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Super Bowl XLIV Handicapping Trends / Stats

NFL Betting: Super Bowl Stat Check

No single game gets as much attention as the Super Bowl. Hundreds of millions of people will watch the Indianapolis Colts take on the New Orleans Saints in Miami. They’ll have had a full two weeks to learn about the two teams in question. If you want to outsmart them and maximize your chances against the football odds, you’ll need all the relevant stats and factoids you can get your hands on. Here are 10 goodies that are off the radar screen of the average fan.

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The more efficient running team has won 17 of the last 29 Super Bowls.

The advanced efficiency stats show that the better passing team has only won 14 of the last 29 Super Bowls. According to Football Outsiders, New Orleans had the most efficient running game in the NFL this year, while Indianapolis was ranked No. 22.

The average final score at the Super Bowl is 30-15.

We’ve got a total of 56.5 points up on the NFL odds board for Sunday. Last year’s game went well over the total of 46.5 points, as Pittsburgh beat Arizona 27-23. Carolina holds the record for most points by a Super Bowl loser with 29.

Underdogs are 13-30 SU at the Super Bowl.

Bettors will be more familiar with the fact that underdogs are 18-23-2 ATS at the Big Game. The Saints are 6-point puppies (-105) against the pointspread and +175 on the moneyline. The moneyline is a better value if the trends hold up.

First-time participants are 4-15 SU and 6-12-1 ATS against Super Bowl veterans.

This is the first trip to the Super Bowl for the Saints. The Colts were 6.5-point favorites when they beat the Bears 29-17 four years ago, again in Miami. The Colts (then representing Baltimore) also lost 16-7 to Joe Namath and the Jets at Super Bowl III.

Teams that score over 32 points are 18-0 SU at the Super Bowl.

The Saints were the highest scoring team in the NFL during the regular season at 31.9 points per game. The Colts were third in the AFC at 26 points per game.

The UNDER is 4-2 at the Super Bowl with the total at 50 points or higher.

Sunday’s total of 56.5 is the highest total in Super Bowl history. In second place: Super Bowl XLII, where the Giants and Patriots easily slid UNDER the 54.5-point total in a 17-14 final.

The Favorite-OVER parlay has hit nine of the last 29 Super Bowls.

The second-best parlay is the Underdog-UNDER with eight winners in the last 29 Super Bowls, most recently in that Giants-Patriots classic.

The team with the greater number of sacks at the Super Bowl is 12-2 SU and 9-3-2 ATS in the last 14 qualifying games.

The Cardinals had three sacks to two for the Steelers in last year’s game. Arizona lost the championship but earned the cover as 6.5-point puppies. New Orleans owns a 35-34 edge over Indianapolis in sacks this year.

Quarterbacks have won six of the last 11 Super Bowl MVP awards and 17 of the last 28.

Peyton Manning is the 2-3 favorite to win his second SB MVP award. Drew Brees is next on the Super Bowl props list at 9-4. Everyone else is 10-1 or longer.

The NFC has won each of the last 12 Super Bowl coin flips and 15 of the last 17.

Arizona won the toss last year after Pittsburgh incorrectly called tails. The Cardinals chose to defer; Super Bowl XLIII was the first where teams were allowed to do so. Tails has been the right call in nine of the last 12 Super Bowl coin tosses.

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