Before the ball is snapped tonight, or any touchdowns are scored, tonight's Super Bowl opens with the coin toss.
The ceremonial call between heads or tails not only determines which team will kick and receive to open the Big Game but it has become a Super Bowl prop betting staple, garnering a massive amount of money at sportsbooks. Here’s everything you need to know about betting on the Super Bowl coin toss.
At Super Bowl 56, Heads came out on top with the Bengals winning the toss and choosing to defer.
Heads or tails odds
Super Bowl coin toss heads or tails odds will be some of the first odds released and why not? I's truly a 50-50 proposition. You'll even notice that most sportsbooks offer reduced odds compared to the usual -110 seen when betting point spreads or Over/Under totals. For example, at -105, it'll take a $105 bet to win $100.
If you are betting heads or tails on the Super Bowl coin toss, you can do is to ensure you’re betting at the best odds possible. Here are the best options out there from what we have found:
In the United States, not every state that has legal sports betting will allow bets on the coin toss. You can find legal Super Bowl coin toss odds at sportsbooks in the following states:
- New Jersey
- New York
- West Virginia
Super Bowl coin toss betting explained
A simple coin flip has become one of the most popular and fun Super Bowl betting options, with all sportsbooks offering at least odds on “Heads or Tails”. But there’s more than one way to wager on the coin toss results.
What is the Super Bowl coin toss?
To determine which team will receive the ball first in the Super Bowl, a coin is tossed and the designated road team (NFC team in even-numbered Super Bowls, AFC team in odd-numbered Super Bowls) calls either Heads or Tails.
The winner of the coin toss can choose to kick the ball to the other team to open the first half (allowing them to receive the kickoff in the second half) or receive the opening kick after halftime (and kick off to start the second half).
Super Bowl coin toss prop bets
Super Bowl coin toss prop bets are among the handful of odds markets not decided between the whistles. Similar to national anthem props, coin toss props are quick and exciting, making them a great opener to your Big Game betting.
Sportsbooks will offer odds on not only the winning side of the coin toss (Heads or Tails) but also:
- Which team will win the coin toss (NFC or AFC)?
- What the winner will choose to do (kick or receive).
- If the coin toss winner will go on to win the Lombardi Trophy as Super Bowl champs.
How to bet on the coin toss
Along with other Super Bowl odds, it's important to learn how to bet on Super Bowl prop markets. When it comes to Super Bowl bets, the coin toss prop is the simplest wager you can make. There’s no deep dive into analytics nor do you need to be a savvy sports bettor to find an edge. It’s a 50/50 chance no matter how you toss it.
Because the coin toss is a random result, bettors should bet responsibly and treat the coin toss as a fun bet, always staying within their means. Sportsbooks are also cautious when it comes to the coin toss, setting stricter bet size limits on this prop than other Super Bowl betting odds.
Heads or tails prop
The most common Super Bowl coin toss prop is “Heads or Tails”. You just bet on which side of the coin will turn up.
Sportsbooks will assign a cost to each side, also known as juice or vig. For example, a coin toss prop could have -105 juice on Heads and Tails, meaning for every $1 you wish to win on the coin toss, you would have to wager $1.05 (bet $105 to win $100).
A prop market like this is a great example of why it’s so important to shop around at different sportsbooks before making your bet. Some betting sites might only offer odds of -115 on the coin toss prop, meaning you’d need to wager $115 just to win $100.
Coin toss winner prop
Another bet you can place is on the coin toss winner prop, which allows you to wager on which team will win the coin toss and get to choose whether to kick or receive to begin the game.
Much like “Heads or Tails”, each team is assigned a price/juice for the coin toss winner prop. For example, the NFC and AFC teams could both be set at -105 (bet $105 to win $100).
Coin toss winner also wins Super Bowl prop
In combination with the coin toss winner prop, you can also bet on if the winner of the coin toss will go on to win the Super Bowl itself. This is most often presented in a “Yes/No” format.
You would think dictating the opening of the game could give the coin toss winner an edge, however, Super Bowl betting history shows us that the winner of the coin toss has gone on to win the Lombardi Trophy just over 44 percent of the time.
Super Bowl coin toss history
The Super Bowl coin toss prop has been a staple of Big Game betting for decades now, ushered in with the explosion of online sportsbooks in the late 1990s. And since then, football fans have been trying to find an inside edge when it comes to capping the coin toss.
However, as any statistician will tell you, a coin toss is a 50/50 proposition every time you flip it. The result of the coin toss isn’t influenced or impacted by the previous results or any past trends that always seem to pop up come Super Sunday.
That said, here are some of the notable records and trends around the Super Bowl coin toss:
Tails out front
Looking at the past 54 Super Bowls, Tails has been the winning side 29 times, including six of the past seven Big Games, while Heads has won 25 times.
NFC dominant in toss
The NFC holds a significant edge in Super Bowl coin toss wins with 36, including a 14-year streak between Super Bowl XXXII (1998) and Super Bowl XLV (2011), while the AFC has won only 20 tosses. While this record is intriguing, the NFC’s dominance in Super Bowl coin flips is completely random.
Winning the flip doesn’t mean winning the game
The winner of the coin toss is far from a shoo-in to win the Lombardi Trophy, going just 24-32 (42.8%) in the past 56 Super Bowl games. Cincinnati won the coin toss in Super Bowl LVI but lost to Los Angeles.
Since 2008, when a rule change allowed coin toss winners to defer receiving to the second half, winners of the Super Bowl coin toss have opted to take the ball to begin the second half in 12 of the past 13 NFL championships. New Orleans in Super Bowl XLIV (2010) was the only coin toss winner to elect to receive the ball to open the game during this span.
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Can you legally bet on the Super Bowl coin toss?
Many sportsbooks offer Super Bowl coin toss odds, but they may not be available in every state where betting on sports is legal and regulated. Betting on the coin flip is legal in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Illinois, Tennessee, and Michigan.
Which sportsbooks offer coin toss props?
Pretty much every online sportsbook will offer the basic “Heads or Tails” Super Bowl coin toss prop. However, other props based around the coin toss will vary from book to book.
The juice/vig around these coin toss props can vary from book to book, so if you are looking for the best possible return on your prop bets, be sure to shop around if multiple sportsbook options are available in your region. Have a look at our best Super Bowl betting sites if you're looking for a trusted option.
Instant replay: Super Bowl coin toss betting
A literal flip of the coin determines which team will kick and which one will receive the ball on the opening series. Every Super Bowl opens with the coin toss and it has become a prop betting staple.
- 50/50 chance at winning — great odds to open your Big Game betting strategy.
- The road team (NFC in even-numbered Super Bowls, AFC team in odd-numbered Super Bowls) calls either heads or tails.
- Winning the flip doesn’t translate to winning: Coin toss winners are 24/30 (43.6%) in the last 55 contests.
Super Bowl coin toss FAQs
Yes. Most sportsbooks offer at least a “Heads or Tails” Super Bowl coin toss prop bet.
The designated road team calls the coin toss. The NFC champion is the road team in even-numbered Super Bowls while the AFC champion is the road team in odd-numbered Super Bowls.
In 2021 for Super Bowl 55, the Kansas City Chiefs called heads and won the coin toss.
You can find odds for Super Bowl coin toss prop bets in the days after the AFC and NFC Championship Games are completed and the two Super Bowl contenders are set. Some online sportsbooks do offer year-around odds on “Heads or Tails” for the Super Bowl.