NFL win totals at sportsbooks like Mybookie.ag have been up for weeks, but they can change at anytime, whether it’s due to heavy action on side or another or a major injury or suspension (think Tom Brady’s four-game Deflategate penalty). So it’s tough handicapping totals this early, but here are three I am very confident about in online NFL betting.
In Depth Analysis on the Sure Over/Under NFL Picks for the 2016 Season
Could the defending Super Bowl champions miss the playoffs entirely? It’s possible, and I’d go under this wins total. Of course the Broncos lost their top two quarterbacks off last year’s roster in future Hall of Famer Peyton Manning and his once-assumed successor in Brock Osweiler, who spurned Denver for a few million extra dollars to sign with the Houston Texans. So your starting QB is Mark Sanchez. Yikes. The Broncos had the NFL’s top defense last year but lost end Malik Jackson and linebacker Danny Trevathan, among others. Now there’s talk that star linebacker and Super Bowl MVP Von Miller is willing to sit out the 2016 season if he isn’t made the highest-paid defensive player in NFL history. He is very dissatisfied with Denver’s first offer, which is essentially only a two-year deal with $38 million guaranteed. The Broncos have slapped the franchise tag on Miller, which would pay him $14.1 million. I highly doubt Miller sits out, but Article 10, Section 15(c) of the Collective Bargaining Agreement provides that the Broncos can’t use the exclusive franchise tender on Miller in 2017 if he doesn’t play in 2016. Also, star cornerback Aqib Talib recently shot himself while drunk in Texas. He could be facing legal issues there and an NFL suspension. The injury itself isn’t too serious. Go under here.
Carolina Panthers (10.5 wins)
Let’s go to the other Super Bowl team, and I’d go over here. Will the Panthers win 15 regular-season games again? Certainly not. And they did lose star cornerback Josh Norman, deciding to rescind the franchise tag and letting him walk for free. Norman had a career-high four interceptions, 16 passes defensed and 56 tackles last season for the NFC champion Panthers. So he will be missed. But the Panthers will still have one of the NFL’s top defenses, they still have the reigning NFL MVP in quarterback Cam Newton, and they get back their top receiver, Kelvin Benjamin, after he missed all of 2015 following an excellent rookie season. Benjamin should make Newton that much more dangerous.
San Francisco 49ers (5.5 wins)
Go under on NFL betting odds here. You know that at least a couple of teams are going to win three games or fewer because it happens every year and there’s usually one per conference minimum. The Niners are clearly the least-talented team in the NFC and might be favored in a game just once all season. How sad are things in Frisco? Blaine Gabbert, one of the biggest first-round draft busts of this decade (with Jaguars) is reportedly the “heavy favorite” to become the starting quarterback in San Francisco over Colin Kaepernick. The players like Gabbert, who wants to be there, but don’t like Kaepernick, who doesn’t want to be there. Plus Gabbert is healthy right now and learning the offense under new coach Chip Kelly, while Kaepernick is recovering from offseason surgery.