NFL Super Bowl Betting

Brady, New England Patriots - © GEPA pictures
The Super Bowl, the conclusion of an NFL American Football seasons is one of the most-viewed annual sporting events around the world. The teams who make it to the showcase match after having come through the trials of the regular and post-season will battle it out for the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

The Super Bowl is basically a championship match between the AFC and NFC champions for the current season. This is the pinnacle of the professional sport with the individuals from the winning team walking away with a much-coveted and prized Super Bowl ring.

Eagles can cover tight spread in Minnesota
Super Bowl LII Betting 2018 - Winner Odds & Prediction

How it all started

The Super Bowl began as a showdown between the two rival leagues, the NFL and the AFL. Before that the NFL had seen off challenges from other rival leagues but when the AFL formed in 1960, forty years after the NFL had begun they found the newcomers too much to handle as the NFL stars were being pried away. So the two came to a merger agreement in 1966 which would go into effect in 1970. Part of the agreement stated that the winners of the two leagues formed after the merger would go head to head in a title match.

Why is it called a bowl? Post-season college football matches were called a bowl game after the original was hosted at California's Rose Bowl (the stadium being shaped like a bowl unsurprisingly) and the name took off from there. When it came to the big match forged from the merger of the NFL and AFL, Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt just jokingly referred to it as the "Super Bowl" and the media took that and ran with it. The first official "Super Bowl" game with that name was the third one.

Super Bowl Venue

The Super Bowl moves around the USA from year to year and dates and stadiums are booked up to five years in advance of the games. Down the years there have been talks of expansion to potentially host it outside of the USA, such as in London. There are criteria which have to be met to host a Super Bowl such as the minimum number of seats and parking spaces close to the stadium. Temperature is another factor and it must be in a stadium that hosts an NFL team. There's a lot of other stuff as well, like space needed for the NFL experience, infrastructure, costs and hotel space, and so on.

Who is the "home team"

There is an official home and away team for a Super Bowl and this is simple. The NFC representative is the home team in odd-numbered years, the AFC team in even-numbered years. All it does is give the home side the choice to wear their colour or the white jersey.

The half time show

Almost as popular as the game itself, there is a lot of focus on the half time show at a Super Bowl. The spectacles of modern day have come a long way from the entertainment in the early days of marching bands. Now it is common to have a famous celebrity to come out and sing the national anthem and there is usually a mini-concert performed by a music artist, which in the past has included U2, Michael Jackson, Madonna and infamously Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson.

Super Bowl Date

Book in that first Sunday in February as that is when the Super Bowl is hosted. The NFL season starts the first day after Labor Day (the first Monday in September) and between the Conference Championship games and the Super Bowl, there is a two week break.

History of Winners

The first ever winner of the Super Bowl was the Green Bay Packers who took down the Kansas City Chiefs back in January 1967 and they went out and blasted their way to a title defence the following year taking down the Oakland Raiders. In the third Super Bowl, the first game to played under that name, there was the first big upset as the New York Jets beat favourites the Baltimore Colts.

Among the leaders of the most successful franchises to have won the Super Bowl on multiple occasions, you can count the Pittsburgh Steelers, Dallas Cowboys, New England Patriots, Green Bay Packers, New York Giants and the San Francisco 49ers among them.

There have been some big winning streaks and through the mid seventies, it was the NFC on top winning five Super Bowls on the bounce and actually winning eight of nine between 1973 and 1981 inclusive, largely thanks to the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Oakland Raiders. The big turn around when the AFC started getting momentum came in 1985 and the AFC won thirteen straight Super Bowl matches.

2017 Super Bowl Review

The New England Patriots got their fifth Super Bowl title (taking them to 5-4 from appearances) in 2017 after a thrilling match up against the Atlanta Falcons in Houston, Texas. The Pats had gone into the game as favourites, but they were pushed hard by the Falcons who were competing in just their second Super Bowl and looking for their first title. It was a remarkable and standout game because the Pats looked dead and buried at half time, trailing 21-6.

Atlanta further extended their lead in the third period before the Patriots mounted a simply stunning comeback, pulling back 25 points to take the game to overtime. The Pats crucially won the toss for overtime, received the ball and drove their way 75 yards down field before James White ran in a short touchdown from two yards. Over 30 Super Bowl records were broken in the match and Pat's quarterback Tom Brady was named MVP for the fourth time in his career, breaking a record with 43 completed passes. It will long live as one of the greatest Super Bowl games of all time.

2018 Super Bowl Preview

The NFC's Philadelphia Eagles will be taking on the reigning champions New England Patriots on February 4th for the Super Bowl LII title. The match is being hosted in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Pats will be looking to become the first team to pull off back to back Super Bowl wins since they achieved it themselves at Super Bowl 38 and 39. For the Eagles, this is their first time back at the showcase match since they went up against the Patriots in the 2004 Super Bowl and just their third appearance in the fixture. The Patriots won that 2004 match 24-21 against the Eagles.

New England topped the AFC seedings and got past the Tennessee Titans in the divisional round. Then they battled it out with the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Championship match and despite being down 20-10 in the fourth quarter, Tom Brady mounted a fight back through two scoring passes to Danny Amendola.

Philadelphia opened with a narrow 15-10 win over the Atlanta Falcons in the divisional round of the postseason and then it was a much easier ride for them as they crushed the Minnesota Vikings 38-7 to win the NFC Championship.

The Pats are the designated home side for the match and they will be just the sixth team to wear their white jerseys at the match, most likely a superstition with them being 3-0 wearing white in Super Bowl matches during the coach Belichick/quarterback Brady era. The Patriots are favourites to lift the trophy.