Vegas’ Midseason Outlook on the Broncos and the AFC Playoff Picture
Even though the Bengals have run this division for the last half-decade, this is Pittsburgh’s to lose. Their offense has the highest in-game upside of any team in the NFL, and if they ever find a way to tap into that full time, watch out.
The division is still very much up for grabs, as all three contenders have only a 3 or 4 in their records (save for the 1 the Bengals tack on at the end of theirs, which will no doubt confuse millions trying to figure out playoff scenarios during the last weeks of the season).
Cincinnati really misses Hue Jackson. They aren’t as deep as past squads, and their offense is missing a spark. The Browns may be bad, but they’re competitive largely because Jackson has found a way to make a college offense competitive with NFL defenses. Between Corey Coleman, Gary Barnidge, Duke Johnson, and Terrelle Pryor, Cleveland is a QB away from a truly threatening offense.
The Ravens are the most 8-8 team that ever 8-8ed. This weekend’s matchup with Pittsburgh and a gimpy Big Ben will go a short way towards determining which side of 8-8 they’re likely to fall on.
Given how good the AFC West looks, combined with the potential of a Bengals resurgence with a healthy Tyler Eifert, it’s hard to see how you won’t need at least 10 wins to get in (save for AFC Crapville). Either way, this writer wrote the Ravens off before the season began and is sticking to it.
Favorite: Steelers (-210)
Value: Bengals (+320), Ravens (+450) – looks like Vegas disagrees with me on Baltimore’s playoff chances (that or they think 9-7 or 8-7-1 could win the division). So who are you going to trust, a billion-dollar industry whose financial solvency is dependent on accurate predictions or some dude on the internet?
Longshot: LOL like Vegas would bother taking bets on the Browns to win the division…no seriously, try and find some lines out there. I’ll wait.