Super Bowl 51 Sports Betting: An After-Game Report
Last night the New England Patriots pulled off one of the greatest comeback wins in NFL history with their 34-28 overtime win over the Atlanta Falcons and entered into the legends and lore of American sports betting.
Besides offering up the first overtime in Super Bowl history, the Patriots also delivered a body blow to bookmakers across the country and the world.
Tom Brady and the Patriots took the field as a 3-point favorite and the betting public was more happy to come along for the ride. According to SportsInsight.com, a whopping 62 percent of public money was riding on the Pats. Though other sportsbooks reported more balanced action and a line that held steady at -3 all week seems to bear that out. A lack of line movement indicates an even balance of wagers on both teams.
Those dreams of easy money seemed to fade away as Brady and company entered halftime down 21-3. But nothing is ever easy when it comes to sports betting.
Inspired by Brady’s legendary abilities, confident live bettors threw cash at the Pats and the bookies got burned.
An unnamed sports book manager described the situation to CalvinAyre.com saying:
(The) mood is somber around here. The Pats peaked at 11/1 in game. We lost twice as much on the live betting as we did on the Patriots -3. It was devastating,
While bookmakers that took live action may have taken a hit, more traditional outfits, like the Westgate in Las Vegas, seemed to have a more balanced handle on the action. In an interview with Gambling911.com, a Southpoint sportbook manager reported smooth sailing:
This is a bookmaker’s delight. We haven’t had to move one number, one side, one total or the money line.
Though final numbers have yet to be released, last year Nevada sportsbooks took in about $13.3 million in profit on Super Bowl wagers.