While historically, the Super Bowl MVP has usually been an offensive player, and a quarterback has won the honor in four straight Big Games and six of the last seven Super Bowls, tremendous value is available for players at other positions.
We break down the favorites, a couple value underdogs and some live long shots to win Super Bowl XLVIII MVP:
Peyton Manning (Broncos) +110
In the past 13 Super Bowls, eight MVPs have been quarterbacks. There’s no doubt if the Broncos win the Super Bowl, Manning will be the likely winner for MVP honors. If you’re a superstitious bettor, maybe you believe in the MVP jynx?
According to Covers Expert Marc Lawrence, regular season MVPs are a shocking 6-11 SU and 5-10-2 ATS in the Super Bowl, including an 0-4 SU and ATS since 2002. I guess it’s worth a shot believing in a little magic, there has to be some way for Manning to lose, right?
Russell Wilson (Seahawks) +400
Wilson hasn’t been anything special in the postseason and a quality performance in the Super Bowl is just what’s needed to silence the critics. In the Seahawks’ pivotal fourth-and-seven play earlier in the fourth quarter against San Francisco, Wilson showed guts and ability to play under pressure.
While Wilson went through a rough patch in the regular season, his defense helped to win games. It will be hard to overlook the importance of the Seattle defense all year and the role they’ll play if Seattle wins the Super Bowl.
Percy Harvin (Seahawks) +2,000
Imagine the headlines? Harvin magically gets healthy and catches an unbelievable deep ball off a slant route? Harvin is an incredibly versatile wide receiver, who has the ability to have an immediate impact.
In 2012, Harvin led the NFL in yards after the catch with 8.7 and has the ability to average much more than that in the Super Bowl. The Seahawks spent first, third and seventh-round draft picks to get him in the offseason and he might just give the Seahawks offense that much needed spark. If he’s healthy.
Wes Welker (Denver Broncos) +2,500
If Richard Sherman covers Demariyus Thomas, Welker will likely be heavily targeted. He’s shown ability to play in high-pressure games and was the definition of consistency for Tom Brady back in New England.
Welker will likely be playing with a chip on his shoulder with all the controversy surrounding his hit on Aqib Talib. If you’re searching for a player that has the ability to change games and put together an offensive highlight reel with their catches, +2500 on Welker is a juicy bet.
Live Long Shots
Champ Bailey (Denver Broncos) +15,000
Bailey is entering his first Super Bowl in 15 seasons in the NFL. He’s been to more Pro Bowls than any other defensive back in NFL history and if anyone’s hungry for a Super Bowl win, it’s Champ.
In the Broncos win against the Patriots, Bailey completely shut down Danny Amendola, forcing Brady to look elsewhere. While his performance was definitely overshadowed, Bailey made it clear that he still has the skill to be a shutdown corner. Bailey may not be the “best cornerback in the game”, but at least he’s got class – and support from a Denver appliance company.
Bobby Wagner, (Seattle Seahawks) +10,000
The Super Bowl MVP honor been given to a defensive player eight time, but if Seattle wins the Super Bowl it will likely be because of its defense. Of course, Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman are notable defensive candidates, however, the runner-up for 2012 Defensive Rookie of the Year is not to be overlooked.
If the Seattle defense can keep the game low scoring and Wager gets an interception and a few big tackles, the Seahawks’ budding defender could walk away with MVP honors. And MVP prop bettors could walk away with their pockets stuffed with cash.