As teams ramp up training camp to prepare for the beginning of the regular season, most NFL teams have solidified their roster, with the exception of elite holdouts like Aaron Donald and Le’Veon Bell.
To the surprise of few, NFL Super Bowl futures 2019 reveal the New England Patriots as significant favorites to win at +500. However, despite the historic excellence of Brady and Belichick, there’s a good chance that another will rise to challenge them out of the AFC.
NFL odds at sites such as CanadaSportsBetting.ca show plenty of value before the season starts. So consider “buy early” candidates before the season begins and prices rise for teams which start out strong.
Super Bowl Contenders – Buy Early
Philadelphia Eagles (+900)
Sure – the NFC features a murderer’s row of superb football teams, but there’s no reason to believe that the Eagles won’t be better off this year compared to last. The Eagles won their first Super Bowl against towering odds, revealing Philadelphia’s depth on both sides of scrimmage. Nearly all of Philadelphia’s top players will return to defend the title.
Carson Wentz will need a bit of time to shake the rust away, but another year of experience should sharpen Wentz after his incredible season was cut short with a blown knee. Philadelphia’s playing it smart, easing Carson back into action despite looking great in training camp.
An improved Wentz will only sharpen the Eagles’ talons. The start of the season may be rough, but Philly’s opponents featured a .492 winning percentage last year, suggesting a relatively easy schedule. Ajayi, Ertz and Jeffery round out top offensive contributors, but Fletcher Cox and the pass rush anchored one of the best defenses in the NFL, allowing Nick Foles to win Super Bowl MVP.
Los Angeles Rams (+1000)
No franchise went all in like the Los Angeles Rams during the 2018 offseason. L.A. traded for Brandin Cooks, who should shred secondaries under coach McVay’s system. The Rams also acquired Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib through trade and signed Ndamukong Suh. As such, the Rams have top five potential on both sides of the ball, even if Aaron Donald doesn’t play this season.
Make no mistake – Los Angeles will rue the absence of Donald, perhaps the best tackle in the NFL. Frankly, a Donald-Suh combo would slice through most linemen like butter, sewing chaos into game plans. The moment the Rams decide to pay up will be the moment they’ll turn into Super Bowl favorites. Their current +1000 odds will trend closer to the Patriots, making them a solid buy early candidate.
Todd Gurley received a deservedly rich deal for his amazing regular season in 2017, when he finished second in MVP voting to Brady. Goff fulfilled his promise by throwing 28 TDs against seven interceptions, averaging well over a first down per completion. If they sign Donald and all offseason acquisitions work well, the Rams will be the team to beat.
Jacksonville Jaguars (+1800)
Look no further than the Jaguars for the best dark horse pick to bring the Super Bowl back to Florida. This team was one score away from making the Super Bowl after outdueling the Pittsburgh Steelers during the divisional playoff round. Leonard Fournette proved capable of maintaining a high level of production during the playoffs, while Blake Bortles appeared to mature under pressure.
This team allowed the second least points against at 16.8 PPG, but you might be surprised that the Jaguars scored the fifth-most in the NFL. Bortles didn’t throw for a lot of TDs, but he showed improved poise all season, earning the best completion and interception percentage of his career. His first winning season could lead to another leap forward in confidence, which would greatly boost the Jaguars prospects.
Jacksonville will be favorites to repeat as division champs, especially considering the strength of their schedule, among the least challenging in the league. Another strong year of defense and a small boost on offense could be enough to overpower the Steelers and Patriots.
Super Bowl Pretenders – Invest Elsewhere
New England Patriots (+500)
There’s no argument that the Patriots will cake walk to another AFC East division title. Pittsburgh, Jacksonville and Kansas probably won’t steal the AFC title either, giving the Patriots another valuable bye week before the playoffs. No, the Patriots likely won’t be challenged until they enter the post season.
Jacksonville were perilously close to denying New England another Super Bowl appearance. The Jaguars made the Patriots look old, slow and soft until the fourth quarter of the conference championships, when Brady pulled off yet another ridiculous comeback.
Perhaps more concerning, coach Belichick displayed extremely questionable judgement when he benched Malcolm Butler for the Super Bowl. Nick Foles tore apart the secondary while the Patriots floundered, allowing an uncharacteristic 41 points. Even Brady couldn’t will the Pats back from that deficit. A +500 line represents an expensive bet considering the talent level of the Rams, Eagles and Jaguars.
Green Bay Packers (+900)
After snapping his collarbone, Aaron Rodgers ignored medical logic with a valiant attempt to return early. The Packers still had a slim chance to make the playoffs, so a rusty Rodgers loss to eliminate Green Bay allowed him to rest and return to 100%, instead of risking an aggravated fracture.
Football is a team sport, but no team seems to hang their championship hopes more on their QB than the Green Bay Packers. A healthy Rodgers and an average defense will make the playoffs nine out of ten times, but a Super Bowl win remains distant if he doesn’t get help.
The Packers defense will determine the success of this team, assuming Aaron doesn’t lose his touch after a tough injury and lengthy respite. Nobody expected backup Brett Hundley to break out at the pivot position, but Green Bay’s defense was ranked 26th in the NFL. Tough to see a big turnaround in defensive fortune after a shockingly inept 2017. Defense still wins championships, and Green Bay’s unlikely to stop conference rivals like the Rams, Eagles and Vikings.
Pittsburgh Steelers (+1000)
The winds of change gust through the Pittsburgh Steelers franchise, not for the best. Big Ben will be a year older and slower, teaming up with his old offensive coordinator Randy Fichtner, who hasn’t served in this capacity for more than a decade. Steelers stakeholders play the contract game with elite RB Le’Veon Bell, who may not return. Bell’s one of top yard gaining forces in the NFL, impossible to replace.
Pittsburgh’s defense simply wasn’t the same after Ryan Shazier’s horrific injury, leaving a massive hole at linebacker. Without his Pro Bowl presence, the Steelers allowed 45 points to the Jaguars in a divisional playoff loss.
If Pittsburgh doesn’t sign Bell, there’s simply no way Big Ben and the rest of the offense will make up for Le’Veon’s incredible output. Even worse, coach Tomlin’s started to weigh in on the contract dispute through sly jabs at Bell’s conditioning – a ridiculous criticism given the running back’s prodigious nature. Despite a relatively easy schedule, it’s doubtful this team will repeat their 13-win season. A +1000 line is far too expensive for this fading franchise.