2019 NFL Season Preview


The NFL’s 100th season gets underway on Friday as the Bears host the Packers from Soldier Field.

Futures betting is one of the most profitable ways to make money on the NFL, and with plenty of value to be found in our Super Bowl, MVP, Rookie of the Year, Over/Under and Division markets, there’s no time like the present to lay down a few wagers ahead of kickoff.

In case you’ve fallen a little behind, we’ve done the hard work for you to bring you up to speed on all things x’s and o’s, so be sure to read our complete 32 team NFL Season Preview below.

AFC East

Buffalo Bills

Super Bowl: $101.00

Last year’s 6-10 record was right on brand for the Bills as the jury remains out on whether this rebuild is actually gearing toward something significant. There’s no doubt Josh Allen is starting under center in Week 1 as the 23-year-old hopes to put last year’s dreadful accuracy woes behind him. A team is only as good as its quarterback, and if Allen throws anywhere close to 11 interceptions again, Buffalo can kiss their faint hopes of a Wild Card berth goodbye. The good news is the Bills have finally surrounded their quarterback with a pair of capable receivers adding John Brown and Cole Beasley through free agency. Reports from camp suggest Allen has developed some patience in the pocket and a strong rapport with both receivers. The three-headed running back committee of LeSean McCoy, veteran Frank Gore and third-round pick Devin Singletary could also bring a new element to Brian Daboll’s offence.

Best Bet: Bills Over 6.5 Wins @ $1.53

To Win the AFC East: $10.00

Miami Dolphins

Super Bowl: $501.00

The Dolphins have been lacking a reliable starting quarterback for the better part of a decade as they now hope former first round pick Josh Rosen can take over where Ryan Tannehill left off. A trade with the Cardinals on draft day brought the 22-year-old to South Beach, but after struggling to establish himself as a starter with limited talent in Arizona, Rosen’s future in Miami is far from certain. New head coach Brian Flores comes from a defensive background during his eight seasons in New England, and while his resume is strong, he and new offensive coordinator Chad O’Shea have zero playcalling experience between them. With a lack of weapons, and a handful of questions surrounding the running game, the Dolphins look a firm favourite for the 2020 No. 1 overall pick.

Best Bet: Dolphins Under 4.5 Wins @ $2.15

To Win the AFC East: $51.00

New England Patriots

Super Bowl: $8.00

The Patriots said farewell to one of the all-time great tight ends this offseason as Rob Gronkowski announced his retirement. That leaves New England short another receiver, but as we’ve seen in years past, the Patriots aren’t afraid to get creative. Any sort of injury to eight-year wide receiver Julian Edelman could spell disaster, but Patriots fans needn’t worry too much about the passing game. The general vibe out of New England is the Patriots intend to transition into a run-first team – the perfect recipe for success only a year after ranking fifth in rushing yards thanks to Sony Michel’s 900-yard rookie year.

Best Bet: Patriots Under 11.0 Wins @ $2.00

To Win the AFC East: $1.15

New York Jets

Super Bowl: $67.00

Jets General Manager Joe Douglas flashed the checkbook back in March signing free agent Le’Veon Bell to a lavish four-year, $52.5 million contract. It’s a gamble the Jets are willing to take on a running back that missed the entirety of the 2018 season, but the payoff could be huge should Bell post his third consecutive 1,000-yard season. Elsewhere, the Jets bolstered the defence by adding tackle Quinnen Williams with the third overall pick. All Williams did last year was rack up eight sacks and 71 total tackles with Alabama, which should come in handy a year after the Jets ranked Top 10 in rushing and passing yards allowed.

