The NFL season ended as the purists wanted, with nothing tainted or controversial marking the Super Bowl outcome.
Bettors experienced numerous highs and lows, from the game outcome and field-goal props to the first punt versus the longest touchdown.
What a ride.
The San Francisco 49ers were a couple of plays shy of putting this game in its pocket. They were ahead 20-10 and were forcing Kansas City into third and 15, deep in its territory with only half of the fourth quarter left.
That’s when the Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who had been playing poorly, lofted the game-changing bomb to Tyreek Hill that set up the first of three game-ending touchdowns.
A look around NJ sportsbooks
PointsBet Sportsbook reported that some of its major action came from the kickers.
About 90% of NJ sports betting customers wagered “Yes” for a missed extra point but lost. The 10% who said “No” gained a +210 return.
The public loved the over in the field goal prop of 3.5, but the final total was three.
The sharpies took the under, and they benefitted by three different things going their way when this prop was one play away from becoming an over.
A pass interception, pass interference call, and then a touchdown pass all occurred at different times, one play before another field goal would have been attempted.
FanDuel Sportsbook: A game of inches
So, the Travis Kelce touchdown making the game 20-17 late in the fourth quarter rewarded bettors at FanDuel Sportsbook on a promo that not only paid for the score but awarded money for every point the Chiefs got. That’s a multiplier of 31.
Why a game of inches? One play earlier, Mahomes threw an incomplete pass, and a field goal was likely. But out came the flag for pass interference, and the Kelce TD occurred on the next play.
Sometimes, you’re just living right.
William Hill: A betting potpourri
Some of those crazy plays impacted a neat William Hill (now Caesars) prop that each team would connect on a field goal of more than 35 yards.
Robbie Gould did it for San Francisco in the first quarter. Kansas City’s Harrison Butker was twice ready to kick one in the 40-yard range but was denied because of the interception and pass-interference calls.
The longest touchdown of the game was 38 yards, losing to the first punt, which was 50, in a yardage prop.
A costly offensive pass interference penalty on George Kittle wiped out the probable field goal that would have provided the split of San Francisco winning the first half, Kansas City the second.
You knew Mahomes had to throw an interception sometime, right? His streak of 163 straight passes without a pick ended, and then he threw a second. Turnover props of over 1.5 were rewarded.
One bet had an over/under of 9.5 players running the ball, and the total was nine.
Under players cringed when Kelce was supposed to get a first down on a completion, but tried to spin away for more yardage and came up short. On the next play, there was a direct snap to him. He was the ninth player to run the ball.
And then it ended right there.
SugarHouse: Chiefs come through as the chalk
SugarHouse Sportsbook rewarded bettors who predicted a halftime tie. It seldom happens, and that’s why it paid +950 here.
The book reported Kansas City surging from 49% to 60% moneyline handle in the last two days before the game. Kansas City also held 70% of the spread volume at -1.5.
SugarHouse moved the over/under line to 53, down from 54.5 over the weekend. But the savvy bettors understood the defenses would play well enough to keep the total below that. Under bettors accounted for just 24% of the tickets.
Kansas City: By the numbers
The Chiefs covered their last nine games they played, including the playoffs.
Kansas City also became the first team ever to overcome double-digit deficits to win all of its championship games.
The Chiefs rallied from 24-0 down to beat the Houston Texans 51-31, from 17-7 down to topple the Tennessee Titans 35-24, and they dug out of this 20-10 hole.
It was Kansas City’s first Super Bowl victory in 50 years and head coach Andy Reid’s first-ever.
DraftKings: Where’s Brady?
Bettors have some speculation to bring into the off-season.
DraftKings Sportsbook has a novelty prop about who New England quarterback Tom Brady’s next team will be. Rumor mills have incorporated everything from Brady retiring or resigning with the Patriots, provided they put some talented players around him.
The Patriots reached the post-season on fumes but bowed out against the Tennessee Titans in the first round. Brady looked ordinary all year.
The board has him as -305 to return to New England. The Patriots are the only favorite on the list. The Las Vegas Raiders are next +350.
Some intriguing longshots include the Washington Redskins at 66-1 and the New York Giants at 50-1. The Seattle Seahawks lead the oh-no brigade as a 250-1 longshot.
It is doubtful Brady would move anywhere he would not be able to call the shots but, interestingly, a prop emerged anyway.
Wait till next year
You may be counting down the days until next year, but NFL betting begins now.
Odds are up for betting on the Super Bowl 55 champion.
The Chiefs are listed at +650 to repeat as Super Bowl winners. But that’s a rare feat. It hasn’t been accomplished since 2004 and 2005 with the Patriots.
The Baltimore Ravens are an attractive choice at 7-1. Teams that underachieve in the playoffs tend to bounce back. The Chiefs looked ready to make the Super Bowl last year, but an offsides call negated the interception that would have sealed the game for them.
This year, they came on like gangbusters and won it all.
The board includes 49ers at +900, good teams like the Los Angeles Rams at 20-1, several choices in the 50-1 range and the Miami Dolphins, Washington Redskins and Cincinnati Bengals at 150-1.