We are edging closer to the start of yet another NFL season. Free agency has passed, the draft is over, and rookies are signed, OTAs are underway, and what we are seeing now with teams is getting closer and closer to what they will look like when games start to matter again. Camps are still almost two months away, but it is still a good time to look for interesting NFL futures value and to make some 2018 Super Bowl predictions. Here's a look at the most interesting of prices available from BetOnline :
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New England Patriots (+310): At this point you would have to be dumb to discount the Patriots. They just keep finding ways to rebuild, reload and stay at the top of the pile. Tom Brady wants to play for another five or 10 years, and there is no reason to doubt him at this point. This price, of course, is ridiculous. There is no good reason to lock down your money from now until January for a potential return like this with as much risk as is involved. But you also can't really argue that they are anything but the strong and deserving favorites this year.
Dallas Cowboys (+900): I respect what the Cowboys did last year, but I am not interested in them at this price. I like the roster for the most part, and the offseason has been pretty solid, but I am not believing in them this year - at least not as a title favorite. The biggest cause for concern is Dak Prescott. He played extremely well last year. Fantastic. Last year, though, no one saw him coming, so he snuck up on teams. This year he won't sneak up on anyone. The pressure on his shoulders will be amplified a hundredfold this year, and teams will be much more prepared for him and focused on him than they were before. It could be tough for him - and for the team.
Green Bay Packers (+1100): The recurring theme in my mind is that I don't really trust any team beyond the Patriots right now. Aaron Rodgers looks really good when he is at his best, but the last two years it hasn't been nearly as easy to be certain that that is what you will see on any given day - especially when the pressure is at the highest. And I'm not as crazy about the construction of this roster as I could be, either. I'll pass at this price.
Seattle Seahawks (+1100): I like a lot of what they can do on the field, but the issues I had with this team last year still continue this year. I don't trust their mental game at all. There is something going on in the heads and hearts of this team that I don't like. They just have too much drama that is getting in the way of their professionalism. The Richard Sherman will-he-or-won't-he-be-traded drama this offseason is just the latest example of what concerns me. When this team was at their best they were highly-focused machines. Now I don't see that, and so I can't back them.
Atlanta Falcons (+1200): Absolutely not. No chance. I wouldn't back a team that lost the Super Bowl the next year no matter what, but especially not in this case. That loss in the Super Bowl is the kind of outcome that can stick with a player or a team for a lifetime. I wouldn't bet on any team being able to shake it off right away. And my concern about this team for the last several years has been that I don't trust or respect their mental game. So I absolutely don't trust them to be anywhere near their best this year.
Oakland Raiders (+1200): I have been negative about pretty much everything for the last several teams. Here's a reversal - I actually like this team. Quite a bit. I like the steps they are taking forward, I like the core that they have on both sides of the ball, and I trust them to keep moving forward. This price is more than fair and is the most attractive one we have discussed so far.
Pittsburgh Steelers (+1200): When Ben Roethlisberger briefly flirted with retirement after last season, alarm bells went off in my head. I didn't believe him, and I don't think anyone including himself really did, either. But the fact that it briefly became a story makes me nervous. This team isn't good enough or deep enough that they can overcome Big Ben being anything other than his full best, and I just am not convinced that he will be there.
Tennessee Titans (+5000): We have to look for a long shot, and this is as attractive as any in my mind. Marcus Mariota is very talented and is on a very positive trajectory. I expect him to take another step forward. I like how this roster is constructed and how the team is run. They are in a manageable division and have a chance to do some damage. They won't dominate the regular season and earn a bye or anything, but they have a chance to be a dangerous postseason squad. Worth a buck or two at this price.
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Read more articles by Trevor Whenham
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