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HISTORY LESSON: A 53-year review of the Super Bowl’s most storied betting lines, over-unders

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Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs may regret the choice of 'red' uniforms on Sunday. Citing the previous 53 Super Bowls, the team wearing white has won 35 times.

BATSBY Sports breaks down the money-line results from Super Bowls past, a half-century’s-worth study of point spreads, over/under tallies, good covers, bad covers, big-time upsets … and of course, jersey-color preference.

(NOTE: For the sake of consistency, since all gambling boards don’t offer the same lines, the point-spread tallies listed here are courtesy of LegalSuperBowlBetting.com.)

And before you dismiss the power of which team wears what jersey, check this out:

DARK OR LIGHT?

Charting the previous 53 Super Bowls, the team wearing white owns a decisive 35-18 advantage — including 11 of the last 13 championship clashes.

And keep in mind, in the 54-year history of the Super Bowl, one of the combatants has never played in its home stadium on Super Sunday.

FOUR RANDOM NUGGETS

a) The cumulative tally for the last five Super Bowls stands at 47.6 points … and that number includes last year’s all-time low for total points (16).

b) The underdogs covered the point spread in three of the first five Super Bowls (Nos. 3-5).

c) Longest streak of the ‘Under’ carrying the Over/Under number: 7 (Nos. 3-9).

d) Longest streak of the ‘Over’ carrying the Over/Under number: 4 (Nos. 26-29).

LARGEST POINT SPREADS IN SB HISTORY

Super Bowl III — 18 points (Colts failed to cover … Jets won outright)
Super Bowl XXIX — 18 points (49ers covered the spread)
Super Bowl I — 14 points (Packers covered the spread)
Super Bowl XXXI — 14 (Packers and Patriots pushed)
Super Bowl XXXVI — 14 (Rams failed to cover … Patriots won outright)
Super Bowl II — 13.5 (Packers covered the spread)
Super Bowl XXX — 13.5 (Cowboys won, but didn’t cover the spread)
Super Bowl XLII — 12.5 (Patriots failed to cover … Giants won outright)
Super Bowl IV — 12 (Vikings failed to cover … Chiefs won outright)
Super Bowl XXIV — 12 (49ers covered the spread)
Super Bowl XXXIV — 11.5 (Packers failed to cover … Broncos won outright)
Super Bowl XIV — 10.5 (Steelers covered the spread)

SMALLEST POINT SPREADS IN SB HISTORY

Super Bowl XLIX — 1 point (Patriots covered the spread)
Super Bowl XVI — 1 point (Bengals failed to cover … 49ers won outright)
Super Bowl VII — 1.5 points (Dolphins covered the spread)
Super Bowl V — 2.5 points (Cowboys failed to cover … Colts won outright)
Super Bowl XLV — 2.5 points (Packers covered the spread)
Super Bowl XLVIII — 2.5 (Broncos failed to cover … Seahawks won)
Super Bowl LIII — 2.5 (Patriots covered the spread)
Super Bowl IX — 3 (Steelers covered the spread)
Super Bowl XV — 3 (Eagles failed to cover … Raiders won outright)
Super Bowl XVII — 3 (Dolphins failed to cover … Redskins won outright)
Super Bowl XIX — 3 (49ers covered the spread)
Super Bowl XXXV — 3 (Ravens covered the spread)
Super Bowl XLVI — 3 (Patriots failed to cover … Giants won outright)
Super Bowl LI — 3 (Patriots covered the spread in overtime)

HIGHEST-SCORING SUPER BOWLS

75 points — Niners 49, Chargers 26 (Super Bowl XXIX)
74 points — Eagles 41, Patriots 33 (Super Bowl LII)
69 points — Buccaneers 48, Raiders 21 (Super Bowl XXXVII)
69 points — Cowboys 52, Bills 17 (Super Bowl XXVII)
66 points — Patriots 34, Falcons 28 OT (Super Bowl LI)
66 points — Steelers 35, Cowboys 31 (Super Bowl XIII)
65 points — Ravens 34, Niners 31 (Super Bowl XLVII)
65 points — Niners 55, Broncos 10 (Super Bowl XXIV)
63 points — Patriots 32, Panthers 29 (Super Bowl XXXVIII)
61 points — Redskins 37, Bills 24 (Super Bowl XXVI)
59 points — Giants 39, Broncos 21 (Super Bowl XXI)
56 points — Packers 35, Patriots 21 (Super Bowl XXXI)
56 points — Bears 46, Patriots 10 (Super Bowl XX)
56 points — Packers 31, Steelers 25 (Super Bowl XLV)
55 points — Broncos 31, Packers 24 (Super Bowl XXXIV)

LOWEST-SCORING SUPER BOWLS

16 points — Patriots 13, Rams 3 (Super Bowl LIII)
21 points — Dolphins 14, Redskins 7 (Super Bowl VII)
22 points — Steelers 16, Vikings 6 (Super Bowl IX)
23 points — Jets 16, Colts 7 (Super Bowl III)
27 points — Cowboys 24, Dolphins 3 (Super Bowl VI)

LARGEST MARGIN OF VICTORY

Niners 55, Broncos 10 (SB XXIV) — Good luck to any Super Bowl champion (or overmatched loser) that wants to eclipse this 45-point spread.

