With June half over, it’s only two and a half months until the new NFL season kicks off and the Philadelphia Eagles begin their title defense.
Despite retaining most of their core pieces from last year’s Super Bowl-winning team and getting quarterback Carson Wentz back from injury, the Eagles are not the preseason Super Bowl favorite. On the latest odds to win Super Bowl 53, the Eagles are listed at +850. That’s second behind the favored New England Patriots at +650.
The Eagles will welcome back Wentz from a knee injury that cost him the final three games of the regular season and all of the playoffs last year, but even if he’s not ready to go in Week 1, the backup is still Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles. The Eagles receiving corps got a little veteran boost in the offseason with the addition of Mike Wallace and Markus Wheaton alongside incumbents Alshon Jeffery and Nelson Agholor.
While the Eagles added at receiver, the favored Patriots subtracted from Tom Brady’s group of pass catchers. New England surprisingly traded Brandin Cooks while Julian Edelman, who missed all of last season with a knee injury, is reportedly facing a four-game suspension for using PEDs. Rob Gronkowski remains and he could be even more important if New England’s top receivers are the likes of Jordan Matthews, Kenny Britt and Chris Hogan.
Steelers, Rams, Vikings next in Super Bowl odds
After the Patriots and Eagles, the oddsmakers turn their attention to the Pittsburgh Steelers at +1000, and the Los Angeles Rams and Minnesota Vikings at +1100.
The Steelers still have their three-headed monster on offense with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, running back Le’Veon Bell and wide receive Antonio Brown. One problem, though. That wasn’t enough to get Pittsburgh to the Super Bowl last year, so what will be different in 2018?
The Rams announced their arrival as contenders last year by winning the NFC West. Los Angeles appears to be stacked on both sides of the ball with Jared Goff, Todd Gurley and Brandin Cooks leading the offense, and Aaron Donald and newly acquired Ndamukong Suh leading a stout defense. If the Rams continue to improve, they could be a steal for bettors right now at +1100.
The Vikings made it all the way to the NFC championship game last season and they could be even better this year. Minnesota upgraded at quarterback by throwing a ton of guaranteed money at Kirk Cousins and will get running back Dalvin Cook back after he missed most of last season due to injury.
Jaguars may offer best value in Super Bowl futures
If you’re looking for the best value on the preseason Super Bowl futures, your best bet may be the Jacksonville Jaguars at +2200. The Jaguars made it to the AFC championship game last season before their surprising campaign ended. Sure, Blake Bortles is unfortunately still their quarterback, but more importantly Leonard Fournette is still in the backfield and the NFL’s No. 2-ranked defense from last season returns mostly intact. Placing a few bucks on the Jaguars may be a smart move right now.