Americans expected to bet nearly $5B on the Super Bowl

97% of Super Bowl bets will be illegal

GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A lot of money is riding on the Super Bowl. According to the American Gaming Association, Americans will bet $4.7-billion on Super Bowl LI, an 11% jump from last year.

Many bet just for fun, whether its through pools at work or at their Super Bowl parties, where you don’t even have to pick the winning team. “Everybody takes a square, a lot of people don’t even follow football, but they all get into that. It’s a lot of fun,” said David Baker of Greenfield.

Besides betting on who will win the Super Bowl, many people get into what are called “prop bets”, like if it’ll be heads or tails on the coin toss before kickoff. Other “prop bets” include the length of the national anthem, the songs of the halftime performer, Lady Gaga, and the number of times Donald Trump’s name will be said.

super-bowl-51-by-the-numbers“It’s just natural on people to bet on whatever they are enthusiastic about and it’s all part of the enthusiasm of the game,” said Janet Masucci of Gill.

97% of Super Bowl bets will be illegal. Only the state of Nevada can offer sanctioned sports gambling. About $132-million will be wagered through sports books by kickoff.

In 2016, Americans wagered $154-billion on all sports, most of it through bookies and illegal offshore websites. The Patriots are favored to beat the Falcons by 3 points Sunday.