Ah, the Super Bowl. The one time of year that I can impulsively gamble away hundreds of dollars on what color Gatorade will be dumped on the winning coach, how long the National Anthem will be, and the countless additional farcical Super Bowl prop bets… And… Have it be justified.
There is one mammoth problem with this game, however, and that’s the fact that it comes at a premium. A premium I always begrudgingly pay, and seems to be getting exponentially more painful with each passing year.
That premium? The fact that the Super Bowl ALWAYS tends to put me in less than ideal situations.
No, I can’t just order an inordinate amount of wings, sit on the couch (in my draws, of course), and watch the game. If you’re lucky enough to have this privilege, embrace it!
You see, I always end up in 1 of 2 situations:
- At someone’s house, with a bunch of people I don’t know, a bunch of non-sports people, and/or the know-it-all sports people who suck all of the pleasure out of the game, or
- Same situation as #1. Except, in my living room.
I find pleasure in neither, but it’s looking like #1 this year. Just in case you were wondering.
Anyway, this is where I imagine the novelty Super Bowl prop bets originated.
Super Bowl party, hoards of folks chopping it up about who know what, and in a monumental sequence of events, one middle-aged woman (who thinks the Patriots are playing the Hawks) turns to another, and asks, “What song do you think Gloria Estefan will perform first?”… Nothing was the same.
While I have nothing to confirm this, I also have nothing to refute it, and don’t lie, it sounds highly likely. In any case, while these novelty prop bets will surely get me through the evening’s small talk, they’re not exactly solid investments. In fact, if you’re actually considering throwing away your money on one of them, here’s a better idea. Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can set up some payment arrangements.
Either way, it’s a charitable donation.
There are, however, some player/team props we don’t typically see on a weekly basis, and with that, some additional ways to make money outside of the spread, and the over/under. So, I’ve studied them all, done a little “research”, and came up with…
3 Super Bowl Prop Bets That Aren’t Completely Imbecilic
Tevin Coleman – Total Receptions: Over 3 (-115)
The Patriots have played two playoff games this season. They’ve allowed 17 completions to the opposing running backs.
Not to discredit Matt Ryan – coaches gameplan, and players execute – but there’s a reason why OC Kyle Shanahan won NFL Assistant Coach of the Year, and drew so much interest from head coach-less squads…
He knows how to scheme.
Truth be told, he has a multitude of weapons at his disposal, and picking one guy to go off (outside of Julio Jones), can be a risky proposition. Except when it’s not. You see, sometimes the best offense is bad defense, and Shanahan isn’t too dense to not realize this. Trust.
Now, “bad” might not be the best term to use in reference to the league’s #1 ranked defense, but Matt Patricia’s unit has a long history of tolerating dump off passes to opposing backs. Let’s call it indifference. They trust their backers, and safeties to make tackles in space, and would rather get killed by dump offs, than with big plays.
But, here’s the thing, there may not be a duo with more pass catching ability, and elusiveness out of the backfield than Coleman, and Freeman. So, while Coleman has only exceeded 3 receptions twice on the season (he hit 3 exactly in 6 games), there’s a lot to suggest he’ll see a bevy of targets tonight, and has a great chance to make it a third.
LeGarrette Blount – Total Rushing Yards: Over 62.5 (-125)
The Falcons allowed 104 rushing yards per game to opposing running backs this season, ranked 24th in opponent’s 3rd down conversion percentage (41.7%), and also happen to be the league’s most prolific scoring offense.
At first glance, you might think these three stats are completely unrelated. Well, you’d be wrong.
Yes, I admit, numbers guys have a tendency to throw out random, impertinent statistics in an attempt to add credibility to an argument that lacks it. Or, to simply confuse the hell out of the reader to the point that they just accept what’s being said. But, that’s not the case here.
I lost my train of thought…
Oh, what’s the best way to keep a high-powered offense out of the end zone? Keep them off the field. And what’s the best way to accomplish that? Run the ball effectively, and convert on 3rd down.
Enter LeGarrette Blount.
I can assure you he’ll see 15 carries, at a minimum, and against this subpar run d? Yes sir, give me the over. I’ll be highly surprised if he doesn’t go over 75.
Stephen Gostkowski – Will His 1st Kickoff Result in a Touchback: No (+180)
Any advantage that Bill Belichick can identify, he’ll exploit. Almost to a fault. 5 additional yards on a touchback? Not happening, and it’s been apparent since Week 1 that the Pats intended to take full advantage of the new rule.
While their 56.5% touchback percentage ranks in the middle of the pack, Atlanta ranks 21st in average yards per kickoff return at 21 yards per return. No disrespect to Eric Weems, or Justin Hardy, but neither is drawing comparisons to Devin Hester or Dante Hall, and I’m no statistician, but 21 < 25.
Gostkowski is a vet. I don’t see his adrenaline taking over, and him booming his 1st kickoff out of the end zone. Even so, catching +180 odds, on an event that’s occurred about 57% of the time, and clearly is not the objective; just comes down to execution? It’s a no-brainer. I’ll take that 10 out of 10 times.
What are some of your favorite Super Bowl prop bets for this year’s game?
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