Super Bowl Best Bets: The Wagering Bloodbath Finale

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Are you ready for some gambling?
Every week, when I do the "Best Bets" post, part of the process is going back to the previous week's "Best Bets," gathering the data, and cutting and pasting my revised ongoing record for the season.

As you can gather, if you've been betting my picks this season, that's been a painful process this year. I'm frankly going to be relieved more than anything else once the Super Bowl is over on Sunday and I inevitably get that pick wrong, too.

Seriously, now I know how the Texans felt playing out the string in December. Gambling, like football, is supposed to be fun.

This has been the 2-14 of wagering seasons for me.

So let's get this over with...

First, a few prop bets that I like for this weekend's extravaganza:

1. Peyton Manning UNDER 290 1/2 passing yards
I think this game could go one of three ways with respect to Manning -- 1) Manning slings the ball all over the field and rains down yards and touchdowns on the Seahawks, 2) the Broncos play ball control and run the ball and grind out a win (or a close loss), or 3) the Seahawks bottle up the Broncos and contain Manning. Of those three scenarios, I think the first one is the least likely, especially in the cold. Manning has a 56 percent completion percentage in cold weather (below 40 degrees) playoff games.

2. Marshawn Lynch OVER 21 1/2 rushing attempts
Marshawn Lynch is the quintessential "running back who gets better the more you feed him the ball," so unless this game gets crazy sideways on Seattle early (which I don't see happening) and they have to abandon the run, I think even a slow start by Lynch would still see them feeding him the ball until he busts something. (See: San Francisco game, Lynch's 40-yard touchdown run in the second half.)

3. Total penalties both teams OVER 12 1/2
Between the Seahawks' propensity to clutch and grab, an inevitable downfield shot that gets a P.I., a few "OMAHA"-induced offsides, a possible roughing the passer or two, and the usual combination of adrenaline and testosterone that has guys all amped up, I feel pretty confident in this one. Potential "GambleCast" fantastic finish on this prop bet would be a late game unsportsmanlike conduct on a garbage touchdown in a blowout.

(NOTE: "GambleCast" is my mythical network that attacks every game from a gambling perspective and on which the announcers have money on every prop bet and the outcome of the game.)


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