NFL Picks: Earliest Look at Super Bowl 50 Futures Betting Market

Kevin Stott

Sunday, February 1, 2015 3:38 PM UTC

Sunday, Feb. 1, 2015 3:38 PM UTC

Next year's Super Bowl 50 betting odds have been released! There’s no better time to get maximum value on a bet than right now for the 2016 battle held in the the new Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California.

Piping hot out of the oven from the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook here in Sin City are updated (Wednesday, January 28) NFL odds for next year’s Super Bowl 50—the NFL has decided to scrap the Roman numerals for a year due to aesthetics—to be held at the new Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, 45 miles southeast of San Francisco and the home of the NFC’s 49ers. The game will take place on February 7, 2016 and will be the first Super Bowl held in the Bay Area since Super Bowl XIX some 30 years ago (1985) and will be called the “Golden Super Bowl” due to its site in the Golden State (California) and because 50th anniversaries are traditionally dubbed “Golden” ones. Super Bowl 50 will be televised on CBS.


The Value on Some of These Futures Bets Often Has a Shelf-Life Like Milk
Quite often, the best odds sports bettors are going to get on the eventual Super Bowl winners (NFL champions) are those first released by the different sports books, and with two of this season’s top three favorites—the AFC’s New England Patriots (Opened 7/1 to win this Sunday’s Super Bowl XLIX, Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) and the NFC’s Seattle Seahawks (Opened 4/1)—meeting in this year’s NFL championship game at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona on Sunday (NBC, 6:30 p.m./3:30 p.m. PT), that could again be the case next season as much of the value of Patriots and Seahawks Super Bowl XLIX Futures Bets were lost quickly after their release last year, as is often the case in most major professional sports. Hey, it don’t come easy brother.

When those swarming Seahawks (NFL), the San Antonio Spurs (NBA), the Los Angeles Kings (NHL), Manchester City (EPL) and Bayern Munich (Bundesliga) win their respective league championships or one big game for all the marbles like the Super Bowl—as Seattle did last year and is trying to duplicate this weekend—sportsbooks in Las Vegas, Europe and offshore can all deal with it as the prices of those teams as big favorites can usually only create so much liability. But when teams like the San Francisco Giants (MLB) or Atlético Madrid (La Liga)—which topped European giants Barcelona and Real Madrid in shocking the world last season in Spain’s top flight of soccer—with longer odds in their titles end up winning their leagues and their bettors’ Futures bets, as they both did last season, then the sports books usually have more exposure. And that’s where the fun and the beauty lies, in trying to find those values early enough on and then get down on the theoretical best pick(s) in one’s mind. And anyone who has done it, knows it’s not easy to win Futures. There’s always only one winner in each Futures book marketplace, and, although there is certainly nothing wrong with it and I’m guilty of it more often than not, many people bet with their hearts and back their favorite teams, value be damned. Poof! That was your money formerly being your’s.

And two of those teams, the Patriots and Seahawks, are again the favorites next season and it makes perfect sense that we could see these two banging heads again in Super Bowl 50. The two teams that get to the Super Bowl almost always have great QBs and good coaches and good-to-great defenses. Anyway, let’s look at the latest odds for next year’s Super Bowl 50—there have been eight teams whose odds have changed already since release—as well as the even-fresher AFC and NFC Divisional odds and provide some quick thoughts about all 32 NFL teams chances get to Santa Clara and maybe win it all next season. The early bird gets the worm, bubba.


Super Bowl 50 Futures Odds - Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook (NFL odds: 1/28/2015)

Seattle Seahawks 5/1

New England Patriots 6/1

Green Bay Packers 7/1

Denver Broncos 8/1

Indianapolis Colts 12/1 (Opened 16/1)

Dallas Cowboys 14/1 (Opened 12/1)

Baltimore Ravens 20/1 (Opened 25/1)

Philadelphia Eagles 20/1 (Opened 16/1)

Pittsburgh Steelers 20/1 (Opened 25/1)

Detroit Lions 25/1

New Orleans Saints 25/1

San Francisco 49ers 25/1

Cincinnati Bengals 25/1

Arizona Cardinals 30/1 (Opened 25/1)

Atlanta Falcons 30/1

Carolina Panthers 30/1

Houston Texans 30/1

Kansas City Chiefs 30/1

Miami Dolphins 30/1

New York Giants 30/1

San Diego Chargers 30/1

St. Louis Rams 30/1 (Opened 25/1)

Buffalo Bills 50/1

Chicago Bears 50/1

Minnesota Vikings 50/1

Cleveland Browns 60/1 (Opened 50/1)

New York Jets 100/1

Washington Redskins 100/1

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 200/1

Jacksonville Jaguars 300/1

Oakland Raiders 300/1

Tennessee Titans 300/1


Early Movement
As you can see, since being released, there have already been eight line movements for teams in the NFL Futures marketplace to win Super Bowl 50 next year, a real testament to how many Sharps and Common Folk actually take their Futures NFL Picks really seriously. Three teams were bet down: The AFC’s Colts (16/1 to 12/1), Ravens (25/1 to 20/1) and Steelers (25/1 to 20/1); while five others saw their odds go up a little bit: The NFC’s Cowboys (12/1 to 14/1), Eagles (16/1 to 20/1), Cardinals (25/1 to 30/1) and Rams (25/1 tp 30/1) and the AFC’s Browns (50/1 to 60/1), all of whom have some QB problems except for the Cowboys who still have Tony Romo riding high in the saddle. Giddyup homeslice.