Best Bet: Jets Over 7.0 Wins @ $1.56

To Win the AFC East: $7.00

AFC North

Baltimore Ravens

Super Bowl: $34.00

Out with the old and with the new – both on the roster and between the hash marks. Super Bowl-winning quarterback Joe Flacco has departed for the Broncos, clearing a path for the Ravens to get a good look at scrambling specialist Lamar Jackson. The Ravens could be the surprise packet of the season should they rank top five in fewest yards allowed on the ground and in the air once again. What won’t come as a surprise though is the Ravens running the ball on first down. Aside from Jackson’s wheels, the Ravens also welcome veteran Mark Ingram into the backfield after eight strong seasons in New Orleans. Ingram rushed for 645-yards in a shortened season with the Saints last year while sharing the carries with Alvin Kamara. Still under 30, there’s plenty of juice left in the tank just yet.

Best Bet: Ravens Under 8.5 Wins @ $1.71

To Win the AFC North: $3.50

Cincinnati Bengals

Super Bowl: $201.00

Things have gone from bad to downright horrible in Cincinnati. To be fair, things looked grim entering the offseason on the heels of a 6-10 record – the Bengals’ third consecutive season under .500. But now star wide receiver A.J. Green is set to miss at least the first two weeks of the season with an ankle injury, casting further doubt over Zac Taylor’s first season as head coach. The one remaining positive is Cincinnati’s offensive line. The Bengals gave up the 10th fewest sacks last year before drafting offensive tackle Jonah Williams in the first round. Since Andy Dalton and Joe Mixon will have to carry the team, at least they’ll have decent protection to rely on. The same optimism can’t be found for Cincinnati’s first-half schedule though – the Bengals travel to Seattle, Buffalo, Pittsburgh, Baltimore and the Rams all before the bye.

Best Bet: Bengals Under 6.0 Wins @ $1.71

To Win the AFC North: $21.00

Cleveland Browns

Super Bowl: $15.00

Winners of the offseason, Odell Beckham Jr., and most likely, the AFC North. Cleveland General Manager John Dorsey saw the glass half full as the Browns finished last season with plenty of promise, topping it off by not only signing a top-five wide receiver but also signing trouble running back Kareem Hunt to a one-year deal. Off-field issues aside, all Hunt has done since entering the league in 2017 is average 4.7 yards per carry and just under 80 yards-per-game. With Baker Mayfield continuing to progress, two talented receivers in OBJ and Jarvis Landry, and a returning Hunt in Week 8, it’s safe to get excited about the Browns again.

Best Bet: Browns Under 9.5 Wins @ $1.65

To Win the AFC North: $2.40

Pittsburgh Steelers

Super Bowl: $21.00

Distraction-free, the Steelers can now get back to work knowing all of last season’s dramas are a thing of the past. Le’Veon Bell has departed for New York, while Antonio Brown is now a member of the Oakland Raiders. There’s still plenty of talent left over in Pittsburgh though as the 37-year-old Ben Roethlisberger prepares for his 14th season under centre. Juju Smith-Schuster finished fifth in receiving yards last year, while Bell’s replacement, James Conner, ranked third in rushing touchdowns. First-round pick Devin Bush also strengthens a defence that finished top five in fewest rushing and passing yards allowed last season.

Best Bet: Steelers Under 9.0 Wins @ $2.00

To Win the AFC North: $2.75

AFC West

Denver Broncos

Super Bowl: $81.00

Vance Joseph’s two-year tenure as head coach came to an end following Denver’s second season below .500. In steps Vic Fangio, the man responsible for Chicago’s top rank defence in 2018. Fangio has zero experience as a head coach, which makes the Broncos one of the more intriguing teams this season. Joe Flacco is also among the new faces in Denver after starting only nine games last year with the Ravens. It’s difficult to get excited about the Broncos in a competitive division featuring two Super Bowl contenders, although there are several small storylines worth following. Phillip Lindsay flashed real promise before a wrist injury sidelined him last year. The defence was also sneaky good across all 16 games.

