This post was originally published on August 12th, 2015. Updated Super Bowl odds are at the bottom.
The 2015-2016 NFL season is close, but it still seems so far away.
For instance, the Bears released their initial depth chart of the season Wednesday afternoon – but in all reality, it doesn’t mean shit.
So when we get emailed press releases about different teams’ odds to win the Super Bowl this season, we naturally jump all over it. After all, during this odd period of half-ass preseason games, fantasy football shit-talking, and New York Jets quarterbacks getting punched by their teammates – betting on what the whole NFL season amounts to seems right.
Super Bowl odds usually don’t jump off the page at you right away – the Patriots are always in the top five and the Jaguars are always in the bottom five – but there are definitely intriguing plays to be made. And if you’re looking to hit big on a sleeper team, you won’t get better value than now.
Here’s what were taking away from the current 2016 Super Bowl odds, and who we may or may not put our money on.
2016 Super Bowl Odds
Easy Money — Green Bay Packers (6/1) and Seattle Seahawks (6/1)
This is the cake walk of betting. The teams that you throw the house on because there’s a better chance that these two are playing in the NFC Championship than there is Jay Cutler throwing 10 interceptions by Week 6 (Hint: there’s a good chance Jay does that).
You throw your money on these teams to hedge the teams you really want to win the Super Bowl because let’s be frank, deep down no one wants Green Bay or Seattle to win a Super Bowl. It’s just not fun that way and all you want to do is Geno Smith (yes, that’s an official verb) their entire fan base.
Best Bets — Pittsburgh Steelers (18/1) and Baltimore Ravens (22/1)
The AFC North has been the model of consistent winning for the last 15 years. Well, the Steelers and the Ravens have, at least. Since 2000-2001, one of the two teams have been in the AFC Championship Game eight times – including a head-to-head matchup in ’08-’09.
Both Pittsburgh and Baltimore are coming off playoff appearances last year and have all the tools to make a deep run assuming they get back.
Sucker Bets — Denver Broncos (14/1) and Indianapolis Colts (9/1)
Everyone is going to do it. This is probably Peyton’s last hurrah and his protege in Indianapolis finally has all the offensive weapons necessary to win a ship.
But don’t be fooled, especially with the Colts. While they’re a lock to make the playoffs given their dog shit AFC South competition, I’m not so sure they have the defense – or the durability on the offensive line – to test the rigors of the playoffs.
As for Peyton Manning and the Broncos, well, that arm is as good as mine when the temperature dips below 40.
Super Value Plays — Arizona Cardinals (33/1) and Minnesota Vikings (33/1)
I love the prospects of a $3 bet netting me $100 when it comes to these two teams. The only problem is that the NFC West and the NFC North have arguments of being the two best divisions in football.
The Cardinals proved last year that when fully healthy they’re one of the best teams in all of football, going 8-1 before Carson Palmer tore his ACL. Bruce Arians is a head coach I feel safe throwing my money on, it just depends on the health of his team.
As for the Vikings, it’s about as obvious as it gets: Teddy Bridgewater progresses, Adrian Peterson is back, and Mike Wallace is now in town. If things pan out on the Bridgewater front and Wallace keeps his head on his shoulders, this is a team that can ride Green Bay’s heels right into the playoffs.
Hail Mary — Tampa Bay Buccaneers (100/1)
I know, I know, Tampa Bay was the worst team in football last year. But guess what, Andrew Luck took Indianapolis from worst-to-first a few years ago, and Robert Griffin III took the Redskins to the playoffs in his rookie season, too.
I’m not saying Jameis Winston is Andrew Luck, but with the weapons already slotted on Tampa’s depth chart he most certainly can be Robert Griffin III. The NFC South is also a division most view as up for grabs.
I call it a Hail Mary because that’s literally what it is. But the Buccaneers are a team on the rise and that 100/1 price tag isn’t half bad. Hell, throw $10 on it.
UPDATED 2016 Super Bowl Odds: 11/6/15
Things tend to change a bit over eight weeks of an NFL season. As we noted on the fantasy side of things earlier this week, the amount of injuries to big-name players in 2015 has been ridiculous.
Even when teams stay healthy, shit rarely goes as planned in football. And thus, shit rarely goes as planned in Vegas too. So with a fresh set of midseason 2016 Super Bowl odds released from My Top Sports Books, we revisited our preseason picks – and added a couple new future bets that look good after the season’s first half.
Easy Money — Green Bay Packers (13/2) and Seattle Seahawks (15/1)
Despite Seattle dealing with an early stumble at the hands of the Rams, their other three losses have been to 6-1 Green Bay and 8-0 Cincinnati on the road – plus a heartbreaker at home vs. 7-0 Carolina. This is still a team worth betting on because of Pete Carroll, Marshawn Lynch, and The Legion of Boom in the second half of the season. Plus, they’re better odds now.
And Green Bay? Well, they still have Aaron Rodgers so they’re all good. This will probably the best their odds get to the rest of the season too.
Best Bets — Pittsburgh Steelers (35/1) and Baltimore Ravens (300/1)
Pittsburgh’s odds have doubled after navigating a first half that included suspensions for Le’Veon Bell and Martavis Bryant, a bad Ben Roethlisberger knee injury, a worse Bell knee injury, and dropping back-to-back games to close out October. But this team is still well coached and plays in a weak division outside of the Bengals. They can still sneak into the playoffs, and Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown can get hot enough to offset the loss of Bell.
As for Baltimore, well, we really shit the bed on this team. Or maybe they just shit the bed. Perhaps it’s the true curse of Marc Trestman.
Sucker Bets — Denver Broncos (8/1) and Indianapolis Colts (50/1)
Ironically these two teams play each other in Week 9, and we’ll be fine calling the Broncos frauds if they drop one to Indianapolis.
The Colts were a sucker bet and have played like a true sucker bet all season. Pat yourselves on the back if you didn’t buy the hype.
Somehow the Broncos are 7-0 despite Peyton Manning’s arm resembling something you would order at Noodles and Company – mostly because their defense might the NFL’s best since the 2000 Ravens.
Kudos if you got Denver at 14/1 before the season, because they won’t be again.
Super Value Plays — Arizona Cardinals (14/1) and Minnesota Vikings (30/1)
How these two teams sat at 30/1 odds in the preseason was psychotic. Now, the Cardinals have jumped to 14/1 and look like favorites to win the NFL’s toughest division.
The Vikings are still lingering around the same odds despite being 5-2. The only logical explanation for this is that they’ve played the league’s easiest schedule in the first half of the season and have the league’s toughest schedule the rest of the way.
Hail Mary — Tampa Bay Buccaneers (150/1)
Now this one was never going to hit. But I have to say that I’ve been pleasantly surprised with how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have looked. Sure they’re in last place of the NFC South, but at 3-4 they would be in first place of the AFC South.
The only reason their odds have gotten worse is because Carolina and Atlanta are just steamrolling through teams and Famous Jameis is still a rookie. One day, young fella. One day.
Midseason Picks — Carolina Panthers (25/2) and Cincinnati Bengals (15/1)
On principle alone, it’s worth throwing a little on the Panthers and Bengals – who are a combined 15-0 thus far. Both will likely lose a couple games at some point, but Cam Newton has played like an MVP at times and you could say the same for Andy Dalton.
Don’t be surprised to see Carolina make a run to the NFC title game, and from there they’ve got as good a shot as anybody to win the whole thing. Cinci would presumably have to get by New England eventually, but they’re easily the best Bengals team since Dalton got to town.