For those NFL fans who love to gamble, it’s been a terrific year.
That’s because on May 14, 2018, the United States Supreme Court overturned the federal ban on gambling known as the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA).
Now instead of having to go to Las Vegas to bet on professional and college football games, gamblers will be able to go to their local betting parlors and casinos in whichever state they live to place whatever NFL bets they like.
Unfortunately, though, that’s going to take a little more time to get set up.
So until all those new American parlors and casinos are put in place (and they will be!), online betting will continue to rule.
However and wherever you choose to place your bets, the 2018 NFL season will provide fans with plenty of opportunities to gamble, so we thought we’d offer a little help in that department.
This article series lists the current odds posted at four of the top online NFL betting sites:
- BETOnline (BO)
- Intertops (IT)
- SPORTSBetting (SB)
- GT Bets (GT)
We’ve included the betting odds for every team in each NFL division, their chances of winning their division, their conference and the Super Bowl. But remember, odds can change, so be sure to check what’s actually listed online before placing any bets.
Only gamble what you can afford to lose but study the odds to keep your losing to a minimum and shop around for the best odds to keep your winning to a maximum.
This is the NFC East
After winning 21 NFC Championships and 13 Super Bowls since the 1970s, the NFC East has become known as the toughest and the most successful NFL division.
And last season was no exception.
Despite losing their starting quarterback in Week 14, the 13-3 Philadelphia Eagles won their first ever Super Bowl in 2017 and with most of their players returning, expect a repeat performance in 2018.
The Dallas Cowboys ended up in second place in the AFC East with a 9-7 record last season, but in 2018 they have an immediate advantage: star running back Ezekiel Elliott will play all 16 games instead of only the 10 he started in 2017 due to a six-game suspension.
Due to key injuries and a tough schedule, the Washington Redskins went 7-9 last year so they shifted quarterbacks, plugged their leaky run defense and boosted their ground attack in the offseason.
The New York Giants hope to start strong in 2018 after drafting a once-in-a-generation running back to counter their finally healed wide receiver, but it all depends on their franchise quarterback playing like he used to.
The Philadelphia Eagles (+1000 to win SB LIII)
The 2017 season couldn’t have gone better for the Philadelphia Eagles since they won Super Bowl LII after defeating the New England Patriots, 41-33. And that’s after going 7-9 and being in last place in the NFC East the year before.
Head coach Doug Pederson is in his third season and hopes to do the one thing that only seven other NFL teams have done – win consecutive championships. And since most of his Eagles have remained the same, chances are it’s entirely possible.
Most Eagles stayed, some moved on
The Eagles can field 19 of their 22 last-season-starters in 2018. Some players who won’t be returning are running back LeGarrette Blount, wide receiver Torrey Smith, defensive tackle Beau Allen, outside linebacker Najee Goode and cornerback Patrick Robinson.
Offensive coordinator Frank Reich left to become head coach of the Indianapolis Colts, so coach Pederson loses his sounding board and trusted confidant. Receivers’ coach Mike Groh has stepped into that role now.
Wentz is fine, only not for Week 1…maybe.
Quarterback Carson Wentz tore his ACL in Week 14 after passing for 3,296 yards, 33 touchdowns and only 7 picks. He’s sat out certain drills in training practice but says it’s all “part of the plan,” meaning the recovery plan coaches and trainers want him to keep.
Both Wentz and Super Bowl MVP backup Nick Foles took first-team snaps at training camp, neither yet to be named starter in the regular season opener on September 6 against the Atlanta Falcons.
Keeping happy (and healthy) those Eagles who stayed
Howie Roseman, the Eagles executive vice president of football operations and general manager brought in some decent names and re-signed some others during the offseason, including the 32-year-old defensive end Michael Bennett who has a “disruptive skill set” who had 8.5 sacks for Seattle last season.
The Eagles re-signed outside linebacker Nigel Bradham, their “Pro-Bowl-caliber imposer,” to a five-year, $40 million deal and signed wide Receiver Mike Wallace, a 31-year-old from the Baltimore Ravens who’s still considered a deep threat speedster.
9-time Pro Bowl tackle Jason Peters is back and healthy and Alshon Jeffrey has been placed on the active PUP list and is expected to be ready for Week 1.
