The final countdown to see who will be the NFL champs of the 2019-20 season has begun. The game will be held this Sunday, February 2, in Miami Gardens, Florida, and is promising to be one of the better matchups in recent Super Bowl history. It’s a close race between the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs, and oddsmakers are still not in complete agreement over who might actually emerge victorious.
The Niners and the Chiefs are strong on both sides of the ball, which is part of the reason neither team is running away with the odds. The Chiefs are still given a little bit of a lead and, according to Bovada, are going to score first. They’ll also pick up more than 13.5 points in the half, judging by the -130 odds they’re getting. The Niners are looking at -110 to pick up the same amount.
In the second half, Kansas City is sitting on an Over at -125 to earn 13.5 points; San Fran sits at -115. As the clock continues to roll, there’s not much doubt that the action will become more intense, and could come down to the wire. At +4500, the Chiefs winning by exactly five points would be a lucrative bet should they win, but 49ers fans might prefer the +5500 given their team to win by five.
Neither of the teams has received a lot of support for reaching more than 20 points. San Fran has odds of +145 to get to 25, while Kansas City would have to overcome odds of +120. Given the defensive capability of both teams, there’s a strong chance that the score will be kept low.
Not too surprisingly, the Chiefs are looking at -135 to have more penalty yards than the 49ers (+105). In the most recent season, San Fran was flagged 112 times for a total of 987 yards, while Kansas City saw 120 yellow flags hit the turf for a total of 1127 yards.
Super Bowl LIV is going to see the first kickoff, provided there aren’t any delays, at 6:30 PM Eastern Time this Sunday. Held in the evening since it’s an East Coast game, this makes it somewhat difficult for international fans who, because of work commitments, can’t stay up all night to watch the contest or who, like those in Australia, would already be at work Monday morning when the game begins. Now, fans are launching an effort to get the NFL to change its schedule, and it all begins with a 16-year-old high school student out of New York.
16-year-old Frankie Ruggeri raises some valid points in his online petition seeking to have the game moved to a Saturday. He asserts, “It will get more money and get more visitors to [the] game. NFL will get more television views because most government jobs have off. Have to [sic] more children to enjoy their beloved game on TV or at venue. Most of your playoff games are on Saturday. Probably have [to alter] prices [because] more visitors will go.”
He also explained to WHAM-TV that the game should be moved because “schools are not open the next day.” In many cases, this holds true for businesses, as well, which means that all the football fans can enjoy all the Super Bowl parties without having to worry about the Monday-morning hangover. The petition already has more than 55,000 signatures.
Unfortunately, it’s going to take more than a petition to change the scope of the Super Bowl. Historically speaking, Saturday is not a good day for TV ratings – Sunday is much better. This means that broadcasters providing coverage for the game, which always gives them a huge boost, would be reluctant to make the switch.
However, they’re also missing the bigger picture. The Super Bowl is more than just another championship game. It is a ritual, a daylong party that football fans will follow no matter when and where it is found. Moving the game to Saturday opens up more gambling opportunities around the world, would attract more international eyes to the game and, in a small way, perhaps show everyone that the broadcasters still believe in football, and not only in the ratings.