NFL Super Bowl betting nuggets: Year of the underdog?

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88 shares, 149 points

Cincinnati was 125-1 to win the Super Bowl entering the season, making them just the second team 100-1 or longer to reach the Super Bowl in the past 40 seasons (1999 St. Louis: 150-1), according to SportsOddsHistory.com. It was one of five teams to enter the season with 100-1 odds — the other four hold the top four picks in the draft (Houston, Detroit, Jacksonville, New York Jets).

Underdogs of at least three points are 7-2 outright and 8-1 ATS in the Super Bowl since 2007. Underdogs of at least 3.5 points are 6-0 ATS and 5-1 outright in the Super Bowl in that span. Since 2001, underdogs of at least three points are 12-3 ATS (9-6 outright).

Cincinnati is 7-0 ATS and 6-1 outright as an underdog of at least three points this season, including 6-0 outright and ATS when Joe Burrow starts. Burrow is 11-2 ATS in his career as an underdog of at least three points (7-5-1 outright).

Burrow is 7-0 ATS in postseason games in his career dating back to college, including bowl contests and conference championship games. He is 3-0 ATS and outright in his pro career in the postseason. He was also 4-0 ATS and outright in his college career in bowl games and conference championship games, including 2-0 ATS and outright in the playoff.

Season odds history

Cincinnati entered the season 125-1 to win the Super Bowl, making it the largest preseason long shot to reach the big game since 1999 St. Louis according to SportsOddsHistory.com. Those are the only two teams with 100-1 or longer preseason odds to reach the Super Bowl in the past 40 seasons.

Since the Greatest Show on Turf won it all in January 2000, 100-1 preseason title long shots have gone 0-5 in championship rounds in professional football, baseball, the NBA and the NHL.

Cincinnati was one of five teams that entered the season with at least 100-1 odds. The other four teams hold the top four picks in the draft.

Cincinnati’s odds peaked at 150-1 after losing in Week 2 at Chicago. Meanwhile, Los Angeles opened the season at 14-1 and never reached that long of odds again the rest of the season.

Super Bowl history

  • Underdogs of at least three points are 7-2 outright and 8-1 ATS in the Super Bowl since 2007. Underdogs of at least 3.5 points are 6-0 ATS and 5-1 outright in the Super Bowl in that span. Since 2001, underdogs of at least three points are 12-3 ATS (9-6 outright).

  • Underdogs are 8-6 outright and 9-5 ATS in the past 14 Super Bowls. In the past 10 seasons, they are 6-4 outright and ATS.

  • This year snaps a five-year streak of the AFC team being favored in the Super Bowl. This is just the fourth time in the past 20 seasons that the NFC team is favored in the Super Bowl (2015, 2012, 2010). Since 1995, AFC teams are 5-1-2 ATS when getting points in the Super Bowl (4-4 outright). The past two AFC teams to be underdogs both won outright (Denver +5.5 over Carolina in February 2016, Baltimore +4 over San Francisco in February 2013).

  • The past three Super Bowls have all gone under the total.

  • Los Angeles is 1-3 outright and 0-3-1 ATS in the Super Bowl. Cincinnati is 0-2 outright and 1-1 ATS in the Super Bowl.

  • In the past 10 seasons, the Super Bowl MVP favorite has won three times.

2021 postseason notes

  • After favorites dominated in the wild-card round, underdogs have gone 5-1 ATS and 4-2 outright in the past two playoff rounds. Overall, underdogs are 6-6 ATS and 5-7 outright this postseason. If the underdog wins in the Super Bowl, the six outright wins by underdogs would tie the most in a single postseason in the Super Bowl era (done four times, last in 1970) and the five outright wins from the divisional round on would tie 1970 for the most in the Super Bowl era.

  • There have been 105 outright wins by underdogs this season, one win shy of the most in a single season in the Super Bowl era. Underdogs went 106-161 outright in 2006.

  • Unders are 8-4 this postseason. Unders have hit at a 54.1% rate this season (152-129-3), which will be the best mark since 1991.

Los Angeles Rams Trends

  • Los Angeles is 10-10 ATS this season and 6-3 ATS in its past nine games. Overs are 10-9-1 in Rams games this season.

  • Los Angeles failed to cover in the conference championship game. Teams that fail to cover in that round are 3-8-1 ATS in the Super Bowl and 3-9 outright.

  • Los Angeles is 2-7 ATS against AFC teams in the past two seasons (1-4 ATS this season).

  • Overs and unders have alternated in Los Angeles’ past 11 games (last game went under).

Cincinnati Bengals Trends

  • Cincinnati is 13-7 ATS this season. Unders are 11-8-1 in its games this season.

  • Burrow is 3-0 ATS and outright in his NFL career in the postseason. He was also 4-0 ATS and outright in his college career in bowl games and conference championship games, including 2-0 ATS and outright in the College Football Playoff.

  • Cincinnati is 7-0 ATS and 6-1 outright as an underdog of at least three points this season, including 6-0 outright and ATS when Burrow starts. Burrow is 11-2 ATS in his career as an underdog of at least three points (7-5-1 outright).

  • Cincinnati has covered seven straight games, tied for the third-longest streak entering the Super Bowl all time. The Bengals are the ninth team to enter the Super Bowl on at least a seven-game cover streak. The previous eight are 5-3 outright and 4-2-2 ATS in the Super Bowl.

  • Cincinnati’s past four games have gone under the total.

  • Cincinnati is 8-2 ATS and 7-3 outright.

Source: ESPN


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