Los Angeles, CA
Here's what our panel of so-called experts at Ocelot Sports' HQ had to say about our favorite Super Bowl prop bets that the LVH released...
1. Will first kickoff of Super Bowl result in a touchback?
Shamus: The 49ers’ Akers actually went five-for-five with touchbacks versus Atlanta, much more reliable in that area than with FGs, although during the year S.F. was at about 48% with touchbacks. And Baltimore’s Tucker booms ’em deep more often than not -- the Ravens ranked 7th in the NFL in touchback percentage at a little more than 54%. But take a chance and say NO here. Under normal circumstances it’s probably a coin flip, already making +150 worth a shot. But I’ll say adrenaline carries the returner out of the end zone from as much as four or five yards deep to start Super Bowl XLVII.
Pauly: David Akers is like the Monet of place kickers. Looks good from far away, but it's really fuzzy up close. But you cannot deny his masterful ability to kick off a tee. I like Shamus' train of thought. Whoever gets to return the kick will be amped up and ready to start things off with a bang. I concur... no touchback.
JoeSpeaker: Hey! Kickers have adrenaline, too! Indoors and revved up, the opening kick goes into the fourth row of the Superdome. Touchback.
* * * *
2. Opening Coin Toss:
Pauly: It's like Wesley Snipes said in that movie... "Always bet on TAILS!"
StB: AMEN! Wait... did I take heads in the Papa Johns coin toss for a pizza?
Shamus: Six previous Super Bowls have been played at the Superdome, with the coin landing heads four of six (including the last three). HEADS has the clear edge, here. It's science. Seriously... load up.
* * * *
3. Will there be a safety?
JoeSpeaker: Remember how awesome that safety was last year? Imagine swaggering up to the window to cash that ticket? Yes please. Both Andy Lee and Sam Koch are kick-ass punters with the ability to pin teams deep. That goes into the thinking here.
Pauly: The sad part about the guy who cashed the safety ticket? He got screwed. The real odds were much higher. The sports book got the best of him when you really look at it. With that in mind, the reall number should be higher like +1400 or +1500. Because of that, I'm going to pass.
Shamus: This actually has happened more often than you’d think -- seven times in 46 Super Bowls, or about once every 6.5 games. Meanwhile during the regular season (since 2002) safeties tend to occur about once every 16 games or so. So what are the “real odds”? I’m saying NO.
* * * *
4. Will Dashon Goldson (SF) make an interception?
JoeSpeaker: I'm gonna go with my man #38 for another longshot wager. If Flacco is throwing deep, there will be a couple jump balls and Goldson has the strength to battle Boldin and Torrey Smith in the air. Yes on 38.
Pauly: Joey Flacco is due for an INT. He's gone 5+ games without one. Plus, the Niners have the ability to pick off long passes. If Flacco underthrows one downfield, it's a live duck waiting to get plucked. I like Goldson with this one.
Shamus: When I see Flacco has gone many games without an INT, I don’t see him as due -- I see him as less likely to throw a pick. So a NO from me for Goldson.
* * * *
5. The first score of the game will be:
ANY OTHER SCORE +140
Shamus: A field goal. The first of several on Sunday.
Pauly: I'm convinced this could become a battle of field goal kickers. San Francisco's D keeps Flacco and company out of the end zone on the first drive and force the FG unit to come out.
JoeSpeaker: If this comes down to a battle of field goals, congratulations Baltimore.
* * * *
6. Longest TD of the Game:
OVER 45.5 (-110)
UNDER 45.5 (-110)
JoeSpeaker: I will also take the over in this one. Flacco's been doing a decent impression of The Mad Bomber and Kaepernick is also a big play machine, who could either run or pass for the distance.
Pauly: Niners have given up 5 long TDs, but also got 6 INTs whenever QBs dared to go deep against them. I'm gonna pass, but I'm leaning UNDER.
StB: With these 2 defenses, I'll take the under. If someone is going to give it up, it will be SF but I don't think Boldin gets behind them.
Shamus: Both teams had long TD plays during the divisional round, but neither did in the conference championships. I'm torn. I'll pass.
* * * *
7. Total QB Sacks (Both Teams):
OVER 4.0 (-110)
UNDER 4.0 (-110)
JoeSpeaker: Over! Despite Kaepernick's escapability, Terrell Suggs will get to him at couple times. The 49ers pass rush has been slowed recently, but that's sure to be a priority for defensive coordinator Vic Fangio, who I expect to add some wrinkles to get more pressure.
