2023 Super Bowl Odds: Our Staff Drafts Its Favorite Futures From 1 to 14
Getty Images. Pictured: Jalen Hurts (left), Patrick Mahomes (center) and Tom Brady.
We put seven of our brightest minds to the test to figure out where the best value on the Super Bowl odds board is.
Without further ado, here are our favorite Super Bowl odds ahead of the Wild Card Round.
It’s all about the path. Philadelphia is one of two teams that gets an automatic win this week. It’s also the only team guaranteed to have home-field advantage all the way to the Super Bowl. Even better, when you factor in the chances of a Giants or Seahawks upset at over 50% per the implied moneyline win probabilities, that sets up the Eagles as a better than 50/50 to be huge home favorites next week.
In other words, the Eagles have by far the best odds to reach the semifinals of any team in the field, and they’ll be playing at home and well-rested when they get there.
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We’ve already seen Philadelphia outplay Dallas twice, and I like the matchup against the 49ers. That would mean a seventh-round rookie QB on the road in a wild environment with everything on the line, yet to face a passing defense in the top half of the league, now facing the NFL’s No. 1 pressure rate and No. 1 pass defense by DVOA. The Niners are also heavily dependent on turnovers while Philly usually takes care of the ball, and A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith could hurt a weak collection of corners.
The Eagles are deep with the best, most well-rounded roster in football. That matters this time of year because it means they can hold up despite the inevitable injuries and it means they can win any number of ways — as the league’s best rushing attack, with their usual outstanding defense, or by unleashing their MVP candidate as a passer.
I’ll probably make Philly a slight underdog once they get to the Super Bowl, but the Eagles have the best chance of any team to get there and are an easy first pick at +500.
2) Sean Koerner: The 49ers are one of the more complete teams in the league right now. They have arguably the best defense and while they have lost QBs Trey Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo, rookie Brock Purdy has done an excellent job as a replacement.
Purdy is surrounded by a ton of weapons in Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, and George Kittle. Getting Deebo back last week was massive for this offense and we haven’t seen both Christian McCaffrey and Deebo Samuel on the field at the same time, but it’s going to be tough for defenses to slow them down.
With the NFC being fairly weak right now, I like getting the 49ers at +500 here.
3) Chris Raybon: This is pretty simple. I’m getting the No. 1 team in the NFL in terms of DVOA.
I’ll happily take Buffalo.
However, here’s the good news: I’m backing the team with easily the best quarterback in the NFL, a team that has hosted the AFC Championship game in four straight seasons and a team that will at least be rested from having the No. 1 seed.
Take the odds away and the Chiefs would be first pick by a mile due to their winning pedigree.
Then it’s likely a rematch with either the Bills or Bengals, a tough matchup regardless of venue. The positive spin is Chiefs will probably be favored against any opponent, so there’s at least some decent hedge opportunities should you feel inclined.
5) Chad Millman: Let’s face it, you’re not making this bet because you think the Bengals are undervalued. Their defensive backfield is suspect. Their offensive line is falling apart with injuries. Even Money McPherson has had some crypto moments.
This is about Joe Cool. He said it himself, as long as he is playing, the Bengals’ window is open. I’d bet on that.
6) Anthony Dabbundo: I went with some game theory here since I don’t think the Chargers would have made it back to me in Round 2.
Los Angeles’ pass defense took a major step forward in the second half of the season and was a top-five unit by EPA per play allowed. The offense still has major issues on early downs and the inability to run the ball at all is a major culprit there. Justin Herbert is good enough to bail them out on third down.
But the main reason the Chargers have a shot is that they are finally healthy. They were one of the most injured teams in the first half, but the return of Keenan Allen, Joey Bosa and Mike Williams gives them the required juice to surprise some teams.
They’re a pick’em in Jacksonville in the Wild Card Round, but the Chargers do have the better defense in the matchup. The path will then likely include a trip to Kansas City, but the Chargers played two coin flip games with the Chiefs this season and they played two tossup games with K.C. last year. That’s a matchup that has suited Los Angeles because its pass the ball and stop the pass approach was designed to compete with the Chiefs at the top of the conference.
None of the big three in the AFC have been an efficient run team this year and unlike Baltimore, the Chargers won’t need to run the gauntlet and beat all three to make the Super Bowl.
7) Simon Hunter: With the last pick, the two things I was looking for were which team had the best value and easiest path to the Super Bowl. This left me with only three teams to choose from in my opinion: the Jaguars, Buccaneers and Vikings.
First up, the Jaguars, who are my favorite value bet on the board.
At almost 50-1 this team has all the makings for a run deep into the postseason. There are many similarities between this team and last year’s Bengals. The quarterback, Trevor Lawrence, is in his second season and is making his first playoff appearance, and the defense is better than most have given it credit for.
After starting the year 2-6, the Jaguars finished 7-2 and won the AFC south. Now, they’re a home underdog for Wild Card Weekend. I see a team that’s very resilient against adversity.
Doug Pederson, to me, is the key. He’s been there before, which is something very few coaches have experience with.
I make the Jaguars’ odds closer to 35-1.
8) Simon Hunter: The Vikings felt like a choice I had to make.
I’m trying to throw out my own negative views on this team and look at the bright side. They’re simply a team that has played in close games and overachieved all season. Not only were they lucky, but they were incredibly clutch. No quarterback has more fourth-quarter comebacks since Kirk Cousins since he became a starter in the league.
The Vikings’ path to the Super Bowl looks like it’ll be through Daniel Jones, Brock Purdy and a banged-up Jalen Hurts, who has only played one game in the last month-plus. It’s not unfathomable to see Cousins outplay any of those three in a one-game, winner-take-all scenario.
This number should be closer to 25-1, but everyone hates the Vikings. This is a pure value play with this team.
The main reason I passed on the Bucs is the feeling that Tom Brady already has a foot out the door.
Dallas has been a top-five offense by EPA per play since Week 7 when Dak Prescott returned from injury. Week 18’s embarrassing loss to Washington was bizarre, but the Cowboys are as balanced and efficient as almost any offense in the league. Dak Prescott was No. 1 in Success Rate prior to Sunday’s disaster.
The biggest question mark for the Cowboys is whether or not the defense can hold up. They rely on the pass rush and forcing turnovers but were exposed on a play-to-play basis in the second half after the injuries piled up there.
Dallas favored to beat Tampa Bay and then would potentially draw Philadelphia in the Divisional Round if the favorites win in the NFC. The Cowboys would be underdogs against Philadelphia or San Francisco, but Presoctt just torched the Eagles’ passive zone scheme and secondary for 40 points on Christmas Eve. Against San Francisco, Dallas’ pass rush could rattle rookie Brock Purdy.
The defense may be too far gone to take this team all the way, but Dallas’ offense should keep it in every game.
At +1300, the Cowboys are clearly the best of the rest after the big five of Kansas City, Philadelphia, Buffalo, San Francisco. I think their chances are comparable to Cincinnati because of the path.
Ever since Roquan Smith joined Baltimore on Halloween weekend, this Ravens defense has been, wait for it, scary. In fact, in the category that matters most, scoring, the Ravens have been better than any other playoff team except the 49ers.
Before Smith, Baltimore’s run defense was 20th DVOA in the first nine weeks of the season. Since acquiring him, the Ravens are third. The Ravens have allowed 132 points since trading for Smith, which is the second fewest in the NFL. They’ve also only allowed eight passing touchdowns, which are third fewest.
Patrick Queen has also benefited from playing next to Smith. His three sacks are fourth most among middle linebackers. Queen and Smith have combined for 19 pressures since Week 9, which are third most among LB duos.
This defense is worthy of a championship. It just needs a quarterback, which is what we’re hoping it gets back this weekend.
11) Gilles Gallant: As a Cowboys fan, drafting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers felt dirtier than Antonio Brown’s IG reels but, much like Brown, you can’t overlook the Buccaneers’ talent on the field.
The roster still has many holdovers from the Super Bowl win in 2021 and, of course, Tom Brady. While the Old Man may not be as sharp on the trigger, he still can summon some magic and drive this team to victory.
The Bucs get a rematch with the Cowboys, a team they already beat in Week 1 and a team that very well could just beat themselves if Tampa is patient. Then the Bucs would likely be going to Philadelphia. It may seem like a lifetime ago, but the Bucs manhandled the Eagles twice last season. Will we see a repeat of this? Maybe not but at +2800, it certainly isn’t the toughest road to get to the NFC Championship Game.
12) Chris Raybon: The Giants have won half of their games as underdogs this season, which is good because they might be an underdog in any realistic playoff matchup this month.
The good news is that the Giants get a first-round matchup with a bottom-five team, according to DVOA.
13) Sean Koerner: I was sort of stuck with the Dolphins toward the end of the draft, but this is a team that will very likely lose in the opening round to the Bills. However, if Tua Tagovailoa ends up being able to suit up this week, this is an offense capable of hanging with any team and could make some noise.
Miami has a ton of upside but is correctly priced as a long shot.
14) Brandon Anderson: SEATTLE ISLAND!!
Fine, I’m not expecting this ticket to cash, but I already cashed a +1500 playoff ticket so I guess I won’t complain.
I’ve long since abandoned the island. Seattle’s offensive line play has gone south, while Geno Smith is fading and doesn’t deal with pressure well. That’s bad news against an awesome 49ers defense, and it’s even worse news that the Seahawks never really figured out how to tackle or get off the field on third down.
Good on Seattle for making the playoffs, but the magic Geno carpet ride ends here. Even if they stun the 49ers, this young roster and poor defense aren’t winning three more unless Kenneth Walker pulls his best Marshawn Lynch impression for a month straight.