Best Bet: Broncos Over 7.0 Wins @ $2.00

To Win the AFC West: $12.00/a>

Kansas City Chiefs

Super Bowl: $8.50

Firmly in both the Super Bowl and MVP discussion as Patrick Mahomes somehow looks to set the bar even higher. We’ll never know if the Chiefs could have beaten the Patriots in overtime during last year’s AFC Championship game, but we do know Kansas City is poised for another big season. Tyreek Hill has been cleared to start the season, and although the running game won’t be near what it was with Kareem Hunt, the Chiefs still have a strong committee of Damien Williams and Carlos Hyde to rely upon on. Defensively, the Chiefs were awful against the pass last year, so it’s no surprise General Manager Brett Veach focused on the secondary during the middle rounds of the draft. The only thing stopping the Chiefs from reaching the Super Bowl this year would be Mahomes regression or a trip to Foxboro in the playoffs. You can make up your own mind on which one of those scenarios are more likely to happen.

Best Bet: Chiefs Over 10.5 Wins @ $1.75

To Win the AFC West: $1.67

Los Angeles Chargers

Super Bowl: $15.00

The Chargers returned to the playoffs for the first time since 2014 last season only to bow out in blowout fashion to the Patriots. The season could still be labelled a success though when you factor in how many injuries LA had to overcome, particularly on defence. A full year of Joey Bosa would go a long way to ensuring a trip back to the postseason, especially after drafting two defensive players in the first two rounds of the draft. Jerry Tillery accounted for 13.5 sacks during his four years at Notre Dame, adding another dimension to the Chargers pass rush that ranked inside the bottom 10 in sacks last year. Melvin Gordon’s holdout has added some drama this offseason, but with plenty of depth behind him, there’s no reason the Chargers can’t return to the Wild Card game.

Best Bet: Chargers Over 9.5 Wins @ $1.71

To Win the AFC West: $2.75/a>

Oakland Raiders

Super Bowl: $101.00

General Manager Mike Mayock wasted no time replenishing his wide receiver stocks, adding Antonio Brown through free agency on a three-year, $50 million deal. The Raiders thought they were getting the games best wide receiver, but instead they’ve received nothing but headaches in the form of Brown’s frostbite diagnosis and his issues with the NFL’s helmet policy. Whether Brown does or doesn’t play could make or break the Raiders in 2019, as Oakland falls into a tricky category of teams that might win anything between four-eight games. Defensively, the Raiders allowed the third-most rushing yards in the league last year, so there’s still work to be done there. The jury is also out on quarterback Derek Carr, who was sacked 51 times.

Best Bet: Raiders Under 6.5 Wins @ $1.48

To Win the AFC West: $15.00/a>

AFC South

Houston Texans

Super Bowl: $21.00

Andrew Luck’s shock retirement two weeks out from the season has catapulted the Texans into heavy favouritism to win the AFC South. With a strong offensive roster comprising of third-year quarterback Deshaun Watson and the league’s best receiver DeAndre Hopkins, Houston certainly has the talent to not only win the division, but also the Super Bowl. Unfortunately, things took a slight turn during the preseason with starting running back Lamar Miller suffering a season-ending ACL injury. The Texans have plenty of depth with Duke Johnson and Carlos Hyde stepping in, but there’s also the sudden departure of defensive end Jadeveon Clowney to account for. Houston has the fourth toughest strength of schedule heading into the season, and with games against the Saints, Jaguars, Chargers and Panthers to start the season, we should find out plenty about what the Texans have to offer early.

Best Bet: Texans Over 8.5 Wins @ $1.95

To Win the AFC South: $2.30/a>

Indianapolis Colts

Super Bowl: $51.00

The Andrew Luck era came to an emotional end as the star quarterback announced his retirement in the third week of preseason. With injuries piling up and recovery time dwindling, Luck decided to unselfishly pull the plug on his six-year career, throwing backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett into the spotlight. The Colts have been high on Brissett for a while, so there’s every chance this all works out for the better. The 26-year-old has made 23 starts during his time in both Indy and New England, throwing 13 touchdowns and seven picks in the process. Still, Brissett has massive shoes to fill. The Colts do have a strong running game in Marlon Mack to rely on, as well as a defence that allowed the seventh-fewest rushing yards last season. But even so, this might turn out to be a bit of a gap year as the Colts eye the future.