Let’s look at the teams in their respective conferences with their Conference Odds with some quick thoughts on each. If you’re not blindly betting on the team you’re supporting, wagering on Futures Bets properly is often basically a process of deductive elimination.


The New England Patriots (5/2 to win AFC Championship) can win Super Bowl XLIX against Seattle on Sunday and then win Super Bowl 50 next year and then maybe people will call them a dynasty. Maybe not. People are really stubborn these days. With LeGarrette Blount proving to be a decent RB and the defense improved and QB Tom Brady definitely back and maybe the team a bit mad if it loses to the Seahawks on Sunday and with Bill Belichick at the helm, the 6/1 odds on the Patriots look good now but look quick as that may be as high as they will ever be in this marketplace.  The Denver Broncos (7/2 to win AFC) are again the second choice in the AFC at 8/1, but QB Peyton Manning—who has said he’ll be back next year—showed signs of age and the defense still needs some work. Last year, the Broncos opened at 6/1 to win this Super Bowl XLIX, so you can see how a little respect has been lost. But Denver plays in a division it should again roll through (the AFC West) and expect the organization to do everything possible in the offseason to build around Manning the Elder for one last attempt at a ring. This team is loaded with receivers, but will they have to stay healthy and get a better second half in 2015 out of Peyton to have a chance to get to the title game and then win it all. But logic says, it’s probably New England or Denver again in this conference, so maybe the Broncos bitterness from losing in last year’s Super Bowl can be relieved with a win in Super Bowl 50, surely sending Manning off into retirement with a huge smile.

The Indianapolis Colts (5/1 to win AFC, 12/1 to win Super Bowl) have Andrew Luck and could have a relatively easy path to the AFC Championship again, playing in the weak AFC South. But until the Horseshoes defense gets better and the team expects to get by the Patriots and Broncos, this team will always be disappointing its fans and its hard to toughen up playing the Texans, Titans and Jaguars twice each season. Instead of backing Indianapolis, Futures Bet money would probably be better spent on either or both AFC North bruisers, the Baltimore Ravens (8/1 AFC, 20/1 SB) and the Pittsburgh Steelers (8/1 AFC, 20/1 SB)—both bet down from 25/1 from early Wise Guy cabbage. Both teams have great coaches (John Harbaugh, Mike Tomlinson), Super Bowl-winning QBs (Joe Flacco, Ben Roethlisberger), solid defenses and wonderful fan bases, and, even at 20/1, seem to potentially have some value as both aren’t intimidated in the least by the Patriots or the Broncos.

The Ravens and Steelers’ upstart divisional running mates, the Cincinnati Bengals (11/1 AFC, 25/1 SB) have QB Andy Dalton and WR AJ Green and upstart RB Giovani Bernard, but this team folded down the stretch, doesn’t have the kind of postseason confidence or body of work as does Baltimore or Pittsburgh and the Bengals are now stuck in one of the NFL’s toughest divisions with even their in-state rival Cleveland Browns (25/1 AFC, 60/1 SB) winning games. But with head cases like youngsters WR Josh Gordon (suspended) and QB Johnny Manziel, no way that team (Cleveland) has even close to the kid of season it fought for in 2014/2015.

As far as the rest of the AFC, Kansas City Chiefs (14/1 AFC, 30/1 SB) actually beat both of this year’s Super Bowl participants, but backing a team that didn’t get a TD from the WR position this season to win the Super Bowl is like backing a dog to win a horse race because he is a large dog. No es bueno. The San Diego Chargers (14/1 AFC, 30/1 SB), Houston Texans (14/1 AFC, 30/1 SB), Miami Dolphins (14/1 AFC, 30/1) and Buffalo Bills (23/1, 50/1 SB) could all potentially surprise in the 2015 NFL season, but none will likely be good enough to knock off the Patriots, Broncos, Ravens, Steelers or the Colts. And, I can confirm, after hours of intense research, telephone calls and Googling, that the New York Jets (40/1 AFC, 100/1 SB), Tennessee Titans (120/1 AFC, 300 SB), Jacksonville Jaguars (120/1 AFC, 300 SB) and Oakland Raiders (120/1 AFC, 300/1)—who will reportedly be going with a Hurry-Up Offense to start next season—will indeed still playing football in the AFC and have not been relegated to the CFL.


The NFC should be a little bit more open next season than it was this one where it often seemed like a two-team race between the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks (5/2 to win NFC, 5/1 to win Super Bowl 50) and the Green Bay Packers (7/2 NFC, 7/1 SB), who met in the classic NFC Championship game in the Emerald City two weeks ago when we were all still young. Where I’m sitting, it still seems that the two teams with the best shot at actually winning next year’s Super Bowl will again be one of these two, with Seattle likely looking to improve its receiving corps in the offseason and the Packers remembering how close they came to boarding a plane to Glendale fueling their fire. Russell Wilson and Aaron Rodgers are both incredible under pressure and seldom do handicappers talk about the value of specific fan bases and their expectations and the Seahawks and Packers probably have the two strongest in the NFL. Caring really matters. And these two are probably worth consideration at these current NFL odds, despite the fact that only one could possibly win the NFC and advance to The Big Game next year.

