Football is officially back! Each week I’ll have an article highlighting some of the most significant movement in the futures market on DraftKings Sportsbook. The shift in the odds could be relevant to team futures, players futures or the awards market, but it’ll always have to do with something that played out on the field the previous week and caused a major shift in a market.
Obviously, entering Week 1 we haven’t seen any games yet. So I thought it would be cool to highlight the five NFL win totals that moved the most from when they opened to the start of the season (coincidentally, all five happen to be NFC).
Opened: UNDER 7.5 (-145)
Entering Week 1: UNDER 6 (-120)
This win total probably involves the least movement of the five teams listed, but the Bears were the only team to see their win total move by more than one full win — moving 1.5 games from open until the first day of the NFL season. Chicago went 6-11 in 2021, starting the season with veteran QB help before moving to Justin Fields. But the Bears are considered to have one of the worst offensive lines and worst groups of playmakers in the NFL, and lost a couple of key pieces on a defense that was already trending in the wrong direction. Many bettors believe the Bears are very live to potentially post the worst record in the NFL.
Opened: OVER 8.5 (+100)
Entering Week 1: OVER 9.5 (-155)
If another win total have the potential for a 1.5-game move, it’s the Eagles. You see the -155 juice on their over, but I don’t think we have time to see this one actually get to 10. Bettors love what the Eagles did this offseason, adding to positions of need all over the field — highlighted by A.J. Brown at WR. Philly has a very well-rounded roster, and bettors are also expecting Jalen Hurts to take a step this season. With the Cowboys losing some weapons and a key offensive lineman, the Eagles have also become a trendy bet to win the division — nearly cutting their odds in half since they opened.
Opened: OVER 5.5 (-115)
Entering Week 1: OVER 6.5 (-120)
Simple answer on this one. While Tampa and New Orleans project as the top-two teams in the division, bettors feel Baker Mayfield is worth an extra win in Carolina. Mayfield had a tough final season in Cleveland, but was playing through injury. The market prefers Mayfield to Sam Darnold.
Opened: UNDER 6.5 (-120)
Entering Week 1: UNDER 5.5 (+100)
While this line opened following the departure of Russell Wilson, bettors have still gone against the major downgrade at the QB position in Seattle. Geno Smith draws the start in Week 1, and we think we’ll see some Drew Lock at some point in the season. All three other teams in the NFC West made the playoffs last season, so with the Seahawks losing their most important player, bettors are banking on things getting ugly.
Opened: OVER 7.5 (-120)
Entering Week 1: OVER 8.5 (-120)
This number opened a little low for the Saints considering two different factors. For starters, New Orleans had a lot of injuries last season, particularly at QB and the skill positions. Jameis Winston is back, and he gets Michael Thomas back from injury while adding Jarvis Landry and Chris Olave. The offense should absolutely take a step forward. And while Sean Payton is no longer coaching, bettors don’t seem to care. New Orleans has plenty of veteran coaches in place that know the system well, and could avoid any setbacks here. The Saints return a strong defense, and bettors feel this number was off by a full win from open to close. Many are even taking a shot on the Saints to be division winners.
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