Wait, another post about football?!? Well, it’s nearly Super Bowl time, so indulge me.
The 88th NFL season comes to a climax on Sunday night when New England’s Patriots and Philadelphia’s Eagles square off at the 52nd Super Bowl in Minneapolis. It has been one of the more tumultuous seasons in league history, with the kneeling controversy hitting full stride early in the season, and the league’s refusal to enforce their own directives regarding the national anthem playing out as it did.
For now, water under the bridge.
I get a lot of people who ask me what my prediction is for the Super Bowl. This year it’s kind of complicated, so let me explain:
If you’re looking for me to pick a winner, I’d pick New England. As of this writing on Tuesday, the Patriots are -200 on the “money line” in Las Vegas. If you bet $200 on the Patriots to win, you’d get $100 back on top of the $200 wagered if they win.
The point spread on the game has the Patriots currently 4.5 point favorites, with the half-point there to prevent ties if the margin of the game hits that number exactly. (That’s happened before, most famously when the Steelers beat the Cowboys 35-31 in Super Bowl XIII in 1979, the point spread was four points. The game was a “push” and everyone who had that line got their money back.) If I were a Vegas bettor, I’d take the Eagles getting 4.5, because in the eight Super Bowls the Pats have played in during the past two decades, they’ve never won or lost by more than six points.
The over/under for the game (the total number of points scored by both teams) is at 48 as I type this. I’d take the under on that. There are also a menagerie of “prop bets” out in Las Vegas out there, plus some casinos now offer in-game wagering with a point spread that moves during the course of the game, but I’ll leave you to do your homework if you’re curious about that.
Would I mind if the Eagles won? Absolutely not. They’ve been close a few times since winning their last NFL title in 1960, and the Patriots have won five of these things in the past two decades – sure, let the Philly fans have one. Wouldn’t mind that at all.
As a fan, I’m hoping for a good game. I finally got my wish of seeing the first Super Bowl game to go to overtime last year, so I don’t know how that can be topped.