Even though the Nevada Gaming Commission has yet to release their report on how the books did this year betting the Super Bowl, it is likely a winner for the bettors. Last year, over $90 million was wagered on the Super Bowl, and the amount bet this season likely met or exceeded that.
Early reports out of Vegas say that while some books made a small profit, the winnings were given out more to the betting sharps and public in this one. It seems as if the worst-case scenario of an underdog winning outright and the over cashing made most sportsbooks in Las Vegas shell out a lot more this season.
At the time of kickoff, the NFL odds makers had moved the Ravens up as high as +4 ½ and +5 underdogs, which would be anywhere from +160- +175 on the moneyline. Even though the books got a steady dose of public funds on the 49ers over the weekend and leading up to kickoff, it apparently wasn’t enough to stave off the big bets that came in earlier on the Ravens. I’m sure parlays on the over and moneyline didn’t help the cause either.
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The end of the NFL season has been very good for bettors in general according to sources out of Las Vegas. NFL betting was at a very high profitability over the second half and through the playoffs.
Prop bets looked to be the method of choice for most sharp bettors this Super Bowl. One big one that probably hurt was the safety at the end of the game by the Ravens’ punter. Bob Scucci at Coast Resorts said, “The safety at the end of the game wasn’t what we needed. Not only did it pay 6-to-1 for it to happen in the game, but also 50-1 to be the final score of the game for San Francisco.”
All the talk this week will likely be dominated by the blackout, which halted the game for 34 minutes while the crews at the Super Dome were figuring out the issue and restoring electricity to the lights. What affect if any this had on the 49ers comeback, or the Ravens’ defense at the end of the game will be debated on and on for the next month probably, until we are all sick in the face hearing about it.
With the exception of maybe the over, and probably some low-level prop bets, I don’t think the blackout in the 3rd quarter had much to do with anything. It may have given the 49ers’ young quarterback Colin Kaepernick time to breath, but it also helped banged up Baltimore defense rest also. It helped and hurt both teams, as well as bettors and books alike.
All in all, this Super Bowl will probably be remembered for the blackout, but you and I know that NFL bettors gave the books a black eye this season and in the postseason.
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