Tempting Super Bowl Prop Bets
There are so many things to love about the Super Bowl, and the ability to bet on just about every facet of the game is one of my favorite aspects of the big game. It’s not even a matter of wanting to actually place a wager on all of the Super Bowl prop bets, but it’s nice to know that I can speculate on the important things in life, like the length of the national anthem, Katy Perry’s wardrobe, and Marshawn Lynch’s crotch.
Beyond the props that border on the ridiculous, there is typically a group of actual game-related wagers that catch my attention. The following are seven prop bets that I will be tempted to make before kickoff on Sunday. Why seven, you might ask? After combing over the available props and statistics, these are simply the bets that I would make with the greatest confidence.
1. Will Julian Edelman (Patriots) Score a Touchdown
- Yes (+120)
- No (-150)
Julian Edelman only had four touchdowns on the season and will likely be paired up against elite Seahawks CB Richard Sherman when Edelman lines up on the right side of the line. Although Edelman does generate a healthy number of redzone targets, crunching the numbers indicates he has a less than 30% chance of scoring a touchdown. Jody’s Pick: NO
2. Total Receptions – Julian Edelman
- Over 6.5 (-115)
- Under 6.5 (-115)
Edelman has seen double-digit targets in seven of his last eight games, reeling in 64 catches over that period including 17 grabs through New England’s first two playoff games. Working primarily out of the slot, Randall Cobb caught seven balls against Seattle in the NFC Championship game despite conservative play calling in the second half, and Edelman will likely enjoy similar success in the middle of the field. Expect a lot of short-to-intermediate routes for Edelman in the Super Bowl, with a slew of targets and catches. Jason’s Pick: OVER
3. Total Receiving Yards – Doug Baldwin
- Over 54.5 (-125)
- Under 54.5 (-105)
Fresh off of a 106-yard performance in the NFC Championship game, a 55-yard threshold might seem like a layup for Baldwin. But over the course of the season, including two playoff games, he’s registered 55 yards or more on just six occasions. Throw in the fact that Baldwin is likely to be covered by Darrelle Revis for most of the game and I think it’s likely that he once again falls short of this yardage target. Jody’s Pick: UNDER
4. Who will have more Receiving Yards in the game?
- Julian Edelman +7.5 (-115)
- Rob Gronkowski -7.5 (-115)
In the last six games that Edelman and Gronk have been on the field together, Edelman has 17 more catches and 43 more receiving yards. As I already mentioned, I think Edelman is going to have a good game in the Super Bowl, and I think he is just as likely to lead the Patriots in receiving yards as Gronk. So, I’ll take the 7.5 points and go with the receiver in his prop. Jason’s Pick: EDELMAN
5. Total Rushing Yards: Marshawn Lynch
- Over 89.5 (-130)
- Under 89.5 (even)
If you played this number in all 18 games the Seahawks have played this season, the UNDER would have hit 11 times. Good defenses have been able to shut down Lynch at times this year. In fact, the Panthers and Rams each held Lynch to 60 yards or less TWICE each in 2014. Four of Lynch’s six 100+ rushing yard performances during the 2014 season came against bottom 10 run defenses, including Green Bay (twice 23rd, Kansas City 28th and the New York Giants (30th). Meanwhile the Patriots finished the regular season 9th against the run and a key component of any Bill Belichick gameplan is to shut down what the opponent does best. In Seattle’s case, that’s run the ball with Marshawn Lynch. Jody’s Pick: UNDER
I agree with Jody on this one. Bill Belicheck’s entire gameplan will be to try and take away the run game. His focus will be to force Wilson to beat the Patriots through the air. The Hawks power run game is their bread and butter and without it they sputter on offense. I think Lynch gets close, maybe 75 yards with a score, but 90 is a tough Super Bowl Prop Bet. Mike likes the Under
6.Who will throw the first Interception in the game?
- Brady (-150)
- Wilson (+120)
This could easily be a game with both teams avoiding airing it out against strong secondaries, therefore seeing no interceptions. That being said, Brady has been much more careful with the ball (see next answer) so the play would be to take the better odds here. Jody’s Pick: WILSON
7. Longest Reception – Jermaine Kearse
- Over 22.5 yds (-115)
- Under 22.5 yds (-115)
The Patriots have given up at least one pass play of 24 yards or more in every game this season, including the playoffs. Meanwhile, Kearse had at least one catch of 24 yards or more in eight games this year, including a 63-yarder verses Carolina and a 35-yarder against Green Bay in the playoffs. Betting on a long catch for a specific player is a little fluky, but Seattle will try to take pressure off of its running game by taking a few deep shots with Russell Wilson, and Kearse has been the primary target on those types of plays. Jason’s Pick: Over
8. Tom Brady Interceptions:
- Over 1.5 (+190)
- Under 1.5 (-230)
In five prior Superbowls, Brady’s touchdown to interception ratio is 9 to 2. During the 2014 season, including playoffs, Brady’s ratio is 39 to 11. Combining those two, it’s about a 4 to 1 ratio. The Seahawks have an elite secondary, but the best guess here is that Brady will be careful with the ball and avoid costly mistakes. Jody’s Pick: UNDER
9. Total Passing Yards – Tom Brady
- Over 260.5 (-130)
- Under 260.5 (EVEN)
Brady eclipsed 260 yards passing in nine games this season, including a 367-yard effort in the divisional round of the playoffs against Baltimore. But now he’s facing the top passing defense in the NFL in a Seahawks team that allowed a league-low 185.6 yards per game during the regular season. It’s a unit that just held Aaron Rodgers to 171 yards in the NFC Championship game and has allowed just one quarterback to exceed 260 yards in its last 14 games. Jason’s Pick: UNDER
