Buying or Selling Each Team's 2014 Super Bowl Odds
Ah, it's that time of year again!
With the vast majority of NFL teams (Atlanta and Tennessee being the exceptions) done with offseason work until the start of training camp, it's now the proper time to begin to assess teams' 2014 Super Bowl odds.
Using odds taken from BetUs.com, one can see how Las Vegas values each NFL franchise as it enters the 2013 season.
Think of each of these odds as bets coming in $100 increments. So, if you were to plunk down $100 on the Patriots, who are listed at +700 (7-to-1), and they were to win it all, you'd win $700 on your bet.
Also, this exercise is not meant to encourage you to wager your hard-earned money on any of these teams. It is meant to analyze all of the odds listed and determine if they too high, too low or just right.
What are the odds for your favorite team to win the Super Bowl? Let's find out, starting from the team with the worst odds (Jacksonville) all the way to the teams with the best (Denver and San Francisco).
Jaguars 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +15000 (150-1)
The Jaguars, along with the Raiders, possess the lowest odds to win Super Bowl XLVIII, coming in at a staggering +15000.
Honestly, just look at the picture above. The Jacksonville quarterback derby will be decided primarily between Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne.
Would you really want to plunk down even one dollar of your hard-earned cash on either Gabbert or Henne?
Infinity-to-one would have been a more reasonable listing.
Raiders 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +15000 (150-1)
Unfortunately for Raiders fans, who haven't seen a winning season since the great Rich Gannon led the team to Super Bowl XXXVII, their odds to win Super Bowl XLVIII are the same as the Jaguars'.
There's no sugarcoating this: The Raiders are going to be terrible. So terrible, in fact, that I expect coach Dennis Allen to lose his job after the season, despite only holding the post for two seasons.
Is it feasible to construct a scenario where the Raiders could potentially surprise and possibly make a push for a wild-card spot? Yes. It's not likely, but it's within the realm of possibility. Compare that with the Jaguars, who have no chance of contending, and the Raiders should have gotten slightly better odds than Jacksonville.
New York Jets
Jets 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +10000 (100-1)
Ah, if only these odds had been "Team Most Likely to Butt Fumble." The Jets would have been the overwhelming favorite!
These odds are fair. The Jets are going to be terrible, but they'll be better than the Jaguars.
Bills 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +10000 (100-1)
The future for Buffalo might be bright, but there are questions regarding the present, mostly centered around the quarterback position.
On paper, the Bills' 53-man roster is better than that of the Jaguars, Raiders and Jets. But, the team will likely be starting a rookie quarterback in EJ Manuel, which downgrades the situation.
Still, I think there is potential in Buffalo. The Bills won't win the Super Bowl, but they should be better than the three teams behind them on this list. That makes these odds a sell. The odds should be better.
Titans 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +10000 (100-1)
For the Titans, 2013 will be the first season that Jake Locker is the unquestioned starter at quarterback. While he's failed to sparkle thus far in his NFL career, Tennessee has done a good job of surrounding him with talent on offense.
While the defense wasn't up to snuff in 2012, the offense intrigues me. And with coach Mike Munchak likely fighting to keep his job, the Titans should have a sense of urgency from Week 1 forward.
There's reason to be bullish on the Titans. Their odds should be better.
Cardinals 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +10000 (100-1)
Most people will probably see the Cardinals grouped in the same odds category as the Jets, Bills and Titans and wonder why.
Carson Palmer is shot as an NFL quarterback. The offensive line, even with the drafting of guard Jonathan Cooper in the first round of April's draft, is still a major question mark. And outside of Larry Fitzgerald, who do you really trust on offense?
Their defense could be an amalgamation of the '85 Bears and '00 Ravens and it wouldn't make a difference.
These odds are spot-on.
Browns 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +7500 (75-1)
The Browns aren't going to win the Super Bowl this season, but they'll be improved from a 2012 campaign that saw them finish 5-11.
New coach Rob Chudzinski put together an excellent staff, with Norv Turner coordinating the offense and Ray Horton the defense. There are terrific and young building blocks on both sides of the ball.
Their odds should be a bit better.
St. Louis Rams
Rams 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +5000 (50-1)
People forget that, last season, the Rams went 4-1-1 against the highly competitive NFC West, which featured both the 49ers and Seahawks.
The team has improved this offseason, specifically with the signing of tight end Jared Cook and the drafting of West Virginia wide receiver Tavon Austin. Quarterback Sam Bradford finally has some weapons to work with.
Plus, Jeff Fisher is a terrific coach.
The Rams are definitely capable of making some noise in the NFC West. That makes this an easy verdict.
