The wait is almost over — Super Bowl LI is finally here. With Sunday’s (Feb. 5) big game fast approaching, and the New England Patriots set to battle the Atlanta Falcons for NFL supremacy, let’s put our focus (
and our money
) on what millions of casual fans and Super Bowl partygoers really care about — hours of premium entertainment, that largely has nothing to do with the actual game itself.
Screener teamed up with our friends at Covers.com to highlight a collection of our favorite non-game related bets for Super Bowl Sunday — from Gaga to Gisele to convicted felons. Because, really, what is pro sports without felons?
What color will Lady Gaga’s hair be?
What it means: Blonde/Yellow is a runaway favorite here, with the -170 odds translating to a 63% chance to win. Brunette Gaga is a distant second, with a 33% chance to win, while Purple and Orange are huge underdog colors, both at roughly a 5% chance to win, respectively.
We’ll put our money on: While Blonde/Yellow would seem to be the safe bet here, we’re feeling frisky, and loving the +1500 odds (a $100 bet would win you $1500) of a white-coifed Gaga (a mere 6% chance) to win.
Which song will Lady Gaga perform first?
“Bad Romance” (-115)
“Born This Way” (+800)
“The Edge of Glory” (+900)
“Just Dance” (+1100)
“Poker Face” (+2500)
Any Other Song (+165)
What it means: The “experts” seem to think a “Bad Romance” opener is all but a lock, with -115 odds translating to a 53% chance to win. Taking the field (aka, any other song not listed above) is actually the second best bet here, with +165 odds equaling a 38% chance to win.
We’ll put our money on: While just about any or all of these songs are good picks to be featured somewhere in Gaga’s halftime set, we are suckers for an underdog, and given the current political climate, a “Born This Way” opener as a very clear, loud message of acceptance, equality and love seems more likely than not. We’ll take “BTW” with +800 odds ($100 would win you $800), despite the slim 11% chance of victory.
Will Lady Gaga have a major wardrobe malfunction?
What it means: Pretty simple here. The oddsmakers say there is a 6% chance of a major wardrobe gaffe. So, you will make a ton of money if you think Gaga will go full Janet. A $100 bet would net you $1500 smackaroos.
We’ll put our money on: No chance, no way, no malfunction.
Will Lady Gaga say ‘Trump’ at any time during the halftime show?
What it means: Roughly a 60/40 split here, as to whether or not Gaga will actually say the word “Trump” during her set, with a ‘Yes’ the slight favorite, with a 58% chance.
We’ll put our money on: If the question were “Will Gaga get political during her halftime show?” the answer would be 1000 percent YES! But whether she’ll actually namedrop POTUS, we’re not so sure of — and neither are the oddsmakers. We’ll take the slight underdog and guess that she does not mention the word “Trump” during her performance.
How many commercials will Peyton Manning appear in during the Super Bowl broadcast?
Over 1.5 (+120)
Under 1.5 (-150)
What it means: Another near-coin flip bet, if you think you’ll only see one Peyton Manning commercial, you take the Under, which has been tapped a 60% likelihood. If you think he’ll be in more than 1, you take the Over for slightly more lucrative odds, and a 45% chance to win.
We’ll put our money on: Peyton’s on-the-field career may be over, but his on-screen pitchman days are in peak form. Nationwide insurance, Papa John’s Pizza, DirecTV (just to name a few) all boast the famed QB on their ad roster, and you can all but guarantee that Peyton’s mug will be showing up on your TV set at least once during the game. Our guess is there will be at least 1 Nationwide commerical and 1 for Papa John’s, and we expect to see #18 in both. We’ll take the Over, please. And thank you.
Super Bowl LI total viewers
Over 117.5 million (-140)
Under 117.5 million (+110)
What it means: Yet another close call. Oddsmakers think the game is more likely to hit the Over, with -140 equalling a 58% chance of coming out on top. As you can see from the slight variance in the odds, the Under isn’t that far behind.
