We are in the thick of the NFL season. Some teams have surprised (Minnesota 5-0, Atlanta 4-1, Dallas 4-1) and others haven’t (Cleveland 0-5). How have the division odds changed since the beginning of the season? Which teams should you bet to win the division crowns?
To determine if a team has value we look at what their current odds are to win the division from Sportsbook.ag and compare that to our projected odds that they win the title based on 10,000 simulations of the 2016 season. For example, New England is -1000 to win the AFC East. In order for us to feel comfortable wagering on the Pats they would need to take the division 90.9% (which is 100/(100+1000)) of the time. We project Tom Brady and Bill Belichick to win the division 79.1% of the time, meaning there is no value in placing a bet at -1000 odds.
Here are a few teams with value.
Current odds: +110, Implied Probability: 47.6%
Vikings win the NFC North 84.9% of the time
After five weeks the best team in the NFL is the Minnesota Vikings. Sam Bradford (six touchdowns, zero interceptions) leads the last unbeaten team in the league. The defense has been downright stingy ranking first in points per game and fourth in yards per game allowed. It is rather generous of the bookmakers to give you the Vikings at plus money when Minnesota is projected to win the Super Bowl.
Current odds: +185, Implied Probability: 35.1%
Eagles win the NFC East 51.6% of the time
Carson Wentz lost his first game as a professional (chucked a deep ball that was intercepted to end the game). However, a one-point road loss is nothing to stress over. This is the perfect time to buy back on the Eagles. Philly is 6th in our Power Rankings and is projected to win the NFC East.
Arbitrage opportunity: there is value betting Dallas to win the division as well. With both the Cowboys and Eagles at plus-money, as long as one of them comes out on top you can guarantee yourself a profit.
Current odds: -410, Implied Probability: 80.4%
Steelers win the AFC North 90.0% of the time
Pittsburgh looked terrible against the Eagles in Week 3 but unstoppable since. After Le’Veon Bell returned to the fold the team has averaged 37 points per game. The Ravens are who we thought they were and the Bengals are not. The Steelers are projected to run away with the AFC North.
Other teams with value: Bills (+600), Colts (+250), Broncos (-180), Cowboys (+150), Falcons (-400) and Seahawks (-225).
Below are all 32 NFL teams and their chances to win their respective divisions.
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