Legal Super Bowl Betting

Legal Super Bowl BettingProfessional football is so ingrained in the American psyche that the sport’s biggest event – the Super Bowl - is practically an unofficial US holiday. With annual viewership numbers frequently breaking records, topping out in excess of 114 million at Super Bowl LI, it should come as no surprise that legal Super Bowl betting is hot-button topic for sports fans (65 percent of which are in favor of sports betting, according to a 2016 ESPN article). Further driving home the point, Sporting News reported that $4.5 billion of the $4.7 billion bet on Super Bowl LI was wagered outside of Nevada and Delaware, the only two states with regulated and taxed sports betting.

Millions of Americans are placing a bet on the super Bowl and many are wondering if it's legal, while at the same time lawmakers are trying to figure out how to get their cut of the action. The key summary here is that no matter who you're betting with, it's not illegal to place a wager no mater how large that wager is. The laws in place are meant to stop organized crime from running books. With dozens of states moving towards legal sports betting it's safer than ever for fans placing a legal bet on the Super Bowl to be assured that bet will stay legal.

Legal Super Bowl Betting Guide

When it comes time for the Big Game most of the world stops for four hours. However, the betting world is at a fever pitch. And the first rule of sports betting is know what you're betting on and understand the wager you just made. Super Bowl Betting is complex with lots of different bets available at all sorts odds. Our legal Super Bowl betting guide will take you through every step from deposit to withdrawal and make sure you understand what you're betting on. You will also learn about federal laws that impact how you're able to bet. Then it's as simple as sitting back and watching the game with a whole new point of view!

Is It Legal For US Residents To Bet On The Super Bowl Online?

No matter what the hodgepodge of federal and state laws say about sports gambling, it is legal for US residents to bet on the Super Bowl online, but only if you take care to steer clear of domestic websites or shady local bookies (unless you live in Vegas, of course). The key to avoiding trouble with the law is to only place your bets using the services of the offshore sports betting sites that we trust and recommend you use.

Federal laws like the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA), which prohibits all but four US states – Nevada, Delaware, Montana and Oregon – from legalizing sports betting don’t apply to overseas websites. The best legal Super Bowl betting sites like Bovada, BetOnline, SportsBetting and 5Dimes exist outside US jurisdiction but are regulated and licensed by the gaming authorities in their home countries, so American football fans can expect a consistently reliable and safe experience with plenty of betting options.

The only real obstacle – and it isn’t much of one – is the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA). The UIGEA, which was probably one of the most controversial anti-gambling bills ever passed, as it was an 11th-hour add-on to totally unrelated counter-terrorism legislation and it wasn’t even read in totality before the bill it was a rider to passed unanimously. For our purposes though, the UIGEA’s prohibitions are directed toward financial institutions processing gambling-related credit card transactions and not the person actually placing a bet, so there’s no way you’ll be in violation of a federal law if you use an offshore gambling site. The worst thing that can happen is your chosen credit card might be rejected in the deposit or withdrawal process, but all the offshore sportsbooks we suggest accept VISA credit and debit cards from US players and some even take American Express.

There are other means of making deposits to bankroll your account and collect your winnings, some of which are faster than others but all of them are equally secure, but we’ll touch on that in the next section.

Best Legal Deposit Method For Super Bowl Betting

As mentioned previously, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA) can sometimes make it more difficult to use a credit or debit card to make deposits at legal sports betting websites based in overseas jurisdictions. However, there are several options available to make sure you don’t encounter any disruptions and can get right back in the game. The best legal deposit method for Super Bowl Betting is actually to use Bitcoin, the digital “cryptocurrency” that is on its way to revolutionizing how money is spent and even created.

  • Bovada and BetOnline, the top offshore online sportsbooks, encourage their customers to use Bitcoin for their transactions for several reasons, among them:
  • It’s the cheapest method of making deposits and collecting withdrawals, with no processing or transaction fees,
  • It’s secure: your Bitcoin leaves your “wallet” and goes straight into the sportsbook’s with no middle-man to muss things up,
  • It’s mobile-friendly, convenient and easy to use no matter where you are or what time of day it is –that’s important for betting on the Super Bowl, as the “Big Game” tends to run late or, like last time, have a surprise over-time finish, and
  • It’s independent of banks, outside the purview of government agencies and free of any third-part involvement so you’re 100 percent in control of what happens to your money and what you do with it.

