How to bet on the Super Bowl

Logo_Football_NFL Super Bowl 64x64

What is the Super Bowl?

Established in 1967, the Super Bowl is the annual championship game of the National Football League (NFL), and is also one of the biggest events of the year for sports bettors. The big game closes out a month-long postseason, and features a matchup between the champions of the NFL’s two conferences, the NFC and AFC. The Super Bowl is the single biggest event on the American sports calendar and attracts a global audience of over 200 million.

The NFL is made up of 32 teams, who compete in four divisions in each conference. The winner of each division qualifies for the NFL playoffs, along with the three non-division winning teams with the best regular-season record. Playoff matchups are determined by seeding, with the highest seeded teams clashing with the lowest seeded teams in each playoff round.

Now established as an annual February tradition, the Super Bowl also provides an array of betting options for every type of sports bettor, regardless of experience. In addition to typical game line wagering, the Super Bowl offers a unique opportunity for sports bettors to get in on the action off the field, with wagering on every aspect of the game from the national anthem to the color of the celebratory Gatorade shower.

Football_NFL_Vince Lombardi Trophy
© Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

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How I can bet on the Super Bowl?

For sports bettors most interested in the action on the gridiron, all the typical betting options that are available during the NFL regular season are also available for the Super Bowl. Moneyline betting enables you to simply and easily place a bet on which team you think will win the game, with the payout determined by moneyline odds.

Even more popular is point spread betting, which enables you to wager on the margin of victory by which a team will win or lose. Let’s take the example of the Los Angeles Rams being listed as 4.5-point favourites against the Cincinnati Bengals. That means if you bet on the Rams, they must win by five or more points for you to win your bet, while Cincinnati can lose by as many as four points and still emerge as a winner.

Prop bets enable you to wager on team and player performances, regardless of who wins the game. Examples of prop bets include wagering on how many touchdown passes a quarterback will throw, or how many yards a rusher will run for, with the option to wager that the player will either finish over or under a specific number.

Of course, you can also wager on how a team will perform over the course of the season with a futures bet. You can bet on which team will win its division, which player will be named MVP, and which team will win the Super Bowl, among countless other options.

Super Bowl betting tips

Stay on top of injuries

In the days leading up to every NFL game, each team publishes an injury report that outlines the status of players dealing with health issues.

Reviewing these reports is crucial to understanding which players may not be able to play, as well as those who may be playing hurt.

Take note of hot and cold streaks

Every team that reaches the Super Bowl does so on a winning streak, but how did these teams perform during the regular season? Did they struggle to make the playoffs or instead dominate their division? Did they play great at home and struggle on the road? How have they fared in previous Super Bowl appearances? These are all questions you should consider.

Consider the weather

While the Super Bowl is typically held in a warm, sunny location, weather can emerge as a factor in any game played outdoors. That makes it important to check out how teams have previously performed in different types of weather conditions, as well as in domed stadiums.

Shop around for the best odds

Given the popularity of the Super Bowl, you will find no shortage of odds available covering all aspects of the game. It is important to review the odds at as many sportsbooks as possible to find the best betting line before laying any wager.

Who won last year’s Super Bowl?

Super Bowl LVI featured a matchup between two teams aiming to end long championship droughts. The Los Angeles Rams returned to the big game for the second time in four years, searching for their first Super Bowl title in two decades. For the AFC champion the Cincinnati Bengals, the match marked their first trip to the Super Bowl in 34 years.

Led by veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford, the Rams finished the regular season with wins in seven of their last eight games to seize the NFC West divisional title. Los Angeles continued their strong play in three playoff game wins, including a 30-27 victory over defending champion the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the legendary Tom Brady.

Last-place finishers in the previous four years, the Bengals rocketed to the top of the AFC North standings in 2021. Cincinnati’s success was powered by rising star quarterback Joe Burrow. The 25-year-old also lifted the Bengals to an early Super Bowl lead, but were unable to stop the Rams on a late-game drive that ultimately sealed a 23-20 victory.

Who is the Super Bowl MVP?

As the name suggests, the Super Bowl MVP award is given to the player deemed to have been the most valuable during the big game.

The winner is selected by a panel of 16 sports writers and broadcasters, with online fan voting also factors into the decision. Quarterbacks are the most likely position player to get the nod, with passers taking home the honor in 31 of the 56 editions of the Super Bowl to date.

While the attention of NFL fans was squarely focused on quarterbacks Joe Burrow and Matthew Stafford, it was Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp who claimed the prize at Super Bowl LVI.

The league leader in receiving yards during the 2021 campaign, Kupp rose to the occasion in his first career Super Bowl appearance with a pair of touchdown catches, including the game winner with just 85 seconds remaining. Bettors can also wager on the Super Bowl MVP prop, which usually comes with long odds if you are to wager on a player who is not a quarterback.

Football_NFL_Cooper Kupp Super Bowl LVI MVP
Cooper Kupp Super Bowl LVI MVP © Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Super Bowl history

Originally known as the AFL-NFL Championship Game, the Super Bowl originated as a clash of champions from rival leagues, and did not even adopt the name Super Bowl until the third edition of the game in 1969. However, with the AFL and NFL eventually merging into the single league we now know as the NFL, the Super Bowl quickly emerged as the most important date on the US sports calendar.

In addition to making the Super Bowl the biggest game in football, the 1970 merger of the NFL and AFL resulted in the realignment of the new league into two conferences, the AFC and NFC. Since that time, the Super Bowl has been a battle between the NFC and AFC conference champions. The Green Bay Packers emerged victorious in the first two editions of the Super Bowl, raising concerns as to how competitive former AFL teams would be. That all changed over the next decade, with former AFL teams winning 11 of the next 13 Super Bowls.

The Pittsburgh Steelers dominated during those years, winning four titles, while the Miami Dolphins claimed the crown on two occasions, including their perfect season in 1972. The NFC dominated from the mid-1980s through to the mid-1990s, winning 13 straight Super Bowl titles. This was also a golden era for Joe Montana and the San Francisco 49ers, who won four titles, while “America’s Team” the Dallas Cowboys won three times.

As the NFL entered the 21st century, the arrival of Tom Brady transformed the New England Patriots. With Brady at the helm, the Patriots reached the Super Bowl nine times, raising the trophy on six occasions. Brady eventually left New England in 2020, moving on to Tampa Bay, where he won his seventh career title with the Buccaneers at Super Bowl LV before retiring at the end of the 2021 season.

Super Bowl FAQs

How many people watch the Super Bowl?
Which teams have made the most Super Bowl appearances?
Which team has the most Super Bowl wins?
Which players have played in the most Super Bowls?
Has a defensive player ever won the Super Bowl MVP?
What are the overtime rules for the Super Bowl? Can the Super Bowl end in a tie?

BET.CA's football guides are written by our experienced team, who have spent years following the NFL, CFL, and NCAA football. Their expertise and advice will help you get the most out of your football betting.

BET.CA staff
BET.CA staff