Bettors going with Brady over Wilson in early Super Bowl action

The Seahawks left the first impression on bettors on Sunday, beating the Packers in a thrilling NFC championship game in Seattle. The Pats needed no miracles in their audition for the suits, blowing the Colts out in Foxborough in the AFC championship game.

Funny how betting works.

Much like Tom Brady & Co. did in playing the second game of Sunday’s championship doubleheader, the early Super Bowl XLIX betting line moved dramatically as New England finished off its 45-7 thrashing of Indianapolis late Sunday night. The Seahawks open at about a field-goal favorite for the Super Bowl in most offshore books, but then bettors went heavy on the Pats to move the game down to a pick ’em.

Here is Pinnacle Sports’ play-by-play, er … wager-by-wager:

And finally, from Vegas betting expert RJ Bell delivered the news that Super Bowl XLIX truly is anybody’s game, even in Sin City:

Oddsmakers say they don’t expect the line to fluctuate much over the next few weeks, with heavy betting anticipated on both sides.

"You’re not going to see this one bounce around like you did last year," said Jimmy Vaccaro of the South Point sports book. "Last year, the whole world was in love with Denver early and there was a crush at the (betting) window. But this game is going to stay right around Seattle a 1-point favorite or pick `em the entire way."


At the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook, the opening line favoring the Seahawks by 2.5 points moved quickly even before the Patriots-Colts game was over. Shortly after the game was over, the line was already at pick `em.

"Everyone remembers what they saw last," oddsmaker Jeff Sherman said.

As for last season, a similar situation happened out of the gate, as the Seahawks opened as a slight favorite before heavy betting moved the line Denver’s way immediately, and the steady flow continued in the Broncos’ favor until the Broncos were 2.5-point favorites at kickoff. Seattle ended up winning the game 43-8, and bookmakers had a big day, winning nearly $20 million on record legal betting of $119.4 million.

This year is expected to see more than $100 million bet again.

In recent years, a whole lot of that astronomical cash has stayed in Vegas; according to, the favorite has covered only once in the past seven Super Bowls (Green Bay at -3 over Pittsburgh, 31-25, in Super Bowl XLV) and only three times in the past 13 Super Bowls.

Another bit of history that seems to not bother the bettors right now: The Patriots have NEVER covered as a favorite in the Super Bowl; New England was favored in both matchups with the Giants and lost them both outright. Before that, the Patriots beat both Philadelphia and Carolina by three points despite being a touchdown favorite at kickoff in each Super Bowl. The last time the Patriots were a point-spread winner in the Super Bowl? Brady’s first Super Bowl, when New England beat St. Louis 20-17 in Super Bowl XXXVI when the Rams were a whopping 14-point favorite.

In Super Bowl XXXI, the Packers and Patriots pushed (a tie when point spread is factored in), as 14-point favorite Green Bay won that game 35-21. And New England was a 10-point dog to Chicago in Super Bowl XX and lost 46-10.


This has been a banner football betting season so far for sports books in Nevada, the only place where full legalized betting is allowed in the country.

As for two weeks from today, the biggest talking point, at least for the first few days, will be the status of Seahawks shutdown cornerback Richard Sherman’s arm, injured in the 28-22 win over Green Bay on Sunday.

Sherman told the media after the game he was "100 percent" and will play against the Pats.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report