Best Bet: Colts Under 9.5 Wins @ $1.30

To Win the AFC South: $5.00/a>

Jacksonville Jaguars

Super Bowl: $51.00

Two years removed from a narrow AFC Championship Game loss to the Patriots, the Jaguars now find themselves looking to make up for last years horror 5-11 season. The front office got busy during the offseason by signing Super Bowl LII hero Nick Foles to a four-year, $88 million contract. It’s a hefty deal for an aging 30-year-old quarterback, but it appears the Jaguars feel their window for success is now. Further down, Jacksonville acquired defensive end Josh Allen, who could turn out to be one of the biggest steals of this year’s draft. A full season from oft-injured running back Leonard Fournette would also go a long way towards another playoff appearance.

Best Bet: Jaguars Under 7.5 Wins @ $1.95

To Win the AFC South: $3.75/a>

Tennessee Titans

Super Bowl: $51.00

It’s another ‘glass half-full’ kinda year for the Titans. The health of quarterback Marcus Mariota will be paramount if Tennessee are to weasel their way into the playoffs, while there’s plenty of questions surrounding the coaching staff – namely Arthur Smith, who has never coached as an offensive coordinator before. Defensively the Titans could make waves though and challenge some of the AFC’s top contenders. Tennessee ranked inside the bottom five in rushing and passing touchdowns allowed last year, which should come in handy with games against the Texans in Weeks 15 and 17 and the Saints in between.

Best Bet: Titans Under 8.0 Wins @ $1.71

To Win the AFC South: $4.50

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys

Super Bowl: $23.00

Last year’s NFC East winners look to be one big question mark with star running back Ezekiel Elliott sitting on the sidelines. An offseason contract dispute has the two-time Pro Bowler doubtful for Week 1 and perhaps indefinitely, leaving the Cowboys short one of their top offensive weapons. The trickle-down effect should be felt immediately as the offence transforms into pass-first. Dak Prescott isn’t the most accurate quarterback going, but he did complete just over 67% of his passes last season – the 10th highest total in the NFL. A full training camp with Amari Cooper should bring big results, but with a very difficult run home with games against the Bears, Rams and Eagles in the final month, don’t expect the Cowboys to lock up the division anytime before Week 17.

Best Bet: Cowboys Over 9.0 Wins @ $2.00

To Win the NFC East: $2.60

New York Giants

Super Bowl: $101.00

The Giants grabbed what they thought to be the quarterback of the future in the first round of the draft, selecting Duke prospect Daniel Jones with the sixth overall pick. Jones will start the season on the sidelines behind 14-year veteran Eli Manning, leaving the Giants somewhere between the 4-6 bracket in terms of season wins. Star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr has also departed for greener pastures in Cleveland, leaving Sterling Shepard and emerging tight end Evan Engram in charge of receiving duties. Last year’s Rookie of the Year Saquon Barkley is the favourite in our Most Rushing Yards market ($4.00), but since no one knows just how long or short Manning’s leash is on the starting role, it’s difficult to envision Big Blue coming anywhere near a winning record in 2019.

Best Bet: Giants Under 6.0 Wins @ $1.65

To Win the NFC East: $15.00

Philadelphia Eagles

Super Bowl: $11.00

For the second straight season the Eagles are banking on a bounce-back year from quarterback Carson Wentz. Nick Foles departing to Jacksonville means there is no Plan B, but the good news is the Eagles bolstered their wonky offensive line by adding Washington State offensive tackle Andre Dillard in the first round of the draft. Wentz and Foles combined for 40 sacks last year, not that you need to remind Wentz’s ACL or his numerous back injuries. The jury is still out on whether the Eagles are deep enough at receiver, but the added addition of fan favourite DeSean Jackson should offer Wentz another option in the slot. The ground game also received a boost in the form of Jordan Howard, gifting the Eagles their long lost bell cow running back. Philly currently have the 26th easiest strength of schedule, leaving them as the short-priced favourites to claim the division.

