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The big game is finally here: Super Bowl LIV will kick off at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, Florida on 2 February 2020, with the San Francisco 49ers taking on the Kansas City Chiefs.
As is always the case, the focus of debate has been how the top quarterback coming into the game – in this case, Patrick Mahomes – can deal with the opposition defence. Due to the 49ers defence being the best against the pass in the postseason and second-best in the regular season, it’s easy to see why the two teams are so closely matched coming into the 2020 Super Bowl.
Now, we turn to the experts who have already laid the Super Bowl odds bare for us to examine, debate, and utilise to bolster our predictions for the big game.
Spread and Total Lines Breakdown
It’s set to be a very close Super Bowl as it is, but the bookies are slightly edging in favour of the designated home team, the Kansas City Chiefs, in the Super Bowl LIV betting markets. For the spread, you can grab the Chiefs -1.5 at 9/10 with the 49ers at +1.5 at 9/10. In the totals markets, the bookmakers don’t expect to see a huge flurry of touchdowns from the game, with the under 6.5 total touchdowns favoured at 71/100 to the 26/25 for the over.
That said, with such a dynamic attack in San Francisco and an almighty arm in Kansas City – with ample safe hands and speed on the other side of the line – it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the bookies foresee a decent number of points on the scoreboard. The total points line is split at under/over 53.5 points in the game (including overtime), with both priced at 23/25.
Sacks could play a large part in the game given the firepower on both defensive lines, with the bookies expecting there to be over 4.5 total sacks (including overtime) with the odds at 18/25. Under 4.5 total sacks is set at 1/1.
The passing game looks to be very important during the game, particularly for the Chiefs, with the oddsmakers ever so slightly favouring the over 543.5 column at 41/50 against the 22/25 under column. Going through the air, they expect under 67.5 pass attempts at 4/5 as well as under 45.5 pass completions, also at 4/5.
For the San Francisco 49ers much more so than the Kansas City Chiefs, the ground game will play a major role, with the Chiefs’ likely top rusher to be their QB, Patrick Mahomes. In this totals market, the experts expect plenty of rushing yards, with over 245.5 the favoured option at 41/50 in the total rush yards market.
Moneyline Spread, and Total Odds Analysis
The 2020 Super Bowl betting markets favour the outcome of the Kansas City Chiefs coming out on top. They ride the moneyline (including overtime) at 41/50, with the San Francisco 49ers trailing at 107/100. However, while the Chiefs do have Patrick Mahomes under centre and the seasoned Andy Reid on the touchline, it’s very difficult to look past the strength of the 49ers’ defence.
Sure, Mahomes has an incredible arm and is very quick on his feet, but the opposing defensive line features the likes of Nick Bosa, Arik Armstead, DeForest Buckner, and Dee Ford, who have been gobbling up quarterbacks all season. Even if they don’t quite catch the young quarterback, he’ll be under pressure constantly.
On the other side of the ball, San Francisco’s three-headed monster in the backfield coupled with Jimmy Garoppolo’s quick release in play-action schemes makes it a very difficult offence to contain. While the Chiefs certainly have quality on defence as well, it just seems like a lot of hope is on Mahomes outfoxing the best passing defence of the postseason and second-best of the regular season, which is a mighty feat indeed.
It’s expected to be a very close game, especially with the Chiefs’ comeback power showcased through the playoffs and 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan’s involvement in the face-palm downfall of the Atlanta Falcons at Super Bowl LI. As such, taking the away team on the spread may be a strong move just in case Mahomes pops some late, timely heroics.
Of all of the totals markets to ride against, perhaps the total number of sacks (including overtime) market would be best – which favours over 4.5 at 18/25. At odds of 1/1, you can get under 4.5 sacks, which seems to be the safe bet given the active nature Mahomes and the strength of the 49ers O-line, which is often complemented by the mighty George Kittle as well.
Main Prop Bets
So, the first and biggest prop bet that’s on everyone’s mind is that of the Super Bowl LIV MVP. If the Kansas City Chiefs win the Lombardi Trophy, you can bet that it’ll be accredited to Patrick Mahomes conquering what is likely the best defence in the league. He’s at 11/10 to land MVP honours.
While quarterbacks are the go-to choices for Super Bowl MVP awards – winning seven of the last ten – the 49ers’ ground game will be crucial, and if Raheem Mostert carries the rock as efficiently as he has done in recent games, his 6/1 odds will be a steal.
However, it’s not difficult to foresee the 49ers defence having a huge impact on the game, snuffing out passing options and possibly invading Mahomes’ space. If the defensive linemen get to the QB often, their efforts could dictate the game. Nick Bosa is favoured by the bookies in this sense at 20/1 with Arik Armstead at 100/1, but to play it safe, you can get any defence player to be names MVP at 11/2.
Throughout the regular season, quite remarkably, both the 49ers and Chiefs were penalised a total of 116 times, with the San Francisco outfit conceding over 100 more penalty yards than their Super Bowl counterparts.
That said, in the postseason, the 49ers have tightened up significantly, conceding just five penalties in their first game and just two against the Green Bay Packers. The Chiefs, on the other hand, have continued to concede penalties, clocking in 15 over their two postseason matches.
In the regular season, the Chiefs conceded many holding penalties, but in the postseason, they’ve already been flagged twice for pass interference, sitting at 9/10 to be the first team penalised for the foul at the Super Bowl.
While the Chiefs offence is almost entirely pass-oriented and the 49ers prefer more of a mix, both sides have elite-level tight-ends at their disposal to move the chains. With George Kittle and Travis Kelce on the field, the 33/10 odds on the position of the first TD scorer being a tight end look rather good.
However, through the postseason, Kittle has predominantly been utilised for his world-class blocking, only getting four receptions for 35 yards so far. Kelce, on the other hand, is having a whale of a time, clocking 164 yards and three touchdowns, making his 19/20 odds to score a touchdown anytime very appealing.
There you have it: your guide to the betting markets of Super Bowl LIV. Regardless of which team you’re backing, you’re bound to find an exciting market to follow in the big game.