San Diego Chargers
Chargers 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +4500 (45-1)
While San Diego finished last season 7-9, it would be lucky to hit that mark again. The Chargers are the third-best team in their own division (behind Denver and Kansas City), and they don't have much of a hope of competing for a playoff berth.
The offensive line scares me too much. These odds are correct.
Kansas City Chiefs
Chiefs 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +4500 (45-1)
Perhaps more than any other team this offseason, the Chiefs have reloaded. From the hiring of coach Andy Reid to the trade for quarterback Alex Smith to the drafting of offensive tackle Eric Fisher with the first overall pick, the Chiefs have definitely improved.
Unlike the Chargers, with whom they share the same odds, Kansas City has an opportunity to contend for a playoff berth in 2013. The Chiefs' odds should be better.
Vikings 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +4500 (45-1)
While some might argue that the presence of 2012 NFL MVP Adrian Peterson and the fact that they made the playoffs last year should lead to better odds for the Vikings, it's just not true.
Bottom line: Minnesota still employs Christian Ponder at quarterback. While he's better than most people think, he's not yet at the stage of his career where he'll be able to win games on by his lonesome.
That fact alone makes these odds fair.
Lions 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +4000 (40-1)
While the Lions made the playoffs in 2011, 2012 was nothing short of an abject failure. The team stumbled to a 4-12 record that has put coach Jim Schwartz squarely on the hot seat.
The Lions are closer to last season's iteration than they are to 2011's. Plus, there's no way they are as good as the Vikings. That makes this an easy verdict.
Panthers 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +4000 (40-1)
Some are bullish on the Panthers' prospects in 2013, but there isn't much reason to be.
The offense could potentially be potent, and I'm certainly a fan of quarterback Cam Newton, but there are issues on the defensive side of the ball.
These odds are fair.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Buccaneers 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +4000 (40-1)
This offseason, the Buccaneers took their biggest area of need, the secondary, and turned it into a strength, trading for cornerback Darrelle Revis, signing safety Dashon Goldson and drafting cornerback Johnthan Banks.
With quarterback Josh Freeman continuing to develop, there's reason to be bullish on the 2013 Buccaneers, and they'll be better than the Panthers.
The odds should be better.
Eagles 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +3500 (35 to 1)
Many are seeing the Eagles odds and likely wondering how they could be better than those of the Vikings, Panthers and Buccaneers. Those thoughts are fair.
While the Eagles could surprise in 2013 and be a factor in the NFC East, they aren't a better team than Minnesota or Tampa Bay.
The odds are too high.
Colts 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +3500 (35-1)
Yes, the Colts went 11-5 last season and qualified for the postseason. Yes, Andrew Luck is still their quarterback. And yes, he should be even better in year two than he was as a neophyte.
It doesn't matter. The odds are spot-on. The Colts were a great story in 2012, but there's no question that they overachieved.
This doesn't mean that Colts fans should be concerned about a 6-10 season. It just means that these odds are fair.
Dolphins 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +3500 (35-1)
The Dolphins were the most aggressive team this offseason, splashing cash to bring in players like wide receiver Mike Wallace and linebacker Dannell Ellerbe and trading up to third overall in the draft to select Oregon defensive end Dion Jordan. Plus, quarterback Ryan Tannehill will look to build off a promising rookie campaign.
There is legitimate reason to be excited by the Dolphins in 2013, but they aren't legitimate Super Bowl contenders.
These odds are fair.
Bengals 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +3500 (35-1)
There is reason to feel good about the 2013 Bengals.
Their draft haul was outstanding, as they selected Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert in the first round and North Carolina running back Gio Bernard in the second. Both should add pop and sizzle to an offense in desperate need of it.
Plus, the team employs two of the better coordinators in the league in Jay Gruden (offense) and Mike Zimmer (defense).
With the team set to be featured on HBO's Hard Knocks during training camp, the bandwagon will fill up fast.
These odds are too low. The Bengals will be better than the odds indicate.
Cowboys 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +3000 (30-1)
Love them or hate them, the Cowboys are one of the most popular teams in not only the NFL, but in all of sports. And when the public likes a team, it becomes overvalued.
Make no mistake: The Cowboys are overvalued at +3000.
Dallas' offensive line was a sieve in 2012, and without protection, there's no way for quarterback Tony Romo to succeed.
Then there's the offseason emasculation of head coach Jason Garrett by owner Jerry Jones, as Garrett will no longer call the plays, ceding the duties to offensive coordinator Bill Callahan, who hasn't called plays in the NFL for a decade.
The fact that the Cowboys have better odds than the Bengals is ludicrous.
Redskins 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +2500 (25-1)
The Redskins had a magical season in 2012, culminating in an NFC East title and playoff berth.