Pauly: Baltimore has done a good job protecting Flacco in the playoffs, but that was against the weak front lines of the Colts and Patriots. No way they can hold the Niners back especially with Justin Smith getting extra rest for his torn triceps.
StB: Don't see how this stays under. Both offenses will be nervous to start the game. Toss in an early sack apiece and then watch them go for blood in the 4th quarter.
Shamus: Both teams averaged about 2.3 sacks per game in the regular season, and both teams gave up around that (a little more, actually) per game, too. So I'll take the OVER in a game that should see a lot of passing on both sides and thus a lot of opportunities to tackle the QB for a loss.
* * * *
8. Final Score for Baltimore:
19 -- 40/1
26 -- 40/1
Pauly: He's my "4 FGs theory of 12" in which Tucker kicks four FGs. San Francisco limits Baltimore to 1 TD (maybe 2) but the Niners' defense is so strong that it makes Justin Tucker kick four times and he connects on all four. The 4 FGs equals 12 points, which put several key numbers in play like 19 (1 TD and 4 FGs) and 26 (2 TDs and 4 FGs). I also see a potential scenario in which Tucker connects on 3 FGs and Baltimore scores 2 TDs for 23 points, but I do not like the number offered at 15/1. it should be 20/1.
* * * *
9. First Half Winner & Game Winner:
RAVENS (first half) and 49ERS (game winner) 9/2
Pauly: San Francisco is a slow starting team. I can see them getting into an early hole like 13-7 or 13-10 at halftime, but coming back to win in the second half.
Shamus: Going with how the last two games went for Baltimore here. Heck, even though they led at the half versus Indy in the wildcard, they were a different team after that halftime pow-wow. I'm actually going with 49ers (FIRST HALF), Ravens (GAME WINNER) at 4/1.
JoeSpeaker: The true mark of excellent coaching staffs: making the adjustments at halftime and both have shown that ability this post-season. If the Ravens have a good plan cooked up for the Pistol, I can see them leading early. Although I think the Niner backfield is just too fast for Baltimore.
* * * *
10. Most Penalty Yards:
Pauly: The Ravens (-125) drew more penalties all year but I don't like laying so much juice. The key to this is "yards" so in the Ravens revamped "go long and I'll hit ya" offense, they have more chances to draw pass interference penalties for big yards down field. With that said, the Niners look attractive here.
JoeSpeaker: My only fear is the pass interference calls way downfield against the Niners. Carlos Rogers especially is prone to this. On the other hand, the Niners haven't had a holding call against an opposing O-lineman since like Week 8. It's a conspiracy.
* * * *
11. Total FGs made by both teams:
OVER 3.5 +125
Shamus: Feel okay on this one. Unless, of course, Akers goes flakers.
Pauly: According to astrological charts, the moon will be in a "Waxing Gibbous" phase so I'm convinced there will be 5 FGs in this game... 4 from Tucker and 1 from Akers.
* * * *
12. Longest FG Made:
OVER 44.5 (-110)
Pauly: I'm a Justin Tucker fan and the 49ers better be careful because this rookie can kick 50+ yards with a high rate of consistency. Let's not forget, Akers suffered through more turmoil than a tormented village drunk in an Irish novel and he's kicked horribly at times, yet earlier this season Akers drilled a 63 yarder, which tied an NFL record.
StB: In the dome, I see them kicking it from a distance just before half.
Shamus: I'll take this bet as well, not so much because of the kickers but because I think this game will have more FGs than TDs and playing indoors makes things nicer when attempting the long ones.
* * * *
13. Will the team that scores first win the game?
Pauly: I'm sticking with my "San Francisco is a slow starting team" theory, which applies to both sides of the ball. It takes a series or two before Kaepernick gets cooking and the Niners' defense is most vulnerable in the first quarter. I envision Baltimore scoring (Tucker FG) in the first or second series, but the Niners coasting to a win in the second half.
StB: What is the line on Yes? I liked SF early but have more confidence in Baltimore now. SF has been hot for a couple games and can go cold once again.
Shamus: Both the Niners and Ravens saw opponents score first against them in their last two games. In other words, scoring first this Sunday probably isn’t going to be as vital as has been the case in past Super Bowls, where the team who has scored first has gone on to win 30 of 46 times. But I'm going to pass on this one, although I am betting the first score will be a FG.
