After Tom Brady and the New England Patriots earned yet another Super Bowl ring earlier this year, the 2019/20 version of the NFL is back! The Chicago Bears will host the Green Bay Packers on Thursday night to kick off the season where Kansas City go in as betting favourites to take out the Super Bowl. Look no further than our season preview for the predicted conference winners, wildcards and Super Bowl champions!
The 2018/19 Super Bowl champions go into this season as heavy favourites to take out the AFC East conference. With Tom Brady still doing his thing it’s hard to go past them, but the retirement of Rob Gronkowski leaves a massive void. The New York Jets look the only team that could pull off an upset, the signing of Le’Veon Bell boosting their offense big time!
Predicted Conference Winners: New England 1.18
This is a tough one to pick, with Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Baltimore all within a shot, meaning there could be a possibility of two wildcard winners from this conference alone. The Browns have brought in some serious talent over the off-season, including Odell Beckham Junior. Baltimore’s style of defense and ball control will get them places as always, while on the other hand, the Steelers could be in trouble following the loss of Antonio Brown and the aforementioned Bell.
Predicted Conference Winners: Pittsburgh 2.53
This is by far the toughest conference to pick as you can make an argument for every team. Jacksonville go in as slight favourites after Nick Foles was brought in to revitalise the Jaguars offense. The Texans possess a very talented squad and are next on the betting line as they look to finally cash in and make a serious challenge in the AFC. Tennessee need Marcus Mariota to stay fit if they’re a chance, while the Colts will try to keep their momentum going after some improvements last season.
Predicted Conference Winners: Houston 3.09
In the west, it’s a two-way battle between the Chiefs and the Chargers. The Chiefs are favourites to go all the way this season after falling agonisingly short of a Super Bowl appearance last campaign. Patrick Mahomes is key with his rocket-arm and high football IQ. For the Chargers, their season could depend on the contract negotiations of Melvin Gordon, but if LA can move past that, their talented roster could do anything!
Predicted Conference Winners: Kansas City 1.64
Predicted AFC Wildcards: LA Chargers & Cleveland
Over to the NFC and it’s a battle between the Eagles and the Cowboys in the East. Philadelphia haven’t been successful in the playoffs under Carson Wentz, but if he stays fit and healthy they can go deeper this season. Ezekiel Elliot will be the key for the Cowboys after winning yet another rushing crown in 2018. Off the field, decisions on players with expiring contracts could play a big part in their success.
Predicted Conference Winners: Philadelphia 1.76
Chicago, Minnesota and Green Bay will fight it out in the north, with the Bears heading in as slight favourites. This is mostly down to their brilliant front seven and the hope of another solid season from Tarik Cohen. On the other hand, the Vikings need to improve on what was a disappointing last season. They’ll be looking to revamp their offensive line play and defense. Lastly, if the Packers are to succeed, Aaron Rodgers needs to return to the form he showed in 2014-16.
Predicted Conference Winners: Minnesota 2.94
New Orleans are the team to beat in the NFC South conference, with the Saints retaining most of its nucleus from last season. With Drew Brees around they’ll always be contenders to take out the whole thing, but can they rebound from another season which ended in heartbreak? Carolina and Atlanta are the two teams most likely to derail the Saints. Carolina will need Cam Newton to overcome a rehab-focused off-season, whilst Atlanta are hoping their offensive line and defense bounce back.
Predicted Conference Winners: New Orleans 1.63
Although they suffered an agonising Super Bowl loss last season, the LA Rams still go in as clear favourites to top the West. They need Jared Goff to play the season of his life and Todd Gurley’s knee to hold up if they’re any chance of going deep. The 49ers are also a chance going into their third season under Kyle Shanahan, as predicted, their hopes rest on the shoulders of Jimmy Garoppolo. Seattle look the only other hopeful, keep an eye on Russell Wilson, who just became the NFL’s highest-paid player.
Predicted Conference Winners: LA Rams 1.6
Predicted NFC Wildcards: Cowboys & Atlanta
Predicted AFC Champions: Kansas City 4.4
Predicted NFC Champions: New Orleans 4.9
Predicted Super Bowl Champions: New Orleans 10.29
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