Hall of Famer Joe Montana dissected the Broncos defense for 297 yards passing and five touchdowns, while the Niners scored at least 13 points for all four quarters.

SMALLEST MARGIN OF VICTORY

Giants 20, Bills 19 (SB XV) — This back-and-forth classic, played at the height of tensions during The Gulf War in January 1991, would probably go down as one of the five cleanest Super Bowls of all time, with both clubs consistently forging big plays … and committing minimal mistakes on the other end.

In that vein, it only makes sense that Super Bowl 25 can never be topped, spread-wise.

SUPER SUNDAY: 10 HIGHEST OVER/UNDERS

Super Bowl LI — 58 points (OVER … Patriots 34, Falcons 28)
Super Bowl XLIV — 56.5 points (UNDER … Saints 31, Colts 17)
Super Bowl LIII — 56 points (UNDER … Patriots 13, Rams 3)
Super Bowl XLII — 54.5 (UNDER … Giants 17, Patriots 14)
Super Bowl XLVI — 54 (UNDER … Giants 21, Patriots 17)
Super Bowl XXIX — 54 (OVER … Niners 49, Chargers 26)
Super Bowl XXXVI — 53.5 (UNDER … Patriots 20, Rams 17)
Super Bowl XIX — 53.5 (OVER … Niners 38, Dolphins 16)
Super Bowl XXXII — 53 (PUSH … Broncos 34, Falcons 19)
Super Bowl XXX — 52 (UNDER … Cowboys 27, Steelers 17)

SUPER SUNDAY: LOWEST OVER/UNDERS

Super Bowl VII — 33 points (UNDER … Dolphins 14, Redskins 7)
Super Bowl VIII — 33 points (UNDER … Dolphins 24, Vikings 7)
Super Bowl IX — 33 points (UNDER … Steelers 16, Vikings 6)
Super Bowl VI — 34 (UNDER … Cowboys 24, Dolphins 3)
Super Bowl V — 36 (UNDER Colts 16, Cowboys 13)
Super Bowl X — 36 (OVER … Steelers 21, Cowboys 17)
Super Bowl XVI — 36 (OVER … Steelers 31, Rams 19)
Super Bowl XVII — 36.5 (OVER … Redskins 27, Dolphins 17)
Super Bowl XIII — 37 (OVER … Steelers 35, Cowboys 31)
Super Bowl XX — 37.5 (OVER … Bears 46, Patriots 10)
Super Bowl XV — 37.5 (UNDER … Raiders 27, Eagles 10)

About The Managing Editor

Jay Clemons remains the only sports writer on the planet to capture Cynposis Media’s national award for Sports Blog Of The Year (beating out NBA.com, MLB.com, PGATour.com, The Players’ Tribune in 2015), along with the Fantasy Sports Writers Association’s pre-eminent award for Best Writer (2008). Through the years, Mr. Clemons has been a key figure with numerous blue-chip sports/media brands, namely the Detroit Lions, Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report and the NBC/Universal family. With Sports Illustrated (2006-11), Clemons served a triple role with SI.com‘s heralded football coverage—editing Peter King’s famed ‘Monday Morning Quarterback’ column, penning award-winning pieces for NFL and then writing/narrating scripted videos within the NFL and baseball realms. In 2013, Clemons’ first year with the company, FOX Sports South enjoyed a monumental increase of approximately 34 million Web hits in a 12-month cycle—merely posting 11 million hits the previous year. 

Then, over a two-month span in 2014, FOX Sports South amassed 19.5 million Web hits—a 60-day record for any FOX affiliate. And in 2015, Clemons claimed the aforementioned Cynopsis Media award on FOX Sports’ behalf, the company’s only national writing award during that period. Clemons, a graduate of Michigan State University  and Wayne State University, has been an on-camera Web-TV host for Sports Illustrated, Bleacher Report and FOX Sports. In 2015, he also became the first-ever sports journalism professor at Kennesaw State University in suburban Atlanta.

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