Over the years, the Super Bowl has become one of the most popular events sports bettors enter a bet on. However, along with the experienced bettors we have each year, we also see a string of new bettors entering the industry for the first time, and many of these people find themselves confused. When they first decide that they are interested in placing a bet on the game, they figure that they will simply be picking who will win the game, which leads to a series of surprises when they suddenly see these complicated looking numbers with either a positive or negative sign in front of them. We will do our best to clarify what these numbers mean and how they actually work to your advantage.
When you look at the lines for this year’s Super Bowl, you will notice that the money line, which is the bet to pick the straight-up winner, has the Ravens at a +140 and the 49ers at a -160. When you first look at it as a novice bettor, you might think that this indicates the Ravens are heavily favored to win the game, but this is actually not the case.
The 49ers are favored to win, and those numbers actually signify a winning of either over $100 or under $100. So, when you see the Ravens having a +140, this means that a $100 bet could convert into you ending up with $240 after also receiving your initial $100 risk back. When you see the -160 next to the 49ers, this signifies that a $100 bet would only amount to $160.61 at the end of the day if the 49ers win.
So, why do you receive less money by betting on the 49ers when you thought you were just picking the winner of the Super Bowl? Well, it is due to the fact that the bookmakers have predicted that the 49ers will win the game, and they know that if they do not provide a little push for people to risk betting on the underdog Ravens, everyone would bet on the 49ers. This would result in them losing money.