6 million. 7.6 million americans are expected to place bets with online sports books for sunday’s matchup between the kansas city chiefs and the tampa bay buccaneers that’s. According to the american gaming association it’s, an industry trade group it’s a 63 increase over last year and the most ever according to the organization. Overall, though, about 23.2 million americans are expected to gamble some 4.3 billion dollars, it’s quite a decrease in betting from 2020, when 26 million people plan to bet a 6.3 billion dollars on super bowl, 54. that’s. According to the group, the online shift accelerates a trend that began back in 2018 when the supreme court struck down a law that effectively outlawed sports betting in all, but a handful of states. Since then, 25 states and washington dc have passed laws to legalize gambling that’s. According to the aga and lockdown drove people online, perhaps not surprisingly, fueling an 80 increase in betting on mobile devices. Well, in just two days, 25 000 people will make their way into tampa’s raymond james stadium to cheer on the bucks and chiefs in super bowl. 55.. The nfl is hoping the event will not be a super spreader and bloomberg estimates that over 50 percent of those in attendance have some level of immunity here with more on the nfl’s plan, is bloomberg’s miami bureau chief jonathan levin jonathan thanks so much for being here. Um explain this 50 percent figure. This is between actually having had the virus and being vaccinated.
That’S, correct tim and thanks for having me yeah so part of the nfl strategy was they. They purposely invited seventy five hundred fully vaccinated health care workers and, in part what the league seems to be thinking is you know this is an opportunity to give thanks to very important members of our community, but it also means that a significant chunk of of the Crowd of 25 000 is guaranteed uh fully protected right. In addition to that, you know we have all this incredible data at this point. That gives us a sense of what the rest of the public looks like right. So we figure that that of the the balance beside those 7 500 health care workers, you’re you’re, getting close to about 1500, who would have been vaccinated through uh, some other means and they’ve probably had it at least the one dose, the first dose, which gives some Measure of of immunity right beyond that they’re they’re, probably more than 4 000, who have acquired the virus in in society and have developed antibodies. That way, so you know it’s a it’s a bit of a back of the cocktail, napkin there’s, a lot that we don’t know there’s still so much. We don’t understand about whether or not people who have immunity can still spread the virus and so forth, but it it it gives you a sense of uh. The the cost benefit analysis that the nfl and the city of tampa are probably doing right now.
So you spoke to a university of south florida epidemiologist, who said he’d rather be at the super bowl than than at a house party. I should note that he did say that he’s a die hard bucks fan so that’s part of the reason, of course, but how dangerous is it to be at the game according to to him yeah? Well, you know again, the thing is the nfl has put all these medication mesh measures in place and part of it is, is the immunity and part of it is uh. You know the things that we’ve learned work so well against this virus over time. They’Re spreading people out they’re, dividing the seats into these sort of pods, uh and uh, of course, they’re making they’re guaranteeing that everybody in the stadium is wearing a mask and the science has told us over. You know the past 11 months that we’ve been going through. This that that just doing those things make a huge difference, um. What do you know about? Who is attending who’s who’s, not a healthcare or frontline worker? Well, we we don’t, really know much, but it you know again what we did in in our little model. Was it was extend essentially do an extrapolation uh and we we we assumed that the crowd is going to be roughly representative of the us. Broadly, you can actually get a little more more granular uh, and you know if you assume uh, that half of the crowd is from the tampa.
Our area and half is from uh the kansas city area. You know we have estimates that suggest that roughly 155 residents of hillsborough county uh, maybe uh, currently infected with the virus it’s about one in 25 in jackson, county where kansas city uh is located. So you know again, it gives you a little bit of a sense of how much of a risk is this. You have uh, you have about twelve hundred susceptible people um. If those numbers stand, you know maybe somewhere between uh. You know fifty and four hundred people passing 400 on the pessimistic end. Uh, you know, could end up uh getting infected at the game, um yeah. So i i do wonder about the context of last year’s super bowl because, as as you mentioned, governor ron desantis talked about how it could have been floating at the february second game last year. That, of course, was was hosted in miami that’s. The backdrop i’m wondering about the economic risk or the risk of of hosting it this year in tampa um the economic benefits to the city of tampa. Do they outweigh the risks yeah? You know that there are the tricky thing about this pandemic. Is it you know, it’s everything is so gray, it’s, never it’s, never black and white, and what epidemiologists tell me, is you absolutely you can’t hold an event like this? No matter what you do, you can’t hold an event like this without without some level of risk, and so what policy makers are doing is is they’re.
Trying to you know, decide uh. Do we walk away from the economic benefits when we’ve already invested so much in bringing the game to the city of of tampa because of the risks we know there? One thing we can say for sure: we as a society have come a long long way. In the the past eleven twelve months, ron desantis, the governor of florida, has said it’s conceivable that the virus was circulating way back at the last super bowl in miami gardens. But the circumstances would have been entirely different. We didn’t need, we wouldn’t have even known it. Was there uh. You know we would have known nothing about the mitigation efforts that we know today and, of course there was a full crowd in that stadium. This is going to be the smallest attendance in the history of the super bowl jonathan i’m, throwing you uh under the bus here, but who are you rooting for? You know, uh, to be honest with you, i’m, a long time, philadelphia eagles fan.