The last time we looked at futures odds and made some 2016 Super Bowl predictions, the 2015 edition of the game had concluded just two days prior. We were still in shock about how monumentally bad Pete Carroll's play-calling decision was to end that game and were still exhausted from watching the playoffs and looking for winners. Now we have had some time to gain perspective and get some separation.
Free agency is mostly over, and the draft is in the books. It's a good time, then, to take another look. What futures odds look sound? Which seem crazy? Where's the value? Who is going to win the Super Bowl? So many questions (odds to win the Super Bowl are from Bovada):
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Seattle Seahawks (6/1): The Seahawks have had a pretty solid offseason. Adding Jimmy Graham alone is a major coup. Their season ended in pretty much the worst way possible, though, and that can have an impact on teams the next year. This team has played at a high level for a long time and has played a lot of extra football the last couple of years. They certainly could keep it rolling, but I am not willing to bet that they will at this price. I'll pass.
Green Bay Packers (7/1): At some point it has to all come together for Aaron Rodgers. He is too good to have won only one Super Bowl. He is coming off a great season, too. That being said, I just don't have enough faith in his supporting cast to quite justify this price. I'm not going to bet on him, but I wouldn't be surprised to come to regret that decision - or at least to become nervous about it.
Indianapolis Colts (8/1): This team has been taking slow steps forward each year. They have also slowly been addressing some personnel issues. In an AFC that seems reasonably wide-open this year, I am willing to think that this is the year they take their next big step forward. Andrew Luck is great and is only going to get better. At this price I'm ready to gamble.
New England Patriots (17/2): All I can do with these guys right now is sit back and wait until we know more. I am nervous about trusting defending champions in even the best of situations. Given the whole Tom Brady situation, though, and the uncertainty over whether the suspension will stand and when it will take place, there is really no way to take a stand one way or the other with the team. We'll revisit this team when we know more.
Dallas Cowboys (10/1): On paper this should be a decent team. More than decent, perhaps. While they have had a good offseason in many ways, I can't help but be nervous about the state of their running back situation. I also can't help but be nervous because they are still the Cowboys, and I am no more a fan of their coaching than I have been for a few years now. I respect those who would bet this team, but I think I'll pass on it.
Denver Broncos (12/1): This is a ridiculous price. They didn't have a great offseason, and they have to learn to work with an entirely new coaching staff this year. More significantly, though, Peyton Manning looked nothing like himself to finish out last season, and he's not exactly young at this point. He could be great, but at his age and physical state I am certainly not willing to bet that he will. Double this price and I may be interested - though probably not. At this price, though, it just isn't worth the risk.
Detroit Lions (33/1): You always have to look for a long shot or two, and at this price I'll look towards the Lions. They are a team that finds new ways to let me down all the time, but I'm not ready to give up on them. They did a lot of things well last year, and I have faith in this offense to take a big step forward. They obviously have some changes on defense to deal with, but I still like the team enough to gamble at this price.
San Diego Chargers (50/1): I really like this price. There are obvious issues - they didn't have a great offseason, and they have the potential distraction of a move to deal with all year. Still, this is a strong coaching staff that has had more time to get their vision in place. Philip Rivers is due for a huge year, and I have confidence in him to pull it off. The AFC is an easier path this year, so at the price it's worth a look.
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