5 Super Bowl Winners You Should Be Betting On

PORTLAND, Ore. (TheStreet) -- We're just going to go ahead and put it out there: We have nothing left to say about Super Bowl ads.

We told you what companies could use one. We told you which National Football League sponsors should have blocked their competitors from getting one. We let you know which industries won't be airing commercials when the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers take the field on Sunday or on any other Super Bowl Sunday, for that matter. That has to cover just about every way a company can wring a cent out of the Super Bowl, right?

Wrong. Though companies have spent $1.85 billion on Super Bowl ads in the past decade, according to Kantar Media, there are a lot more ways to cash in on the more than 160 million total viewers in the U.S. who watched the big game last year. We took a look around the Super Bowl's edges and found five cash-producing portions of the Super Bowl that marketing departments and ad firms just don't tend to cover:

Lead-out programming

It's great to have half the country tune in to your network for a night and rake in all that commercial cash. Back in 2011, the NFL renewed its broadcast deal with CBS ( CBS), Fox ( NWS) and NBC ( CMCSA) through 2022 and increased its take from $1.93 billion per year to $3.1 billion.

That boosted the NFL's revenue by as much as 60% over the life of the deal, but it also locked in those networks' rotating Super Bowl rights for the next decade. That tends to mean great things for the shows that follow the big game, which have drawn more than 20 million viewers apiece since 2003. That year, ABC's airing of the Jennifer Garner vehicle Alias after the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 48-21 rout of the Oakland Raiders managed only 17 million viewers.

This year, CBS is throwing its modern-day Sherlock Holmes drama Elementary into the mix after the big game. It's the last true drama that's run after the Super Bowl since Fox's House drew 29 million viewers after the New York Giants stunned the until-then undefeated New England Patriots in 2008. CBS has to like its chances, however, as the 38.6 million viewers who watched its premiere of Undercover Boss after a New Orleans Saints victory in 2010 was the largest Super Bowl lead-out audience since 43 million people watched CBS' Survivor after the Baltimore Ravens' last Super Bowl appearance in 2001.

The lead-out crown, however, goes to NBC. Though 17 years have passed and Jennifer Aniston's produced a string of romantic comedies since, its two-part Friends episode The One After The Super Bowl that aired in 1996 is still the most-watched post-Super Bowl show ever. It drew nearly 53 million viewers and took up 46% of U.S. television screens.

Sponsor tie-ins

As we mentioned, the billions companies spend to become official NFL sponsors don't prevent competitors from running ads during the big game.

It does, however, prevent those competitors from using certain trademarked phrases such as "Super Bowl," "Baltimore Ravens" and "San Francisco 49ers" that might help tie the product they're selling to the event. In the case of Papa John's ( PZZA), the NFL's official pizza sponsor, the company gets to set up an online sweepstakes that awards Papa John's Rewards members with free pizza if they correctly guess the outcome of the pregame coin toss. That's no slight edge, considering that its rivals at Yum Brands' ( YUM) Pizza Hut are planning to give away a mystery promotional product as part of its own Super Bowl - umm, "big game" -- ad blitz.

Official NFL soft drink sponsor Pepsi ( PEP), meanwhile, gets to dress up its packaging in Super Bowl logos and Vince Lombardi trophies and use its ties to the game to give away 1 million free bottles of Pepsi Next to viewers who sign into the PepsiNext.com website after the ad airs.

Sports betting

It isn't just Las Vegas oddsmakers who think this game is a big deal.

It's the biggest betting day in that particular sports gambling capital, but it's the second-biggest sports betting day worldwide -- behind only world soccer's Champions League final. In Nevada alone, however, the folks at LVH Superbook said last year's matchup between the New York Giants and New England Patriots brought in nearly $94 million in bets, just shy of the $94.5 million record set before the Pittsburgh Steelers' win over the Seattle Seahawks in 2006.

This doesn't always mean great things for Nevada bookies, however. Though the New England Patriots helped the bookmakers take in more than $15.4 million by not covering the point spread against the Philadelphia Eagles in 2005, they cost those same oddsmakers nearly $2.6 million when the Giants upset the Patriots in 2008.

Grocery shopping

The National Retail Federation has a tendency to get a bit overexcited once anything resembling a retail holiday comes around, but their surveys of buyer intentions tend to provide at least a vague idea of how buyers will approach seasonal spending.

This year, in a survey of buyer intentions, the NRF found that 74.5% of Americans plan to buy some form of food or beverages specifically for the Super Bowl. Altogether, they're predicting Americans will spend a net average of $68.64 apiece on Super Bowl shopping and almost $12.3 billion in total.

That's a bit lofty, which is why we should remind you that it's a survey of buyer intentions, which have very little to do with reality. Any bagger or cashier at a Kroger ( KRO), SuperValu ( SVU), Safeway ( SWY) or any other supermarket in America, however, can tell you that the Saturday and Sunday leading up to the Super Bowl are nightmarish days in the aisles. Bags of store-brand crinkle-cut chips, 3-liter bottles of soda and cans of dip that little resemble the sour cream or onion they claim to contain all fly off the shelves and into the trunks of suburban grocery getters. Whether your town is near San Francisco or Baltimore matters about as much this Super Bowl Sunday as its proximity to Ireland and Mexico will matter on St. Patrick's Day and Cinco De Mayo. Americans love having excuses for their gluttony, and supermarkets don't mind running event-specific specials to feed it.

TV sales

The good news for consumers is that most televisions get a 10% to 15% price dip in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, according to price-tracking site Decide.com. The bad news is that they're just clearing last year's holdovers to make room for the toys that debuted at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas a month earlier and hit showrooms and online stores in March.

When post-holiday consumers do splurge for a TV, though, they go big. In past years during the two weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, nearly 60% of TV spending was screens 46 inches or larger, according to the NPD Group. Even as TV fizzled 7% last year, consumers picked up 82% more TVs 55 inches and larger than they did in 2011.

Prices on those bigger models are coming down by roughly $160, which NPD says is 10% lower than last year. Stores such as Target ( TGT) and Super Bowl ad buyer Best Buy ( BBY) have been running sales for much of the past week to decrease supplies. With the latter offering a 55-inch version of its in-house Insignia brand for $550, bargain-hunting buyers should feel free to spike their receipts right in the faces of the Black Friday line-sitting friends.

-- Written by Jason Notte in Portland, Ore.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Jason Notte.

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Jason Notte is a reporter for TheStreet. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Huffington Post, Esquire.com, Time Out New York, the Boston Herald, the Boston Phoenix, the Metro newspaper and the Colorado Springs Independent. He previously served as the political and global affairs editor for Metro U.S., layout editor for Boston Now, assistant news editor for the Herald News of West Paterson, N.J., editor of Go Out! Magazine in Hoboken, N.J., and copy editor and lifestyle editor at the Jersey Journal in Jersey City, N.J.

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