After having looked at each NFL team individually, let’s look closer at the divisions. The NFL odds for the AFC West are very top heavy, so will the heavy favorite walk away with the divisional crown?
Denver Broncos (-300)
Denver is the heaviest favorite in the NFL Odds to win a division this season at -300, and for good reason. Even though they barely won the division last season thanks to a very under-the-radar Chiefs team, this season looks as if it’s the Broncos’ division to lose once again. However it might not be as hard as last season. While almost every other team in this division is still not up to par, the Broncos have gotten a lot better this offseason. They added DeMarcus Ware to give them some more pass rushing ability, and even though they lost Eric Decker, they added Emmanuel Sanders, a more than capable replacement. It might be one of the better locks for the divisional future odds, however the Broncos have too much chalk for my liking.
Kansas City Chiefs (+550)
After giving the Broncos a run for their money last season, the Chiefs are back in action this season with NFL Odds of +550 to win the division. Even after having a standout season a year ago, the likelihood of the Chiefs regressing some is high. They lost a few key players on both sides of the ball, including Branden Albert, Brandon Flowers and Akeem Jordan. On top of that, their offense is not going to be good enough to stay with Denver this season. Alex Smith is a good quarterback, but he is not a championship caliber quarterback. The sooner the Chiefs realize this, the better. Even though they could easily make the playoffs again this season, it won’t be as the AFC West champs unless the Broncos get hit with a ton of injuries.
San Diego Chargers (+550)
The Chargers might be one of the more interesting teams this season in the NFL odds. They famously snuck into the playoffs last season and won their wildcard game on the road. They even showed some punch versus the Broncos in the divisional round, however at +550, their NFL Odds to win the division are pretty adequate. Even though I love their team, their offense is still very young outside of Antonio Gates and of course Phillip Rivers. With a young receiving core, and a defense that may still give up a bunch of yards through the air, it’s hard to say that the Chargers would be a good team to place your NFL pick on this season.
Oakland Raiders (+1800)
The Raiders have been in the news recently, but not for the right reasons. There was an unconfirmed report from ESPN yesterday that the Raiders were contemplating a move to San Antonio. This likely won’t happen, but it goes to show that in Oakland, the Raiders don’t have much of a chance to be good anytime soon. They spent their summer spending money on stopgap measures, but it likely won’t lead to more than five or six wins this season in a tough division. Playing the Broncos, Chargers and Chiefs six times per season might results in five or six losses for the Raiders, and there is not value in that.