The Rise of Super Bowl Prop Bets – What is Driving This Action?

February 6, 2016
Super Bowl 50

Short for proposition bets, prop bets have become an integral source of revenue for online and land based sportsbooks that offer Super Bowl betting lines. In these bets, you aren’t betting on the outcome of the game, but rather on the small, intriguing details of the game. For example, the 2016 Super Bowl will be held in San Francisco and one of the prop bets that is popular allows players to place a wager on whether or not there will be an earthquake during the game. There are literally hundreds of prop bets associated with Super Bowl 50, and there are predictions that prop bets will reflect up to 60% of the betting action on this year’s Super Bowl event. That means that more than half of the bettors will engage in prop bets as opposed to only participating in traditional betting action on the outcome of the game.

Prop bets have undeniably surged in popularity among US gamblers, but they have actually been around since the 80s. During the original TV series Dallas, multiple sportsbooks in Vegas took bets on who shot JR Ewing. These types of bets were around, but weren’t necessarily very popular among gamblers. However, this changed about 20 years ago when the sportsbook at Boardwalk Casino decided to spice things up a bit and add some unique betting options to the menu in hopes to draw some attention to the casino brand. He offered customers the opportunity to bet on whether Michael Jordan would score more points than the Dallas Cowboys would in the Super Bowl that day. Jordan was playing in an NBA game on the same day.

The effort drew national attention and the tradition was born. Ever since Super Bowl XXX, prop bets have become an element that is woven into the fabric of the Super Bowl betting culture. What started out as a publicity stunt is now one of the most active betting niches in sportsbook gambling. The surge in popularity for proposition bets is demonstrated in both legal online sportsbooks and brick and mortar sportsbook destinations in Vegas.

Why the popularity on what is sometimes just an outrageous bet? For one, prop bets draw in sports fans that don’t typically bet on football or any sport. These wagering options are so intriguing that fans can’t resist the temptation to take a stab at them. You don’t need to have a lot of technical knowledge about football to enjoy these types of bets, so more people feel comfortable engaging in this type of gambling. Another theory about the surge in popularity for Super Bowl prop bets is the fact that many prop bets are tied to specific players and/or positions, and since so much of the American fan base is engaged with fantasy sports these days, which is driven by player performance rather than team performance, they feel like they know the players well enough to place an informed wager on these prop bets.

There are some sportsbooks that are offering up to 800 different Super Bowl 50 prop bets. You can place bets that are tied to players and their positions, as well as news coverage, half time entertainment, the singing of the star spangled banner, and the weather conditions on game day. The list of options available this year is chock full of interesting, unique and creative prop betting lines that add some sizzle to your super bowl betting action on February 7.