Looking to place a bet on the NFL’s historic 50th Super Bowl? The first thing you’ll need to know are the odds, and Las Vegas is already posting odds on the game because even though Super Bowl 50 will not be played until February 7, 2016 — and Super Bowl 49 was played only six weeks ago — it’s never too early to start wagering on the biggest event in American sports.
So who have Vegas oddsmakers named as the betting favorite to win Super Bowl 50, when the game finally takes place at the new Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California, about an hour south of San Francisco?
If you guessed the New England Patriots, the team that has won four Super Bowls, including Super Bowl 49, and appeared in six of the last 15, well, you guessed — wrong!
No, according to the leading sports book Bovada, the current favorite to win the next Super Bowl is none other than the team New England narrowly edged in the most recent Super Bowl — the Seattle Seahawks. The Patriots, along with the Green Bay Packers, are second-favorite at 7-1 odds.
Bovada and most other Las Vegas legal sports betting operations favor the Seahawks, and a bet placed between now and March 31 will get a bettor 6-1 odds. That means that for every dollar wagered, Bovada will pay out six dollars to patrons who put their money down on Seattle.
As early as the latest odds are in relation to when Super Bowl 50 will actually take place, the latest odds are not even the first set posted. On March 2, Bovada installed the Seahawks as 5-1 favorites. In other words, because odds are based largely on the “action” a sports books sees on any one team, the slightly lowered odds means slightly fewer bettors than expected put their early money down on the Seahawks.
The teams on which bettors wager the most money get the shortest odds. Sports books balance that money by giving patrons an incentive to bet on teams generally considered less likely to win. That incentive is the potentially lucrative long odds assigned to longshot teams.
For example, in order to tempt bettors into putting money on a seemingly hopeless team like the Jacksonville Jaguars, Bovada has them at 200-1 to win Super Bowl 50.
Let’s face it, the Jaguars almost definitely will not win the Super Bowl next year. But if by some miracle they do — they pay big money, $200 for every $1 wagered.
Here are the complete betting odds for every NFL team to win Super Bowl 50, as per Bovada. The odds will change again after March 31.
[Images: Rob Carr/Getty Images, ESPN.com]