Americans will wager over $4 billion on the Super Bowl

February 5, 2021, 6:22 PM UTC

While a trip to Las Vegas or Atlantic City likely isn’t in the cards for most Americans this Super Bowl Sunday, plenty of people will be putting down money on the Big Game.

The American Gaming Association estimates 23.2 million people in the U.S. will gamble $4.3 billion when the Kansas City Chiefs meet the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Raymond James Stadium.

That’s an impressive number, but it’s a big drop-off from last year’s Super Bowl, when the AGA estimated Americans would wager $6.8 billion. And some analysts think the AGA’s numbers for this year might be a bit low.  

Shaun Kelley, an analyst with BofA Securities, says this year’s Super Bowl could see a larger wager pool, given the growth of online sportsbooks. Right now sports betting is legal in 21 states—and 15 of those allow online sports betting.

“The AGA expects approximately a third of bettors will be placing bets with online sportsbooks, a 63% increase [year over year],” says Kelley. “This implies just over 10% of adults with access to online sports betting will be placing bets on the game through online sportsbooks. We will take the over on that.”

Some online wagering sites see the Super Bowl as an opportunity to lure new players. DraftKings will run two 15-second ads during this year’s game. Other sites could run promotional sign-up offers.

Las Vegas, meanwhile, which welcomed 310,000 people on Super Bowl weekend in 2019, will be less crowded (though it is expecting a larger crowd than in recent months) and could see a drop in its sports bookings.

Don’t have any skin in the actual Super Bowl itself? If you want to get in on the action and don’t care about either the Chiefs or the Bucs (the Chiefs are currently favored by three points), there are always side bet opportunities, running from who will win the coin toss to what color Gatorade will be poured over the winning coach this year. (Orange, notes BofA, is the current favorite at +125.)