Last season things looked good in Green Bay before injuries struck right at the core of the team. Now in 2014, will they stay healthy enough to compete for the NFC crown, or even the Super Bowl? The NFL Odds seem to think so.
Super Bowl (+1000)
At Bovada Sportsbook, the Packers are behind only the Broncos, Seahawks, Patriots and 49ers in the NFL Future Odds, and they are very adequately priced for their chances at winning it all. Last season injuries all over their defense, and to Aaron Rodgers himself derailed the Packers’ chances at a title, however they still made the playoffs, even though Rodgers didn’t play the entire second half of the season. However, this season with all of their assets back in the fold, the Packers may return to being the dark horse team of all the favorites to win the Super Bowl. Their offense can compete with anyone, and their defense has a lot of potential to create turnovers. They were able to retain BJ Raji on a one-year deal, as well as cornerback, Sam Shields, who both will play a big role on defense this season. Raji is moving back to nose tackle this season, which should really help impact the Packers’ pass rush. If healthy, Raji is almost assured to draw double teams from interior offensive lines.
Getting past the two powerhouses in the NFC West would be difficult, but there is no better team in the NFC capable of making sure we don’t have an entirely West Coast NFC Title game than the Packers. Even though he had a horrible season with the Bears last year Julius Peppers joined the Packers to add some depth to their pass rush on the edge, and with Clay Matthews coming back from injury as well, Green Bay’s sack potential is through the roof this season. However when you think of the Packers, you don’t normally think defense. This might lead to them being undervalued a lot in the early-season NFL Odds. If the sportsbooks underestimate the Packers this season, they could make a lot of people money.
NFC North (-110)
Despite losing James Jones to the Raiders, the Packers still have a very good passing attack. They arguably don’t have much in regards to a tight end this season, however if mini-camp sensation Richard Rodgers is truly ready to start as a rookie, the Packers have just added a younger and much healthier Jermichael Finley to their roster. Along with Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb, the Packers may lead the league in passing this season if all goes well. Aaron Rodgers was on pace to finish third in the NFL in passing yards before he got hurt in the first half of the season, and as long as he stays upright this season, the Packers may have great NFL Odds value. However I am going to stop short in suggesting them to win their division. The Bears are very undervalued this season and could send the Packers to the wildcard round. Also, Green Bay has had problems protecting Rodgers, and the loss of several offensive linemen this season could hurt the chances of getting a title back to the self-proclaimed, “Titletown.”