NFL Futures Betting: Top Odds from the NFC
by CarbonSports - 7/8/2014
With the calendar hitting July, it's time to start turning our attention to the upcoming NFL season as the Seattle Seahawks aim to defend their crown. Seattle will have to go through a deep NFC conference once again, but they enter this season as the favorites to do so.
NFC Favorites: Seattle (+320), San Francisco (+420), Green Bay (+750), New Orleans (+850)
These four teams top the list of those looking to be the NFC's representative in the Super Bowl and for good reason. Seattle and San Francisco played an epic NFC Championship Game this past year, and if another play or two went the 49ers way we could be talking about them looking to defend their Super Bowl championship. One of those two teams will definitely win the NFC West and likely have one of the top two seeds in the conference come playoff time. But with all that can happen throughout the year (injuries, turnovers, tough breaks etc), and the fact that the Seahawks and 49ers will be looking to beat up one another in their two regular season meetings, there just isn't enough value on either of them in this futures market.
Green Bay at +750 is an iffy team as well as they'll face stiff competition from Detroit and Chicago in the NFC North and may not even with their division. With the Packers heavily reliant on the health and well-being of QB Aaron Rodgers, things could go south for them in a hurry if he goes down with another injury this year ,and I'm not a believer that their defense can carry them all the way back to the Super Bowl.
New Orleans has questions about their defense, too, but with their offense operating like a well-oiled machine on a weekly basis they could come out with a top two seed with numerous playoff games at home and would be a good bet. The Saints can put up points on any one and will not lose too many 'shootout' type games, but it will be all about their ability to create turnovers and stops on defense. They ran into those two NFC West teams in the playoffs the past few years and weren't able to get by Seattle/SF on the road. However, if they can flip the script and get those playoff games at home this year, it could be a different story.
NFC middle-of-the-pack: Chicago (+1400), Philadelphia (+1500), Detroit (+2300), Carolina (+2500), Dallas (+2500), NYG (+2600), St Louis (+2700), Atlanta (+2800), Washington (+2900)
It's a big group of teams chasing down those top four, and every one of these teams will have to overcome flaws or weaknesses in their lineup. Chicago will give Green Bay a run for their money in the NFC North, but the Bears are still a team learning how to win and won't be able to run through the gauntlet of the playoffs. Same goes for Detroit and Carolina as these two are fringe playoff teams that are still learning how to win the big game.
We've got the entire NFC East division in this group as it should be another year of tight play in the NFC East with any one of the four being able to capture the division crown. As we've seen with the Giants in the past, if the eventual NFC East winner can get hot at the right time they could make a run to the Super Bowl, but they'll have to do it as underdogs against one or more of those top four teams already listed. I don't like their chances to do so, but I do believe you can find some value in division futures for the NFC East (more on that at a later date).
That leaves St Louis and Atlanta in this group, and of those two it's the Falcons who I believe have the best shot. They are coming off a very disappointing year where nothing went right for them, but the Falcons are out to prove that it was a one-off and they are ready to get back to their annual playoff-bound form. They've got one of the best WR duos in the game (Julio Jones/Roddy White) and if they can tighten things up defensively and get consistent production from their running game that home-field advantage in the dome could propel them to a Super Bowl.
NFC Long shots: Arizona (+300), Tampa Bay (+4000), Minnesota (+7500)
None of these three teams have a shot of getting to the big game as there are too many questions at too many key positions for all three of these teams. None of them have a reliable QB that can put the team on their back and win games, and I doubt any of them will even sniff the playoffs this season.
You can go a lot of ways with this future bet on who will win the NFC, but for my money there are three/four teams I think that are worth it. As a long shot, taking the Falcons at (+2800) is a value-pick for a unit or less because they've got the talent on their roster to be a very good team and I'm confident in their ability to bounce back after a rough season.
But it's New Orleans (+850) and one of Seattle (+320) or San Francisco (+420) who I believe will be the NFC's representative in the Super Bowl. I say "one of" for those two NFC West teams because I'm still undecided on which one as it'll be the division winner that I'll want to side with. Home field means so much when the Seahawks and 49ers play that it could come down to that again this year. So whichever one of those two you believe will win the NFC West is the team I would put the future bet on because I've got that winner playing the Saints in the NFC Championship.
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