The Super Bowl point spread is one of the most popular lines played at major providers in North America. The overwhelming majority of sports wagers incorporate point spread thanks to the vast majority of bettors playing the football and basketball lines.
Although this form of betting is very popular, it isn’t the most simplistic betting line to get your head around. As well as the spread, there are a number of different terms used by sportsbooks such as an equalizer, or in hockey, it is known as the puck line.
The purpose of the point spread is to even the playing field, as no two teams are assembled evenly - in the end, someone almost always has to lose! As such, sportsbooks create a point spread for a game so that each team has an almost even chance of winning the game.
Playing the Super Bowl spread is a great way to even things out on the day, as one team is almost always likely to be the favourite. Football fans aren’t always looking for the straight-up, they might want to be on the team they prefer or simply just avoid backing the favourite entirely. Whatever it may be, there are always ways to find value in the Super Bowl point spread.
Betting on the point spread gives bettors the opportunity to risk money on both teams, regardless of the odds posted. As we see with straight-up bets; the moneyline will post the better team as the favourite (odds proceed with a ‘-’ symbol) and the opponent, the less likely to win, as the underdog (odds proceed with a ‘+’ symbol) - often referred to as simply the dog.
When wagering on the underdog, the bettor will win if the dog wins outright or loses by an amount smaller than the point spread. For this reason, the Super Bowl point spread is one of the most popular betting lines at the Super Bowl LV.
Super Bowl Spread Examples
Bettors will often hear these terms used in betting communities regarding the spread. The term against the spread” (ATS), which is also often known as “covering the spread.” If a bettor does this, this would mean the favourite must not only emerge victoriously but must do so by more than the point spread for the bet to be a winner.
However, if the favourite wins the game but does so by less than the spread, or if the favourite loses the game outright, the bettor will have lost the bet.
Super Bowl spreads require bettors to choose between taking points with an underdog or laying points on the favourite. The odds can vary considerably, with a range stretching from evens all the way up to 21 points on a very lopsided contest.
The point spread is simply a projection of the margin of victory the oddsmakers envisage for the favourite. We know we’ve said and a lot, so, in order to make things clear to our readers, we will provide an example of the point spread for a hypothetical Super Bowl fixture.
Remember, point spread prices are posted with the “vig”, or “juice”, with 1.91 being the standard price. Let’s take the potential lineups for the Super Bowl 55 point spread as an example.
Kansas City Chiefs (-2.5)
Buffalo Bills (+2.5)
So, if bettors backed the Chiefs with these odds, with a $110 wager, they would receive their original stake plus an additional $100 if the Chiefs take the game with a 13-3 victory.
We will provide a second example, just to make things clear. This time we’ll provide an example using a more specific moneyline (other referred to as “SU”, straight up).
Green Bay Packers - (+3.5) - SU +150
New Orleans Saints - (-3) - SU -161
The Saints were posted as favourites over the Packers, with a 3.5 point advantage. This means the Saints need to win the Super Bowl by 4 or more points to cover the spread.
Alternatively, betting on the Packers, who were posted as 3.5 point underdogs. This means the Packers would have to win the game outright or not lose by more than 4 points in order for the bet to payout. The reason the odds are displayed as .5 is to avoid a “push”, which is when the bettors have their wagers refunded - something bookmakers prefer to avoid.
When to Bet on the Point spread
All gambling sharps know how to read the value in the betting odds, assessing a variety of lines and finding the best possible to turn a profit. So, bettors have several choices when assessing the value of the spread. However, in brief, the ATS is useful in the following scenarios:
Bet on thefavourite to win SU (but with low odds, since they are favourites)
Bet on the favourite to win ATS (with more decent odds, since it’s a harder task)
Bet on the underdog to win SU (with high odds but low chance to win the bet)
Bet on the underdog to win ATS (with lower but decent odds, since the handicap increases their chance to virtually win)
Sportsbook operators will often try to have equal money on both sides of the spread. If the odds are always equal, it will maximize how much money the sportsbook operator can make. This works for the bettor too, as the points spread is a great way to make some money at the Super Bowl.
Now that you have learnt how to bet on the point spread, it is time to choose from the below list the top sportsbooks where you can wager online and choose the best one for you: