NFL Season Preview: Parlaying Every Division Winner, Volume I

| September 7th, 2020

There are plenty of ways to full-season gamble on the NFL. Fantasy football. Over/unders. Player props. (Somewhere I have a Trubisky 2019 MVP ticket from Borgata in Atlantic City.) But last year, some friends and I began experimenting with a new one: parlaying every division winner. A $5 parlay on all the favorites winning their respective divisions will pay north of $1500. If you start working in some underdogs you can be looking at a payout between $3500-4000. They’re not easy bets to hit but they’re fun bets to follow.

It’s also an interesting way to present a de facto NFL preview. (I just took screenshots of the odds from the DraftKings Sportsbook app, so there’s no rhyme or reason to the order which they’ll be presented.) Here’s part one.

  • I think the NFC West is a place to experiment because I think all four of those clubs could win that division, with Arizona the longest of the shots. How is Sean McVay going to respond to his first real dose of adversity in the league? How is Seattle going to perform as they’re set to lose their greatest strength, the league’s best home field advantage? The Niners better be successful on the ground because they have one of the more underwhelming collections of receivers in the league.
  • The Chiefs are the biggest divisional favorite in the league and they should be. Will one of my ten parlays maybe throw the Broncos into the mix? Maybe. But I don’t even think a significant injury to Mahomes would be enough to knock them out of the top spot. That’s not confidence in Chad Henne or Matt Moore but more confidence in Andy Reid to find a way.
  • Out of ten parlays, I’ll have the Niners in 4, Seahawks in 4 and Rams in 2.
  • Out of ten parlays, I’ll have the Chiefs in 9 and Broncos in 1.

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Three Bears Futures Bets To Consider

| May 14th, 2020

Quick note: I know money is a major issue for many Americans right now as the unemployment numbers have exploded and entire industries have been destroyed. When I write columns like this, encouraging gambling, I hope those suffering know I am sensitive to their situation. But gambling odds provide a solid context to discuss sporting issues. So I’m going to keep writing about them for the time being.

Bet One: Nick Foles MVP (+15000)

Do I think Nick Foles is going to win MVP this season?


But that’s why he’s 150-1 to win the award. (Same odds as Mitch Trubisky actually.)

Here’s why the bet is worth $1: the value logic. What if Foles starts, executes the offense and the Bears start winning? What if he proves the 2019 season can be written off to the failures of the previous quarterback, as many believe the case to be? There will be an easily-made argument for his value to the franchise.

Also, when quarterbacks execute this offense, they produce statistically. Alex Smith, who most consider a game manager, put up 4,000 yards and 26 TDs in 2017 for Andy Reid. You combine him turning around the Bears offense with a large statistical output and he’ll be in the MVP conversation.

And Foles plays in Chicago. If he plays well, it’ll be visible and there will be a demonstrative campaign for him.

Bet Two: Bears To Make the Playoffs (+160)

If the 2020 rules existed in 2019, the Bears would have finished a single game out of the postseason. If they’re healthy I don’t see how they’re not a better team in 2020.

As a matter of fact, I believe the Bears are going to be a very good team and this number will be -400 by the middle of the season.

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