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NFL odds for Super Bowl LV: Brady to Bucs shakes up futures betting

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With most of the big names in free agency signed to contracts (with the exception of Jadeveon Clowney and Cam Newton), the Super Bowl LV futures odds have seen some changes with the big one being Tampa Bay’s ascent after signing six-time Super Bowl winner Tom Brady.

The GOAT heading to Tampa Bay has given instant credibility to a Buccaneers team featuring a talented young defense and a couple of terrific wide receivers in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. The Bucs have seen their odds to win the Super Bowl rise to +1600, which ties them with Brady’s previous team New England.

In addition to the loss of Brady, the Pats also saw three starters depart from their front seven (Danny Shelton, Kyle Van Noy and Jamie Collins) and have failed to add any impact players via free agency or trade. It looks like the end of an era in Foxboro but Belichick and company still have better odds than 24 teams in the league.

The defending Super Bowl Champions the Kansas City Chiefs have the best title odds at +600, followed closely by Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens (+700). The Ravens had the top regular season record in the NFL last season but were upset in their Divisional Round matchup with the Titans.

In third place are last year’s NFC champion the San Francisco 49ers who traded away Pro Bowl lineman DeForest Buckner but managed to get a Top-15 draft pick in return.

The Panthers have been through a rough offseason even before cutting former MVP Newton who barely played in 2019 anyway. One of the best defensive players in the league in linebacker Luke Keuchly retired in January while Gerald McCoy, Dontari Poe, Vernon Butler, Mario Addison, Bruce Irvin, Eric Reid and James Bradbury have all departed as well. The Panthers have +6600 odds which is higher than only the Lions, Bengals and Redskins.

Here are the Super Bowl LV odds for every team in the NFL:

ODDS TO WIN 2020 SUPERBOWL

Team Odds to win
Kansas City Chiefs +600
Baltimore Ravens +700
San Francisco 49ers +800
New Orleans Saints +1,100
Green Bay Packers +1,600
New England Patriots +1,600
Philadelphia Eagles +1,600
Tampa Bay Buccaneers +1,600
Seattle Seahawks +1,800
Pittsburgh Steelers +1,800
Dallas Cowboys +2,000
Buffalo Bills +2,200
Minnesota Vikings +2,500
Los Angeles Rams +2,500
Indianapolis Colts +2,800
Tennessee Titans +2,800
Cleveland Browns +2,800
Los Angeles Chargers +2,800
Chicago Bears +3,300
Los Vegas Raiders +3,300
Houston Texans +3,300
Atlanta Falcons +4,000
Denver Broncos +4,000
Arizona Cardinals +4,000
Carolina Panthers +6,600
Miami Dolphins +6,600
New York Jets +6,600
New York Giants +6,600
Jacksonville Jaguars +6,600
Detroit Lions +8,000
Cinncinati Bengals +8,000
Washington Redskins +10,000

Understanding NFL futures odds

Sportsbooks release NFL futures odds pretty much as soon the confetti is falling to mark the end of the previous football season. There are many ways to wager on NFL futures but picking the outright winner of the Super Bowl is definitely the most popular. During the offseason and preseason, you’ll be able to get a nice plus-money price on basically any team in the NFL as there is so much uncertainty around what will happen next year.

Even the current favorite, the Kansas City Chiefs, come in at +600. This means that a bettor stands to profit $600 on a $100 wager should Patrick Mahomes and company pull off the repeat. Or perhaps you’re looking at a team with slightly longer odds. Let’s take the Dallas Cowboys as an example. Here, you can profit $2000 on a $100 wager as Mike McCarthy’s new squad has betting odds of +2,000.

Of course, futures odds are a fluid market. They can change every day based on news, injuries, suspensions, etc. And they will certainly change based around big NFL events, such as free agency and the draft. For example, a devastating injury to a starting quarterback on any of the top teams in the league would likely cause them to plummit down the futures odds board.

All the odds seen above are in American format. Should you find decimal format or fractional format easier to read, simply convert the odds using our simple odds converter tool.

Longshots to consider when betting the Shoemaker Mile

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Monday’s Shoemaker Miles Stakes at Santa Anita Park is a great race for a number of reasons. For starters, the Shoemaker Mile is a Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series “Win and You’re In” race that offers the winner a guaranteed spot in the 2020 Breeders’ Cup Mile at Keeneland.

Watch the Shoemaker Mile on Monday, May 25 from 6-8 p.m. ET on NBCSN, NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app.

The race also features last year’s Preakness Stakes winner, War of Will, making his season debut. Despite his triumphs on the dirt in 2019, War of Will started his career on the turf and his pedigree suggests that he’s very likely to be just as successful on the grass. That said, the Shoemaker Mile will be his first start off of a six-month break, and I’m going to try to take a swing or two with some horses who could upset the apple cart at longer odds.