Legal Super Bowl BettingOther ways of making deposits at online sports betting sites include the old-fashioned (and slower) but reliable check-in-the-mail method, a person-to-person bank transfer – fortunately backed up by multiple-layer encryption systems at our favorite offshore sportsbooks – wire transfers and even prepaid debit cards. That being said, Bitcoin really is the best way to fund your account and collect your winnings at payout time.

It might take a little getting used to and maybe even some time to wrap your head around using an exclusively digital currency, but Bitcoin is the fastest, most secure method give the current political climate we find ourselves in as sports bettors. Most of the offshore sportsbooks are going to have basically the same process for depositing with Bitcoin, but you’d be wise to check for any specific instruction the site or sites of your choice may have before you get off in the deep end.

Legal Super Bowl Wager Types

Once you’ve loaded up your account, you’re almost ready to start betting (and if you’re confident the Patriots will indeed win their sixth Super Bowl come next February, now is a pretty good time to get in on those close +325 odds). However, like with just about everything else involving the practice of sports gambling, there are several different kinds of legal Super Bowl Wager types to consider.

We’ll give you a quick breakdown on each of the three main kinds of bets, but ultimately it’s up to you to decide which (if not all of them, just don’t go crazy!) works best for you. The important thing is to have fun but be sensible, and remember: always bet with your head, not with your heart. This will require a little bit of extra research on your part to keep up with matchups, game previews, stats, injury reports and so on, but it’s worth it in the long run.

Moneyline

A moneyline bet is the simplest to understand and the simplest in practice. All you have to do is pick the winner and you’ll win, which is pretty straightforward - hence why this kind of wager is often referred to as a “straight bet.” The way moneyline odds work is also easy to understand, as it’s based on a $100 baseline. The favorite will be given less profitable odds (like the ridiculously low +350 on the Patriots to win the Super Bowl) because there is inherently less risk involved in taking that bet, while the underdog will have a better payout, reflecting their reduced likelihood to win the game.

For example: if you bet on the Patriots to win the next Super Bowl (and they in all likelihood will, provided a meteor doesn’t crash in Gillette Stadium in the next few months) you would win $450 total since they’ve got +350 odds of winning. The higher the number behind the plus sign the less likely that team is to win. When a team has odds beginning with a minus sign then you know the likelihood of that team winning is close almost entirely a sure thing.

Spread

The spread is a little bit more difficult to parse out than the moneyline bet, but you can get the hang of it pretty quickly if you think of it in terms of the underdog going into the game with a handicap. Basically, the favorite will need to win by a certain number of points’ advantage over the underdog in order to pay out. A bet on the underdog can still get you a payout with a loss so long as the team doesn’t lose by more than their handicap, head start or however you want to think about it. In either case, that’s called “covering the spread.”

For example: imagine that somehow by a freak turn of events that the Green Bay Packers (+800 in the moneyline) and the New York Jets (+30,000) were to end up facing each other on Super Bowl Sunday. If the oddsmakers give the Jets a +30 handicap, Green Bay can win by more than 30 points OR the Jets can cover their spread if they lose by less than 30 points. Either way, you will still get paid for a winning bet depending on which side you picked.

Payout is still determined by the moneyline odds, so if the Jets won in this hypothetical situation then you would win $30,100 if you picked them. A “push” happens when the scoring differential between the two teams is less than the spread. In that case bettors get their money back.

Totals

Also called the “Over/Under,” totals bets are another interesting variation of wagering on the outcome of football games. Instead of choosing who you think the winner of the Super Bowl will be, you pick whether the combined score of both teams is higher (over) or lower (under) than the score determined by the oddsmakers about a week in advance of the Big Game.

For example: pretend that the Oakland Raiders (+1000) have a boon 2017 season, perhaps on last hurrah before they move out to their new home in Las Vegas in a season or two, and find themselves lining up against the similarly matched Pittsburgh Steelers (+1200), who have won more Super Bowls than any other team. The bookies think this one is going to be a real bloodbath and that the sides are going to grind out a defense-heavy game, so they list the points total at something low like 15.

