The 5 NFL Teams Most Likely to Win the Super Bowl
No matter what level of contention each of the 32 teams in the NFL is shooting for in private, once the tape is rolling, they’ll all say that they’re ready to compete for a Super Bowl tomorrow. This is, of course, not taken particularly seriously by anyone involved when most of the teams say it — even if football’s emphasis on parity really does result in the ability to go from zeros to heroes — or at least Super Bowl contenders — in the span of a single season. No one is putting their reputation on the line to argue that the Jaguars are going to take the league by storm after their five loss start.
That said, the Vince Lombardi trophy is there for the taking every year, and since defending Super Bowl champions are so rare — never mind repeat winners — for the good NFL teams, the playing field is relatively equal. The biggest difference is that the optimism of the preseason and first two weeks of play have been replaced by logistics and numbers. If a team starts off the season with three losses, they’re unlikely to make it into the playoffs, let alone all the way to the Super Bowl. While that is not to say that oddsmakers won’t take an outlandish bet, there’s a reason why some teams are sitting at 2,500-1 odds to come out of 2014 victorious.
So, using odds from Bovada, we’ve taken a gander at which teams are left in serious, honest Super Bowl contention. Or, thinking cynically, the teams that fans are most likely to wager on.
5. San Diego Chargers: 10-1 odds
Alongside Philip Rivers as a not-so dark horse MVP candidate, the San Diego Chargers are turning heads as they continue to leverage a great start (currently, the team sits at 4-1, rattling off four straight wins to lead the AFC West) into prime Super Bowl contention, the likes of which haven’t been seen since LaDainian Tomlinson was still playing in the NFL. This is not something that most people expected going into the 2014 season, and while it’s possible that the Chargers could be in for another brief postseason appearance, they look like they could be primed for a deep run.
4. New England Patriots: 10-1 odds
All hail the cut off hoodie. After a couple weeks of uncharacteristic underperformance, the New England Patriots came storming out with a week five performance that temporarily silenced the doubters and the Tom Brady trade rumors in one fell swoop. Are they still running on fumes? Yes. Are they still hurting for receiver depth? Yes. Are these odds so safe because the house is assuming that fans will see the game and figure that the Pats have still got it, baby? Almost certainly. Could they go all the way and win their first Super Bowl since Spygate? It’s very possible.
3. Green Bay Packers: 10-1 odds
Never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line, never bet against Aaron Rodgers in matters of the mustache, and never count out the Green Bay Packers before their playoff hopes have been statistically eliminated. Those seem to be the three guiding principles of the measurements that have the NFL’s only community owned team so high up on this list, since they’re only sitting 3-2 on the season so far, tied with the Detroit Lions for supremacy over the NFC North.
2. Denver Broncos: 17-4 odds
Last year’s Super Bowl runner ups are here to do two things: win games and break records. As Peyton Manning and company attempt to make everyone forget about their disastrous game last February, one of the most potent offenses the NFL has ever seen has cruised out to a 4-1 record, putting them neck and neck with the San Diego Chargers — who we’re still trying to remember are looking like one of the elite teams this season. Also, at 17-4 odds, that means any correct bet is going to pay over four and a quarter times what the initial wager was. Just so you know.
1. Seattle Seahawks: 4-1 odds
Since they’re still the defending Super Bowl champions, even if they’ve been, dare we say underrated these last couple of weeks, the Seahawks have to be afforded the benefit of the doubt until the games really start to matter. Sitting at three wins to a single loss and with their bye week in the rearview mirror, Seattle’s now prepared for the long grind to the top of the NFC West. Their biggest competition? The Arizona Cardinals, who are currently sitting at 33-1 odds, despite owning the same record as their Pacific North West division members.