Let’s start out with the horse on the rail, Without Parole. He won the Group 1 St. James’s Palace Stakes going a mile at Ascot back in 2018. His three other career wins have all came at this mile distance as well. Granted, he hasn’t won in six races since the St. James’s Palace but he did finish a fast-closing third two starts ago in a much tougher U.S. debut in the TVG Breeders’ Cup MileIrad Ortiz Jr. rode Without Parole in that race and he will reclaim the mount on him again on Monday.

Without Parole has only had one race this year and it was in the Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational in which he finished second to last. However, he had several excuses right from the start of that race when he got squeezed coming out of the gate. He also raced in traffic throughout and got cut off several times in the stretch before Frankie Dettori — who had come from Europe to ride him at Gulfstream — finally just wrapped up on him. The Pegasus World Cup Turf also was a race that didn’t allow him to run on Lasix (furosemide) after he’d shown significant improvement racing on Lasix for the first time at the Breeders’ Cup.

Stream the 2020 Shoemaker Mile live here

How much of a factor might Lasix be for some horses? Well, let’s next look at the horse who finished last in the Pegasus World Cup Turf: Next Shares. In his following start (back on Lasix) in the Grade 1 Frank E. Kilroe Mile Stakes, Next Shares finished third (beaten just a neck) to River Boyne. Both Next Shares and River Boyne return in the Shoemaker Mile and I prefer the former as a pace play who has plenty of back-class. If you rewatch the Kilroe Mile, Next Shares covered a lot more ground than River Boyne. With a similar effort, Next Shares could certainly turn the tables.

The other thing to like about Next Shares is that his trainer, Richard Baltas, has entered speedster Neptune’s Storm in the Shoemaker Mile. That horse, along with Voodoo Song, should ensure a very brisk pace up front — they’ll also be kept honest by Blitzkrieg and War of Will, both of whom usually race on or near the lead. All of that speed adds up to good news for Next Shares. He’s a Grade 1 winner who has always done his best running when he’s had some pace to run into. The other two keys for him (like all stalking or closing-type runners) is clear running room late, and hopefully he’ll get that with Hall of Fame rider John Velazquez taking the mount.

Lastly, we should take a look at True Valour. It’s hard to make much of an excuse for his flat finish in the Kilroe last out, but he’s truly performed better than what his results on paper might indicate. In the Thunder Road Stakes in February, he looked pretty keen early and it took him a few strides to settle down without throwing his head around and fighting his rider. Turning for home, it was clear that jockey Andrea Atzeni had plenty of horse under him but was just waiting for some running room. It ended up coming too late because River Boyne was in a better spot and had already taken command. True Valour did split horses nicely in the closing stages and was half a jump away from finishing second.

If you go back to the Breeders’ Cup Mile, True Valour had excuses there, too. He was up on heels early and he again took a little bit of time to settle down into a comfortable stride. Then, turning for him, he was just waiting for running room but instead got stuck behind a wall of horses. True Valour ended up steadying pretty badly and lost all chance at that point. I’m a little worried about how headstrong he tends to be early in races, but there’s a scenario here that could have at least two horses battling for the lead early and opening up some daylight on the rest of the field. That means he’ll be less likely to be running up on anyone’s heels and it also ensures that he’ll have a nice setup. Whether he can navigate clear passage late in the race is a separate matter.

Longshot Selections

#1 Without Parole

#3 Next Shares

#2 True Valour

Watch the Shoemaker Mile on Monday, May 25 from 6-8 p.m. ET on NBCSN, NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app.

How to bet an exacta on a horse race

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Betting an exacta can present a challenge on several levels.

There is, of course, the primary need to analyze past performances and decide which horses are going to finish first and second.

Yet because of the inherently lower payoffs as opposed to what you’ll find in a Pick 3 or Pick 4, you’ll need to structure your wagers effectively in order to turn your selections into a profitable wager.

For starters, an exacta can be a simple wager. If you like two horses equally, you can just box them in the exacta and collect so long as they finish 1-2 in any order. If you like one of them a little more, you can then bet more on the one you prefer, say $10 on a 1-2 exacta and $5 on 2-1.

If you’re a little more uncertain, make sure you structure your bet around the size of the field and the probable payoffs.

If you like a longshot, the higher probable payoffs give you the cushion you need to wager on more combinations and still turn a nice profit.

But if you’re dealing with favorites or horses at relatively low odds, you have to wager more efficiently to preserve your profit.

In a field of six or less, you’re best to either focus on one horse or box two of them instead of boxing three or more horses because of the small payouts the bet will most likely generate.

In a field of seven, a wise strategy would be to box your top two choices and then, if you are worried about other horses, play them top and/or bottom other the other horses. For example, box 1-2, then bet 1-2 over 3-4 and 3-4 over 1-2. This way you are getting coverage on four horses without having to box them.

Once you get an eight-horse field, as long as there is not an overwhelming favorite, you can expand the number of horses you box since the payoffs will typically be higher, giving you a better opportunity to offset the inevitable array of losing tickets in a boxed wager.