NFL: Super Bowl LV - Welcome to Tampa!
Ahead of the more serious business of previewing Super Bowl LV, the Cloudbet Blog takes a moment to look at the venue that has held two Super Bowls already and share some Super Bowl facts, while taking a couple strolls down memory lane.
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Home sweet home
For the first time in Super Bowl history, a team will play in its home stadium. That's Tampa Bay at the Raymond James Stadium.
The city of Tampa has hosted four Super Bowls already - making LV its fifth.
Super Bowl XVIII (1984: LA Raiders 38-4 Washington Redskins) and XXV (1991: NY Giants 20-19 Buffalo Bills) were played in the old Tampa Stadium, "The Big Sombrero", which was replaced when the Raymond Jay stadium opened in 1998.
But no real home advantage
From a bettor’s perspective, the Covid pandemic has neutralised the traditional sense of home advantage in the 2020 season.
While fans might think having a limited crowd is better than nothing, their presence hasn’t moved bookmakers’ lines this season - the lesson being that nothing can really compensate for athletic talent and good coaching.
There will be 22,000 fans in attendance on the day - barely filling a third of the 70,000-plus capacity Ray Jay stadium.
Of those, 7,500 will be vaccinated healthcare workers, given free tickets by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Most, says the NFL, will come from the Tampa and central Florida area.
Well played that man.
Raymond Jay’s biggest games
Super Bowl XXXV (2001) - Ravens roll the Giants
AFC champs the Baltimore Ravens beat the NFC’s New York Giants 34-7.
MVP of the game was legendary linebacker Ray Lewis - that season’s NFL Defensive Player of the Year (he earned it again in 2003). He finished his career as a 17-year Ravens vet, having spent his whole career at Baltimore.
Super Bowl XLIII (2009) - Steelers steal it from the Cards
AFC champs the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the NFC's Arizona Cardinals 27-23. At the start of the fourth quarter, the Steelers led by 20-7, but Arizona came at them with 16 unanswered points - taking the lead at 23-20 for the first time with 2:37 on the clock.
But Big Ben marched 78 yards downfield on a drive that ended with MVP Santonio Holmes' best clutch toe-tap catch in NFL history. With 35 seconds left.
With that win, the Steelers became the first franchise in history to win six Super Bowls.
Bill Belichick and Brady’s New England Patriots joined them in 2019.
The Pirate Ship
103 feet / 31 metres.
43 tons of steel and concrete.
A 30-man pirate crew.
An animatronic parrot.
Cannons... that fire.
CANNONS! THAT FIRE! - every time the Bucs get in the red zone. And they fire off a shot for every point the Bucs score.
I mean, literally, BOOM!
And a Kenny Chesney set - #NoShoesNation.
Breaking news: This just in (Feb 2) - in the spirit of playing the Super Bowl in a neutral venue, the NFL and the Buccaneers have said that the cannons will not fire during Super Bowl LV.
But rest assured - it'll be a different matter if the Bucs win...
Historical Super Bowl betting facts
Largest spread in a Super Bowl: -18 - twice. First, with the Colts over the Jets in Super Bowl III; lost outright at a score of 16-7. Second, with the 49ers over the Chargers in Super Bowl XXIX; bet was won and covered, at a score of 49-26.
This year it's only 3 points.
Highest total in a Super Bowl: 57 (the over) - when the Patriots defeated the Falcons, 34-28, in SB LI.
Lowest total in a Super Bowl: 33 (the under) - three times. Super Bowl VII, when the Dolphins beat the Vikings, 14-7; Super Bowl VIII, when the Steelers beat the Vikings, 24-7; and Super Bowl IX, when the Steelers beat the Cowboys, 16-6.
Cloudbet is offering the Total this year at 56. The Over is offered at 1.93, and the Under at 1.96.
Tom Brady’s ATS Record in Super Bowls is 4-5. This is only the second time he's been an underdog in the Super Bowl. The other time? Super Bowl XXXVI, when the Patriots beat the Rams as 14-point underdogs.
Cloudbet Super Bowl LV winner market odds
The bookies have Kansas City as the favourites for the Vince Lombardi trophy. But with all he's achieved, can you really rule out TB12?
Handicap: Tampa Bay +3 2.02, Kansas City -3 1.89.
Total: The Over / Under at 56 is 1.93 / 1.96.
Money line: Tampa Bay at 2.49, Kansas City at 1.60.
Odds quoted are current at the time of writing, but please check the site for the latest live odds.
Bring the bling
The Vince Lombardi Trophy
A trophy is made each year by Tiffany & Co. and is valued at about $50,000? The sterling silver trophy weighs about 7 pounds, making it easy for weary arm to lift aloft.
The winning team gets to take the trophy home - and keep it.
It has its own Lombardi Trophy Theme, composed by David Robidoux in 2005, which is played during the presentation.
Will Patrick Mahomes get to lift it again this year?
How much do Super Bowl rings cost?
The winning team normally receives about 150 gem-encrusted Super Bowl rings for players, coaches, and other important members of the organisation. The total bill? Somewhere around $5 million.
William "The Refrigerator" Perry's size 25 ring was the largest made to date by jewellers Jostens, for his 1985 season performance with the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XX.
Most Super Bowl rings are valued between $30,000 and $50,000, but if the ring was issued to a superstar, that raises the game. A ring that belonged to Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor sold for over $230,000.
Brady’s looking for his record seventh Super Bowl ring.
Super Bowl half-time advertising
Last year's Super Bowl viewership was just shy of 100 million. That's a lot of eyes. It's no surprise that Super Bowl ads have, over the years, taken on a life of their own. But it comes at a price.
For Super Bowl LIV the cost of a 30-second slot was up to $5.6 million. For Super Bowl XLIX in 2015, that was around $4.5 million.
Here's a thought for those of you who like to invest or bet with bitcoin.
Over the period February 2, 2015 to February 3, 2020 bitcoin rose from $224.58 to $9,356.77.
Had the advertisers paid the networks in bitcoin, here's how the sums would look:
$5.6mn would have cost BTC599 at the $9,356.77 market price on game day in 2020. Today, that BTC599 would be worth $20,490,592 (at a bitcoin price of $34,208).
$4.5mn would have cost BTC20,037 at the $224.58 market price on game day in 2015. Today, that BTC20,037 would be worth $685,425,696.
What does this picture look like in 2025?
The one and only time OT was played in a Super Bowl was in Super Bowl LI - better known as the game in which the Atlanta Falcons blew a 28-3 lead to the New England Patriots.
THAT catch by Julian Edelman - and Brady’s finest hour? ESPN thinks so.
Where can I get the best Super Bowl odds?
Check out bitodds.com for a comparison of the best bitcoin betting Super Bowl odds available online today.
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This is the Super Bowl, people. One of the biggest sporting events of the calendar - and what a mad, crazy year it's been...
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