Favorites To Win The Super Bowl 54 (Update)
Sean Payton or Frank Reich? Notably that of Kyle Shanahan, with the San Francisco 49ers, and Sean McDermott, with the Buffalo Bills, but what has happened with the New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts have been sensational.
On the other hand, the landscape in the Northern Division of the National Conference is becoming clearer, the Baltimore Ravens raise their hand as a contender and the alarms are going off for the Kansas City Chiefs.
Payton and Reich work magic
It’s not the first time Sean Payton has shown he’s one of the best trainers in the NFL. However, this season he has done his best work. The Saints lost Drew Brees in Week 2 of the season, and doubts began over New Orleans’ chances of winning the divisional title. Payton had other plans, and from the beginning, he adapted his offensive to Teddy Bridgewater’s strengths.
Since his injury prior to the 2017 season, Bridgewater had seen little action, and when he had entered the field there were doubts about whether he would be able to lead an NFL team. What he has done this season has only been to complete 70 percent of his shipments, with 9 touchdowns and just 2 interceptions. Even more impressive, this week they moved the ball at will against the Chicago Bears’ tough defense despite being without Alvin Kamara and Jared Cook. It’s all Payton’s credit.
New Orleans plays to control the game clock, move the chains and not go for the big play constantly, a marked change of philosophy in relation to when Brees is on the field.
In Indianapolis, experts ruled out the Colts, formerly considered contenders for the Lombardi Trophy, after Andrew Luck’s retirement. After seven weeks, the team led by Frank Reich is leading the South Division of the American Conference and has just beaten the Houston Texans, their closest challenger. Similar to Payton, Reich has played the strengths of his team.
Jacoby Brissett has been efficient, in part, because he hasn’t been asked to constantly risk the ball. With an elite offensive line, Marlon Mack leads one of the best ground attacks, while the defensive is aggressive, young and talented. Reich has known how to take advantage of a line-up that lacks stars, but in which everyone plays the same thing.
Vikings and Packers generate distance
What appeared to be an extremely closed sector seems to have become a two-horse race. The Minnesota Vikings’ victory over the Detroit Lions as a visitor gave Minnesota a couple of games ahead in the race for the NFC North Division. Add to that the Chicago Bears’ home loss to the New Orleans Saints, their second in line, and the Vikes have more room to breathe.
For their part, the Green Bay Packers’ win has left them one game ahead of Minnesota. With Aaron Rodgers giving his best performance in the campaign, the Packers are in an unbeatable position, as they have already beaten the Vikings once and have no defeats within the sector.
Baltimore shines; problems in KC
With a surprising victory last week over the Seattle Seahawks, the Baltimore Ravens seem to have what it takes to compete in the American Conference. On the field, the win allowed the Ravens to increase the lead over Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers in the Northern Division. More importantly, Lamar Jackson showed that he can play in important games, although he can still improve his pitching accuracy.
With Marlon Humphrey, Earl Thomas and newcomer Marcus Peters, the Ravens secondary could be the best in the NFL. If Jackson becomes a real threat in aerial play, Baltimore has the elements to generate playoff noise.
In contrast, the Chiefs won’t count on Patrick Mahomes for three weeks. The real problem is not the time of absence of Mahomes, but the number of blows that have taken. If the offensive line doesn’t improve, the Chiefs may have a short trip in the playoffs.
|New England Patriots||+250|
|New Orleans Saints||+500|
|Green Bay Packers||+1000|
|Kansas City Chiefs||+1000|
|San Francisco 49ers||+1000|
|Los Angeles Rams||+1600|
|Los Angeles Chargers||+8000|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+15000|
|New York Giants||+30000|
|New York Jets||+75000|