Best Bet: Eagles Over 9.5 Wins @ $1.55

To Win the NFC East: $1.75

Washington Redskins

Super Bowl: $201.00

Alex Smith’s gruesome leg injury was perhaps the most memorable moment of the Redskins’ 2018 season. Not surprisingly, the 35-year-old isn’t slated to return anytime soon, leaving former Denver Bronco Case Keenum in charge under center. Keenum was a shell of his former self at Mile High only a year after leading the Vikings to the NFC Championship Game. A career-high 15 interceptions places a huge question mark over Keenum’s skillset, but with rookie Dwayne Haskins occupying the backup role, the Skins don’t exactly have a long list of options. Defensively Washington could surprise a few folks, though. The Redskins ranked 11th in interceptions last year and also allowed the ninth fewest rushing touchdowns.

Best Bet: Redskins Over 6.0 Wins @ $1.83

To Win the NFC East: $12.00

NFC North

Chicago Bears

Super Bowl: $15.00

Two doinks cost the Bears a trip to the Super Bowl last year, but that still hasn’t dampened the optimism in Chicago. We should learn a lot about this Bears team as they host the Packers in Week 1, a game that will test Chuck Pagano’s defence against one of the league’s best quarterbacks. The Bears tied for third in sacks last year and also ranked Top 10 in fewest passing and rushing yards allowed. Khalil Mack, fresh from a 12.5 sack season, is a wrecking ball in the backfield, but as we learned last year, defence can only carry the Bears so far. This is a big year for quarterback Mitch Trubisky as he prepares for his second full season under center. Overthrown balls were commonplace in Trubisky’s game last year, but he still showed plenty of poise when it came to running the ball. Rookie phenom David Montgomery should also shoulder plenty of the workload as Chicago’s new feature back.

Best Bet: Bears Under 9.5 Wins @ $1.71

To Win the NFC North: $2.75

Detroit Lions

Super Bowl: $101.00

Surprise sleepers or cannon fodder? The Lions might be the most underrated team in the league when you take a look at just how much talent there is on the roster. Quarterback Matthew Stafford returns for his 10th season under center after throwing for his lowest touchdown total since the 2012 season. Part of that was due to a new offensive system under new head coach Matt Patricia, but the recent hiring of offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell might change things for the better. Bevell spent seven seasons in Seattle as the OC, helping earn the Seahawks their first Super Bowl title in 2013. He worked wonders with running back Marshawn Lynch and wide receiver Doug Baldwin, both of whom compare well to the Lions’ Kerryon Johnson and Marvin Jones Jr. The North is a tough division, but with a kind strength of schedule in the final four weeks, don’t sleep on Detroit making a Wild Card push.

Best Bet: Bears Under 6.5 Wins @ $1.83

To Win the NFC North: $17.00

Green Bay Packers

Super Bowl: $21.00

Mike McCarthy’s 13-year tenure as head coach came to an end midway through the 2018 season, paving the way for former Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur to take over the reins. LaFleur, who also spent time as the Rams OC during the 2017 season, could work wonders in an offence led by one of the game’s greatest quarterbacks. On the flip side, developing a working relationship with Aaron Rodgers could take time, something Green Bay doesn’t have with Rodgers’ age clock ticking. The Packers continue to uncover star receivers, with the latest being Davante Adams, who is fresh from his first 1,000-yard season. Adams’ route running and jump ball skills are second to none, while starting running back Aaron Jones could be in for a big season should he stay healthy. The additions of Za’Darius Smith and Preston Smith gifts Green Bay a serious pass rush capable of rivaling the Bears, but in a nutshell, the Packers still fall into that weird category of possible Super Bowl contenders and serious underachievers. It all depends on injuries and just how quickly LaFleur adjusts.

