Perhaps the only person keeping a closer eye on Sunday’s weather than books and bettors is Broncos QB Peyton Manning.
In the week and a half lead up to Super Bowl XLVIII, more stories have been pumped out on Peyton’s problems playing in cold weather than any other Super Bowl angle. Even the controversial Richard Sherman well will run dry long before the media milks everything it can out of Manning vs. Mother Nature.
The forecast for Super Bowl XLVIII between the Broncos and Seattle Seahawks – the first outdoor cold weather Super Bowl – is calling for temperatures just below freezing, snow and possible rain before the confetti flies over MetLife Stadium. Which, for bettors, is perfect weather for fading one of the best passers in NFL history.
According to our ATS/Weather database, Manning is 8-14 SU, 7-14-1 ATS and 12-9-1 Over/Under in starts played in temperatures of 40 degrees or below for his career – covering the spread in just 34 percent of those games.
Manning went 6-11 SU, 5-11-1 ATS and 9-7-1 O/U in temperatures of 40 or below as quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts from 1998 to 2010, accustomed to playing home games in the warm indoor track of the RCA Dome and Lucas Oil Stadium in that span.
Since moving to Denver, playing home games in the thin air at Sports Authority Field, Manning is 2-3 SU and ATS in cold weather with a 3-2 O/U count the past two seasons.
Oddsmakers are aware of his struggles against the winter elements, but aren’t discounting Manning or the Broncos when it comes to the Super Bowl spread – or any spread for that matter.
“It’s tough to quantify previous outcomes for a line set for two weeks in the future,” Peter Korner, founder of Nevada-based odds service The Sports Club, tells Covers. “We don’t know what the weather will be. If it’s 30 degrees, people sweat in 30 degrees. I used to play hockey outside in 20-degree weather and would sweat like a dog.”
Korner says the lines are made with optimal playing conditions in mind, factoring in statistical models and the market perception. It’s the sportsbooks who must adjust to the extended forecast and public’s reaction to the weather.
And even with the mercury dipping in East Rutherford and the possibility of snow Sunday, Korner says when it comes down to it, people are going to bet who they think will cover the 2.5-point spread – regardless of the weather.
“I don’t think the betting public gives a shit about that,” he says of Manning’s cold weather woes. “They’re going to play who they want to play. People coming into town aren’t thinking about the percentage of drop off in (Manning’s) play. They’re betting Peyton Manning or the Seahawks to stop him.”
The total for Sunday’s Super Bowl is set at 47 points.