Super Bowl Prop Bets: Biggest Surprises from Sunday's Game
The Baltimore Ravens endured a furious rally by the San Francisco 49ers to win Super Bowl XLVII 34-31 in New Orleans' Superdome on Sunday after a 34-minute power outage in the third quarter totally changed the complexion of the game.
This was a highly entertaining matchup from start to finish, and was a fitting end to what was a wild NFL season. For those who decided to take a dive on some prop bets, there were several surprises from the big game.
Here is a breakdown of the most shocking outcomes from the bets that were available.
Most Valuable Player
To be clear, it wasn't exactly the biggest risk to put money on Ravens signal-caller Joe Flacco to take home the Pete Rozelle Trophy. But considering his shaky track record and the extra week off, something could have gone wrong.
So much for that.
Ever since Jim Caldwell took over as offensive coordinator, Flacco is simply a different quarterback. He has emerged as one of the game's elite after a spectacular postseason run, and as amazing as his level of play has been, Sunday may have been his very best.
The final numbers: 22-for-33, 287 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions.
This shocker is more of a testament to how much Flacco turned it on in the playoffs—and maintained it on the biggest possible stage—rather than any stunning deviation from his most recent outings.
Former NFL player Matt Bowen of the National Football Post and Chicago Tribune weighed in on Flacco's incredible postseason as a whole on Twitter:
Flacco: 11 TDs-0 INTs in the Super Bowl run. Not bad when you are in a contract year.— Matt Bowen (@MattBowen41) February 4, 2013
Ravens WR Jacoby Jones made a decent bid to win the award—and that, too, would have been a shocker. He caught a 56-yard bomb from Flacco in the final two minutes of the first half, and opened the final 30 minutes with a 108-yard kickoff return for a touchdown that proved critical.
Will either team score in the last two minutes of the first half?
Double kudos to those who called this one—because both the Ravens and 49ers scored. At 1:58, the aforementioned Flacco to Jones connection made the score 21-3.
Against all odds and bucking the trend of the entire game to that point, San Francisco QB Colin Kaepernick led his team on an eight-play, 71-yard drive to put David Akers in prime field-goal position.
After battling demons throughout the season, the veteran put it through the uprights from 27 yards out as time expired.
Loose coverage was expected to be played by both teams in these scenarios, considering how well the respective linebacker corps tackle underneath and how dangerous each team is in the vertical passing game.
But those strategies didn't work, and it provided the Niners with a key shot of momentum after they struggled to move the ball to that point. That would evaporate with Jones' kickoff return.
Will either team score three consecutive times, conversions excluded?
However, if not for a masterful two-minute drill highlighted by an incredible throw by Kaepernick to set up a field goal, this would have happened twice.
In a game featuring two extremely disciplined teams coached by brothers John and Jim Harbaugh, it was a shock to see how many big plays there were despite the explosive nature of both offenses.
After the aforementioned Superdome blackout, the Niners went on an absolute tear.
They moved the ball down the field at will, as Kaepernick's arm and legs devastated the experienced Baltimore defense.
Although San Francisco ultimately fell short of the ultimate prize, it proved how resilient the team was.
The surge certainly made for a far more entertaining game than it had been to that point. If any team was the safe wager for this bet, it was the Niners. It was nevertheless shocking that it actually happened, as it nearly resulted in an historic comeback.
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