Stuckey: Why I Won’t Be Betting a Side in Super Bowl 53 … Yet

Stuckey: Why I Won’t Be Betting a Side in Super Bowl 53 … Yet article feature image

Derick Cook, USA Today Sports. Pictured: CJ Anderson, Sean McVay, Marcus Peters

  • The New England Patriots are 1-point favorites over the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII.
  • Stuckey explains why there's a good possibility he won't be betting either team in the big game.

After taking a peak at the lookahead lines for the four potential Super Bowl matchups, I had a feeling I wouldn’t be betting on a side, no matter the matchup.


All of the spreads were less than three points.

And sure enough, the Rams opened as a one-point favorite over New England in Super Bowl LIII. The line has since flipped to Patriots -1, but that’s besides the point.

We’ve seen a spread of less than three points only three times in the previous 36 Super Bowls — although we did see it twice recently in back-to-back years (2014 and 2015).

Three times in six years now after only seeing it once in the prior 31, which I think at least partially speaks to the current parity of the league.

Along with seven, three is one of the kings when betting the NFL, and I already know if I see a flat +3 on either side, I will be on it.

But barring an unexpected injury, I don’t think we’ll get that.

That means I won’t be betting a side in the Super Bowl.

So, again, why am I laying off?

This matchup features two teams that are so close in my power ratings and so similar in many ways. They’re both offensive teams with premier quarterbacks and coaches, to go along with reliable kickers. And they both have exploitable holes on defense.

This just isn’t going to be a game where we see the contrast in styles that I think could significantly favor one team. It also isn’t going to be a game where we see a +6 and I think it should be +4.

Not betting a side is boring, I know. But there are so many other things to wager on Super Bowl Sunday. From props to pools to contests, I will still have plenty to sweat.

Instead of betting a side, I think this game lends itself nicely to exploring some of the matchups for player props, so stay tuned for our props coverage over the next two weeks.

And before you ask, don’t do a Super Bowl teaser. As I’ve written before, you shouldn’t ever tease totals, especially in a game like this where there’s zero correlation between any side and total with two offensive teams.

Good luck to all and cherish the final two weeks of a handicapping football games. We won’t do it again until August.