A word to the wise (and while we’re at it, the un-wise), please feel free to take every single opposite bet here and actually make money. Remember, back in August I was happily sitting on an Atlanta Falcons SB victory prediction. Oh how the fallen have fallen…
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(NOTE: All picks were made with 5 units of a currency to be determined)
Seattle Seahawks to win – Moneyline +110
- I would like to take this moment to congratulate the Denver Broncos on their Super Bowl victory and to Peyton Manning for his double dirty bird gesture at the trophy podium.
Marshawn Lynch (SEA) OVER 90.5 Rushing Yards (-135)
- From a stats perspective, Lynch is actually an awful “on any given down” running back. The number of times he’ll run into the line of scrimmage and fall down veers into Ron Dayne territory. Lynch finished 6th this regular season in rushing yards with 1,257 and has garnered the best fan favorite persona this side of AP with the Beast Mode and Skittles monikers. However, what most Seattle fans don’t want to admit (or don’t know enough about football to admit) is that he’s pretty inefficient for an elite running back. On a per attempt basis, Lynch is 17th amongst running backs (DVOA) and under 50% in Success Rate (good for 19th among RBs). In other words, on any given run play, Lynch is expected to get the yards needed (and not much more) and often get stuffed like a turkey. It doesn’t help that Denver’s defense front had a Power Run stopping rank of 13th and a Line Stuff rank of 9th.
- BUT…the dude pulled off 109 yards against that (THAT) San Francisco defense. And its going to edge into the 30 degree range in NYC meaning the coaching might veer towards running plays (which Seattle does anyways). And while Lynch isn’t your go-to “if you had one running play to get X yards, who do you go to?” running back, this is a 4 quarters bet we’re talking about here. In every Seattle game, no matter how many no gains in a row Lynch has, there will be a moment where he’ll bust one through. It always happens and you know it. Leading to our next bet…
Marshawn Lynch (SEA) OVER 19.5 Longest Rush (-115)
- A 20 yard rush by Lynch? Come on, this is happening. San Francisco’s 2nd level and open field rushing defense were ranked 6th and 2nd, respectively, and Lynch was able to pull of that 40 yard burst. Denver’s isn’t horrible (9th and 16th in those categories) but it combined of their above average front line defense means there’s room for one Lynch run burst.
Julius Thomas (DEN) UNDER 55.5 Receiving Yards (-115)
- Borrowing this one from Cousin “The Cousin!” Sal over at Grantland, but the Seattle safeties are gonna beat up on the underneath and seam passes all day. Too physical. Look what they did to Jimmy Graham a few weeks ago! Thomas has broken 55 yards only 6 times in 18 regular and postseason games this year. Two of them were against the worst defense in the league, San Diego (although they did improve by the end of the year) and two more were against the 30th and 32th ranked pass defense against TEs (your Houston Texans and Dallas Cowboys, ladies and gentlemen!). And did we mention Seattle is 1st in overall DVOA defense and 3rd against TEs?
Demaryius Thomas (DEN) will score the game’s first TD (9/1)
- Then again, after trampling all over the Denver passing game these last few paragraphs, get ready for a nice pay day here! Denver’s only saving grace will be that while Seattle’s secondary is tough and tackles well, it’s elite fast. Thomas is a burner and with a lot of weapons fighting for space underneath, Thomas might have a couple of shots to get downfield behind the D backs. And Denver’s first possession should be an all out onslaught if they want to avoid a grind it out game Seattle plays well in. Denver also has the best pass protection in the league, giving Manning time to hit Thomas for a big gain.
Alex Ovechkin Points vs. Detroit HIGHER than Seattle Seahawks sacks vs. Denver (+120)
- Speaking of that pass protection, Seattle was very very good this year (7th) in pass rushing, but not as dominant as they are in other defensive areas. Manning was sacked 3+ only twice this season and his line has given up only 18 sacks total. If Manning goes down, its hard to expect 3 or more sacks coming. Meanwhile, Washington will be at home against Detroit on Super Bowl Sunday, a team they already beat 4-3 (OT) back in November. In that game, Ovechkin scored 1 point with 5 SOGs and this time he gets to go up against a reeling Red Wings team (lost 9 of their last 15) and goal tender Jonas Gustavsson’s 2.59 GAA (23rd in the league). A couple of goals and an assist are easily attainable.
Doug Baldwin (SEA) OVER total receptions (3.5)
- If Seattle has a chance in this game, he’s coming up with several of these. All of them on 5th down of course.
Wes Welker (DEN) UNDER total receptions (5.5)
- If Denver has a chance in this game, they’ll go much deeper than Welker for eight. Also, have you seen this thing!?!??
That one on the left is the Concussion Prevention helmet he has to wear. And against Seattle’s defense, it doesn’t stand a chance. Although it begs the question, with the ever increasing awareness for concussion prevention and advancements in equipment technology, over/under the 2018 season for this new head gear?
What Color will the Gatorade (or liquid) be that is dumped on the Head Coach of the Winning Super Bowl Team? – Blue (10/1)
- Orange is too easy. But if they do try to plan these things, both teams have blue in their jerseys. We’re getting into hyper-meta advanced metrics here folks.
“Who will be seen first on TV after kickoff?” – Erin Andrews (-140)
- And while we’re speaking about Gatorade and Erin Andrews
We ❤ You Erin!
Sincerely, The 500 Section
Who will President Barack Obama pick to win the game? – Seattle (+110)
- Very interesting debate for this one. He’s not running for reelection, so he doesn’t have to worry about currying to swing state favor, which would obviously play in Denver’s advantage. However, there is a US Senate race with a Democratic incumbent in Colorado this November and Senator Mike Udall is currently polling in the mid 40s against his frontrunner GOP opponent. Super Bowl boost? Then again, since election season, Obama has visited Seattle more often, with a major fundraiser there last November. The tech and industry core of the Seattle economy is key to both his economic proposals and fundraising opps in the future (since his role in the party is now Obama Brinks Truck). He might even like grittier attitude of the Seahawks given his fanship for the Bears and their historical defensive minded franchise.
- For fun, let’s see how The Prez has done with his Super Bowl picks these past few years
- 2008: New England (Loss)
- 2009: Pittsburgh (Win)
- 2010: Indianapolis (Loss)
- 2011: No Pick
- 2012: No Pick
- 2013: No Pick
- So ever since the 2010 trouncing during the mid-terms, President Obama has played the politics game avoiding a messy Pennsylvania vs. Wisconsin disaster in 2011 but still reluctant to upset the waters in 2013 with a heavily blue California vs. Maryland match up. So maybe this is the ultimate trap bet. Dammit.
Russell Wilson (SEA) will win Super Bowl XLVII MVP (15/4)
- Seattle is going to win. They’re going to need a good game from Wilson and although Lynch will rack up some yards, Wilson is going to be essential to this win if they want to keep up with Denver, who can waste as much time putting drive together as Seattle can. Also, its Russell Hustle Bustle Man Muscle Wilson! How can Bill Simmons be wrong?