We’ll put our money on: 111, 108, 112, 114, 111… those are the average viewers (in millions) for the past five Super Bowls. For this year’s game to hit 117.5 million viewers, it would have to be the most-watched Super Bowl in history. Though the number typically increases year to year (last year’s game an exception), jumping to 117 seems lofty. It will undoubtedly be a ratings smash, but we’ll take the Under here, which is also the slight favorite.
Will Michael Vick be mentioned during the broadcast?
What it means: Michael Vick was the #1 pick in the NFL draft in 2001 by the Atlanta Falcons. He played 13 seasons in the NFL, the first six of which came with the Falcons. Of course, Vick now lives in pop culture infamy following his arrest and two-year prison stint after getting caught torturing animals for entertainment. As far as the odds go, will announcers Joe Buck and Troy Aikman bring up Vick at some point during the game? Extremely unlikely, according to the oddsmakers, who say it’s a 75% chance they will avoid the former star’s name.
We’ll put our money on: They’re going to say his name. It may not have anything to do with his felony conviction, but current Falcons QB Matt Ryan was drafted to replace Vick while the now-former QB was behind bars. In fact, Vick just penned an essay for The Players’ Tribune, calling that moment his own personal “rock bottom.” That is some juicy, juicy filler right there if we do say so ourselves. Bet Yes, which will double your money at +200.
Will Aaron Hernandez’s name come up during the broadcast?
What it means: Prison isn’t just reserved for former members of the Falcons. And while dog-fighting is heinous, former Patriots star Aaron Hernandez’s crimes are even more deplorable. The tight end is currently serving a life sentence for first-degree murder. While in prison, he was also indicted for another double murder that happened years ago. Much like Vick, the experts have declared it is also unlikely Hernandez’s name will be mentioned, with a 72% chance of no Hernandez mention.
We’ll put our money on: The NFL would rather pretend Hernandez was never part of their organization. Unlike Vick, who was allowed back into the NFL after serving his sentence and had somewhat of a redemption, at least on the field, Hernandez may never see life from outside of prison walls again, let alone from a NFL field. We are confident there will be no mention of Hernandez or his scandal. We’ll take the No.
How many times will “DeflateGate” be said during the broadcast?
Over 2.5 (-115)
Under 2.5 (-115)
What it means: Unless you were living under a rock the past few years, you’ve heard at least a mention of Tom Brady and deflated footballs. The NFL says the Patriots QB cheated and deflated the balls, Brady cried and dragged it out over multiple seasons before finally taking his lumps. What’s important here are the odds. And judging by the odds, the experts have absolutely no idea how many times the announcers will mention the whole ordeal, which became known as DeflateGate. Oddsmakers say there is a 53% chance there will be more or less than 2.5 mentions of the word, so it’s anybody’s guess.
We’ll put our money on: Brady and his balls are sure to be a topic, but whether or not the announcers actually say the word “DeflateGate” once, let alone a few times, we’re not buying it. We’ll gladly take the under here, guessing that it’s mentioned only once.
The number of times Gisele Bundchen is shown during the broadcast
Over 1.5 (-120) 54%
Under 1.5 (-110) 52%
What it means: As true a 50/50 split as we have on the list. You’ll notice neither odds here have a + sign, which means the house isn’t really comfortable declaring a likely winner here. According to the odds, there is a 54% chance Gisele — aka Mrs. Tom Brady — will be shown more than once, and a 52% chance she will be shown once or zero times.
We’ll put our money on: Seriously, if Gisele only makes it on camera once, the entire production team should find another job. Putting the doting/celebrating/cheering/tearful spouse of a superstar athlete on camera is Broadcast 101, behind only the more tried and true “Put The Parents On TV.” Assuming Gisele is in the stands, or more likely in a suite (and not backstage somewhere where she can’t be seen), this might be our best chance of the night to make some money. Give us the Over, which means they’ll show her at least twice.
So there you have it. Ten things to keep you totally engaged in the big game, and maybe even make a few bucks or just sound like the expert in the room, even if you could not care less who actually wins the game. After all, isn’t gambling really the best part of Super Bowl Sunday?
Super Bowl LI will air on Sunday, Feb. 5, at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT on FOX.
For more Super Bowl odds and wagers, both on and off the field, visit Covers.com.