Bet on Black (& Gold)?

Experts sending mixed messages on Saints in early futures lines



Sportsbooks are giving the Saints 16/1 odds to win the Super Bowl, 10/1 odds to win the NFC, and 3/2 odds to win the NFC South division

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New Orleans Saints fans are feeling pretty optimistic about their team’s chances to win big this season. After all, they were a play away from the NFC Championship last season, and have seemingly added talent to their roster in the offseason without much, if any, of a drop off from departing players. But while many in Who Dat? Nation think this year’s team may be one of the best Saints teams to ever take the field, experts are seemingly not as bullish on the team as its supporters.

While Biz New Orleans does not endorse or encourage illegal gambling (it’s legal in Mississippi now), looking at betting odds gives an insight to the mindset of experts willing to wager big bucks on the outcome of the upcoming season.

VegasInsider.com has listed odds to win Super Bowl LIII, to be held in Atlanta on February 3, 2019, as well as divisional and conference championships, provided by BetOnline.ag, an online sports book based in Antigua and Barbuda, with some seemingly mixed messages.

The sportsbook gives the Saints 16/1 odds to win the Super Bowl, 10/1 odds to win the NFC, and 3/2 odds to win the NFC South division.

That means if a gambler wagered $100 on the Saints to win the Super Bowl and the team is successful, they would win $1,600 plus the original $100 stake.

The website has seven other teams with better or equal chances to hoist the Lombardi Trophy at the conclusion of the 2018-19 season. It lists the New England Patriots as the favorite with 7/1 odds. The Minnesota Vikings, Philadelphia Eagles, and Pittsburgh Steelers are next, all at 10/1, with the Los Angeles Rams at 12/1, Green Bay Packers at 14/1, and Atlanta Falcons equal to the Saints at 16/1.

The NFC race is predicted much the same, with the Vikings and Eagles at 11/2, the Rams at 13/2, Packers at 8/1, and Falcons and Saints at 10/1.

So why is that odd?

While the Saints and Falcons are given similar chances in the hunt for the Super Bowl and conference championship, New Orleans is the favorite to win the NFC South divisional championship with 3/2 odds, while the Falcons follow closely at 7/4. Meanwhile the Carolina Panthers (11/4) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers      (12/1) are given less of a chance to make an impact.

In the division race, a $100 bet on the success of the Saints at 3/2 odds means the bettor would take in $150 plus the original $100 stake (3/2 multiplied by 100). A $100 bet on the Falcons means the bettor would take in $175 plus the original $100 stake (7/4 multiplied by 100). That means the experts believe the Saints will be the better team in the regular season. Why they give the Falcons equal chances to win the Super Bowl and the NFC are unclear and unexplained.

It’s worth noting that New Orleans is tied with the Detroit Lions for the second hardest strength of schedule in 2018 based on the combined record and winning percentage of all of their 16 opponents last season (137-119; .535). The Packers are deemed to have the toughest schedule, as their 2018 opponents went 138-118 in 2017, a winning percentage of .539. The Falcons have the 13th toughest schedule as their 2018 opponents went a combined 130-126 last season, winning 50.9 percent of their games.

 

Odds to win Super Bowl LIII

VegasInsider.com’s odds to win Super Bowl LIII, to be held in Atlanta on February 3, 2019, as provided by BetOnline.ag, an online sports book based in Antigua and Barbuda. Schedule strength is based on the 2017 winning percentage of all of a team’s 2018 opponents.

 

Team Odds Schedule Strength
New England Patriots 7/1 T-22
Minnesota Vikings 10/1 T-8
Philadelphia Eagles 10/1 T-19
Pittsburgh Steelers 10/1 T-25
Los Angeles Rams 12/1 T-5
Green Bay Packers 14/1 1
Atlanta Falcons 16/1 13
New Orleans Saints 16/1 T-2
Houston Texans 20/1 32
Jacksonville Jaguars 20/1 T-25
Los Angeles Chargers 20/1 24
San Francisco 49ers 20/1 T-15
Dallas Cowboys 25/1 T-15
Kansas City Chiefs 25/1 T-19
New York Giants 25/1 T-8
Carolina Panthers 33/1 12
Denver Broncos 33/1 T-25
Oakland Raiders 33/1 T-29
Baltimore Ravens 40/1 21
Detroit Lions 40/1 T-2
Tennessee Titans 40/1 31
Seattle Seahawks 50/1 T-5
Cleveland Browns 66/1 T-5
Indianapolis Colts 66/1 T-22
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 66/1 4
Arizona Cardinals 100/1 T-8
Buffalo Bills 100/1 18
Chicago Bears 100/1 T-8
Cincinnati Bengals 100/1 T-29
Miami Dolphins 100/1 T-15
Washington Redskins 100/1 14
New York Jets 150/1 T-25
     

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Chris Price is an award-winning journalist and public relations principal. When he's not writing, he's avid about music, the outdoors and Saints, Ole Miss & Chelsea football. He lives in New Orleans with his wife, two girls and three Labradors. In addition reporting on New Orleans sports, he is looking forward to Biz’s assignment to cover the Mint 400, “The Great American Off-Road Race.”

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