Super Bowl LI odds: Luke Bryan, Lady Gaga spark prop bets for Sunday

Leave a comment

The game may be the thing for the die-hard football fans, but the beauty of Super Bowl wagering is the 50/50 propositions on events related to the football game.

For starters, country star Luke Bryan will perform The Star-Spangled Banner prior to the NFL championship game at NRG Stadium in Houston on Sunday. The over/under on the duration of the national anthem is two minutes 15 seconds, with each prop listed at -120 on the moneyline, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

The last 11 anthem performers have needed an average of 1:58 to complete the song.

Bryan is listed at -200 to be wearing jeans when he starts the anthem (+150 for any other type of attire) and -700 to not leave out any words, as Christina Aguilera did a few years back.

Picking heads or tails, or either the Atlanta Falcons or New England Patriots to win the coin toss are each listed at -105. The coin has come up tails in the last three Super Bowls, after a five-year stretch of landing heads. The team winning the coin toss is 6-9 in the last 15 years, so perhaps bettors should feel secure picking the team they feel will lose the game.

Pop singer Lady Gaga may rely on shock value with her outfits, but lead halftime entertainers tend to go with the tried-and-true from their song catalogs.

Given the political climate in the United States, it’s not surprising that Born This Way, which includes empowerment themes, is favored at +225 to be the first song that Gaga performs. Bad Romance is second at +250, with Edge of Glory (+600), Just Dance (+1000) and Poker Face (+1000) also on the board.

Lastly, but certainly not least, there is the prop wager on what color of Gatorade (for betting purposes, Gatorade can be any liquid) will be poured over the winning coach. Clear/water, lime/green, orange and yellow are each listed at +300. Each team’s color is on the board, with the red of the Falcons listed at +600 and the blue of the Patriots listed at +750.

Orange has been used in four of the last seven years. Only twice in the past 16 years has the color synced with the winning team’s color – the Pittsburgh Steelers (yellow) after Super Bowl 43 and the Denver Broncos (orange) after last season’s Super Bowl 50.

As for the game, the Patriots are three-point favorites against the Falcons with a 58.5 total.

Broncos favored on road against Colts for Thursday Night Football

Leave a comment

In a prime-time matchup between inconsistent teams that are playing for pride, bettors might want to zone in on who could be motivated to break some negative betting trends.

The Denver Broncos are listed as a 2.5-point road favorite against the Colts with a 51.5-point total for the NFL Week 15 Thursday Night Football matchup, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

It has been more than a full 365 days since the Broncos, who are 0-8 straight-up and against the spread in their last eight road games, have won away from home. Getting a struggling Colts team on a short week would seem like a golden opportunity for the Broncos to get off the schneid, although Indianapolis is 5-2 ATS in its last seven games after consecutive losses.

The Broncos are also 0-6 SU and ATS in their last six games in Indianapolis, according to the OddsShark NFL Database, but all of those were with Peyton Manning quarterbacking one team or the other. Both teams’ identities have changed dramatically in the last two seasons, and not for the better.

The Broncos, who are 4-9 SU and 3-9-1 ATS, have a promising matchup in the passing phase for a change. Wideout Demaryius Thomas (four TDs in the last six games) is on a tear and the Colts come in allowing an NFL-worst 8.2 yards per pass and missing starting CBs Nate Hairston (concussion) and Rashaan Melvin (hand). Quarterback Trevor Siemian is also coming off a turnover-free game against the New York Jets in Week 14.

Denver has shut down RG Ron Leary (back) for the season, so it’s unclear how much one should expect from RB C.J. Anderson and the running game. Of course, Denver really only needs its offense to produce 2-3 scoring drives a game and not leave OLB Von Miller and the defense in perilous positions.

The Colts, who are 3-10 SU and 6-7 ATS, are struggling to keep pass rushers off young QB Jacoby Brissett and have allowed an NFL-worst 52 sacks. That hardly seems auspicious going into a matchup against Miller and other pass rushers such as DE Shelby Harris and OLB Shaquil Barrett.

With Chris Harris and Aqib Talib on the corners for Denver, it is hard to foresee a breakout from No. 1 WR T.Y. Hilton, whom Brissett has struggled to connect with in recent games. The outlook is much better for TE Jack Doyle against a Broncos defense that does struggle covering inside receivers, so if Indianapolis is to win, it might come through Brissett and Doyle cashing in on any and all red-zone visits. Denver tied for the league worst with 26 touchdown passes allowed.

The Colts face a tough matchup in the rushing phase. Denver allows a league-low 3.3 yards per rush, and Indianapolis will have to spot RB Frank Gore after he had 36 rushes in ankle-deep snow against Buffalo last Sunday.

One should read very little into the Broncos being 8-2 SU and ATS in their last 10 Thursday games and the Colts being an even more sterling 11-1 SU and 10-2 ATS in their last 12 Thursday contests. Both teams have tailed off considerably in the last two seasons.

The total has gone under in six of the Broncos’ last seven games against teams with losing records. The total has also gone under in nine of the Colts’ last 11 games.

For more info, picks and a breakdown of this week’s top sports betting news check out the new OddsShark podcast with Jon Campbell and Andrew Avery. Subscribe on iTunes, or check it out at OddsShark.libsyn.com

Rams’ Whitworth rewards local students with bikes

Leave a comment

Los Angeles Rams’ Andrew Whitworth celebrated his 36th birthday in an unconventional way this year. Instead of receiving gifts, the offensive tackle donated nearly 600 bikes and helmets to Grape Street Elementary School in the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Whitworth had 18-wheelers deliver the gifts and was in attendance to tell the children the good news.

In order to not leave any Walmart without bikes ahead of the holiday season, Whitworth went to multiple stores.

The children returned the favor by giving Whitworth a cake and singing him “Happy Birthday.”

Whitworth is in his first year in Los Angeles after signing a three-year contract with the Rams earlier this year. The 12-year veteran’s charity, the Big Whit 77 Foundation,  partners with students to challenge them to get good grades.