Prop betting has become synonymous with the Super Bowl betting experience. Super Bowl prop bets have exploded in popularity in the years since William “The Refrigerator” Perry plunged into the end zone for the Chicago Bears against the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 20. Perry, a 320-pound defensive lineman, scored an offensive touchdown in the game despite oddsmakers slapping 8-to-1 odds on it actually happening.
Super Bowl 54 between the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers should be a fun one. The Chiefs have been installed as 1-point favorites at most Super Bowl betting sites, and public money is split nearly down the middle. 44 percent of the money wagered on Super Bowl 54 has come in on the 49ers to cover the spread, with 56 percent coming in on the Chiefs.
While most of that money will be bet on the game’s outcome, many Americans will try their hands at trying to hit on some of the more popular prop betting options.
Prop bets are a fun way to make the game more interesting, especially the things that happen during the game that don’t necessarily have a meaningful impact on the game’s final outcome. Prop bets can make you care about the minutiae, for better or for worse. Bovada, BetOnline and MyBookie all have a slew of props posted online.
Let’s snoop around some of the best Super Bowl 54 betting sites in order to find the best prop bets available as Super Bowl Sunday approaches.
Which Team Will Kickoff First?
|Which Team Will Kickoff First?||Odds at MyBookie|
|Kansas City Chiefs||-115|
|San Francisco 49ers||-115|
Obviously, this prop comes down to the coin toss. The team that wins the coin toss obviously isn’t a lock to choose to receive the ball first, either. You’re not getting much upside with both teams owning identical -115 odds. Considering it’s the Super Bowl I would imagine both teams would choose to receive first if given the choice, but time will tell.
In case you’re curious, the 49ers have won the coin toss in 4 of their 5 Super Bowl wins. The Chiefs lost the coin toss in their only Super Bowl appearance to date.
Will the Opening Kickoff Be a Touchback?
|Will Kickoff be a Touchback?||Odds at MyBookie|
The NFL has prioritized safety in recent years, which caused the league to alter its rules when it comes to kickoffs. Kickoff returns are inherently dangerous plays considering the running start both sides are able to get. So, the league pushed the kickoff up to a team’s own 35-yard-line. The move has resulted in the vast majority of kickoffs resulting in touchbacks, and returns are way down.
60 percent of the Chiefs’ kickoffs this season resulted in touchbacks. 50 percent of the 49ers’ kickoffs resulted in touchbacks. San Francisco ranked near the bottom of the league in that department (26th), while the Chiefs were 15th. There is pretty good value on the first kick not resulting in a touchback at +150, especially if the Niners happen to kick first. If the 49ers do kickoff, you’re getting +150 odds on what is literally a 50/50 proposition, based on the aforementioned touchback percentage.
Which Will Be the First Offensive Play?
|First Offensive Play?||Odds at BetOnline|
This is another prop that depends on the result of the opening kickoff. The Chiefs ran passing plays 61.4 percent of the time during the regular season, which was the 10th-best mark in football. The 49ers, meanwhile, passed just 48.1 percent of the time, which ranked 31st. Jimmy Garoppolo infamously threw just 8 passes in the NFC Championship Game win over the Packers because Green Bay had absolutely no answer for San Francisco’s rushing attack.
So, if you think the Chiefs will get the ball first, bet pass play at +120. If you think San Fran will receive first, opt for run play at -160.
There’s value in the first play turning into a sack at +1000, but run or pass obviously make for far safer bets.
First Scoring Play of Super Bowl 54?
|First Scoring Play?||Odds at BetOnline|
|Chiefs Touchdown Pass||+250|
|49ers Touchdown Pass||+300|
|Chiefs Field Goal||+300|
|49ers Field Goal||+375|
|49ers Touchdown Run||+500|
|Chiefs Touchdown Run||+700|
|Any Other Chiefs Touchdown||+2800|
|Any Other 49ers Touchdown||+3300|
The option that seems to stand out the most here is the first score of Super Bowl 54 being a 49ers touchdown run at +500. As mentioned, the Niners are a run-heavy offense, and one would imagine they’ll stick with that strategy as long as it works for them in the Super Bowl. If Kansas City struggles to stop Raheem Mostert and co., there is little reason to believe San Francisco won’t just pound the ground game, as usual. So, the first score being a 49ers touchdown run at +500 makes for a pretty solid, high-upside option.
A Chiefs touchdown pass is understandably the favorite at +250. Patrick Mahomes threw 5 TD scores in the team’s Divisional Round triumph over the Texans, and he followed that up with 3 more in the AFC Championship Game against the Titans. The Chiefs are happy to take to the air, and we know Andy Reid will come in with an aggressive game plan. Seeing Mahomes connect on a big play to Tyreek Hill or Travis Kelce early in the game wouldn’t be a surprise, so the +250 odds on a Chiefs TD pass being the first scoring play of the game also makes for a strong bet.
|How Many Total Touchdowns?||Odds at BetOnline|
If you have the misfortune of remembering last year’s Super Bowl, you’ll remember that the Patriots and Rams combined to muster just one touchdown. Sony Michel plunged into the end zone for a 2-yard score to give New England a 10-3 lead, and that was the game’s lone touchdown. If you want to bet on a repeat performance, you can get the 49ers and Chiefs combining for 1 score at favorable +4000 odds.
This game will be more high-scoring, though. As you can see, BetOnline oddsmakers are more confident that the teams will combine for double-digit TDs than they are that we’ll get another one-touchdown Super Bowl. Thank goodness for that.
