Now is the time to take a serious look at NFL futures and in particular which teams have a legitimate chance to win a Super Bowl. Here we will focus on the NFC South.
While the Seattle Seahawks, Green Bay Packers, Philadelphia Eagles, and Dallas Cowboys have been talked about a lot as the top contenders from the NFC there are still three teams alive in the NFC South and one of them is destined to get in as the division winner despite that they all have awful records. Is it even reasonable to consider the Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints, or even the Carolina Panthers as a Super Bowl contender? Maybe not, but all three are still very much alive.
Who’s In Contention?
Only 1.5 games separates the top three teams in the NFC South as the Panthers win at New Orleans on Sunday moved them to 4-8-1. It seems ridiculous but with games against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns, and Atlanta this Carolina team is still very much in contention for top spot in the division. The Panthers would need to win their next two games to potentially set up a season finale against the Falcons to determine the NFC South winner while the Saints too can clinch top spot if they win out with games against the Chicago Bears, Atlanta, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Can The Falcons Win It All?
The Falcons knocked off the injury riddled Arizona Cardinals at home before visiting the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football and are right there in the mix for top spot in the division. Matt Ryan has led the league’s fifth-ranked pass offense but Atlanta’s pass defense has been the NFL’s worst. With home games against the Steelers and Panthers as well as a trip to New Orleans left on the schedule the Falcons can still get in to the postseason as the top team from the NFC South if they win out. They already have wins over both the Saints and Panthers so it’s not completely unlikely that they get it done. Atlanta’s awful defense will probably hold them back if they do get in to the postseason and that is reflected by the fact they are listed at +6600 NFL odds to win it all. They don’t appear capable of winning it all. They can barely beat anyone outside of their division.
Can The Saints Win It All?
Despite the fact that they have lost four of their last five including four straight at home the Saints are still listed ahead of the Falcons at +5000 to win the Super Bowl on the NFL betting odds. New Orleans has been incredibly inconsistent and is coming off its worst loss of the year in a 41-10 loss to Carolina. However, the Saints get to visit the Chicago bears next week and they play the Buccaneers in their season finale so the door is still wide open for them to represent the NFC South in the playoffs if they win out including at win at home against Atlanta in Week 16. Even so, this team is clearly flawed as evidenced by their four-game home losing streak. Keep your NFL picks away from them.
Can The Panthers Win It All?
It’s somewhat ridiculous that the Panthers went winless in seven straight games including a 31-13 blowout loss to the Minnesota Vikings in Week 13 and yet is right back in contention after their win over the Saints last week. Carolina gets Tampa Bay and Cleveland at home in back-to-back weeks before visiting Atlanta in its season finale and if they win their next two games that final Week 17 showdown could determine their fate. The Panthers are listed at +150000 odds to win the Super Bowl and while that’s highly unlikely it still won’t be a major shocker if they got in to the postseason. But if they did anything in the postseason in terms of making a run, now that just seems crazy.