One of the reasons the Super Bowl reaches such a large audience is that the big game offers people betting on the action so many different ways to make a quick buck.
Super Bowl XLVIII is special, too, as it features something even more compelling than usual.
Peyton Manning's Denver Broncos enter the contest as a team most non-Seattle Seahawks fans are likely rooting for, while Richard Sherman and the "Legion of Boom" has helped Seattle emerge as a villain many fans love to hate.
The two teams have combined to win 30 games since the start of the 2013 season, losing just six, and both entered the postseason as No. 1 seeds in their respective conferences.
Here's a quick look at when and where you can catch the action, followed by an examination of the most promising bets being offered for the Super Bowl in 2014:
Date: Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014
Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.
Start Time: 6:30 p.m. ET
Live Stream: Fox Sports Go
|Top Bets for Super Bowl XLVIII|
|Over/Under: 47 points||Over: -105||Under: -115|
|Money Line||Denver -140||Seattle +120|
|Spread||Denver (-3)||Seattle (+3)|
|Peyton Manning: 6/5||Demaryius Thomas: 18/1||Wes Welker: 20/1||Julius Thomas: 25/1|
|Russell Wilson: 15/4||Knowshon Moreno: 20/1||Eric Decker: 25/1||Richard Sherman: 25/1|
|Marshawn Lynch: 9/2||Percy Harvin: 20/1||Golden Tate: 25/1||Doug Baldwin: 33/1|
|Total Touchdown Passes||Peyton Manning||Russell Wilson|
|0: 10/1||0: 11/4|
|1: 7/2||1: 3/2|
|2: 2/1||2: 9/4|
|3: 5/2||3: 6/1|
|4: 9/2||4: 15/1|
|5 or more: 10/1||5 or more: 40/1|
|Team to win coin toss:||Denver: -105||Seattle: -105|
|Coin toss result:||Heads: -105||Tails: -105|
|Team to score first:||Denver: -125||Seattle: -105|
|Team to score last:||Denver: -115||Seattle: -115|
|Team that scores first wins the game:||Yes: -165||No: +135|
|Team that scores last wins the game:||Yes: -175||No: +135|
|Which will be the highest scoring quarter?||1st: +400||2nd: +180|
|3rd: +250||4th: +180|
|Will there be a scoreless quarter?||Yes: +225||No: -285|
|Will the game go to overtime?||Yes: +550||No: -900|
Full list of bets can be found via Bovada
Can't-Miss Bets (via Bovada)
Will There Be a Scoreless Quarter in the Game?
- Yes: +225
- No: -285
Seattle went scoreless for two quarters against New Orleans and San Francisco, while Denver scored at least a field goal in all eight postseason quarters against San Diego and New England.
Given the way Seattle's defense has been playing, however, pitching a shutout in four of eight quarters during the playoffs, Denver's offense is likely to get stuck in a slump at least once during Super Bowl XLVIII.
Denver's defense has been playing well of late, as well, and it shouldn't shock anyone if the Seahawks don't score in at least one quarter. Both teams have plenty of time to study up on trends and weaknesses, which will certainly impact production.
Seattle safety Earl Thomas knows his team is going to be prepared, via Clare Farnsworth of Seahawks.com: "When you’re confident, you play confident, no matter who you’re playing. Everybody is the same. I think it’s who prepares well, and I think we prepare better than anybody."
The numbers bear out this truth, as there isn't another defense in the league that can compare to Seattle's when it comes to shutting down opposing offenses.
With that in mind, it's a safe bet to go "yes" on the question of whether or not there will be a scoreless quarter in the Super Bowl. Every $100 bet earns you $225, which is more than double your money.
Will Richard Sherman Record an Interception?
- Yes: +200
- No: -260
It's the biggest game of the year, and you can be sure the best cornerback in the league is going to show up big against Denver's explosive passing attack.
Sherman intercepted eight passes in 2013 to lead the league—despite the fact that quarterbacks rarely attempted to challenge him—to match his 2012 season. That breaks down to an interception every couple of games, and Sherman is due for another after failing to nab one in his last three starts.
The third-year pro out of Stanford is physical, plays with sound technique and has great recovery speed on patterns deep down the field.
Even though Thomas has been Manning’s go-to guy all season long, the first-round pick out of Georgia Tech will have to put together the best game of his career to put Sherman in his place. Few have been able to do it, yet No. 88 has the size, speed and route-running ability to make it happen.
Peyton Manning won't likely be scared of throwing at Sherman, either, like most other quarterbacks. This means the cocky playmaker will have his chances to make a play, and given his history, it's a given he'll come up with at least one interception.
Which means you'll double your money if you bet on him to come through.
Marshawn Lynch for MVP: 9-2 Odds
Marshawn Lynch has been the MVP of Seattle's offense through two postseason games, and it's likely he'll be asked to carry the team once again in Super Bowl XLVIII.
He went off for 249 rushing yards and three touchdowns against the New Orleans Saints and San Francisco 49ers, tripling the scoring of young quarterback Russell Wilson, who managed just one touchdown in those two games.
If Seattle wins this game, then you can be sure Lynch will have gone "Beast Mode" over, around and through Denver's defense, which has allowed just 129 yards on 34 carries (3.79 yards per carry) in its last two contests.
Pro Football Focus highlights a big reason for his success, noting his penchant for breaking tackles:
Barring a breakout performance by a Seahawks defender, it's a guarantee Lynch would win the MVP Trophy if Seattle wins the game. And at nearly 5-1 odds, the return on your investment will have you singing all the way to the bank.
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