To see our coin toss prop bet analysis for the 2011 Super Bowl XLIV (45) between the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers, click here.
Over the next week and half leading up to the Super Bowl, we'll be taking a look at various proposition bets for the 2009 Super Bowl, Super Bowl 43, Super Bowl XLIII, The Big Game, or whatever you want to call it. We'll start the same way the Cardinals and Steelers will start--with a coin toss.
The coin toss is always a popular prop bet because, well, we're not so sure why. It's just a guy flipping a quarter into the air. Nevertheless, it's one of the most wagered Super Bowl prop bet despite the fact that the wager is decided before kickoff.
For casual fans or those just watching the game for the Super Bowl commercials, it's nice to bet on the coin toss since it requires no knowledge whatsoever of the actual game being played and is completely random.
Or is it?
Yes, of course it is. But here are some fun facts to help you through betting on the coin flip:
- To prove how random a coin toss really is, you only need one stat: 21. In the 42 previous Super Bowls, the coin has landed 21 times on heads and 21 times on tails. Throw out any notion that one side of the coin might weigh more or that coin flips aren't completely random or that tails never fails. Coin tosses are absolutely a 50-50 chance, or in this case, a 21-21 chance.
- The team to win the coin toss has a losing record in the Super Bowl of 20-22, but the "winners" have had even less success recently. In the last 12 tosses, the winner of the toss was the loser of the game in nine of those contests. The Giants won the toss and the game last year, breaking a four game losing streak for teams that won the toss.
- The NFC has won the last 11 tossess and is 28-14 all-time in calling the correct side of the coin.
- The team to win the toss has always chosen to receive, and if for some reason your sportsbook offers a prop related to this, it seems like a good bet that the team to win the coss will continue this trend. As a few commenters have pointed out, we completely overlooked the new rule which allows teams to defer on the opening toss, so it will be interesting to see if the Super Bowl gets its first defer call in history.
So, the bottom line is, when betting on Super Bowl props, the coin flip is always a toss-up.