Our Staff’s Favorite Super Bowl 52 Bets
David Butler II – USA TODAY Sports
For the past two weeks we’ve given you complete coverage on Super Bowl 52, and now game day has arrived, bringing with it one final piece.
Without further ado, here are the staff against-the-spread leans as well as our favorite Super Bowl bets.
National Anthem & Cross-Sport Props
P!nk’s national anthem length (Bovada): Over 121.5 seconds (-150), Under 121.5 seconds (+120)
I’m betting this purely for the family. I’m giving my kids a reason to watch the game.
Pick: Over -200 — Chad Millman
Nick Foles completions vs. Kemba Walker points (Bovada): Foles -110, Walker -110
In Foles’ four full games this season, he has averaged just 23 completions, and the Eagles will likely try to attack this Patriots defense with the running game. Walker, meanwhile, hasn’t scored fewer than 23 points in five straight games, and he has a cake matchup against the Suns.
Pick: Walker -110 — Bryan Mears
Spreads & Parlays
Full-game spread (Westgate): Patriots -4, Eagles +4
It’s rare that the majority of bettors fade Tom Brady and Belichick in any game, especially the Super Bowl. According to Scott Cooley of BetDSI, they’ll be rooting for New England to cover, giving us the opportunity to back the Patriots while also being on the same side as the sportsbooks. Bet Labs makes the Patriots 6.1-point favorites.
Pick: Patriots -4 — P.J. Walsh
First-quarter spread (Pinnacle): Pats -0.5 (+116), Eagles +0.5 (-131)
In Brady’s seven Super Bowls, the Patriots haven’t scored a single point in the first quarter. I put zero stock in that stat. During those Super Bowl runs, the Patriots played 126 prior games and outscored opponents during the first quarter in 76 of them.
Pick: Patriots -0.5 — John Ewing
First-half spread (5dimes): Patriots -2.5 (-110), Eagles +2.5 (-110)
I’m looking to fade the trendy underdogs, as the Eagles are getting more than 70 percent of the first-half bets. The Patriots have been money in this spot in our historical database, going 50-17-4 ATS when the first-half line is -2.5 to -4.
Pick: Patriots -2.5 — Dan McGuire
Parlay (BetOnline) – Moneyline, Over/Under +185
I expect the Pats to go up-tempo to wear down Philly’s pass-rush, and the Eagles should be able to run the ball successfully against New England. Tight, high-scoring, back-and-forth, but give me the more experienced coach-QB combo on this stage.
Pick: Patriots & Over +185 — Scott T. Miller
Coaches & Challenges
Color of Bill Belichick’s shirt (Bovada): Blue -150, Grey +140, Red +900, White +900
My research shows that there are several different signs pointing to the fact that Belichick wears blue. I’ve gotten money down on this a couple times, including at Bookmaker, where it went from -112 to -250 to off the board completely.
Pick: Blue -150 — Mark Gallant
Result of the first coach’s challenge (Bovada): Play Overturned -150, Play Stands +120
While no one seems to know what a catch is, the requirements to overturn a call are high, so I think the refs will let their initial call stand. On the flip side if they overturn the play, I look forward to Twitter having a meltdown, which will at least be entertaining.
Pick: Play Stands +120 — Lauren Joffe
First coach’s challenge (MyBookie): Patriots -115, Eagles -115
Belichick has used just 15 challenges over the past half decade. Doug Pederson has used 17 challenges since last year. To Belichick, a timeout is too valuable to risk. To the underdog Eagles, any particular play might be the difference between winning and losing.
Pick: Eagles -115 — Matthew Freedman
Fourth-down conversion by either team: Yes -235, No +195
This prop doesn’t depend on game flow. If a game is a blowout, the team behind will be going for it on fourth down, and even a close game could see either team try to sustain drives with fourth-down conversions.
Pick: Yes -235 — Travis Reed
Rushing touchdown for Eagles: Yes -130, No +110
I see value in both LeGarrette Blount and Jay Ajayi scoring touchdowns, but it’s not necessary to choose between the two. The Eagles have turned to the run more in the red zone over the past two weeks (66.7% in playoffs vs. 47.2% in regular season).
Pick: Yes -130 — Evan Abrams
Nick Foles – higher QB Rating than Tom Brady (Bovada): Yes +150, No -200
When last seen by the public, Foles was putting up a 141.4 QB Rating against the Vikings’ fourth-ranked DVOA pass defense. Forgotten is his 59.4 rating against the Raiders one month ago. Give Belichick two weeks to prepare for a shaky Foles, and the Eagles have a problem.
Pick: No -200 — Adam Levitan
Chris Hogan receptions: Over 3 (-102), Under 3 (-128)
Hogan is dealing with a nagging shoulder injury and has played just three games since Week 8. He’s averaged a paltry 4.3 targets and 1.3 receptions in those three outings, and Brady has other weapons.
Pick: Under -128 — Justin Bailey
Nelson Agholor receptions: Over 3.5 (-143), Under 3.5 (+113)
Patriots nickelback Eric Rowe earned PFF’s 15th-worst grade among 121 qualified corners. Slot receivers Jarvis Landry (twice), Tyreek Hill, Eric Decker, Allen Hurns, Mohamed Sanu, and JuJu Smith-Schuster caught at least six passes against the Patriots this season.
Pick: Over -143 — Ian Hartitz
Corey Clement rushing yards: Over 12.5 (-115), Under 12.5 (-115)
The Patriots allowed the second-most yards per carry (4.6) this season, but Clement has seen more than two carries only once over the past five games. He’s played just 24 and 32 percent of Philadelphia’s offensive snaps in the past two weeks.
Pick: Under -115 — Joe Holka
Rob Gronkowski scores a touchdown: Yes (+105), No (-125)
In the regular season, Philly ranked 19th defending passes over the middle and 17th against tight ends, per Football Outsiders. Prior to the Jacksonville game in which Gronk left with an injury, he had seven touchdowns over his previous six playoff games, scoring in all six. The Eagles also have a strong slot corner in Patrick Robinson, who can neutralize Danny Amendola, Brady’s favorite postseason redzone target. Expect a Gronk spike on Sunday.
Pick: Yes +105 — Stuckey
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