Oakland and Pittsburgh proceed to slam each other’s lines the whole first half and it’s a 6-6 dead heat at the break, but then the Raiders come out of the locker room with some crazy out-route scheme that eats the Steelers alive in the second half for a lopsided 42-6 win. Obviously if you bet “over,” you’re going to win pretty big dollars for that pick or if you’d bet “under” you’d have to pay out yourself. However, if for whatever reason the game had been closer and ended up with exactly 15 points between the sides, then that’s a “push” and a refund for you.

Understanding Super Bowl Prop Bets

All betting is fun, or it should be (if it isn’t, you’re probably doing it wrong or losing too much, but that’s a topic of discussion for another time), but prop bets are the most fun. That’s because they take into account just how many crazy things can happen over the course of a football game that don’t directly involve the final score in the event. And this is the Super Bowl we’re talking about here so craziness is bound to happen.

For example: there were probably many folks who bet on the Ravens to win Super Bowl XLVII, but who could have predicted the freak blackout that stopped play for 34 minutes? We’re not saying that there was a prop bet before the game calling for all the lights to go out at the Superdome, but that’s just the kind of occurrence that could end up making its way onto a prop bet. Props can also be more pedestrian, like “how many incompletions will Tom Brady throw in the Super Bowl?” or “Will there be another Janet Jackson-style ‘wardrobe malfunction’ at the Super Bowl halftime show?” Payout works the same as in the moneyline or “straight bet” format.

There are a few different kinds of prop bets:

  • Game Props – these are wagers based on things happening in the game but not directly related to the final outcome such us “Which team will win the coin toss?” or “Will there have to be a quarterback substitution?”
  • Player Props – this kind of prop bet is based on the performance of an individual athlete’s performance in the game. For instance, “Will the quarterback run for at least one touchdown?”
  • Team Props – these are pretty self-explanatory, but basically you bet on something one or both teams do over the course of the Big Game. This could be the combined total number of sacks by both teams or the number of times the quarterback fumbles the ball on the night.

New Ways To Bet On The Super Bowl

Legal Super Bowl BettingTechnology, like time itself, marches on. This is true of the sports betting industry as it is with any other, and in recent years several new means of placing wagers on sporting events have become available that make the whole betting process more interactive, more portable, more strategic and quite simply better. In the next few sections we’ll lay out the two newest technological innovations that are shaking up the online sports betting world. If you’re considering doing some legal Super Bowl betting, and we can only assume you are since you’ve made it this far into our handy guide, you really ought to give one or both of the new methods of wagering a try.

Live In-Game Wagering

In-game wagering, also called live betting, is one of the newest (and best) ways to bet on the Super Bowl, or really any other sporting event that involves a lot of fast-paced action. That’s because live in-game wagering does exactly what it says on the tin, enabling the user to make new bets based on new odds constantly updated throughout the course of the game. This kind of betting was quite simply not possible or considered reliable until only very recently - certainly within the last few years. That is due to the complex computational algorithms involved in computing new odds based on variables like changing on-field situations, past player performances and other metrics too numerous to get into in this short explanation.

The main takeaway on live betting is this: if you choose this option, you will have to actively watch the Big Game and keep track of what’s going on so that you can take advantage of new betting lines as soon as they become available. This makes live betting a ton more interactive than traditional sports wagering, where you place your bets well in advance of the start of the game. All the top offshore legal online sportsbooks offer in-game wagering on both the desktop and mobile versions of their sites, and we will take a closer look at their mobile offerings in the next section.

Mobile Super Bowl Betting

That we are well and truly living in the age of the smartphone is irrefutable. Your phone or tablet is probably the first thing you look at it when you wake up in the morning and the last thing you check before you fall asleep at night. You no doubt carry your mobile device with you just about everywhere, whether that’s to the dinner table, to the bar with your buddies, heck, even when you’re taking a bathroom break at work. If that sounds like you, the good news is you can bet on the Super Bowl anytime, anywhere thanks to the mobile betting apps offered by all the major offshore sportsbooks.