The Dallas Cowboys (7/1 NFC, 14/1 SB) and the Detroit Lions (12/1 NFC, 25/1 SB) both look alot alike, all Silvery and Blue and stuff and both had impressive past seasons and have good QBs (Tony Romo, Matt Stafford). But for Dallas to win the NFC and get to The City By The Bay next February, the defense will rally have to improve, while for Detroit, it’s the offense that will have to get up to the level to which the Lions talented D played this season. The schizophrenic Philadelphia Eagles (10/1 NFC, 20/1 SB) aren’t solid enough at QB to back with a bet, as the early movement away from the opening 16/1 reveals, and, even though the Arizona Cardinals (15/1 AFC, 30/1 SB) posses a phenomenal defense and have one of the most underrated coaches in professional sports (Bruce Arians), the offense scores points like they hurt, and even with injured QB Carson Palmer coming back, navigating the nasty minefield of the NFC West with the likes of the champion Seahawks, the always solid San Francisco 49ers (12/1 NFC, 25/1 SB) and the pound-for-pound champs, the St. Louis Rams (15/1 NFC, 30/1 SB), is asking way too much. Odds for both the Cardinals and Rams went from 25/1 to 30/1. Investing in Silver ($18.02/ounce) would definitely be wiser. And as far as the Niners, with unpredictable Colin Kaepernick at QB and beloved head coach Jim Harbaugh leaving to coach at his alma mater, the University of Michigan, there’s just too much change in Frisco although this team has a loaded roster and would need to avoid the Injury Bug that plagued them much of this past season and get by those now oh-so pesky Seahawks.

Three of the semi-longshots in the NFC—the New Orleans Saints (12/1 NFC, 25/1 SB), the Atlanta Falcons (15/1 NFC, 30/1 SB) and the Carolina Panthers (15/1 NFC, 30/1 SB)—will all be banging on each other in the room-temperature NFC South and only the Panthers probably play defense good enough to make a run, as they did this season. But only 30/1 to win the Super Bowl? Come come now. Balderdash. We demand some cherries and nuts sprinkled on our sundaes Uncle Jay. Odds are Taylor Swift weds a member of the Supreme Court before a team from the NFC South brings home the sacred Vince Lombardi Trophy. And the New York Giants (15/1 NFC, 30/1 SB), Chicago Bears (25/1 NFC, 50/1 SB), Minnesota Vikings (25/1 NFC, 50/1 SB), Washington Redskins (50/1 NFC, 100 SB) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (100/1 NFC, 200/1 SB) all have way too much work to do and too many good teams they would have to climb over just to reach the NFC Championship game.


Goodbye Roman Numerals, though I never knew you at all, you had the grace to confuse us all, while those around ignored. Well at least the X’s and V’s and I’s and stuff will be gone for a year I guess. But I see no problem in calling her Super Bowl L. And I see that Señor Spellcheck has no problem with that moniker either. Maybe the NFL doth thinketh too mucheth, Billy. Although highlighting the number 50 seems appropro for the occasion. Be prepared to explain all this to your friends. And then know that it probably went right over their heads. It’s simple. One time. Super Bowl 50. Then back to Ancient Rome. And Super Bowl LI. Yes, Super Bowl LI. And they thought Super Bowl L looked stupid. Dios mio. The meteor must be close.

Anyway, there is no Early Line out yet for Super Bowl 50, but my thought is that the NFC will probably open up as slight (1- to 2-point favorites at the SuperBook) unless the Patriots pummel the defending champs like 37-13 or something, in which case, it will probably open up around a Pick ‘Em. We shall see.

The bottom line about all of this is that if you are really serious about holding a ticket or having a Futures Bet on one of these 32 NFL teams, right now is probably the best time to lock in its maximum value. History sort of shows this, although there are always times when the odds do fluctuate and the eventual champion may provide a decent return with mid-season odds. So, yes. Right now. Before Super Bowl XLIX has even kicked off. And if Seattle rolls to an easy victory (43-8) as it did last season against the Broncos, that 5/1 you’re looking at right now could shrink to 4/1 or 7/2 before you know it.

Remember to always shop around sports books in search of the best odds for your Futures Bets as odds vary and some seldom change odds despite taking action. A true marketplace is a fluid marketplace. Futures Bets can be a wonderful way to win, potentially hedge or just enjoy specific backed teams and they’re nice because they last so much longer than your average bet which is usually decided in a couple of hours. And there’s nothing like a potentially valuable and entertaining NFL Futures Picks which could last more than a calendar year.

Super Bowl 50 Futures Picks (Big): Seahawks 5/1, Packers 7/1

Super Bowl 50 Futures Picks (Medium): Broncos 8/1, Ravens 20/1, Steelers 20/1

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