A look at some of the early schedule odds for the Chiefs and NFL.
There may not be live sports, but that does not stop bookies from keeping sports betting alive and well. Every part of free agency had odds, the draft was full of over/under bettors, and thanks to Barstool Sports and Bleacher Report Betting, NCAA Football 2014 is one of the most lucrative betting pools in sports’ history.
The early betting odds for the 2020 NFL season have been released, placing odds on everything from a team’s total number of wins, the winner of the MVP, and the next Super Bowl champions. We look at those odds and pick out some of the most interesting numbers, finding the best places to place your money.
With the announcement of the 2020 NFL schedule, the bookies are hard at work using advanced models and algorithms to draw up some odds and betting opportunities for when live sports hopefully return. We took a look at some of those odds and projections and found some of the good and bad pools available for bettors looking to come out of quarantine with a win.
Important Note: The author of this piece has not placed any money on any of the following betting scenarios and is not a financial advisor. Bet at your own risk.
Good Pool: Kansas City Chiefs (11.5) – OVER
Let’s start with the Super Bowl Champions, home of the new face of the NFL, and the odds-on favorite to come out of the 2020 season as back-to-back winners, the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs are going into the 2020 season with 20 of the 22 Super Bowl starters returning. They’ve retained the all-star coaching staff on the sideline, and brought in some of the most underrated and most explosive players through the draft in Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Willie Gay Jr..
Sure, the Chiefs have some tough road games sprinkled throughout the season, and the Las Vegas Raiders and Denver Broncos have made some great moves in both the draft and the offseason. The Chiefs also have to play the three other teams with highest odds to play in the Super Bowl in Tampa Bay, New Orleans, and Baltimore— all on the road no less.
However, the Chiefs have won 12 games in 3 of their last 4 seasons, and since Andy Reid‘s first season as the Chiefs’ head coach in 2011, they have won double digit games every season but once. The Chiefs are 21-3 in divisional play over the last four years and have won the division every one of those seasons. And no team returns with more stability, whichis vital due to the lack of practice and preparation teams are going to be given during this unprecedented offseason.
The Chiefs also have the MVP favorite in 2020 in Patrick Lavon Mahomes II, a player who has never lost by double digits and who led the Chiefs to three straight comeback wins in the playoffs to bring home the Lombardi.
Considering the Chiefs have 11 to 12 easy wins on the schedule (Houston, New England, Miami, NYJ, Carolina, Atlanta, AFC West), even betting for the Chiefs to lose their biggest matchups will still net them the over. This may not be a “bet the mortgage” type pool, but it seems like a chance to win some easy money.
Bad Pool: Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9.5)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the hardest team to evaluate for 2020. On one hand you have Tom Brady pairing up with Bruce Arians. On the other hand, Brady has been digressing the last few seasons and Bruce Arians has a shaky track record with veteran quarterbacks (for your consideration: Carson Palmer). On one hand, Gronk is returning to join Chris Goodwin and Mike Evans in Brady’s arsenal. On the other, Gronk is returning from a retirement due to countless injuries, especially to the head
The Bucs also play in the second best division in football in the NFC South (the NFC West has 2 Super Bowl contenders, a team that is definitely securing a wild card spot, and the Rams), which brings two games against the New Orleans Saints, the Atlanta Falcons, and the Carolina Panthers each. Add in games against the Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Kansas City Chiefs, and Chicago Bears and the Buccaneers will have a massive challenge to win even 7 games.
Yet again, the Panthers may need some time to get restructured around Matt Rhule and Teddy Bridgewater, and maybe the Bears’ defense will never bounce back to 2018 levels, and maybe the Falcons will continue to be bad despite looking good in May, and maybe the Saints dysfunctional locker room finally catches up to them. There are just as many question marks on their schedule as there are on their roster and it makes nailing down the Bucs’ win total nearly impossible.
This pool has so many “what ifs?” and “what abouts?” that putting any money on it would be ill-advised. If you had to put money on it, go with the under, their rough schedule and questionable defense scream 8 win team, but only put a few dollars at best.
Bad Pool: Green Bay Packers (9)
The 2019 Green Bay Packers were one of the worst 13-win teams in modern NFL history.
A lack of talent on the offensive side of the ball kept Aaron Rodgers and head coach Matt Lefleur from making it to the Super Bowl and recreating the inaugural SB matchup against the Chiefs. Aaron Jones may have been an MVP candidate through the first 9 weeks of the season, but he fell off in the latter half of the season, Devante Adams struggles to be a number one receiver with no other talent to help him, and Rodgers can only carry his team on his back so far.
The Packers could have used free agency and the draft to bring in some offensive weapons and be set to make a legitimate Super Bowl run in 2020. With a fierce defense built around an elite group of linebackers, all they needed was a decent number two receiver or passable option at tight end and the Packers are in a position to take the NFC by storm.
Instead they chose to draft a quarterback in the first round and and bring in close to nothing in free agency.
Rodgers is very obviously disturbed and frustrated, Adams is still by himself (unless you consider Devin Funchess a legitimate target, which he is not), and the tight end spot is full of blockers. The worst 13 win team of NFL history made no legitimate changes and is going into the 2020 NFL season the exact same. Are they still worth 13 wins?
Sure, the offseason being crippled by the current circumstances will benefit the teams that stay relatively the same. Yes, the teams in the NFC North are unpredictable and historically struggle against the Packers. And, if Aaron Rodgers is able to put aside his emotions, he is still an elite player. Nine wins is such a low total to have to eclipse, just being one win over .500.
But how predictable can the win total really be? Can anyone comfortably give the Packers more then 10 wins? Can they reasonably give the Packers only 8 wins? The Packers win total is so unpredictable and the situation in Green Bay is only getting more complicated. Stay away from the Packers betting pools.
Good Pool: New England Patriots (9) – UNDER
To be clear, the New England Patriots are not going to start to stink just because Tom Brady left Foxborough. Bill Belichick is a mad genius on par with most James Bond villains, which fits the man in charge of leading the franchise run by the ever-shady Robert Kraft. The New England Patriots’ defense is full of ballhawks and playmakers (or criminals, whatever Patrick Chung wants to be referred to as) that can score more points then most NFL offenses.
The problem for the Patriots start on the offense, but not where most critics are leveling their concerns. Jarrett Stidham is going to be fine in the screen heavy offense of Belichick, as would most pee-wee football players. Stidham also has experience handing the ball off quite a bit, having played college ball for Auburn.
No, the problem for the New England Patriots remains the same as it was in 2019: they lack weapons in their receiving room. Sure, Julian Edelman has a great pair of hands, but Mohamed Sanu is mediocre and N’Keal Harry is injury-prone and seems to lack the explosiveness he was scouted for. They also do not have a tight end worth a roster spot.
Who is Stidham going to throw it to? A young quarterback needs great leadership, time to grow, as well as a good tight end and receivers who run great routes. Stidham lacks most of that on the roster, and without the help he needs, how are the Patriots expected to win?
This is without mentioning that the AFC East now has a bit of talent in it, with the Buffalo Bills continuing to build on their success, and the Miami Dolphins making some massive moves in the draft and free agency. The Patriots can not coast on 6 easy wins this next season like the past, and add in the fact that they play the rest of the 2019 divisional leaders (Chiefs, Texans, Ravens), as well as the NFC West (49ers, Seahawks, Cardinals, Rams), picking the Patriots to win any games outside of the Jets’ matchups would be crazy.
Betting the under on the Patriots win total is freemoney, and putting a ton of money in that pool will return exponentially. Whether you say “bet the mortgage” or “bet ya house on it,” this is the pool to make that move.