Super Bowl 52 between the Patriots and Eagles saw 9 total touchdowns, while Super Bowl 51 between the Pats and Falcons produced 8 scores. 9 touchdowns to be scored in Super Bowl 54 is awfully appealing at +2000, while 8 is perfectly fine at +800, as well. I would certainly bet on 5 or more TDs being scored before considering 4 or fewer touchdowns for this game.
Will Either Team Go Without a Punt?
|Will Either Team Avoid a Punt?||Odds at Bovada|
Last year’s Super Bowl turned into a punting contest, which was absolutely awful. The Pats and Rams combined to punt the ball 14 times. I’m confident in assuming we won’t get a repeat performance, but I’m also not convinced the game will be so offense-heavy that either team will be able to avoid a punting situation altogether.
Both the Chiefs and Niners have punted 6 times through the 4 combined playoff games to this point. As well as both offenses have played all year long, it’s hard to imagine things go smoothly enough for either of them to avoid a punt over the course of the full 60 minutes.
How Many Penalties Will be Called?
|Total Number of Penalties?||Odds at BetOnline|
One unfortunate side effect of the NFL’s focus on improving player safety has been a spike in the number of flags we see during the games. The NFL has tried to lessen the impact that officials have on the outcomes of the games, but it’s safe to assume we’ll see a steady stream of yellow flags on Sunday.
The Chiefs ranked 15th in the league with an average of 6.8 penalties per game. The 49ers were more disciplined during the regular season, as they were flagged 6.2 times per game. The teams have combined to commit 28 penalties during these playoffs, though, with both going over their regular season averages. I’m optimistic that we won’t see the game marred by too many flags, but I could also see the referees choosing to crack down on shenanigans during the biggest game of the year.
The betting value, as you can see, lies with betting the over on 12.5 penalties at +130.
How Many Chiefs Will Catch a Pass?
|Total Number of Receivers?||Odds at Bovada|
Patrick Mahomes is known to spread the wealth. While Hill and Kelce are clearly a couple of his favorite targets, one of Mahomes’ best attributes as a quarterback is his ability to see the entire field. 6 different pass-catchers caught a pass from Mahomes in the AFC Championship Game, while 8 did so in the previous round against Houston.
Blake Bell (2 catches) and Deon Yelder (1) caught passes in that Texans game. It’s not impossible to think that either of them could find their way into a target in the Super Bowl, but those guys combined to catch just 11 passes during the regular season. They’re not typically heavily involved in the Chiefs’ passing attack.
The over is the value at +145, but the under on 7.5 is the most likely outcome (-165).
How Many 49ers Will Run the Ball?
|Total Number of Rushers?||Odds at Bovada|
The Chiefs like to throw, and the 49ers prefer to run. Mostert accrued 220 yards in the shellacking of the Packers in the last round, while Tevin Coleman topped 100 yards in the Divisional Round against Minnesota. Part of what makes the 49ers such a dangerous offense is the fact that the defense never knows who is going to get the ball. Matt Breida, who is as explosive as any player on the 49ers’ roster, has just 9 carries through 2 games.
The Niners can also try something fancy with Emmanuel Sanders or Deebo Samuel running an end-around from the wide receiver positions.
Mostert, Coleman, Breida and Garoppolo are near-locks to attempt at least one rush apiece. That puts us close to the over, but I’m not convinced the Niners will run multiple end-arounds with multiple receivers, either. The under on 5.5 at +170 looks like a strong value bet.
Will a Non-QB Throw a Touchdown Pass?
|Non-QB TD Pass?||Odds at Bovada|
One of the most infamous plays in Super Bowl history came just a couple of years ago when Eagles quarterback Nick Foles hauled in a touchdown pass from tight end Trey Burton when the Eagles ran the “Philly Special.” Earlier this season, Emmanuel Sanders connected on a touchdown pass to Raheem Mostert in the 49ers’ win over the Saints in New Orleans.
These offenses are both so good that they rarely need to rely on gimmicks in order to surprise the opposing defense. Trick plays are nothing new in the Super Bowl, though, so I could also imagine both teams being willing to dive into their bag of tricks on the NFL’s biggest stage. I’d prefer this bet if it were merely a non-QB completing a pass, but I suppose betting through Bovada on a non-QB throwing a touchdown at +340 is appealing enough from a value perspective.
Who Will Win Super Bowl MVP?
|Who Wins Super Bowl MVP?||Odds at Bovada|
|Patrick Mahomes (Chiefs)||+105|
|Jimmy Garoppolo (49ers)||+260|
|Raheem Mostert (49ers)||+700|
|George Kittle (49ers)||+1400|
|Travis Kelce (Chiefs)||+1400|
|Tyreek Hill (Chiefs)||+1500|
|Damien Williams (Chiefs)||+2000|
It obviously comes at no surprise to see both quarterbacks listed with the best odds of claiming the Super Bowl’s MVP trophy. Betting on Super Bowl MVP is essentially a bet on which team you think will win. The quarterback of the winning team is the most likely candidate, of course. If the Chiefs win, Mahomes will likely have had an awful lot to do with it.
That isn’t necessarily the case for the Niners, though, as Garoppolo is a less-crucial part of San Francisco’s offensive attack. Mostert and the running game will likely get the Niners across the finish line, which makes Mostert an appealing option at +700 to win MVP. Garoppolo isn’t a bad bet in his own right at +260, but there’s a reason Mahomes is such a heavy favorite. He’s the best player in this game, and Kansas City is the betting favorite to win.