Super Bowl 52 Smashes Record For Most Money Wagered

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The Nevada Gaming Control Board reports that Super Bowl 52 saw the most action on a Super Bowl ever with $158.6 million bet on the game. 

I thought it would go over the number of $145 million set by at least one book but I didn’t think it would destroy it like Malcolm Jenkins on Brandin Cooks. That smashes last year’s record of $138.5 million and marks the third straight year we’ve seen a record. 

Books didn’t do so hot on the game, though. The hold (profit margin) for books was just 0.7 percent, which was the worst Super Bowl for the house since 2008. The Pats lost to the Giants 17-14 that year as 12-point favorites.  

Sportsbook US was reported by Todd Dewey at the LVRJ to have the worst day with a multimillion-dollar loss. Sportsbook had the best with a seven-figure win. But overall, why did bettors get the win over the books on this one? 

  • Philadelphia money. It was mostly Philly money that came in leading up to kickoff and a lot of it was on the moneyline, which was a much better payout than against the spread. I talked on PoddsShark two weeks ago about how we could see a lot of blind Philadelphia money coming in leading up to the game because there are so many sports bettors in that area. That’s what happened with the Giants in 2008 when books had their worst Super Bowl ever. Nothing but tons of Giants money to win straight up and it was a big number. 
  • The OVER came through. You can always depend on OVER money from the public in a Super Bowl. Same story here and the total was up to 49.5 by kickoff after Sportsbook at 47.5. 
  • All the OVERs on props came in. (Prop results here.) This game saw 74 points and the most yardage of any game in NFL history. Bettors love to bet OVERs on player and game props and that was a killer. 

Sportsbooks would’ve suffered an even worse loss on the game if it weren’t for a lot of in-game wagers that came in on the Patriots. This was the most interesting part about betting the action on Super Bowl 52 for me.  

It shows that in-game betting has gotten so much more popular in North America and it’s changing the oddsmaking game. There’s a big unknown element there for the books and I think bettors are catching on to that. 

Here’s a look at the numbers from the last 10 Super Bowls via Nevada Gaming Control: 

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