NFL Betting: 2017 AFC Betting Preview

The AFC is a top heavy conference, dominated by a few elite teams. Of those elite teams, the New England Patriots take the prize of AFC favorite and look close to unbeatable entering the 2017 NFL season. Still, the Patriots are coming off a Super Bowl run and with Brady now 40, the team could underperform just enough to open the door for another team. Here are the best teams to bet on in the AFC and the largest favorite to avoid in 2017.

Favorite Who Will Disappoint: Pittsburgh Steelers

Loaded with offensive weaponry and a young, talented defense, the Pittsburgh Steelers are one the favorites in the AFC this season. However, the Steelers have not found a way to get back to the Super Bowl in over half a decade, continually disappointing fans and bettors. There are a few reasons why the Steelers will disappoint again in 2017.

Injuries to Roethlisberger always cost the Steelers a few games, which leads to Pittsburgh losing out on home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Roethlisberger is notable for his declining play on the road, making the Steelers a reach to make the Super Bowl unless they lock up the top seed in the AFC, which seems unlikely. The defense, though good, cannot win many games for the team. If Roethlisberger and the Steelers offense is struggling, their defense is strong enough to pick up the slack.

A Long Shot Worth A Shot: Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers are entering the 2017 NFL season as one of the more underrated teams in the league. The Chargers are deep on both sides of the ball. On offense, the club is filled with receiving talent at both receiver and tight end, giving Philip Rivers plenty of options. The Chargers improved their offensive line and have an above average running back, creating one of the best offensive groups in the league.

The defense may actually be the strength of the Chargers in 2017. The Chargers defense was surprising good in 2016, and that was while dealing with injuries to their best cornerback Jason Verrett and a holdout by their best defensive player Joey Bosa. If the unit improves in 2017, it could challenge the likes of the Houston Texans and Seattle Seahawks for the best unit in the NFL.

Prediction: New England Patriots

It is hard not to pick the reigning Super Bowl champions to repeat, or at least, repeat as AFC champions. The Patriots had a superb offseason, adding Brandon Cooks and Mike Gillislee to their already potent offense. The team’s defense is young but experienced. Add in the weakness of their division and the Patriots should have little trouble winning the AFC East for the eighth straight year.

Even with Tom Brady turning 40, the Patriots still have the best quarterback in the AFC. If Brady does show any signs of slowing down due age, expect Bill Belichick to be well prepared and adjust the offense accordingly. In fact, the Patriots have considerable depth of running back and should be able to use multiple backs in different scenario to protect and preserve Brady. The smart money is on the Patriots to make it back to the Super Bowl this season.

Odds To Win AFC
Baltimore Ravens +1500
Buffalo Bills +4000
Cincinnati Bengals +1800
Cleveland Browns +6600
Denver Broncos +900
Houston Texans +1200
Indianapolis Colts +1800
Jacksonville Jaguars +3000
Kansas City Chiefs +1000
Los Angeles Chargers +2800
Miami Dolphins +2200
New England Patriots +150
New York Jets +6600
Oakland Raiders +650
Pittsburgh Steelers +400
Tennessee Titans +1200