Super Bowl XLVIII - Odds & Free Picks

League: NFL
By: Craig Trapp Published on: 01/23/2014

Championship Sunday has come and gone and Super Bowl 48 is just around the corner, and this year’s participants, the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks, are set to bring football fans an enthralling showdown and gamblers worldwide an intriguing set of decisions to make.

Odds on the move

Odds for the Super Bowl have been on the move since the teams were determined. Denver opened as a slight favorite, usually picking up -1 or -1.5 points on Seattle. Those odds looked slim to gamblers, who have already pushed that line to the -2 to -3 range betting heavily on Peyton Manning and the Broncos. It’s not yet certain where the odds will settle, but fast as movement was last week, there’s a decent chance the Broncos could be favored by even more points by Super Bowl Sunday. Many online casinos with sportsbooks like bet365 and William Hill update their odds more often than standalone sportsbooks. Follow this link for a list of online casinos that accept sports bets and have the most up to date spread on the game

The Broncos

Denver’s big strength so far this postseason has been its ability to start fast, with Manning posting insurmountable leads before opposing offenses have knotted up their cleats. The Broncos are outscoring opponents 37-3 over the first 45 minutes of games so far this postseason, and Manning was especially excellent last week. In a 26-16 win over New England, the Denver quarterback threw for a record-tying 400 yards and posted a 118.4 quarterback rating. On the other side of the ball, Terrance Knighton and the rest of Denver’s defensive front has done a tremendous job rushing opponent’s quarterbacks and slowing opponent’s ground games. Denver has struggled to stop teams late in games, but otherwise, the defense has looked strong.

The Seahawks

Defense is Seattle’s strength, leading the league in points and yards allowed during the regular season. In the NFC Championship game, the Seahawks’ secondary recorded two key interceptions off San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick. The last was a highlight play by Richard Sherman in the final 30 seconds -- a leaping effort to tip a pass that was intercepted by Malcolm Smith. Offensively, the ‘Hawks are led by quarterback Russell Wilson, who was efficient against the 49ers as he was for most of the 2013-14 season. He and running back Marshawn Lynch are going to need to have big games if Seattle is going to outscore Manning and the Broncos.

Match-up / Predictions

Many Super Bowl predictions this week are going to talk about the matchup between Denver’s dominant offense and Seattle’s defense, but just as fascinating will be the matchup between Denver’s defensive line and Russell. Denver managed to slow San Diego and New England thus far in the postseason, but Russell is more mobile than Philip Rivers and Tom Brady. If Seattle wins, it’ll be because Russell finds a way to create time and space to pass the ball. That said, this bettor still thinks Manning and the Broncos are too good, meaning my Pick for Super Bowl 48 is Denver on any line up to -5. For more free picks on the game check out our NFL free picks