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Posted by on Feb 4, 2017 in Blog, Essays, Las Vegas, Sports Betting | 3 comments

My Super Bowl Wager



In the Super Bowl, I’m betting $1,600. to win back $1,454. on the UNDER 59.

This is the highest betting total in Super Bowl history.  Fifty championship games have been played since 1967, with some of the best offenses of all-time.  Yet no betting total has ever been this high.  All things considered, the value looks to be with the UNDER 59.

The public appears to be betting the OVER in droves.  The total opened at 57.5 in many sports books (YMMV), then went up to 58.  All around Las Vegas today (eve of the Super Bowl), there were lots of 58 and 58.5 numbers frozen in place.  Many people I spoke with expected the betting public might continue to chisel the number steadily upward, but enough sharp money should have resisted the total going too much higher than where it’s stabilized over the past 12 days.  When I suddenly saw a 59 flash at Red Rock (Stations) today, I pounced and made this a larger-than-average wager.

Of course, betting against a tidal wave is tricky.  There’s some evidence this total could climb higher.  In that case, I could be sitting on a stale number by tomorrow afternoon.  This is always the risk on takes when betting as a contrarian.  I’ll feel pretty awful if this total closes at 60 and I’m sitting here holding the shit basket.

There’s also some value in the UNDER 29.5 First Half Total.  However, I’ll hope the extra 30 minute time frame will reduce variance (two halves at 29.5 each) and the ticket will get cashed.  I did want to note the First Half Total does look to be equally as tempting.

For this ticket to lose, 60-plus points will need to be scored.  That’s 30 points per team.  Many Super Bowls have turned into routs, of course, which is always the danger here in the big game.  If one team jumps to a big lead, the ball starts flying all over the field and crazy stuff happens.  However, recent Super Bowl games have played at a more modest pace and points haven’t lit up the score board.

The intangible in this game should be the Patriots’ defense.  If they come to play, it’s probably a win and easy cover and the UNDER cashes.  I greatly respect Bill Belichick’s abilities as a head coach (that should go without saying, although his politics are fuck).  But New England has also be a dreadful Super Bowl favorite under his reign, as the Patriots have failed to cover in most games.  That brings up the old saying — Good teams win, but great teams cover.  Remember that, Patriot fans.

I began posting NFL plays publicly on the internet about 20 years ago.  I’ve posted thousands of plays over that long span.  Since I’ve started writing on my own here at my own site, I’ve enjoyed 3 winning seasons and 1 losing season.  This year, my winnings were pretty modest — just $1,384 in profit spread out over 17 weeks (or 13.8 percent in profit).  Most of the winnings game from betting teaser wheels.  I’ve not handicapped the NFL particularly well in recent years.  However, I’ve somehow managed to still make money both in 2015 and 2016.  There’s no pretending here.  However, given all the talk and trash that’s floating out there (touts), I’m pretty proud of being ahead overall after thousands of NFL plays posted at my site.

Accordingly, I could rest on my mini-laurels and wrap up another winning season by betting small.  It would be easy to run out the clock and declare victory.   However, I won’t play it safe here.  I’m risking the prospect of a losing season overall by wagering $1,600 on this game.  Hence, I could end up in the red for the year (regarding posted plays here — not counted are hundreds of wagers such as halftimes and so forth which do not get posted because there’s no time).  However, I really like this UNDER play and if it hits, I’ll end up $3,000 to the good for the season, which is a return of about 30 percent.

Best wishes to everyone.  Thanks for reading.

SIDE NOTE:  Look for my continuing series on “Gambling for a Living,” coming up next week.  I have several more chapters to write, which will include a recap of this year’s NFL regular season.





NET GAIN/LOSS:   + $1,384.

LAST WEEK:  (7-8-1)  – $360.




  1. I agree with your sentiment that this total is too high, but I think a first half under is better than a full game under for reasons I expect to be fairly obvious to serious students of the game. You got a pretty good number though. Last week if you acted fast a 59.5 was available, but it didn’t last long. I fully expect it will close below your number at any rate.

  2. You did good taking the under at 59, it’s currently at 58. It looks like it hit 60 at Stations, Jerry’s couple other places but I don’t think for long.

    I’m going to look into the first half under.

    Really, really looking forward to your, “gambling for a living update”. Been checking your site daily looking for that update. I enjoy reading your views on politics, however it’s dull for me since our political views mirror each other.

  3. He can’t match you for stake size, Nolan, but parental bias aside, I have to give my son the edge in testicular fortitude. He backed the Patriots in-play when they were down by 25 and available at +7000 on the UK betting exchanges.
    First Superbowl he’s ever watched live and he wound up £300 richer.
    For my part, I am considering giving up sportsbetting altogether…

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