What is the Super Bowl?
The Super Bowl is the National Football League’s (NFL) annual championship game, played on the first Sunday in February each year. The game is played between the respective winners of the NFL’s two constituent conferences, the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). Following the game, the Super Bowl winner is presented the Vince Lombardi Trophy in a post-game ceremony, where the game’s MVP is also honored.
Due to its enormous popularity and broad appeal, Super Bowl Sunday has become an unofficial public holiday of sorts within the United States. The game has a far reaching impact (both directly and indirectly) on a number of industries and markets, including advertising, broadcasting, food service, and more.
For example, due to the high level of viewership (the Super Bowl is regularly the most watched television broadcast in the United States every year), commercial airtime is the most expensive of the year. Furthermore, in terms of food consumption events, Super Bowl Sunday ranks second only behind Thanksgiving, with purchases of Super Bowl food and drink generating billions of dollars each year nationwide. Even the cities hosting the game generate tens of millions of dollars.
When did the Super Bowl start?
The game can trace its roots to the merger between the NFL and its former rival, the American Football League (AFL) in 1967. Following the agreement to merge the rival leagues, each was then re-designated as a conference within the larger NFL, thus giving birth to both the NFC and the AFC.
Many owners in the new league were concerned about the viability of the merger after the NFC’s Green Bay Packers won the first two Super Bowls, thus putting the “competitiveness” of former AFL teams in doubt. However, these doubts were ultimately put to rest after two former AFL teams, the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs, were each crowned the Super Bowl winner the following two years.
Who has won more Super Bowls, the NFC or the AFC?
In total, the NFC and AFC are tied in the number of Super Bowl wins, with each recording 27. However, the two teams with the most individual wins are AFC teams--the New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers, each having been the Super Bowl winner six times. The Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers each have five victories apiece, while the Green Bay Packers and New York Giants each have four. Additionally, fourteen other NFL franchises have won at least one Super Bowl. However, a total of 12 franchises that have never been a Super Bowl winner. They include:
San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers
Futures betting on the Super Bowl
Given the fact that the NFL is the most popular sport in the US, it should come as no surprise that the Super Bowl is one of the most wagered on events in all of sports each year. The American Gaming Association estimates that billions are bet on the game. One of the most popular ways to bet on the NFL is futures bets, with wagering on the eventual Super Bowl winner being particularly popular. In fact, many sportsbooks release odds for the following year’s Super Bowl winner the day after the latest Super Bowl ends. However, in addition to betting on the eventual Super Bowl winner, fans can also bet on the game’s MVP.
Before placing your bets on the Super Bowl winner, be sure to check out Sidelines for NFL odds comparisons and to stay updated on league news, stats, injuries, and more throughout the season.