Best Bet: Packers Over 9.0 Wins @ $1.88

To Win the NFC North: $2.75

Minnesota Vikings

Super Bowl: $26.00

The Vikings found themselves 6-3-1 prior to their Week 10 bye last season before losing four of their final seven games. Not for the first time, Minnesota present a compelling case for playoff contender and at the same time, a sub-par .500 team. Quarterbacks are the first player blamed when a team underachieves, as Kirk Cousins found out the hard way last year. Despite what some fans think, the multi-million-dollar man actually had himself a season though, throwing for over 4,000-yards, 30 touchdowns and the second-highest completion rate in the league. The defence also performed exceptionally well allowing the third-fewest red zone touchdowns and the eighth-fewest points-per-game. What held the Vikings back last year was largely the strength of the division and their lack of a ground game. Dalvin Cook, who has played in only 15 games over the last two seasons due to various injuries, is by far one of the most agile and talented running backs in the league. Should he suit up for a full 16-games, the Vikings look a great chance to win the North.

Best Bet: Vikings to Win the NFC North @ $3.00

NFC West

Arizona Cardinals

Super Bowl: $151.00

The biggest movers and shakers of the offseason pressed the restart button on their rebuild by drafting quarterback Kyler Murray with the No. 1 overall pick and trading future franchise man Josh Rosen not long after. Murray, who threw for over 4,000 yards and 42 touchdowns last year at Oklahoma, is a huge wait and see at the NFL level. Speed and agility are a huge plus, but his short 5-10 frame could make him vulnerable to the speed of a top-level pass rush. Of course, Murray won’t be short on options to bail him out of trouble. Veteran Larry Fitzgerald returns for his 14th season, while second-year receiver Christian Kirk looks poised for a huge year. It’s easy to forget David Johnson is also one of the premier running backs in the league, and with new head coach Kliff Kingsbury dialing up some creative looks and schemes, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Cardinals win a handful of games.

Best Bet: Cardinals Over 5.0 Wins @ $1.83

To Win the NFC West: $31.00

Los Angeles Rams

Super Bowl: $10.00

Super Bowl hangovers are all the rage in the NFL, and the Rams could turn out to be the latest victim. Los Angeles’ disappointing Super Bowl display against the Patriots leaves plenty to be desired from Sean McVay’s side, especially with a handful of the leagues most talented players on the roster. A year ago, Jared Goff was thought of as one of the most promising young quarterbacks, but after throwing only one touchdown pass during the postseason, suddenly some doubt has crept in. The return of injured receiver Cooper Kupp should provide Goff one of his most reliable weapons, but with the durability of running back Todd Gurley also a huge question mark, the jury is still out on the Rams. You’d be foolish to doubt McVay’s coaching style, but since the NFL is a copycat league, can the Rams stay ahead of the curve? If one thing is for sure, you can expect defences to adjust accordingly this year.

Best Bet: Rams Under 10.5 Wins @ $1.71

To Win the NFC West: $1.55

San Francisco 49ers

Super Bowl: $41.00

The 49ers might be a year behind where they’d like to be in their return to playoff contention. Jimmy Garoppolo’s devastating knee injury in Week 3 last year cost him, and the Niners, their entire season. The good news is Jimmy has returned ready to roll, and with a handful of stellar draft picks, San Francisco could be poised for a Wild Card spot in 2019. At the top of the list, Ohio State defensive lineman Nick Bosa should enjoy a long and healthy diet of sacks when he returns from injury, while second-round pick Deebo Samuel also presents as a dangerous threat both as a receiver and a kick returner. Unfortunately, most of San Francisco’s scoring chances will have to come through the air this year after running back Jerick McKinnon was ruled out for the second straight season.

Best Bet: 49ers Under 8.0 Wins @ $1.88

To Win the NFC West: $5.50

Seattle Seahawks

Super Bowl: $31.00

Doubt the Seahawks at your own risk. This time last year many thought Seattle would fade into obscurity behind a tattered offensive line and a fairly thin receiving corp. Again, we were left with egg on our face as the Seahawks finished the season 10-7, clinching a Wild Card spot before losing to the Cowboys a week later. Plenty has changed in Seattle with long-time fan favourite Doug Baldwin retiring, leaving the Seahawks scrambling for answers at receiver. Drafting D.K. Metcalf was a smart move from General Manager John Schneider, even if the Ole Miss star misses the start of the season with a knee injury. The Seahawks also got busy signing Russell Wilson to a lavish four-year, $140 million extension back in April, ensuring one of the leagues top scramblers remains with the team long term. Speaking of running the ball, Seattle’s committee of Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny should also provide plenty of spark on offence. And with the fifth easiest strength of schedule, you’d be foolish to doubt Pete Carroll’s ability to pull off the unthinkable for the second year in a row.

