is in the books.