There are several key storylines that will beaten into the ground by everyone who covers the Super Bowl over the next two weeks. We will beat them down even further.

The first story that gets published every year, just moments after the conference champions are decided is always: "What's the early betting line?" (The Steelers are currently favored by 7.) You see, Super Bowl week(s) is the one magical time of the year when the NFL allows people to admit that gambling exists. It also helps that it's the one game of the year where you can bet on anything. From the coin toss to rushing yards accumulated by the second-string tight end, any and every scenario is up for grabs. And that's just the legal gambling. Throw in office pools, bar pools, dorm pools, and stay-at-home bookie moms, and you get an insane amount of money changing hands over the next couple of weeks. And it will all come down to one little football game.

Of course, that also means that every jerk who has ever watched the Kentucky Derby on TV suddenly turns into a gambling expert. Let's parlay those odds with an over/under teaser and give me three points on the back door money line. Oh, and don't forget the vig. Oh, and I like the Steelers to cover, but I may come down another dime once I get a look at the injury report and find out what Max Starks has for breakfast on Saturday. (I hear he's usually a little sluggish if he has Fruit Loops less than two days before NBC-televised night games.)

As Drew so eloquently put it last week.... NONE OF YOU KNOW ANYTHING! You can't figure this thing out, you don't have a system and nobody beats Vegas. Why do you think casinos even take bets? Because they like giving away money? "A conservative estimate of Super Bowl betting losses over the last 18 years would exceed $12 billion dollars worldwide." And that's not the casino's money.

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Even if they did, it doesn't matter because the game is fixed. The NFL secretly decided their officiating crew before the conference championship games were played and the team they picked had already blown the most controversial play of this year's playoffs. (It was Terry McAulay and his back judge Robert Lawing who conveniently forgot what to do when the play clock hits zero.) They zebras already manipulated at least two Steeler games this year and completely bungled the team's last Super Bowl appearance, but that's really beside the point. The reason we have two weeks of Super Bowl coverage is that two weeks is just enough time for anyone to convince themselves that they are certain about something. And that's where the money is made.

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By the way, MGM is giving 2.5 points scored by safety Troy Polamalu and I would seriously consider taking the over on that.

A Pro Gambler’s Guide to Gaming the Super Bowl [Seattle Weekly]
Interview With MGM Sportsbook Director Jay Rood: Super Bowl Edition [Vegas Watch]
Behind The Bets [ESPN]
Super Bowl XLIII Prop Bet: The Coin Toss [Stock Lemon]
NFL Picks Super Bowl Referees...Terry McAulay? [Bob's Blitz]