- The Patriots (-400), Steelers (+125), Texans (+165), and Chiefs (-160) are favored to win the AFC divisions
- The Eagles (-150), Saints (-150), and Rams (-150) are heavy chalk in their respective NFC divisions
- the NFC North is the only division without a clear favorite, with the Bears and Packers both at +190
With Week 1 of the 2019 NFL season finally here, it can be tempting to believe you know exactly how things are going to unfold during the league’s centennial season. However, at this time of year, it’s important to remember that nothing is ever as it seems in the National Football League.
With plenty of surprises on tap, let’s check the latest divisional odds at BetOnline and pick winners across the AFC and NFC.
ODDS TO WIN AFC EAST
|AFC East Team||Odds|
|New England Patriots||-400|
|New York Jets||+550|
Providing New England with an all-important bye week in round 1 of the playoffs year-in and year-out, the AFC East’s ineptitude has been the Patriots’ greatest advantage over an 18-year span where they’ve won 16 division titles and six Super Bowls.
While the respective ages of Sam Darnold (22) and Tom Brady (42) provide Jets fans with hope that New England’s reign may soon be over, it’s best to play it safe for one more year.
Pick: New England Patriots (-400)
ODDS TO WIN AFC NORTH
|AFC North Team||Odds|
After being division favorites all offseason, the Browns shaky offensive line has given bettors pause. In the meantime, Antonio Brown’s helmet antics have people believing the Steelers will be better off without the diva wide receiver.
But, with a stacked offense of fantasy stars (Baker Mayfield, Nick Chubb, Odell Beckham Jr.) and a terrifying defense led by DPOY-candidate Myles Garrett, I’m sticking with the Browns.
Pick: Cleveland Browns (+165)
ODDS TO WIN AFC SOUTH
|AFC South Team||Odds|
Texans head coach Bill O’Brien made a couple of baffling trades, first sending three-time Pro Bowler Jadeveon Clowney to the Seahawks for nothing, then shipping two first-round picks and a second to Miami for LT Laremy Tunsil and WR Kenny Stills.
After Bill O’Brien traded away Jadeveon Clowney and brought in Laremy Tunsil and Kenny Stills, we’re left wondering—what exactly is the Texans’ long-term plan? https://t.co/NRk9UysipS
— The MMQB (@theMMQB) September 3, 2019
Deshaun Watson’s presence alone makes Houston the rightful favorite in the AFC South, but I’m not ready to dismiss a Colts team with a bulldozing offensive line, an ascending young defense led by Darius Leonard, and a smart play caller in Frank Reich who should be able to coach up Jacoby Brissett.
Pick: Indianapolis Colts (+400)
ODDS TO WIN AFC WEST
|AFC West Team||Odds|
|Kansas City Chiefs||-160|
|Los Angeles Chargers||+175|
The Chargers’ offensive line is in tatters with LT Russell Okung expected to miss at least six games, both Jon Gruden and Antonio Brown are certifiably insane, and the Broncos are quarterbacked by Joe Flacco.
The Chiefs, meanwhile, have a once-in-a-generation star in Patrick Mahomes, an ever-expanding universe of exciting offensive weapons, and a planet-sized play-calling genius in Andy Reid.
Pick: Kansas City Chiefs (-160)
ODDS TO WIN NFC EAST
|NFC East Team||Odds|
|New York Giants||+1000|
The roller-coaster ride that is the Ezekiel Elliott-Jerry Jones contract negotiation is the latest reminder (after Kawhi Leonard’s free agency watch) that the “insider” reports you read on Twitter are complete crap.
With Zeke’s status still up-in-the-air and Amari Cooper once again having foot trouble, Dallas’ potentially-dominant young defense won’t be enough to ground the Eagles.
ESPN panel votes Carson Wentz as second most likely player to win MVP https://t.co/is49Hvg8Xb
— Brandon Lee Gowton (@BrandonGowton) September 2, 2019
Philadelphia has a deep O-Line, explosive rookie weapons in WR JJ Arcega-Whiteside and RB Miles Sanders, and an old friend in DeSean Jackson who should catch plenty of deep balls from a healthy Carson Wentz.
Pick: Philadelphia Eagles (-150)
ODDS TO WIN NFC NORTH
|NFC North Team||Odds|
|Green Bay Packers||+190|
Is Mitch Trubisky ready to make another leap in coach Matt Nagy’s offense or is he the next Blake Bortles? Was the Packers’ demise all Mike McCarthy’s fault or will Aaron Rodgers struggle to get along with new coach Matt LaFleur as well?
Can Gary Kubiak fix the Vikings offense or is the Kirk Cousins signing already a lost cause? And, finally, will Detroit fire the slovenly Matt Patricia at mid-season or wait for another 6-10 finish? This may be the division with the most questions in all of the NFL. I’ll take the team with the best roster, top to bottom.
Pick: Minnesota Vikings (+225)
ODDS TO WIN NFC SOUTH
|NFC South Team||Odds|
|New Orleans Saints||-150|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+900|
The Saints rebounded from the Minneapolis Miracle to win the NFC South last season, but it’s going to be harder to shake off the blown call that cost them a trip to the Super Bowl.
Doubted his entire career, a healthy Cam Newton is going to make magic happen in Norv Turner’s offense with Christian McCaffrey and two promising pass catchers in D.J. Moore and Curtis Samuel.
Pick: Carolina Panthers (+450)
ODDS TO WIN NFC WEST
|NFC West Team||Odds|
|Los Angeles Rams||-150|
|San Francisco 49ers||+450|
The Seahawks’ trade for Jadeveon Clowney puts them back on the radar, but a dearth of pass-catching options and an uncreative offensive coordinator will ultimately doom Russell Wilson.
While I believe the Rams attack will be slowed by a hobbled Todd Gurley, Sean McVay should be able to draw up enough plays to take advantage of a weak NFC West and claim his third-consecutive division title.
Pick: Los Angeles Rams (-150)