* * * *
14. Cross-sport props: Who will have more?
Kobe Bryant (LAL) -4 (-110)
49ERS POINTS +4 (-110)
Pauly: Have you seen the new and improved Kobe? He rebounds, passes the ball, and plays defense. Okay, he still doesn't play defense, but he's passing a lot more. The Lakers are playing the lowly Pistons. The Lakers should get off to a big start and have a field day with Detroit. Kobe gets big minutes all season long and the Lakers haven't played in too many blow outs. I smell a big win for the Lakers and a lot of garbage time, which means Kobe gets to rest on the bench and doesn't have a big scoring night. Meanwhile, Kaepernick and company light up Baltimore. They really don't need +4, but since they're getting points... it's a no brainer.
* * * *
15. Cross-sport props: Who will have more?
Lebron James (MIA) -1.5 (-110)
49ERS POINTS +1.5 (-110)
Pauly: The Miami Heat play the awful Toronto Magic. LeBron is going to light them up like a Christmas tree and smoke the Raptors like a knock-off Cuban cigar. Lebron drops 30 maybe more. I don't think the Niners can score more than 27 or so.
Shamus: Also like Lebron here. And I actually don’t think the 49ers will be scoring at will this weekend (like many seem to believe).
* * * *
16. Cross-sport props: Who will have more??
**JOZY ALTIDORE (AZ) GOALS PK (-130)
TORREY SMITH (BAL) TOUCHDOWNS PK (+110)
** Dutch Eredivisie soccer match Groningen at AZ Alkmaar
JoeSpeaker: U.S. striker Altidore has 15 goals in the Eredivisie this season, the second straight year he's topped that mark, and 20 in all competitions, including five in his last three games. The last of these came on Tuesday evening in a 5-0 thrashing of second-tier Den Bosch, whose fans were reported to have directed racist "jungle sounds" at Altidore. That kind of idiotic shit gets Jozy's motor running. He'll get at least one against a Groningen side that's winless in it's last five. One (or more) for Jozy. Zero for Smith. And hopefully some bans for racist Dutch assholes.
Pauly: Which team is Mia Hamm on? I'm going to pass.
StB: I'm with Pauly. Sounds like a gay luchador going up against Smith.
* * * *
17. Will either team score 3 straight times?
**Includes safeties , but excludes extra points and 2 point conversions
Shamus: This one got me thinking about how swingy the playoff games have been this year. Both conference finals saw a team score at least three straight times (with the Falcons doing so before losing). The previous round saw it happen 3 of 4 games (including by both teams in the Atl.-Sea. tilt). And it happened in 2 of the 4 wild card games, meaning it happened 7 of 10 times in the playoffs. That said, I'm taking the +150 and betting against either team scoring three times in a row Sunday, banking that that momentum swings (which will occur) won't result in so many unanswered scores either way.
Pauly: I'm with you. No. This won't be one of those games when one teams gets all the points in the first half and then the other teams puts up 3 straight TDs in the second half.
JoeSpeaker: I like this one, too. It should be noted that these are the two teams who featured the best defense in their playoff games, so there will be some stops.
* * * *
18. Alternative Point Spreads:
49ERS -10.5 (+230)
JoeSpeaker: The Niners are winning this game by a lot. Apologies to those of you who watch the Super Bowl and just "hope to see a good game." You will not get that this year. You will get to see a 49er offense go absolutely apeshit, though. It will be impressive. You will be impressed. 38-20 to the Niners. San Francisco gets a second championship in the span of four months. As if that city's inhabitants weren't insufferable enough.
Pauly: I like a potential blowout scenario by the Niners, but I'll pass. I'm eying a -7.5 (+175) alternative line instead.
StB: That line is beyond silly. Baltimore has a chance to take this game late. I'll take just about any team and 10 points in a SB.
Shamus: Maybe I’m missing something, but after watching those conference championships I ain’t really seeing such a huge divide between these two teams. S.F. is understandably a favorite after having emerged from the better conference overall, but Baltimore’s win was much more decisive. I'll pass.
* * * *
19. Last Player to Score a TD:
Randy Moss (SF) 18/1
Pauly: I generally don't like the numbers on these props for "first player to score a TD" or in this category and they should be much higher. However, in this case, old-man Moss might get a "mercy" touchdown late in the game if its a blowout.
JoeSpeaker: I love this idea and thought process. Of course, I'm also the guy who once won $300 betting on the first TD of a game, a wager which prompted F-Train to mutter, "Who bets on the first touchdown of the game? Someone who doesn't like $20."
* * * *
Pauly: This is a sucker's bet. Super Bowl never goes into overtime. Take the free money.
* * * *
Best of luck on Sunday.
Check out betting results from every previous Super Bowl.