Bovada and BetOnline are generally acknowledged to have the best mobile Super Bowl betting apps and mobile versions of their main websites, but you really can’t go wrong with any of our recommended offshore sites. Downloading is freely available directly from the Bovada, BetOnline, SportsBetting and 5Dimes websites, so check out each one to see which works best for you in terms of sign-on bonuses, special instructions and so forth.

These legal Super Bowl betting apps have got several key advantages over their desktop versions, even if the user interface is practically an exact replication. The mobile betting app user has access to automatic alerts (this is a crucial addition because you’ll be instantly notified when your team is about to compete or as soon as any changes to line are made prior to the start of an event). Furthermore, mobile sports betting goes hand-in-hand with live in-game wagering, so you can not only take your betting action with you wherever you go, you’ll also be able to bet on new lines throughout the game. Sounds like a pretty perfect setup for the Super Bowl party you’ll doubtlessly be attending by the time next February rolls around.

Legal Super Bowl Betting FAQs

Are There Bonuses For Betting On The Super Bowl?

USA online sportsbooks live and die by their promotional bonuses, which for them are the functional equivalent of a casino’s comps. With the Super Bowl being the most-watched sporting event in the world and every year shattering the record in that regard, it should come as no surprise that all the best offshore legal sports betting sites will have bonuses on betting on the Super Bowl.

Generally, most online sportsbooks will have a pretty hefty sign-up bonus, either of a specific monetary value (Bovada, for instance, offers a $250 bonus for signing up) or a percentage match situation like BetOnline (which offers a 100 percent match based on the amount of your first deposit upon signing up). Winning bets often get a bonus of a certain percentage too, so pick your bets carefully and maximize your profits.

What Do The Plus And Minus Listed On Super Bowl Odds Mean?

Reading odds is one of those things that you absolutely have to be confident in before you ever place a bet. If you should misunderstand what you’re looking at when you click “bet” on a particular line you might end up taking a bit of a beating if the Super Bowl doesn’t go your way.

The easiest way to think about the odds when reading betting lines, as we explained earlier in the legal Super Bowl betting guide, is to understand that they are basically a ratio based increments of $100. So, for instance, if the Patriots are holding steady at +350 on a moneyline that means you’ll win $450 total for every $100 you bet on New England. Conversely, if the Patriots go undefeated in the regular season and go into the Super Bowl with odds of -350, that means you’ll have to risk $350 to win $450 total.

Why Did My Credit Card Get Declined While Making A Deposit?

Legal Super Bowl BettingThanks to the overreaches of the federal government into the privacy of citizens’ lives, we have a series of anti-gambling laws to work around or worth with if we want to be on sports. One of these laws, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006, also called the UIGEA for short, will sometimes prevent some forms of quick-and-easy deposits, namely using your credit card. That’s because the UIGEA prohibits US financial institutions from processing gambling-related transactions, with the effect that your credit or debit card might be declined when you make to add funds to your account.

However, you shouldn’t really be too concerned if your card is declined because the UIGEA only criminalizes and penalizes the banks or financial institutions that process the transactions, not the person who tries to make the transaction. Pretty much the only thing you’ll experience is a momentary inconvenience. Most of the legal Super Bowl betting sites we recommend have their own means of processing credit and debit card transactions, but VISA cards are by far the most commonly accepted.

What Is The Fastest Payout Method?

Usually, Bitcoin is going to be the fastest payout method after you’ve made a successful bet. As we discussed earlier in our legal Super Bowl betting guide, Bitcoin is what’s called a “cryptocurrency,” which means it exists outside the control of banks or government regulatory bodies. What that means in practice is that you will have fewer hoops to jump through when it comes time to collect your winnings, and you won’t run afoul of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA) either. Most requests for withdrawals are processed within an hour, but it can sometimes take up to 48 hours before the online sports betting site adds Bitcoins to your digital wallet.

If all that sounds a little confusing, head over to Bitcoin sections of Bovada, BetOnline, SportsBetting and 5Dimes – each website has got slightly different instructions on how to collect your winnings, and they will each spend a lot more time explaining exactly how you can be sure of getting paid.

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Disclaimer - Underage Gambling is Strictly Forbidden

Underage betting is strictly prohibited at online sportsbooks and real life sportsbooks. We do not condone any form of illegal underage betting, and ask that if you have further questions, you can consult your local state government.