Cowboys, Patriots among best bets to win Super Bowl ahead of playoffs
Now that one of the craziest NFL regular seasons in recent memory is over, we finally know the 14-team postseason field. Only some of those squads have a realistic chance of winning it all - and just a few are worth betting to do so.
Here are the updated odds at theScore Bet to win the Super Bowl ahead of the playoffs, along with my three favorite bets to hoist this year's Lombardi Trophy.
|Green Bay Packers||+380|
|Kansas City Chiefs||+450|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+800|
|Los Angeles Rams||+950|
|New England Patriots||+1600|
|San Francisco 49ers||+2500|
|Las Vegas Raiders||+5000|
Los Angeles Rams (+950)
The Rams were my preseason pick to win it all, and while it's been a somewhat bumpy road to this point, they still enter the playoffs with the NFL's third-best record (12-5) after winning five of six games since the start of December.
Los Angeles ranks No. 1 in PFF grades and No. 2 in net yards per play, and this roster is as good as it's been all year after adding Odell Beckham and Von Miller during the campaign. It's also among the healthiest in the entire postseason field - particularly in the NFC, where the top two seeds have battled attrition all season long.
Sean McVay is among the handful of coaches in this year's field with Super Bowl experience and has arguably his most talented roster this time around. Matthew Stafford's recent turnover streak is discouraging, but he had one of his best performances of the season in a Week 14 win over the Cardinals, whom he'll face again this week. If he can take care of the ball in that game and beyond, this team has all the makings of a title winner.
Dallas Cowboys (+1100)
It seems impossible for a team as nationally beloved as the Cowboys to fly under the radar ahead of the postseason. Somehow, that's the case with this squad, which leads the league in DVOA and is the only team with a top-six mark on offense (sixth), defense (second), and special teams (sixth).
Start with the offense, which has scored 50 points in two of the last three weeks with surprisingly little fanfare. Between 1990 and 2020, only five teams had scored 50 points twice in the same season; four of the five reached the conference title game, and two of them - the 2007 Patriots and 2013 Broncos - got to the Super Bowl.
Dallas' defense has somehow been even more impressive thanks to the prolific play of rookie linebacker Micah Parsons and star cornerback Trevon Diggs, who both have the potential to be absolute game-wreckers in the playoffs. Yes, we've seen the Cowboys disappoint in postseasons past, but this iteration is far too talented and productive to be priced as a second-tier contender.
New England Patriots (+1600)
Remember that exclusive list of teams to score 50 points twice in a season? The Patriots added themselves to it. They own the league's top scoring offense (30.6 PPG) and top scoring defense (16.0 PPG) since Week 7. So how in the world are they priced at 16-1 here and as high as 22-1 at some shops?
Losses to the Bills and Colts in late December shook the market's confidence, but this is still a top-five team by most advanced metrics behind a suffocating defense and high-upside offense. The Patriots are particularly adept against the pass - which is crucial in this year's AFC - and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels has found ways to scheme Mac Jones into success in the quarterback's rookie campaign.
They'll be tested right away against the Bills, who beat New England in Week 16 to even the season series and earn home-field in this contest. I'd expect a better game plan against Josh Allen in what should be a low-scoring affair, which is how the Patriots will need to muscle their way through the AFC. At relatively long odds, I'll gladly bet on Bill Belichick and Co. to surprise.