Inside the Super Bowl Point Spread Numbers

This article about Super Bowl spreads seems like a perfectly good excuse to post this picture.

Super Bowl Weekend is finally upon us. Hopefully we can move past trivial story lines and the speculation about Peyton Manning and any other quarterbacks who will have no impact on this game. Actually, wait, scratch that. I’m just getting word that ESPN Insider Extraordinaire and General Everywhere Man Adam Schefter is reporting the NFL has just announced that during the 4th quarter of the Super Bowl, Tim Tebow will play Permanent QB for both teams.

Anyway, back to the actual game. The Super Bowl point spread had opened at around Patriots -3.5 and quickly moved down to -3, as it seems a lot of people really like the Giants in the matchup. The over/under opened at about 55.5 and is now down to around 54.

While everyone makes party plans and formulates their picks and best bets for the Super Bowl, I’ve found some more interesting stats and trends to consider:

Something to keep in mind about this stuff: just as with any trends…. at some point they don’t have much bearing on the actual game being played on the field. If the AFC favorites had won and covered 12 times in a row, that really doesn’t mean anything if Tom Brady throws two pick-6’s and Victor Cruz takes a 5-yard slant to the house. Just cuz the under has hit 4 out of the last 5 years, doesn’t mean that offenses led by Brady and Eli wont still go back and forth for a 31-27 game that goes over. I think people tend to get lost in trends: “oh, the last 4 times the Super Bowl featured a rematch with an AFC favorite of under 7 points with a democratic administration in the White House in an even-numbered year, the underdog won outright!!”

Huh?

I understand the idea of knowing your history, but it’s also wise to consider the fact that it’s just that: history. That said, let’s go inside the numbers of Super Bowl point spread history and results:

  • The spread has been a factor only 7 times, twice pushing and 5 times the favorite didn’t cover. The other 38 games, whether the underdog or favorite won, the spread did not factor into the game.
  • Five out of the last 7 Super Bowls have stayed UNDER the total.
  • Six out of the last 7 Super Bowls has totaled 50 or fewer points including two games that produced just 31 total points.
  • The favored team has won 15 of the last 21 Super Bowls, and 9 of the last 12.
  • The NFC holds a 24-21 straight up edge over the AFC.

Week 4 NFL Picks

Week 4 NFL action is upon us and once again Bums Logic has your Best Bets: NFL picks against the spread that are sure to win, but might possibly lose, as evidenced by our paltry but technically winning record so far!

Oftentimes winning football picks aren’t the glamorous Game of the Week when two popular contenders square-off in a showdown. As sad as it is to bet on crappy who-cares games that no one in their right mind would ever watch, if you have a feeling about a game, no matter how bad or boring, just take the easy money.

Case in point this week: the ho-hum Tennessee Titans to take on the perennially putrid Cleveland Browns. Not exactly the kinda game that inspires you to make sure you have a table at the wings place at quarter-to-1, eh? The Titans showed some life in a home win against Baltimore when they utilized a pass-heavy attack with Veteran QB Matt Hasslebeck. Even that season-high only yielded 26 points. In their other 2 games they scored 14 at Jacksonville and 17 against Denver. And now they are suddenly without emerging WR threat Kenny Britt. So this is probably the week they look to get RB Chris Johnson going (he’s yet to have a really big game), and that will keep the clock moving. It’s also a good bet that Cleveland will look to do the same by feeding the rock to RB Peyton Hillis in hopes of grinding out a home win. No one outside of Cleveland or Nashville will be watching this game. It’s got 16-13 written all over it. Maybe 17-14 or one of those weird-score games like 19-15. You get the idea. The point is, bet the Titans-Browns game Under 39. Even if they get to 21-17, it still stays under.

In another game that might be canceled due to lack of interest, New Orleans makes the short trip east to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars. Giving 7 points on the road is often risky in the NFL, but the Saints are a good team with an explosive offense and Jacksonville is mediocre at best with not much of a home-field advantage. I could see a lot of regional Saints fans from the Southeast making the trip to North Florida for this one. The only stat we need for this one is the Saints score 35 points per game while the Jags score just under 10 while giving up an average of 21. Okay maybe that was three stats. Anyway, I expect that to continue as Drew Brees and company will run a clinic en route to a 38-17 win. Bet New Orleans -7 at Jacksonville.

If you must make a bet with a bit more fun and pizazz than the two snoozers above, bet Over 54.5 in the Patriots-Raiders game. I know, it’s another obvious bet just like the Over pick in the last New England game (that won easily). But just like the 2007 Patriots were killing opponents and the spreads they were favored by kept going up and up, these high totals for New England wont keep Over bettors from cashing in for a few more weeks. The Raiders will have confidence and energy at home, and Darren McFadden is running wild on the NFL so far this year. The Pats cant stop anyone, but Tom Brady can keep them moving up and down the field and scoring quickly and often. Both teams should hit 30+ in this game and it will sail over the total. Even 31-27 or 34-24 would be a winner.

Last Week: 2-1-1
This Season: 7-5-1