In most leagues, betting on title lengthy pictures can really feel extra like an train in chasing worth than truly successful cash. That isn’t the case within the NFL.
5 years in the past, the Eagles cashed as 40/1 preseason hopefuls because of Nick Foles’ epic playoff run. The Giants have been dealing as excessive as 50/1 throughout 2007 and 2011 seasons, and rewarded bettors in each years.
Even final 12 months’s Bengals got here one play away from delivering on their 150/1 preseason worth — which might have tied them with the 1999 Rams as the most important long-shot winners within the Tremendous Bowl period.
Relationship again to that ’99 season, seven of the previous 23 title winners have entered the season with odds 20/1 or longer, which doesn’t embody a pair of 18/1 winners (2008 Steelers, 2012 Ravens). Clearly, there’s worth additional down the Tremendous Bowl oddsboard if you recognize the place to look. Listed here are three of my favourite long-shot performs at BetMGM forward of the 2022 season:
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Miami Dolphins (40/1)
I’m baffled that the Dolphins are nonetheless listed at 40/1 after two straight successful seasons and a dramatically improved roster from a 12 months in the past.
New head coach Mike McDaniel, who helped flip the 49ers’ offense into an unpredictable juggernaut, could have loads of instruments at his disposal after Miami added speedy rushers Chase Edmonds and Raheem Mostert. The crew additionally signed three-time Professional Bowl sort out Terron Armstead and traded for three-time All-Professional wideout Tyreek Hill, who pairs with sophomore Jaylen Waddle because the quickest receiving duo within the NFL.
This offense is about up for Tua Tagovailoa to thrive in a facilitator position during which it received’t all be on him to win video games. The Dolphins’ protection, which was a borderline top-five unit by superior metrics final 12 months, boasts an improved go rush and one of the vital proficient secondaries in soccer. If you happen to’re nonetheless sleeping on this group, it’s time to get up.
Washington Commanders (80/1)
Two years in the past, Washington’s protection appeared like a unit that may dominate the league for years. Then Chase Younger tore his ACL halfway by means of the 2021 season, and the Commanders’ torpid offense persistently put their protection in a troublesome place to succeed.
Quick ahead to this season, when Younger ought to return early within the schedule to bolster a really terrifying defensive entrance. Carson Wentz is in command on this offense, which boasts rising famous person Terry McLaurin and first-rounder Jahan Dotson, alongside the most effective offensive traces within the league.
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Certain, there are critical query marks surrounding Wentz, however he’s nonetheless the identical man who was dealing because the MVP favourite just a few years in the past earlier than his season was lower quick by harm. Wentz is about as much as have his greatest season since his rookie marketing campaign. If he does, be careful for Washington.
Carolina Panthers (125/1)
I’m extremely bullish on the Panthers, who quietly had the most effective defenses a 12 months in the past and are loaded with dynamic skill-position gamers on offense. The most important query, clearly, is at quarterback, at which former No. 1 decide Baker Mayfield shall be attempting to rejuvenate his profession with the Panthers.
He’s in a robust place to take action, with former All-Professional again Christian McCaffrey and perennial 1,000-yard receiver D.J. Moore — two of probably the most proficient teammates of Mayfield’s profession — behind a much-improved offensive line. A greater offense will do wonders for this younger and proficient protection, which ranked second in yards per drive allowed (27.3) in 2021, however was hindered by the worst beginning area place in soccer.
All of it provides as much as a compelling ceiling for the Panthers, who’re rife with the chance for enchancment on each side of the ball of their third 12 months underneath Matt Rhule. Mayfield’s development in a make-or-break fifth 12 months is the clear X-factor for Carolina’s season, however at such an extended worth, there’s large upside right here.