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2019 NFL Futures: Win Totals + Picks
The 2019 NFL season is almost here, so AccuScore simulated every game of the 2019 season 10,000 times to project win totals for every team. Then, as we have a habit of doing, we compared our predictions to the win totals lines that Vegas put out to see where we can find the best value. Surprisingly, Vegas and AccuScore were pretty close on win totals this season, without a single win total projection difference of even two games--until Andrew Luck retired. This is unusual, but that doesn't mean there aren't any value opportunities. We made our 2019 season futures picks below, but before we get to that, here are AccuScore's 2019 NFL season futures win totals for every team:
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The New Orleans Saints are projected to finish with the best record in the NFC with the Los Angeles Rams just a touch behind. Since these two teams met in the NFC title game last season and the Saints came within one blatantly missed pass interference call of going to the Super Bowl, this shouldn't come as a shock. The Rams and Saints are projected to easily win their respective divisions and collect first-round byes for the second season in a row.
In the NFC East, the Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys are neck-and-neck, but the Eagles get the edge. The Giants, meanwhile, are projected to finish bottom of the NFC East as the team transitions away from Eli Manning and to their young rookie QB.
In the NFC North, the Minnesota Vikings are projected to notch just about 10 wins on the season, which should be enough to win the division. However, the Chicago Bears are sitting on nine wins and are projected to lead the Wild Card race. The Packers, Falcons, Cowboys and Panthers should all be in the Wild Card hunt.
Stop us if you've heard this one before: The New England Patriots are projected to win the AFC East and collect a first round bye. Ok, so the Patriots winning the AFC East and grabbing a bye is pretty much a broken record, but the Kansas City Chiefs are projected to have more wins than the Patriots. Patrick Mahomes is the real deal, and if the kid continues to play as well as he did last year, or somehow improve, home field advantage throughout the playoffs could and should see the Chiefs possibly dethrone the Patriots as the AFC's team to beat for the next decade--starting with this year.
While the Chiefs may be projected to be the best team in the AFC, the LA Chargers are projected to win 9+ games and give Kansas City a real challenge in the AFC West, along with taking the lead in the Wild Card race.
The Indianapolis Colts were projected to edge out the Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars to claim the AFC South, with the Titans at the bottom of the pile, but then, Andrew Luck retired. Now, the Colts are projected to finish second behind a strong defense, but that's still leaps and bounds better than Vegas is overreacting to the news. Luck has been injured off and on for several years, so as much as his retirement is a massive loss, the Colts players and coaches are probably not overreacting nearly as much as Vegas, which dropped the win total line from 10 to 6.5.
The Cleveland Browns are the talk of the league with Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham Jr. providing new hope for a franchise that has looked lost for so long. However, AccuScore projects the Pittsburgh Steelers to take the division, with Cleveland projected to win 8.3 games and finish second. The Browns project to be in the Wild Card race, alongside the Chargers, Texans and Jaguars.
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NFL Futures Expert Picks: Win Totals
1. Baltimore Ravens: Under 8.0 wins
The Ravens are projected to win 6.8 wins, and with the Steelers and Browns in the division, the probability of the Ravens winning 9 or more games is far more remote than them winning seven or fewer games. There's value here. Take the Under.
2. Miami Dolphins: Over 4.5 Wins
The Dolphins aren't projected to be good this season. In fact, AccuScore has them finishing at the bottom of the AFC East, but it's been a dozen years since the Dolphins won fewer than four games in a season. AccuScore has the Dolphins winning 5.7 games, so whether they win five or six games, they'd still pay out. Take the Dolphins to win Over 4.5 games.
Note:This pick was made prior to the Dolphins making trades that set them up to seemingly tank teh season.
BONUS: 3. Indianapolis Colts: Over 6.5 Wins
Oddsmakers may have made a bit of an over correction on the Andrew Luck retirement news. At least, that's what AccuScore believes. Luck was, no doubt, a great player, but the Colts are a solid team. They may no longer be favorites to win the division, but AccuScore's win totals projection is a full 2.1 wins better than Vegas.