Arky Shea's Super Bowl LVI Bets

I've gotten to my breaking point for the Super Bowl analysis. I have done as much research and number crunching as my fat fingers and bloodshot eyes can handle. I am ready to make my highly educated prognostication for THE GAME.

The Super Bowl is one of the only times I look at long-term historical trends and the reason is simple: it's different. The game itself is different than other championship events because the leadup is expanded, the pregame is elongated by so much, timeouts and commercial breaks are massive and halftime is a chore for timing (and for us sometimes). The grandiose nature of the game itself actually has a massive influence on performance and momentum. I also like to break down the trends to the most modern of games and in this case I am counting back to the 1999 championship season, or the Super Bowl that happened in 2000 between the Rams and Titans.

That being the backdrop, the underdogs are 14-7-1 in those games. This spread sits right now at Rams -4 and when the final spread is 4 or 4.5, underdogs are 3-1 ATS. In all of those 22 games, 12 have had a final score within single-digits. Even though we are on a streak of three streak Super Bowl Champions being decided by double-digits, we haven't had a streak on games like that since '92-'99, a streak of eight games. If you don't remember, there used to be a time where there were massive mismatches in the Super Bowl. In that eight-game streak, all eight games had a spread of a t least 6.5-points (we haven't had one of those since 2009) and in four of those games the spread was double-digits (we haven't had one of those since 2008). Addressing those parentheticals, in 2008 & 2009 the underdog covered AND one was victorious outright.

Dropping in for the current trends that make sense, the Baby Bengals have covered the spread in seven consecutive games, five of which they were the underdog and are 6-1 straight up in that run. The Rams have lost seven of their eleven games against the spread in games versus teams that finished with a winning record. In their last seven (to stay consistent) they are 4-3 ATS. Two of those wins were against sub-.500 teams and two of those losses were against San Francisco. The Rams overall have lost four of seven as a four-point favorite or more.

I think there's a chance that both teams put up a lot of points. Each side has elite playmakers in the backfield and on the outside and both teams have pass defenses that are in the bottom 10 of the NFL. I also think there's an equal chance that all of the pageantry stalls offensive momentum (just think of an injury timeout). It's why, as you can tell, I am on the spread here. I have openly doubted the Bengals this entire postseason run but they have won by leading from jump, getting sacked nine teams and still passing to win and a huge comeback in a wild environment. I am done doubting them. The Rams are tough, they are good, they are extremely talented and just might win this game, but I'll be on the Bengals to make this another good one, close and +4.