Super Bowl Betting: Odds Were On for an Anti-Climax

American football helmet against dark background
This year’s Super Bowl was anti-climactic for fans and bettors.

30-second summary

  • Betting volume anti-climactic
  • Biggest controversy – the singing?
  • Nevada sees over total bets handle just under $146m (£112.7m)
  • New Jersey handle just under $35m (£27m)

Whether you’re a fan of the Super Bowl or not, there are still plenty of interesting wagers that pull in a massive audience, both in the US and worldwide. So, what were the highlights from this year when it comes to those lucky punters and the final odds?

Anti-climactic Super Bowl overview

In a word, both the game and the betting of the 2019 Super Bowl were anti-climactic, with losses reported by many wagering companies.

New Jersey’s two largest digital wagering operators, DraftKings and FanDuel, both reported seven-figure losses, with FanDuel taking a significantly larger hit than the $1m (£772,000) loss suffered by DraftKings. A significant proportion lost through “free bet” promos. FanDuel did better with overall handle of mobile wagers at over 350k (£270k) compared to DraftKings 300k (£231.6k).

Joe Asher, the CEO of William Hill US, told the Associated Press that it had seen its best day’s betting handle since opening in May. He said that there was a record number of new mobile account sign-ups and that local operations had broken even on the day.

In Mississippi, $4.67m (£3.61m) was reported as the intake by the state’s commercial casino operators.

A lucky bettor in Nevada made a cool $100k (£77k) from a $250 (£193) wager at 400-1 odds that the Los Angeles Rams would score exactly 3 points.

No records were made in Nevada’s wagering. The states total betting handle was just under $146m (£112.7m), about $12.6m (£9.7m) below last year’s record. However, it was not at a loss as the net win came in at around $10.8m (£8.3m), significantly better than last year’s measly $1.1m (£850,00).

New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement reported that the state-licensed sportsbooks handled a paltry $35m (£27m) in wagers, less than one-quarter of Nevada’s total. The bad news for New Jersey didn’t end there: Operators there reported an overall loss of $4.6m (£3.55m) on the game.

The other US states that offer sports betting, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Delaware, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania, have yet to report their figures.

Singing sends sportsbooks into overdrive

When talking about the 2019 Super Bowl, you might not expect to be talking about the controversy over the singing of the national anthem rather than the game itself. Unfortunately, this year’s anti-climactic game highlights the extra-long rendition by Gladys Knight. The R&B singer created some debate when she sang the anthem’s final word, “brave,” twice.

Many of those who took the “under” on the anthem’s length thought that it should have been finished at the first mention of the word. The online sportsbooks (who’re internationally licensed) had no shortage of controversy across their wider range of prop wagers.

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