In chapter three of our ‘Degenerate Gambler’s Express’ series, we take a look at some of Vegas’ early front runners to take home the Lombardi trophy in what may be a frigid February night in New Jersey. The favorites are not really surprising and show a list of usual suspects, so we’ll also throw in some of the local teams and the long shots just to keep things interesting. Check out our other ‘Degenerate Gambler’s Express’ articles below and decide on your most effective way to squander your life savings this fall.
Denver Broncos, 6/1
Denver fell to Baltimore in double OT on its home field last year in the playoffs, but not before a reeling off 11 wins in a row en route to a 13-3 season and its second consecutive AFC West title. After adding Wes Welker and Louis Vasquez to bolster an already potent offense, the Broncos stroll into 2013 as the AFC favorites. Former QB and now front office suit John Elway is also hoping some veteran additions on D can lead Denver back to Super Bowl glory, and perhaps a new dental procedure for his front teeth.
San Francisco 49ers, 6/1
Jim Harbaugh and San Fran rode a stingy D and a rejuvenated offense all the way to the Super Bowl last year, taking out Green Bay and Atlanta to capture the franchise’s sixth NFC title. For an encore, the ’9ers will try to get a full season of production from Colin Kapernick, who stepped in midseason last year and never looked back. Six picks in the first four rounds, not to mention the acquisitions of Anquan Boldin and Nnamdi Asomugha, have fortified an already strong roster, and make ‘Frisco a favorite to repeat in the NFC.
Seattle Seahawks, 9/1
After an 11-5 season and a playoff victory over Washington, Seattle is many people’s chic pick to make a lot of noise in 2013. Despite Percy Harvin’s nagging hip injury that will probably keep him out for a portion of the year and some early season suspensions, the oddsmakers are loving the Seahawks and their solid young defense. If Seattle is going to climb the mountain in the NFC, it has to hope for no sophomore slump from Russell Wilson and more steamrolling from Marshawn Lynch.
New England Patriots 9/1
Vegas knows better than to sleep on the Patriots just because of some pesky pending murder charges against one of their star players. As long as Belicheck and Brady are coming to the yard, you know New England will be a tough out in the AFC, regardless of who is catching the passes. 10 straight seasons with double digit wins is all the evidence needed to prove that the Pats will probably be front and center once the season enters its stretch run.
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Cincinnati Bengals, 33/1
After consecutive playofff berths, the Bengals have a new factor to deal with heading into 2013: expectations. With three draft picks in the the first two rounds, it seems Cincy has upgraded an already talented roster, and now stands in the top third of Super Bowl odds. Already armed with one of the best defensive lines in the game, the Bengals hope the offense can create enough firepower to compliment what should be a rock solid D.
Indianapolis Colts, 40/1
Year one of the new regime in Indy couldn’t have went much better for Colts fans, as the team turned a 2-14 disaster into an 11-5 season and a playoff berth. Taking another leap forward will be much more challenging, however, as the Houston Texans have become the AFC South’s top dog.
Tennessee Titans, 150/1
Vegas has a bleak outlook for a Titans squad that 6-10 went last year. Tennessee hasn’t seen a playoff berth sine 2008, and unless Mike Munchak and the crew have some tricks up their sleeve, most seem to think that trend will continue.
Oakland Raiders, 200/1
Rich Gannon isn’t walking through that door.
Jacksonville Jaguars, 200/1
Blaine Gabbert may look like Thor, but most seem to think north Florida won’t have much to cheer for once the season starts.