The four teams with the best odds to win Super Bowl XLIX will all be in action on Thursday night when the 2014 NFL preseason schedule gets into full swing.
The two squads open the preseason as futures betting favorites to win Super Bowl XLIX, with the Broncos pegged at 13-2 and the champion Seahawks close behind at 7-1.
The Broncos have taken four of the last five from Seattle but let the big one get away when the Seahawks trounced them 43-8 in the Super Bowl back in February. And it has been all Seattle in recent preseason matchups, as the team is 4-0 against the spread against the Broncos in August, according to the NFL preseason odds database at Odds Shark.
While he is not expected to play many minutes on Thursday, all eyes will be on Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning. Returning for an amazing 16th NFL campaign, the 38-year-old is a 3-1 favorite to win his sixth NFL MVP honor in 2014.
The New England Patriots also open their NFL exhibition schedule this week, travelling to D.C. as 1.5-point underdogs against the Washington Redskins. The Patriots enter August with odds of 15-2 to win their fourth Super Bowl and are heavy 1-3 NFL futures betting favorites to win the AFC East for the 12th time in 14 seasons.
The Redskins stumbled to a 3-13 finish in 2013 but are a respectable 4-5 bet to win at least eight games for just the second time in the last six seasons.
They have also lost five straight preseason games against the Patriots.
The San Francisco 49ers sit deadlocked with the Patriots in NFL betting, with odds of 15-2 to win Super Bowl XLIX. The Niners open their preseason on Thursday against the Baltimore Ravens. The game is pegged as a pick'em with the total set at a conservative 35 points.
It is the first meeting between the two clubs since Baltimore’s 34-31 Super Bowl XLVII victory in February 2013. After struggling last season, the Ravens open the new campaign in the middle of the pack in Super Bowl XLIX futures betting with odds of 40-1.
However, they have solid 11-4 odds to return to their familiar spot atop the AFC North division.