5 Things I Think, Super Bowl Countdown Edition
Brad’s 5 Things
1- I think the injury report status updates will be boring this week
Typically Super Bowl week features at least a couple of injuries for us to monitor as the media circus rolls through town, but this year there isn’t much in question other than the status of Rob Gronkowski. The big guy is still in concussion protocol as far as we know, but does his status on paper really matter? 1- New England won without him last year, 2- New England always bends the truth on their injury report anyway. In fact, Belichick might consider it fortuitous that he is in position to play chicken with Gronk’s status all week. Just for Danny, here’s a picture of Tom Brady faking an injury.
2- I think we need an FBI inquiry into the Patriots and NFL officiating (not really, but maybe)
For TheRinger.com today, Zach Kram wrote a compelling piece about the advantage the Patriots have enjoyed in terms of penalties: penalty yardage, penalty timing, penalty impact, etc. The supporting statistics paint a lopsided picture that the conspiracy theorists have to be loving. I admit that I was taken in, allowing my mind to wander to questions about statistical anomalies, probabilities, and circumstantial evidence. New England is notorious for pushing the envelope and bending the rules so we easily transfer that willingness to blur the lines over to the guys in stripes, but conflating these items is a mistake. The reason I bring this up six days before the Super Bowl is that I only have a few hopes for this game: 1- I hope it’s at least mostly competitive, 2- I hope the Patriots lose, 3- I hope the game is officiated in favor of the Eagles, but I would settle for it being even. Seriously though, can we please just not have the offseason center around a controversial call?
3- I think kickoff is too late
Now that I live on the East Coast, it’s starting to seem like I’m gonna spend the rest of my life complaining about the start times for major national sporting events. The Super Bowl is better timed than most things, but I think there is room for improvement. The way it works now, if everything goes according to plan, kickoff will be around 6:30pm EST. The game generally takes about 3.5 hours which, if you live in the Eastern time zone, has you leaving your party and heading home sometime between 10 and 11pm. If you’re a true blue fan of the Eagles or Patriots, you should probably ask for Monday off if you haven’t already.
4- I think the superstition on display in and around the Super Bowl is hilarious
Every year we dive way too deep into this game, over examine its participants, and fabricate “storylines” to appeal to casual fans. In fact, if there wasn’t so much money in making us wait, I’m convinced we would eventually go away from the traditional two-week break that precedes the Big Game. While you might be interested in Tom Brady’s super model wife, Fletcher Cox’s dog, or some other random thing, I’m into the superstitions. My favorite one this year relates to the uniforms. 12 of the last 13 Super Bowl winners have worn the road whites and the Pats are 3-0 in them under Belichick, so we shouldn’t be surprised that, as the “home” team for this Sunday (and therefore entitled to first choice of uniforms), New England elected to don the lucky road unis. In case you are wondering, when these two teams met for the title in 2005, the Eagles were wearing green then too (below). Somehow I don’t think that will be a determining factor on the field this weekend though.
5- I think Super Bowl prop bets are the best part of the game (besides the game itself)
As I said last week, the line opened up at Patriots by 5.5. One week later it’s come down by a full point, which means that the betting public has largely taken the Eagles and the points so far. That’s all well and good, but there isn’t any money to be made betting solely on the point spread so let’s consider some other items from the sports book:
-Over/Under: combined final score= 48
-Over/Under: Donald Trump tweets on February 4th= 5
-Over/Under: Seconds it takes Pink to sing the anthem= 120
-Over/Under: Yardage for longest TD scoring play= 43.5
-Patriots by 4 (like the Jags game) pays 20-1
-Eagles by 31 (like the Vikes game) pays 350-1
Here is a link to a ton of game props from OddsShark.com. If you need help interpreting any of this information, hit me up.
Our game picks will be up on Friday. Enjoy the Super Bowl everyone!