In the wee small hours of Sunday night/ Monday morning, the 52nd ‘World Champions’ (nb- the rest of the ‘world’ aren’t allowed to play) will be crowned, as the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles head to the shiny new US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis to duke it out over the Vince Lombardi Trophy as Superbowl LII.

Notably, for those non-NFL aficionados out there, the pair will be opening and closing for the largest Justin Timberlake concert since he managed to ‘accidentally’ disrobe Michael Jackson’s little sister at Superbowl XXXVIII in 2004. Regrettably, we’re not allowed to bet the spread on nipples shown live on air, but that probably says more about the harsh Minnesota winter than questionable wardrobe choices this time around.

So, if I were to say, ‘sporting greatness in Minnesota’. What springs to mind?

You’re quite right. This scene.

And to be completely honest, the list starts and ends here. Gordon Bombay (pub quiz fact- the character was named after two brands of Gin. You’re welcome.) as the enigmatic anti-hero come good, alongside Charlie Conway (pub quiz fact 2- a role which Leo DiCaprio was overlooked for. What a different film that would have been. Although, we all know how useful Leo turned out to be when faced with some Ice. But, I digress.)

(Show me your Triple Deke, Charlie…)

What to bet on in the Superbowl?

Right then. Funny business aside, how can we make some money? The industry, at the time of going to press, makes the Patriots 4.5pt favourites, and to cover it. The Pats last 5 games have had them winning by 20 or more points on 3 occasions, whilst conceding more than their fair share of TDs along the way. Which means quite simply- they put up big numbers.

In September, I think the Eagles would have fancied themselves head to head again a team led by a 40-year-old QB, given that they went on to score less than 20 points just once during the first 14 games of their 2017 season. However, it’s a minor miracle that they find themselves heading to the big dance this year, after an end of season wobble leaving them averaging just 18 pts a game between Christmas and tonight- meaning that a strong New England offense could punish an overachieving, if not well-organised Eagles side.

This is certainly not a Pats team without frailties though, and Philadelphia will know exactly what to do to find the gaps. Blitz. Brady is good, but he is not fast- and pin-point precision means very little when you’re being sacked by a 300lb DT. If the Eagles can re-find some of the early season fire that propelled them to 13-3, scoring over 450pts along the way (the Pats achieving the exact same record, and just 1 more pt), then we could have quite a shootout to look forward to.

That being said then, I can see both teams’ offences arriving fully fired up for this one. Our “Highest Scoring Quarter” market has the 3rd at , which, if one team goes into the locker room a few points behind, could seem like a little bit of value as the desperation plays and pick 6’s rear their head. (nb- ‘Any Pick 6 scored’ is in our #PriceItUp market at , and in a blitzing game, is always worth a shot)

And some not so sure bets…

Speculative 4th and long punt: Start off by backing tails in the coin toss at . (Tails tails never fails, as I’m sure you already know)- then split your investment between the ‘Last scoring play’ being a Philadelphia Eagles Field Goal at a handsome as they pick Brady’s pocket, and Nick Foles, the man who started this season as the Eagles backup QB, steals both the trophy, and the title of MVP- backed at a generous in a 2-horse race. Good luck!

Odds are correct at the time of posting

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