Well, Fox TV and the Nevada books got their marquee matchup for Super Bowl XLV as the Packers and the Steelers both held on in the fourth quarter.
I say held on because there were two different teams in both games playing in the second half. In the Packers/Bears game, Green Bay looked to be going up and down the field at will, cruising to a 14-0 lead in the first half.
The Bears could not move the ball at all and the game had blowout written all over it as the Packers QB Aaron Rodgers was hitting his wide receivers at will down the field and the Bears looked helpless.
Then Jay Cutler goes out for Chicago, so game over, right? Not so fast. The Packers’ offense goes into hibernation and never scores another point in the second half. The only points come by interception for the TD.
I just don’t get it. Were the Bears able to adjust so well as to stop Green Bay cold? This has been one crazy NFL season, resembling the little bunny that keeps going and going.
After the first game we have another blowout in progress as Pittsburgh is rolling at home in front of a frenzied crowd. The Steelers storm to a 24-0 lead as their defense is playing in Super Bowl form. No one can come back in Pittsburgh being this far down, especially the way the Steelers’ defense is playing.
Well, either the offensive coach for Pittsburgh got a call at half time by some network upstairs guy (you know how I love a good conspiracy theory but this is the kind of thing you hear at the books) or the Jets were able to adjust.
So what are we to make of all this nonsense? I just know a week is needed to clear my mind and see what the hedge will be. Green Bay opened as a -2 point favorite with the total 46 and has edged up a half a point to -2½. The total dropped a tad to 45½, which looks a little high.
For the Super Bowl, the betting public knows only one way to bet and that is over, especially if you are betting Green Bay. Vegas ticket writers will hear these two bets the most:
1: parlay 102 Packers -2½ and over 45½.
If Green Bay wins by one point, the books will rake in all the moolah. The good thing about booking this game is that I doubt you will ever see the dreaded -3. Most books may not let you buy up to +3, but if you like the Steelers, that may be a good buy if you can find it or can wait out some of the smaller books.
I would book this game at -2½ until you know what freezes over but we will wait and see. I will open a bottle of the red next Sunday and make my official pick in next week’s column and maybe have a few props to sink our teeth into.
This will be a prop player’s dream game and the books may handle almost as much on the props as they will on the game itself as they will be dealing hundreds of exotic wagers.
I loved Vegas in the 70s and 80s when it was Super Bowl time as the books would have lavish Super Bowl parties, usually two or three for invited guests and others for the little guys. But then came the NFL with all their greed and stopped anyone from using Super Bowl to advertise a party or anything.
Now it is just “the big game.”
In the late 70s, Pittsburgh was playing the Cowboys and I had three seats saved for some friends at the Stardust. It was getting close to game time so I walked to look out the front door of the “Dust” and I noticed there was not a soul walking down Las Vegas Blvd.
Now that was Vegas.
last week since Oct. 25 PCT
1-2 55-52-3 51.4
2: -101 Steelers on the money line.