Kansas City remain the slight favorites at (-125) in the latest nfl odds. Meanwhile, The 49ers are (+105) underdogs basically the line hasn’t budged as of Wednesday morning. It initially moved a half-point in the Chiefs’ direction, but is back to being -1 at most sportsbooks.
That doesn’t mean all bettors think that the current point spread is correct. It just means that about the same amount of money has been wagered on either side … so far.
Based on the betting trends, Paruk believes we are likely to see movement in the coming days, but that the odds will ultimately look the same as they do now come kickoff.
“Sharps” Like San Francisco
In the betting world, sportsbook operators create a dichotomy between “sharp” bettors and the “public”. The so-called “sharps” are generally professional bettors; their wagers are often dictated by predictive models that incorporate thousands of points of data.
The “public” is everyone else.
Usually, sharps dictate where the odds move for two reasons: (1) they bet more and (2) sportsbooks have more respect for their picks. The Super Bowl is the one sporting event of the year, though, where the amount of money wagered by the public actually outweighs the amount wagered by sharps.
The trend that Paruk and his company are seeing for Super Bowl 54 shows that the public is betting more heavily on the Chiefs while the sharps are betting more heavily on the 49ers.
At some sportsbooks, as much as 80% of the “sharp” money has been on San Francisco.
That’s why Paruk believes the line is likely to move in favor of the Chiefs in the coming days, but then move back in favor of the 49ers by kickoff.
How Are the Odds Going to Change?
Usually, sharps bet as early as possible when they see a point spread that they like. But with the Super Bowl, it’s likely that many big-money professional bettors are lurking in the weeds, waiting to pounce.
Jeff Davis, the director of the Caesars Sportsbook, told ESPN that, “professional bettors have stayed away from the point spread.”
The pros will be keenly aware that the public is backing Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs. Even if they’re not privy to insider information on betting handle, it’s extremely common for the public to favor the team with the better quarterback, and when it comes to Patrick Mahomes vs Jimmy Garoppolo, there’s really no comparison.
As Anthony Riccobono of the IB Times wrote in his thorough QB breakdown, “There is … no debate regarding which team has the advantage at the sport’s most important position.”
Sharps will also be aware that most public bettors don’t actually wager until a day or two before the game, meaning that the majority of public money has not been wagered yet. If large amounts of public money come in on the Chiefs on Friday and Saturday, the point spread will inevitably grow to KC -1.5 or -2.0.
That’s when the sharps will pounce, pushing it back down.
Paruk’s advice for would-be Super Bowl bettors, then, is to bet on the Chiefs now if you like Kansas City, but wait a day or two if you want to bet on the 49ers.