Super Bowl 2012 Predictions: Championship Odds for Every Playoff Team
The National Football League regular season is in the books and 12 teams will fight it out in the playoffs in hopes of reaching Super Bowl XLVI on Feb. 5, 2012.
Cantor Gaming has just released their betting odds for each participant to potentially lift the Lombardi Trophy inside Lucas Oil Stadium, with the Green Bay Packers leading the way as 7/5 favorites.
Let's take a closer look at the futures market from a betting perspective.
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
The Cincinnati Bengals won two of their final three games to land a wild card spot, but they've had absolutely no success against quality opponents this year.
Oddsmakers have established the Bengals as three-point road underdogs against the Houston Texans for Saturday's contest.
The season may not come to an end this weekend, but a trip to the Super Bowl is out of the question.
Super Bowl Odds: 60/1
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
The Denver Broncos captured the AFC West division despite losing their final three games, including a listless 7-3 effort against the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday.
It's hard to imagine that the Broncos will walk away with a victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers during the wild card round, currently listed as nine-point home underdogs.
Tim Tebow has ruined any type of value on this team, as casual fans backed him heavily during his five-game winning streak.
Super Bowl Odds: 60/1
Andy Lyons/Getty Images
The Houston Texans are a banged up football team and will be facing a revenge-minded opponent inside Reliant Stadium.
Houston captured a 20-19 come-from-behind road victory over Cincinnati on Dec. 11.
I anticipate this franchise making some noise in the AFC playoffs due to possessing the second-best defense in the NFL in terms of total yards allowed.
Super Bowl Odds: 30/1
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
The Detroit Lions aren't a mature enough football team to win the Super Bowl, which was clearly on display in their 45-41 loss to the Green Bay Packers Sunday.
Super Bowl Odds: 40/1
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images
Being able to run the football during the playoffs is always important, especially in trying to slow down a ferocious pass rush.
My upset pick for Sunday's action.
Super Bowl Odds: 35/1
New York Giants
Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images
The New York Giants are capable of beating any team that comes out of the AFC in the Super Bowl, but they will not run the gauntlet in the NFC playoffs.
It's important to note that the franchise's longest winning streak this year was three games.
Quarterback Eli Manning's season ends this weekend.
Super Bowl Odds: 16/1
San Francisco 49ers
Whitney Curtis/Getty Images
Don't underestimate first-year head coach Jim Harbaugh when coming off a week of rest, as he'll certainly have the San Francisco 49ers ready to play in the divisional round.
Any team that ranks first in the NFL in rush defense has a chance in the playoffs.
I'm not a believer in Alex Smith in what's become a quarterback league.
Super Bowl Odds: 10/1
Matt Sullivan/Getty Images
The Pittsburgh Steelers should have no problem handling the Denver Broncos as nine-point road favorites during the wild card round, which is already reflected in their betting odds in this particular category.
Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is capable of leading another Super Bowl run—even if he doesn't have running back Rashard Mendenhall available.
No value at this point in time.
Super Bowl Odds: 9/1
Andy Lyons/Getty Images
The Baltimore Ravens aren't getting much respect in the AFC playoff discussion due to quarterback Joe Flacco's play in big moments, but running back Ray Rice may be enough.
Closing the season with six wins in seven games was important, as the league's No. 3 defense will be ready after a week of rest.
Definitely worth a look.
Super Bowl Odds: 6/1
New Orleans Saints
Chris Graythen/Getty Images
The New Orleans Saints closed the regular season with eight consecutive victories and are definitely one of the favorites to walk away with the Lombardi Trophy.
Quarterback Drew Brees pilots the league's No. 1 offense in terms of total yards and just set the league's single-season passing record.
My pick from the beginning.
Super Bowl Odds: 4/1
New England Patriots
Jim Rogash/Getty Images
Green Bay Packers
Scott Boehm/Getty Images
The Green Bay Packers are capable of putting up video game-type numbers offensively, but their defense finished the regular season 31st in the league in surrendering 411.6 yards per game.
Possessing home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs is definitely an advantage, as the Packers finished the regular season with a perfect 8-0 mark inside Lambeau Field.
The betting favorite to repeat as champions.
Super Bowl Odds: 7/5