2021 Super Bowl Betting for Dummies and Novice Bettors
The Super Bowl is perhaps the only sporting event that draws in people that have no clue what’s going on for 3.5 hours. The Super Bowl is bigger than just a 60-minute football game between the best two teams in the league. It’s a celebration of football that hogs the media attention for two full weeks prior to the game with talks of the National Anthem, the halftime performer, and the final interview with the game’s MVP.
If you’re just starting out in the world of football and/or betting, I’ll be dumbing this piece down (no disrespect, but sports betting is tough) for you to help you understand what you’re going to see on February 7, 2021, and how to enjoy yourself for the majority of the night.
Have an opinion: The goal of every football game is to score more points than the other team. If you go to any Super Bowl party, regardless of if you have any idea what a tight end is, find out which two teams are playing and simply pick one team to cheer for. The chances are you won’t be alone in cheering for that team, so at least the interest in the game itself will be there.
Enjoy your night: This is probably the number one rule of the night. It’s important to enjoy the game responsibly whether or not you have $1 or $5,000 on the game. This night should be about watching the game with your friends and family and enjoying some good entertainment for four or so hours. Heck, it’s probably the only day of the year where consuming eight slices of pizza and 2lbs of wings is not only acceptable but expected behavior.
Betting Factor: If you have decided to wager on the game, for whatever reason, you must understand what kind of bets are available to be made. Sure, you can bet your friend $50 dollars that Tampa will beat Kansas City, but you’ll only win $50. If you had an online account at a sportsbook and you placed $50 on Tampa to win on the moneyline, you’d get back $125 – which means you’d profit $75. I’m not saying you should open up an online account without doing your research, but what I’m saying is that online sportsbooks, or those in Las Vegas, are where you can make the most money – if you get lucky.
Start with the outcome: This should be entirely self-evident, but I know from plenty of conversations with casual bettors over the years that it is not. When you look at the Super Bowl -- or any other game ever played, for that matter -- the first step has to be to take the time to break it down and think about how you expect the game to turn out. Once you have done that, you can look at the lines and prop bets that are being offered, and you can quickly get a sense of which ones are the most attractive and which ones are not at all worth betting.
Know what you are betting on: If you go to a Super Bowl party with a lot of people that don't spend a lot of time betting on football through the year, I guarantee you will hear things that will amaze you. Casual bettors too often have no understanding of what a line is and how it works, what it costs to make a bet, why some bets make more sense than others, and even how to tell if a bet is a winner or not when the game ends. If you don't know what you are betting on, you obviously can't make a good bet. This is especially important with the Super Bowl because all of the prop bets that are offered can sound fun and interesting but often aren't quite what they appear to be.
Utilize Your Options: If you want to bet on the Super Bowl and want to be on the point spread, you must first figure out what the point spread is. This year, the Kansas City Chiefs are 3.5-point favorites over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That means, if you place a bet on the Chiefs -3.5, they have to win the game by four points for your bet to be considered a winning one. If you bet the Bucs at +3.5, the Bucs can win the game outright, or lose by three or fewer points, for you to win. Now, different sportsbooks will be offering up different line value for this one. Sportsbook X may offer KC -3.5 at -110, whereas Sportsbook Y may offer KC -3 at -130. The difference between the two is you are paying extra to turn a half-point loss into a push (get your money back) if the Chiefs win by three points. If you think the Bucs will win the game outright, most sportsbooks are offering them up at +150. However, if you shop around and utilize your access to different lines, you can find the Bucs at +155 or maybe even +160, which means more money for you if the Bucs win. The same thing holds true for the prop bets. Shop around and find the lines that make the most sense for you and the bankroll.
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