The Eagles believe they can get back to the Super Bowl again, and the odds makers appear to agree.
Odds that the Philadelphia Eagles will win:
The NFC East: BO: -150, IT: -175, SB: -150, GT: -160
The NFC Championship: BO: +550, IT: +425, SB: +550, GT: +450
The Super Bowl: BO: +1000, IT: +800, SB: +1000, GT: +800
The Dallas Cowboys (+2800 to win SB LIII)
The 2018 season will be the eighth with Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett, who has an overall record of 67-53 with the franchise but who’s only 1-2 in the playoffs. The 2016 Cowboys won the NFC East with a record of 13-3, but last season the team went 9-7 and avoided the playoffs completely.
For 30-year-owner Jerry Jones to keep him on, Garrett and the Cowboys are probably going to need to win at least 10 games and earn themselves a playoff spot.
And they’ll have to do it without two of the weapons they’ve gotten used to counting on.
No more Bryant or Witten
For the first time since 2009, the Dallas Cowboys roster will not contain wide receiver Dez Bryant, who the team released after three years of declining production due to injuries. The Cowboys signed free agent Allen Hurns. Hurns caught 39 balls for 484 yards last season, but posted a career-low average yards per catch (12.4) and total number of touchdowns (2).
For the first time since 2002, the Cowboys roster will be without 11 x Pro Bowl tight end Jason Witten, as well. Geoff Swaim, Blake Jarwin, Dalton Schultz and Rico Gathers will all compete for the open spot. Jarwin reportedly outplayed Swaim in offseason workouts from an athletic standpoint, but Swaim’s experience and versatility give him the edge as the Week 1 starter.
Elliot a full-time 2018 Cowboys weapon
Unlike last season, running back Ezekiel Elliot is slotted to play all 16 games this year. The Cowboys went 3-3 while Elliot served a 6-game suspension following a domestic violence investigation.
Even without Elliot, Dallas’ run game ranked 2nd in the league averaging 135.6 yards per game in 2017. That’s because in only 10 games, Elliot ran 242 times for 983 yards and 7 TDs while catching 26 balls for 269 yards and 3 TDs.
And also because of the offensive line.
Cowboys O-Line still exceptional
Offensive coordinator Scot Linehan’s successful O-line only allowed 32 sacks last season, tied for 6th best in the NFL. The Cowboys picked up the fifth-year option on right guard Zack Martin’s rookie contract after being named to his fourth straight Pro Bowl and he’ll line up with tackles Tyron Smith and and La’el Collins, along with center Travis Frederick.
Tackles Chaz Green and Byron Bell couldn’t fix the blind side weakness last season, so the Cowboys drafted hard working guard Connor Williams (U of Texas) in the 2nd round to help the team fill that hole.
The Dallas Cowboys have a decent shot at a Wildcard playoff spot (at least), especially if quarterback Dak Prescott returns to rookie form when he completed 67.8% of his passes, but it appears they’d have to really beat the odds for them to go all the way and win the Super Bowl.
Odds that the Dallas Cowboys will win:
The NFC East: BO: +400, IT: +333, SB: +400, GT: +333
The NFC Championship: BO: +1200, IT: +1000, SB: +1200, GT: +1400
The Super Bowl: BO: +2500, IT: +2000, SB: +2500, GT: +2800
The Washington Redskins (+10000 to win SB LIII)
The 2018 Washington Redskins are looking to turn their lost ship around after posting a 7-9 record last season, which had followed an 8-7-1 record in 2016.
Senior Vice President of Redskins Player Personnel is former Super Bowl Champion quarterback Doug Williams, and in the 2018 offseason, the former MVP passer made some completely bold football moves.
The first one had to do with the quarterback.
No more Cousins, only Smith
Quarterback Kirk Cousins 2017 numbers were impressive – for the third consecutive season, the 29-year-old passer threw for over 4,000 yards, connected for 27 TDs with 13 picks for a passer rating of 93.9. That’s while running for 179 yards and 4 more TDs.
Except during those three years the Redskins only posted a 24-23-1 record and only went to the playoffs once, so the Redskins front office traded with Kansas City for Alex Smith and Cousins signed a deal with the Minnesota Vikings
Last season for the Chiefs, Smith threw 4,042 passing yards for 26 touchdowns and only 5 picks for a passer rating of 104.7. He also ran 355 yards and a TD. The Redskins signed Smith, giving him a four-year contract extension that will pay him an average of roughly $23 million per season, with $70 million guaranteed over the life of the contract.
