Super Bowl Betting Handle Down Eight Percent, Patriots Fatigue Blamed

Posted on: February 5, 2019, 07:18h. 

Last updated on: February 5, 2019, 07:18h.

Super Bowl betting in Nevada was down eight percent in 2019, with handle totaling $145.9 million. Oddsmakers reported a 7.4 percent hold – aka win – to keep $10.78 million on the 53rd edition of the big game.

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Super Bowl betting dropped this year, as Tom Brady and the Patriots again grabbed the Vince Lombardi Trophy. (Image: Jamie Squire/Getty)

The $145.9 million in ticket slips printed represents a volume decline of $12.6 million. Oddsmakers blamed fatigue on the New England Patriots again in the championship, as the team has played in eight Super Bowls, and won six, since 2002.

People are tired of the Patriots,” Westgate SuperBook manager Ed Salmons told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “Everybody wanted to see the Chiefs against the Saints or the Rams.”

“I’d be willing to bet if the Chiefs were in the game, the handle would’ve blown away last year’s record,” Salmons concluded.

The Patriots entered Super Bowl 53 as a 2.5-point favorite over the underdog Rams. The game, which is being summarized as one of the more boring Super Bowls in recent memory, or perhaps ever, went three quarters without a touchdown. The Pats won 13-3.

2019 ends a three-year streak where Nevada sportsbooks took in a record handle on the Super Bowl.

House (in Nevada) Always Wins

Despite fewer bets being placed, oddsmakers enjoyed a more prosperous Super Bowl due to a much higher hold percentage than compared to a year ago. In 2018, casinos kept less than one percent of the record handle for a scant $1.17 million win.

Nevada sportsbooks have only lost two Super Bowls since the state Gaming Control Board began individually tracking the game in 1991. The two losses were the New York Giants’ 17-14 upset of the Patriots in 2008, and the San Francisco 49ers’ 49-26 win over the San Diego Chargers in 1995.

The house’s best performance came in 2014 when more than $19.6 million was kept by oddsmakers on the Seattle Seahawks 43-8 blowout of Peyton Manning’s Denver Broncos.

Despite 2019 being a down year in terms of Super Bowl betting, Sunday’s game still attracted 76 percent more cash than the game did in 2010 ($82.7 million).

New Jersey Loses

Super Bowl 53 was the most legally bet upon big game in history. That’s due to legal sports wagering expanding to new states after the Supreme Court struck down the federal ban on the gambling activity last May.

People in Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, West Virginia, Mississippi, and New Mexico can now place regulated sports bets. Oddsmakers in the Garden State, however, didn’t enjoy their first Super Bowl go-round.

The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement reports that Atlantic City casinos and the state’s two horse racetracks took $34.89 million in wagers. But unlike in Nevada where more money was on the underdog Rams, more money in the Garden State was on the Patriots.

New Jersey oddsmakers reported a negative 13.1 percent hold resulting in a more than $4.56 million loss. The state has 10 land-based sportsbooks, as well as 11 online mobile wagering brands.