Yesterday, in PART 1, we discussed NFL futures, including Super Bowl betting values, MVP odds, and the base numbers on division winners, along with some picks and recommendations.
Now, in PART 2, which you're reading here, let's dig just a bit deeper into the futures market on the 2021 NFL season.
Each of the following odds listed on the charts are based on numbers currently available at SPREADS.CA, which offers the most extensive menu of NFL futures and props. Indeed, SPREADS.CA numerous wagering options are even better than anything a bettor will find in Las Vegas. In my 40 years of wagering on the NFL, I've never seen a more extensive pre-season menu of betting possibilities than heading into this season.
Let's now take a look at some of the more intriguing futures. Note that this is the second of several upcoming articles on NFL futures and propositions. So, check back later for more.
Which division will produce the Super Bowl winner: This futures bet is based entirely on the composition of 4-division teams, and the perception of those teams heading into the 2021 season. Obviously, the stranger divisions – that is, those groups stacked with the best teams – are the favourites to win the Super Bowl. This year, the AFC West is expected to be loaded (+250). Kansas City (favourites to win the championship) heads the pack. However – Denver, Las Vegas, and the LA Chargers are also expected to be competitive. The NFC South is the second choice (+450), but that's based almost entirely on the reigning champs, Tampa Bay, and New Orleans, which should also be in contention despite the big change at quarterback (Drew Brees retired). As for the worst divisions – that is, the teams with the least chance to win the Super Bowl, look no further than the NFC East (+1200) and AFC South (+1600).
Which conference will produce the Super Bowl winner: The AFC is perceived as the slightly better conference this season since they're listed at -120 to EVEN for the NFC. Certainly, Kansas City, Buffalo, Baltimore, and perhaps Tennessee (forecast by most as favourites to win their divisions) are a little more solid than their NFC counterparts – which have a number of questions with the top teams, largely at QB. Concerns include Tom Brady's age (Tampa Bay), Aaron Rodgers' mindset (Green Bay), and reasonable doubts about how teams like Dallas, LA Rams, San Francisco, and others will fare. Edge to AFC, especially at this price.
Will any of the last place teams from 2020 finish first in 2021: Here's a fascinating proposition. Eight teams finished last in 2020. Can any of them make the ultimate reversal? Well, that's going to be really tough for the NY Jets, Cincinnati, Jacksonville, and Detroit which all seem very much outclassed by their division opponents. However, San Francisco (just two years removed from a Super Bowl appearance in 2019) could contend and move up the ladder. So might Atlanta, in a division with some uncertainties. And since Philadelphia plays in such a bad division, anything's possible with that group, as well. Lean to YES, but perhaps not at the laying -150 price.
Division parlays: Here's a new feature, which hasn't been listed before. We get the chance to bet on two divisions and their winners. How about Tampa Bay and Kansas City both to repeat as division champs? That prop is listed at +110. As you can see, the sky's the limit when it comes to possibilities. Some props are playing as high as 300-1.
Will TEAM X make the playoffs: This can be either as the division winner or wild card entrant. Generally, it's a wiser bet to look for teams that are up and coming and return a plus-money price rather than laying a big number with a heavy favourite. The reason is, injuries are a huge factor in the NFL (just as the 2020 San Francisco 49ers). Sure, any team can get hit with key injuries and suffer a bad season. However, since they are tough to predict when this happens you sure don't want to be laying prices like -275 and up. Note that this list is only partial. The complete list with odds can be found at SPREADS.CA.
More to come....