A “prop bet” is a wager based on the occurrence or non-occurrence of an event. In the Super Bowl, prop bets can range from normal football activities (which team will commit the first turnover? Will Player X score a touchdown?) to utter absurdities (what color of sports drink will the winning coach be doused in? How long will the national anthem be?). Let’s break down some of our favorite props heading into Super Bowl LV.
Super Bowl 2021 Prop Bets picks: From Celebratory Drink Colors to Coin Tosses
Result of Opening Kickoff (Touchback, yes/no?)
You shouldn’t have to wait very long to make some gains on Super Bowl Sunday — so why not get things started with an opening kickoff wager? We like the odds that the opening kickoff will be a touchback (-278 on 10Bet).
Yes, six of the past seven opening kickoffs — including last year — were returned (i.e. not a touchback). And no, the value of this wager doesn’t jump off the screen. But we’re dealing with two of the strongest kickers in the league, and the chances of an opening touchback are very, very good.
Kansas City’s Harrison Butker had a touchback percentage of 75.8 percent this season. Tampa Bay’s Bradley Pinion (a kickoff specialist who doesn’t attempt field goals) had a touchback percentage of 85 percent. You simply don’t want to mess with these guys.
Rooting for an opening touchback is the less fun option, we’ll admit. But you know what’s really fun? Cashing bets.
Anytime Wincast (Anytime touchdown scorer AND money line)
If you’re like me, you think the Chiefs are going to win this game. They are as good or better than they were last year. They have the championship experience. They have way too many ways to beat opponents on offense, and most of those weapons are featured in the passing game — while the strength of Tampa Bay’s defense is stopping the run.
That explains why the Chiefs are three-point favorites at all sportsbooks. But you’d be wise to seek a money line play for Kansas City, given that they’re 28-2 straight up in their past 30 games (regular season and playoffs). Of course, there’s less value for the Chiefs on the money line … until you introduce an anytime touchdown scorer to spice up the odds.
Kelce has eight touchdowns in his past eight games, with at least one score in each of his past six. Pairing that with a Chiefs’ straight up win almost seems criminal. There is much more risk with Fournette (as the odds accurately indicate), but he has scored in two of his past three games. And if the Buccaneers find themselves playing from behind, Fournette is the primary receiving back, so he won’t lose on-field opportunities.
Highest Scoring Quarter
When thinking about betting on the game’s highest scoring quarter, you can probably talk yourself into picking any of the four: anything goes in the first quarter, the second quarter is when teams start to settle in, the third is when halftime adjustments are implemented and the fourth is when teams are emptying the playbook for their shot at glory.
Given this volatility, each quarter receives solid value at sportsbooks. But we like the second quarter to be the highest scoring (+175 on Betway) because it happens to be the highest scoring quarter for both of these teams this season.
In the regular season, the Chiefs scored 17 touchdowns in the second quarter, while the Buccaneers scored 19. Both teams impressed in the second quarter of their games last week as well, when the Chiefs scores 21 points and the Buccaneers scored 14.
Color of Liquid Poured on Winning Coach
Of all the Super Bowl prop bets, this one is probably the most absurd. What sort of rhyme or reason can be applied to predicting the color of the sports drink that will be doused on the game’s winning coach?
Well, allow us to try to put some logic into our pick for the favored color, Orange (+150 on 10Bet). For one thing, it has been the winning color in five of the past 11 Super Bowls (Blue is the only other color to appear more than once in that span). Also, the Chiefs used Orange last year to shower head coach Andy Reid. If they’re at all superstitious, might we see an Orange liquid flowing out of their cooler again, assuming they come out on top?
There’s no precedent for what the Buccaneers might do, since Bruce Arians has never won. For what it’s worth, Buccaneers’ last Super Bowl win (in 2002) featured Purple.
Coin Toss Result
Though you might have come across NFL odds throughout this year that appeared on the surface to be a coin flip, the term has never had quite as literal of a meaning as it does in this prop.
Neither Heads nor Tails is favored here, but we like Tails (-105 on 10Bet) to continue its run of six wins in the past eight Super Bowls (including last year).
Again, it’s a coin flip. As are many of these props, at least metaphorically. So good luck, and have fun with it!
More NFL Free Pickssee more
The Kansas City Chiefs look to become the first repeat Super Bowl champion since 2005, but the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have other plans in mind.
We’ve got you covered with the best Super Bowl odds from the top sportsbooks as well as free parlays and picks to help give you a chance at a super payday!
The Chiefs will wait on some extremely important quarterback news all week, while the Bills are searching for a fourth straight road win when these teams meet on Sunday, Jan. 24 at 6:40 p.m. ET.
Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers will host Tom Brady and the Tampa Buccaneers at Lambeau Field for the 2020 NFC Championship.
Jordan Horrobin is a freelance sports journalist based in Toronto, Ontario, who enjoys sports-related research and telling engaging stories. His work can also be found at Sportsnet, Forbes and elsewhere. Though he abandoned most of his team-specific fandoms in the interest of unbiased analysis, Jordan roots hard for his fantasy football/hockey teams (and he's a complete homer for all things Ohio University).