If you gamble, you're a terrible person, and you're never getting into heaven. Let's just make that clear before we get started here. But for those of you who like to look at prop bets and imagine what it would be like to gamble on them, there are hundreds of options at Bovada.lv.
A list of the best bets:
1) Will Richard Sherman receive a taunting penalty in the game?
Jimmy says: No. You know how many taunting penalties Richard Sherman had this season? None, until he got flagged for it in the NFC Championship Game against the Niners. He taunts, but he usually does so within the rules during the game, or after the game is over.
2) Will Michael Crabtree mention Richard Sherman in a tweet during the Super Bowl from kickoff until final whistle?
Jimmy says: Yes, but only because it's a fun bet and if Crabtree were to tweet about Sherman during the game, that would be a great celebratory moment. Plus, it's a bet that the fans can actually affect. If I were to bet this one, I'd be tweeting at Crabtree about Sherman from the moment the game started until final whistle to try to make it happen. On the negative side, this seems like a prop bet that Bovada would never have out there unless they knew for sure which side would win (wink wink).
3) Will Wes Welker drop a pass in the game?
Jimmy says: Yes. In 15 games this season (including the playoffs), Welker had 12 drops, according to ProFootballFocus. I like those odds.
4) Will Percy Harvin be injured in the game? (Must be injured and reported by broadcasters and not return to game)
Jimmy says: Wow!!! Vegas is making people root for someone to get hurt? Michael Irvin disapproves.
I'll go with no.
5) Will the Halftime show break the record for most watched ever (Record Madonna 114 million viewers)
Jimmy says: Honestly, I didn't even know who Bruno Mars was until a week ago. And Madonna had this guy in her show, which undoubtedly kept viewers glued to their TV sets:
The big risk here is the question as to how "most watched" is defined. If people keep their TV sets tuned to the same channel, but don't actually watch it, do they count as viewers? My guess would be yes. In other words, people would have to go out of their way to tune away from the halftime show, which isn't out of the question. Bet on Madonna here.
6) How many times will Eli Manning be shown on TV during the game?
Jimmy says: As a blogger, I'd love for them to show Eli no less than 30 times, but I think the smart money is on the under here, with the emphasis that he has to be shown during the game. You may see him before the game, and certainly after it if the Broncos win, but I'm not so sure they'll go to Eli more than once during regulation, and at +170, those are nice odds.
7) Player to record the 1st Denver reception in the game?
Demaryious Thomas: 7/2
Wes Welker: 7/2
Eric Decker: 7/2
Julius Thomas: 5/1
Knowshon Moreno: 5/1
Jacob Tamme: 8/1
Montee Ball: 8/1
Jimmy says: Julius Thomas! If you were to pick the three games in which the juices were really flowing for the Broncos this season, you'd have to go with Week 1 against the defending champion Ravens (who bounced Denver from the playoffs last year), the first playoff game against the Chargers, and the AFC Championship Game against the Pats.
Against the Ravens, Julius Thomas was Peyton Manning's first target of the game. Against the Chargers in their first playoff game, Thomas caught the first pass after an incompletion to Wes Welker. Against the Pats, Thomas was Manning's first target and completion.
I don't care if you're Peyton Manning and you've been in the league forever, you are going to have nerves on the opening drive of the Super Bowl. A nice way to calm those nerves is to see your TE catch a nice, easy throw over the middle for 5 yards.
8) Longest reception for Demaryius Thomas
Over/under: 24.5 yards, even money
Jimmy says: Over! Thomas had a reception of at least 25 yards in 12 of 18 games this season. The Seattle defense is great, but Thomas is a top 5 receiver in the NFL, but doesn't get the hype. Awesome player. Bet on at least one big play from him.
9) Coin toss
Jimmy says: Heads! From a sciency website:
When flipped by a machine, coins come up heads a solid fifty percent of the time, and tails the other fifty percent. Put the fate of the coin in grubby human hands and the odds tip slightly in favor of the side that faces up just before the coin is flipped. The side that was face up at the beginning of the flip has a fifty-one percent chance of landing face-up at the end. Humans are not as precise as machines, and so the coin rotates around several axes instead of one. The extra rotation favors the side the original position, to a measurable degree.
In terms of a coin toss before a football game, the referee will show the players what is heads, and what is tails before flipping it. The key here is trying to predict which side he'll have facing up before he flips it. I think that most of us re-set it back to heads on our thumbs before we flip, or at least I do. Here's what I mean. Watch as Gene Steratore shows heads, then tails, then almost purposely flips the coin over so it's on his thumb heads up:
The Super Bowl referee is Terry McAuley. He officiated Super Bowl XLIII, and while he handed the coin off to General David Petraeus to make the flip, he handed to the coin to him heads up. He also had the coin heads up in his hand after showing both teams the coin. In my opinion, there is ample evidence to suggest McAuley is a solid bet to be a "heads up flipper" whether he flips it himself or hands it off to someone else:
Heads all day, baby. Journalizin'.
10) Who's going to win?
OK, so this isn't really a prop bet, but since I've made picks all year, this seems like the appropriate place to do so.
Because we're already well over 1000 words deep, let's keep this simple. I think the Seahawks defense is better than the Broncos' offense, and I think the Seahawks offense will make enough plays to score on an average Broncos defense. Hawks 23-21.