Redskins offensive attack enhanced
The Redskins run game was ranked 28th last season, so Williams took a chance and drafted “high maintenance” running back Derrius Guice, who fell in the 2018 draft due to his reputation of immaturity.
Last season during his junior year at LSU, Guice rushed for 1,251 yards and 11 TDs and caught 18 balls for 124 yards and 2 TDs. Running backs Chris Thompson, Rob Kelley and second year man Samaje Perine will compete with Guice for carries.
Reed’s toe is finally healthy
Pro Bowl tight end Jordon Reed only played in 6 games last season due to various injuries, but he still caught 27 balls for 211 yards and 2 TDs.
Reed has had surgery on his toe this offseason and has said he’s feeling “100 times better” and is expected to be a reliable option for Smith.
The 2018 Washington Redskins face a tough schedule and a whole lot of their success will depend on whether Smith can put up the same kinds of stats as Cousins. A look at the odds will tell you the risk is high, but the payoff will be big if he can make that happen.
Odds that the Washington Redskins will win:
The NFC East: BO: +600, IT: +700, SB: +600, GT: +800
The NFC Championship: BO: +5000, IT: +2500, SB: +5000, GT: +3500
The Super Bowl: BO: +10000, IT: +5000, SB: +10000, GT: +7500
The New York Giants (+5000 to win SB LIII)
Some in the media say the 2017 New York Giants were a terrific 3-13 team, meaning they were just a few modifications away from a complete turnaround.
Those adjustments supposedly happened in the offseason – from a potential game-changer being drafted to an injured superstar returning healthy – and the odds makers seem to think that the 2018 Giants will be surprisingly better than before.
It all starts with a healthy OBJ countering a successful Barkley.
Beckham back and feeling healthy
Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has a lot of fans and just as many detractors. He’s a 3 x Pro Bowler, a 2 x second-team All Pro but he sat out most of 2017 because of an injured ankle and that affected the Giants offensive production, which ranked 21st in the NFL.
Beckham Jr. wants to be the highest paid NFL player and he’s shown up to training camp ready to get back to the impressive numbers of his first three seasons, when he averaged 90+ receptions for 1,300+ yards and 10+ TDs.
It’s a safe bet that having a standout running back will help Beckham’s cause.
Barkley has impressed at training camp
Instead of snagging a replacement for veteran franchise quarterback Eli Manning, new Giants general manager Dave Gettleman opted to ramp up their weak rushing attack by drafting Penn State running back Saquon Barkley. In terms of guaranteed money, Barkley got the second-highest contract in NFL history for a running back with his four-year deal worth a total of $31.2 million.
But here’s why he’s worth it: at Penn State, in just 3 seasons Barkley ran for a total 3,843 yards and 43 TDs, caught for 1,195 yards and 8 TDs and even returned two of his 19 kickoff returns for 2 TDs.
Barkley will not only improve the Giants running game that averaged only 96.8 yards per game last season (ranked 26th in the league), he’ll also keep defenses from doubling-up on Beckham, giving him a better chance to get open. At training camp, he did just that in the red zone drills, clearing out the middle of the field by taking linebacker Alec Ogletree with him.
No changes to the secondary?
The Giants allowed 252.4 passing yards per game last season, ranked 31st in the league and together had 13 total interceptions. Despite those low numbers, the entire secondary is returning.
This includes safeties Landon Collins (102 combined tackles and 2 picks) and Darian Thompson (75 and 1) and cornerbacks Eli Apple and Janoris Jenkins. Free safety Curtis Riley (TEN) was signed in the offseason.
When you look at their fluctuating odds, it’s obvious some gambling experts suspect that the New York Giants actually did make their defense better in the offseason and that the Manning/Barkley/Bekham Jr. led offense will be as effective as advertised.
Could be a good bet to find out.
Odds that the New York Giants will win:
The NFC East: BO: +500, IT: +700, SB: +500, GT: +600
The NFC Championship: BO: +1200, IT: +2800, SB: +1200, GT: +230
The Super Bowl: BO: +2500, IT: +4000, SB: +2500, GT: +5000