2020 Super Bowl Betting Analysis: Can The 49ers Win A Shootout?

It has been five days since the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers advanced to Super Bowl 54, but Super Bowl betting odds have remained steady and seem to be moving towards even at a glacial pace.

Most sportsbooks have Kansas City favored to win at -120, meaning a bet of $120 will earn you $100 if the Chiefs win.  The over/under is hovering around 54 points, so most Super Bowl 54 predictions suggest that this will be a close, high-scoring game.

The 49ers have been involved in some nail-biting shootouts this year. Let’s examine the results, how they got there, and whether any of them were close games.  For this analysis, we’re setting the bar at 24 points per team to consider it a shootout.  The 49ers have been involved in five games where this has occurred during the 2019 season.

  • Week 9: San Francisco 28 – Arizona 25

    Despite a late 10-point flurry from Arizona, the 49ers held on to defeat the Cardinals.  Jimmy Garoppolo proved to doubters that he could pass the ball effectively when needed, compiling 317 yards and four touchdowns and completing 28 out of 37 passes.  This game got close late, but the 49ers handled their business early and came out victorious.
  • Week 10: Seattle 27 – San Francisco 24 (OT)

    The 49ers showed some heart and rallied late to take the game to overtime, but the Seahawks prevailed with a field goal as time expired.  This home loss knocked San Francisco from the ranks of the unbeaten and opened the door for the Seahawks to win the NFC West.  Seattle managed to contain the 49ers running game and win in what has become one of the more intriguing rivalries in the NFL.
  • Week 11: San Francisco 36 – Arizona 26

    49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo had another excellent day passing, completing 34 out of 45 yards for 424 yards and four touchdowns.  After an early 16-0 Cardinals lead, San Francisco abandoned the run, and Jimmy showed that he could lead his team to victory with his passing capabilities.  The 49ers totaled 34 yards rushing as a team for the game.
  • Week 14: San Francisco 48 – New Orleans 46

    The 49ers needed every tool in the shed to get the job done against New Orleans.  Garoppolo had another massive game with 349 yards and four touchdowns on 26 of 35 passing.  The running game stepped in with a team total of 162 yards, led by Raheem Mostert with 69 yards and a touchdown.  San Francisco was able to keep on punching and eventually take the lead for good after a legendary 39-yard reception by George Kittle set up the game-winning field goal.  This victory gave the 49ers control of their own destiny for the upcoming playoffs.
  • Week 16: San Francisco 34 – Los Angeles Rams 31

    The Rams were playing for their playoff lives, but the 49ers needed to win their remaining games to secure the number one playoff seed in the NFC.  Los Angeles built an early lead, but the game turned once Fred Warner intercepted a Jake Goff pass and took it 46 yards to the house.  San Francisco rode that momentum and won the game, even though their overall offensive performance was mediocre. 

The San Francisco 49ers have a record of 4-1 when both teams score more than 24 points.  Considering that the 49ers’ strength lies in their defense, it shows a lot of overall team balance when the offense can come through and score the requisite points needed to win through a variety of means.

The 49ers are also 4-1 in games decided by 3 points or less.  They have what it takes to win the close games as well as high-scoring shootouts, and this should be factored in when considering your Super Bowl betting options.