Best Bet: Seahawks Under 8.5 Wins @ $2.05

To Win the NFC West: $3.75

NFC South

Atlanta Falcons

Super Bowl: $26.00

Last seasons Week 1 loss to the Eagles set the tone for the entirety of the Falcons season. Atlanta turned up to Lincoln Financial Field looking flat, going on to win only three of their seven games prior to the bye. In the end, the Falcons missed the playoffs with a 7-9 record only two years removed from a Super Bowl appearance. Now, the Falcons will be looking to bounce-back in a crowded NFC South picture with the seventh toughest schedule in the league. Defensively, the Falcons were a mess last year as a complete lack of depth helped Atlanta surrender the fifth-most passing touchdowns. There hasn’t been much improvement in that department so far, and the offensive line is also of equal concern.

Best Bet: Falcons Under 8.5 Wins @ $2.10

To Win the NFC South: $4.00

Carolina Panthers

Super Bowl: $51.00

Easy to forget how great the Panthers looked prior to Cam Newton’s bothersome shoulder injury towards the back end last year. At one stage Carolina had won six of their first eight games, right before a seven-game losing streak doomed the Panthers for a 7-9 finish. Hot and cold streaks like that don’t fly in the NFC South, but the good news is Cam looks healthy and ready to go. You can expect a different style of play from one of the games top athletes though, as Cam has spent most of the offseason working on arm angles and improving his mechanics. Christian McCaffrey’s workload will also be monitored closely as the Panthers must avoid running the versatile pass catcher into the ground. Second year receiver D.J. Moore also made huge strides last season falling just shy of 800-yards, developing into Cam’s go-to target. Overall, the Panthers are perhaps the biggest sleeper team of the entire season, and one that has all the pieces, and the coaching, to go very far.

Best Bet: Panthers Over 7.5 Wins @ $1.65

To Win the NFC South: $6.00

New Orleans Saints

Super Bowl: $9.00

Drew Brees, now 40-years-old, returns for his 17th season in the NFL after falling just eight yards shy of his 13th consecutive season of 4,000-yards or more. Sooner or later Brees will begin to regress, but like Tom Brady, we’re not going to be the ones to suggest when that time might come. Instead, the Saints remain the favourites in the South with Brees under centre, Alvin Kamara in the backfield and one of the leagues most underrated wide receivers, Michael Thomas, catching passes. Saints fans can sleep well knowing they hold the eighth-easiest strength of schedule this year, and if they can escape the first month of the season against the Texans, Rams, Seahawks and Cowboys with at least two wins, New Orleans should be well on their way to a third straight playoff appearance.

Best Bet: Saints Under 10.5 Wins @ $1.71

To Win the NFC South: $1.60

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Super Bowl: $81.00

Bruce Arians returns to the coaching ranks following last year’s absence. After five years at the helm in Arizona, Arians has a mountain of work ahead of him as he prepares to turn one of the league’s most dysfunctional franchises into something of a playoff contender. The good news is Arians isn’t afraid to mix things up and take a few chances, particularly on offence. His “risk it for the brisket” approach should suit Jameis Winston perfectly, and with talented wide receiver Mike Evans and O.J. Howard to throw to, don’t be surprised if the Bucs pull off their fair share of upsets this year.

Best Bet: Bucs Over 6.5 Wins @ $1.88

To Win the NFC South: $12.00

Tips, recommendations and commentary are for entertainment only. We provide no warranty about accuracy or completeness. You should make your own assessment before placing a bet.