10. Will Luke Willson (SEA) score a TD in the game?
- YES (+300)
- NO (-400)
The Patriots only gave up six scores to tight ends this season, but they were one of only three clubs to surrender 1000+ yards to the position. Wilson isn’t much of a threat, but if you insist on making one throwaway bet, the 3 to 1 payout for YES seems appealing. Jody’s Pick: YES
The Seahawks have been desperately looking to find a reliable target for Wilson in the Red Zone. Wilson has stepped up in the last few games. I feel the Patriots will force the Seahawks to throw, and a big trusted target like Wilson over the middle will be clutch throughout the game. At +300, you have to like those odds. Mike’s Pick: YES
11.Will Tom Brady record 300 or more Passing Yards?
- YES (+170)
- NO (-210)
12. Will Russell Wilson have 35 or more Passing Attempts?
- YES (+300)
- NO (-400)
Again, just looking at raw numbers, this seems like a sure thing. Wilson eclipsed 35 passing attempts only 2 out of 18 times in 2014. During the regular season, New England opponents averaged 35.9 attempts per game against the Patriots, but that is considering how many times teams were in “come from behind mode” during the second half of big New England victories. That isn’t likely on Sunday. The thought of laying $400 to win $100 is a bad idea, but if you insist, take the Jody’s Pick: NO
13. Total Receiving Yards – Luke Willson
- Over 29.5 (-135)
- Under 29.5 (+105)
I’m doubling down on the Seahawks tight end for this one. Only seven teams gave up more catches to tight ends during the regular season than New England, and just two allowed more receiving yards to the position. That trend has continued into the playoffs, as Owen Daniels caught four passes for 41 yards and a score against the Patriots in the divisional round, while Coby Fleener (three catches for 30 yards) and Dwayne Allen (four grabs for 30 yards) each found a level of success in the AFC Championship game. Even excluding his 80-yard touchdown in Week 15, Willson has averaged 2.5 receptions and 42.5 receiving yards over his last four games and he has been as involved as anyone outside of Doug Baldwin in Seattle’s passing game during the playoffs. My Pick: OVER
|Rob Gronkowski TE||13/4||Marshawn Lynch RB||5/2|
|LeGarrette Blount RB||9/2||Doug Baldwin WR||6/1|
|Julian Edelman WR||5/1||Russell Wilson QB||6/1|
|Brandon LaFell WR||6/1||Jermaine Kearse WR||7/1|
|Shane Vereen RB||8/1||Luke Willson TE||8/1|
|Danny Amendola WR||11/1||Ricardo Lockette WR||10/1|
|Timothy Wright TE||11/1||Robert Turbin RB||12/1|
|Brandon Bolden RB||16/1||Cooper Helfer TE||16/1|
|Jonas Gray RB||16/1||Kevin Norwood WR||20/1|
|Tom Brady QB||16/1||Christine Michael RB||25/1|
|James Devlin FB||25/1||Tony Moeaki TE||25/1|
|M.Hoomanawanui TE||25/1||Will Tukuafu TE||25/1|
14. Who will score the PAT’s first TD
Smart money is on the Pats sticking with LeGarrette Blount and trying to grind the ball out. 4.1/2 to 1 for that bet isn’t bad. If you’re the gambling type that likes the big payoff, look at Tim Wright as an 11 to 1 longshot.
Shane Vereen at 8 to 1 is very tempting to me. I can just picture a shotgun play where he zig’s and zags a linebacker out of position and snags a tough grab for 6 yards in the endzone. Mike likes: Shane Vereen
15.Who Will score the Seahawks first TD
The Pats will be ready for Beast Mode when it comes down to short yardage. Seems like the perfect time to run a patented zone read roll out with Wilson getting around the edge and beating the secondary to the corner with a touchdown scramble.
I also have Russell Wilson keeping the ball in a option play for an easy score. The threat for Lynch will be the focus all game for the Patriots, allowing the rest of the Seahawks to move around for opportunities to score.