2019 NFL Futures Betting Market Check
NFL Futures Betting is one of the more beatable markets when it comes to betting on the NFL. The bets normally have lower limits and are generally softer than a line on an actual NFL game where the limits are higher and open to more scrutiny. These NFL Futures betting opportunities come in the form of odds to win the Superbowl, player props, NFL awards futures, odds to make the playoffs and over/unders for NFL futures betting win totals. As we are decently far away from the beginning of the 2019 NFL season, some of these odds available on the Fanduel Sportsbook are not fully bet out of value and are worth wagering on.
Los Angeles Chargers +1400 To Win SuperBowl
Perpetually underrated by the markets, this is perhaps the best chance that the Chargers have ever had to win a Superbowl. LAC finished third in total team DVOA last season, better than the Rams and Patriots who are both ahead of the Chargers in the betting markets in 2019. The Chargers have no significant changes on offense but will actually be adding more efficient targets with Hunter Henry returning. Henry averaged 9.3 yards per target in his first full playing time season which was more than Keenan Allen, Travis Benjamin and Antonio Gates. With Gronkowski retiring, Tom Brady another year old, Tyreek Hill likely suspended and the Chiefs defensive woes, it would not surprise me at all to see the Chargers win the AFC outright.
Baltimore Ravens +174 To Make The NFL Playoffs
With improvements to the Cleveland Browns roster and the historical dominance of the Mike Tomlin/Ben Roethlisberger Steelers, this price makes sense even though the Ravens were the best team in the division last year. Baltimore finished 15th in offensive DVOA last season but third in defensive DVOA. The defense is likely to regress because year over year defensive performance is unlikely to repeat. So, dear reader, you might be asking why I feel like this is a +EV bet? The primary reason is that Lamar Jackson is uniquely qualified to run the offense of a winning team and Jim Harbaugh is qualified to coach that style of football. Quarterback runs are maybe the most undervalued play in professional football and with an offense based around speed and quarterback runs, I anticipate a fairly high floor roster with a good defense. This bet is also a hedge against a Cleveland Browns resurgence and a bet that a 35-year-old Big Ben might have lost a bit of his magic.
Carolina Panthers +192 To Make NFL Playoffs
Unlike the Ravens bet, I think this is better than just a good number. I fully believe in Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. With Devin Funchess and his 6.9 yards per target off the field, Carolina projects to be better on offense. D.J Moore lead the team with 9.6 yards per target last season and projects for more playing time and targets this year. 2018 was an injury-filled season for Cam Newton and if he is still injured, then I would expect the odds for this bet to get a bit longer. Overall, I am trying to be long on the Panthers in 2019 because I expect that a team with Cam Newton, D.J Moore, Curtis Samuel and Christian McCaffrey will be one of the better offenses in the NFC and the market is afraid of Newton’s injury. If Cam Newton does miss significant time or plays injured, these bets and positions are going to look dumb. However, a healthy Carolina Panthers team projects to be the second best team in this tough division.
Buffalo Bills +1000 To Win The AFC East
Much like my position to be long on the Panthers, I am attempting to be short on the New England Patriots. The New York Jets at +700 are an interesting bet to me as well and I might end up betting both of them at these prices. The Bills were second in total team defense DVOA last year and will not dedicate any starts to Nathan Peterman, Derek Anderson or Matt Barkley. There is a pretty wide gap in projection for Josh Allen game to game but I have also long suspected that having a high variance quarterback who can create points with his feet and his arm is an interesting way for middling teams to increase their upside. Allen had three games with greater than nine adjusted yards per attempt and four games with less than four adjusted yards per attempt. With the Patriots losing Rob Gronkowski and heading into Tom Brady’s age 42 season, the time for a non-Patriots winner of the AFC East. The Patriots offense is 1.5 yards worse per play with Gronk off the field over the last 8 years and that alone is enough for me to cast a net on the other two competitive teams in the division.
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