While the season ended on a sour note, with a wild-card playoff loss to Seattle and a serious knee injury to franchise quarterback Robert Griffin III, there's reason to be optimistic for the 2013 iteration of the team.
With Griffin on the mend and his prospects of starting in Week 1 growing, these odds are fair.
Bears 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +2500 (25-1)
The Bears finished with a 10-6 record in 2012, but they missed the playoffs, which cost coach Lovie Smith his job.
Enter new coach Marc Trestman, charged with the assignment of elevating Jay Cutler to the next level of quarterback play.
Cutler has the skills and talent to get it done, and there are playmakers throughout the roster.
These odds are spot-on.
Steelers 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +2000 (20-1)
For more on the phenomenon of popular teams being overvalued, see the slide on the Dallas Cowboys.
The Steelers are the third-best team in their own division, behind Baltimore and Cincinnati. They are an aging team with major question marks.
This does not mean that they are in for a 6-10 season; I have too much respect for coach Mike Tomlin and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to insinuate that. But these odds are way too high for a team that will struggle to qualify for the postseason.
Ravens 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +2000 (20-1)
While the Ravens won Super Bowl XLVII in dramatic fashion, an argument could certainly be constructed that the 2013 team, on paper, won't be as good as in 2012.
Despite that, the Ravens still employ Joe Flacco at quarterback and John Harbaugh as coach. I'll roll the dice with that quarterback/coach combination any day of the week.
Also, the Ravens' odds should absolutely be better than Pittsburgh's.
New York Giants
Giants 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +1800 (18-1)
While the Giants missed the playoffs in 2012, they still employ quarterback Eli Manning and head coach Tom Coughlin. And as the team showed in 2007 and 2011, all they need to do is qualify for the postseason and anything can happen.
That makes +1800 a fair price for Big Blue.
New Orleans Saints
Saints 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +1500 (15-1)
Head coach Sean Payton is back on the sidelines for the Saints, having served his one-year suspension for his involvement in the infamous Bountygate scandal, and with his return comes a sense of excitement in the Bayou.
Because of their defense, the Saints' odds are too high.
Falcons 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +1400 (14-1)
The Falcons came within a play of advancing to Super Bowl XLVII, and they look like a playoff team yet again in 2013.
Atlanta is one of the best teams in the NFC, and it will be better than New Orleans. But with Green Bay, Seattle and San Francisco all better than the Falcons, these odds are fair.
Texans 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +1200 (12-1)
While the Texans captured their second straight AFC South title in 2012 and appear likely to win the division again in 2013, these odds are too high.
Houston can't stack up with the elite teams in the AFC: Denver, New England and Baltimore.
That makes this an easy sell.
Green Bay Packers
Packers 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +1000 (10-1)
The Packers employ the best player in the NFL, quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who gives them an opportunity to win every single time he steps onto the field.
But still, it would be unfair to the other elite teams in the NFC, Seattle and San Francisco, to rank Green Bay above them, particularly with concerns abounding on the Green Bay defense.
Seahawks 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +750 (7.5-1)
Seattle was a few plays away from qualifying for the NFC title game last year in what was quarterback Russell Wilson's rookie campaign.
With the Seahawks having improved this offseason with the acquisitions of wide receiver Percy Harvin and defensive end Cliff Avril, among others, Seattle appears poised to make another run at the Super Bowl.
New England Patriots
Patriots 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +700 (7-1)
In 2012, the Patriots eclipsed double-digit victories for the 10th consecutive season. That total will likely push to 11 at the conclusion of the 2013 campaign.
Even with the team's issues, especially as it concerns their two star tight ends, Rob Gronkowski (surgeries on forearm and back) and Aaron Hernandez (questioned by police this week in a homicide probe, though he's not believed to be a suspect), the Patriots employ Tom Brady at quarterback and Bill Belichick as head coach.
That makes these odds fair.
Broncos 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +600 (6-1)
The presumptive AFC favorite Denver Broncos are coming off a 13-3 season that ended in disappointing fashion: a 38-35 double overtime home loss in the divisional round of the postseason to the eventual Super Bowl champion Ravens.
Despite the heartache associated with that defeat, the Broncos are loaded, starting with Peyton Manning at quarterback. They deserve to be the AFC's favorite, so these odds are fair.
San Francisco 49ers
49ers 2014 Super Bowl Odds: +600 (6-1)
On paper, the 49ers are the best team in football. They came within a few yards of winning last year's Super Bowl, and they appear poised to make another run to the title game this season.
Even with the Falcons, Packers and Seahawks breathing down their necks, the 49ers are currently the best team in the NFC.
That makes these odds spot-on.