A lot of teams had really great showings during the NFL Draft, increasing their odds for winning the 2015 Super Bowl. Here is a look at the odds in the league, how some teams did in the draft and what we can expect with organized training activities starting soon soon.
The Seattle Seahawks remain the favorite to repeat as Super Bowl Champions at 6/1 odds, even though they didn’t have a huge draft day. They didn’t have any first round picks, but they did pick up Paul Richardson with the 45th overall pick and Kevin Norwood at 139 to fill in as a receivers to Russell Wilson. The biggest deals for the Seahawks this offseason have been the resigning’s of their defensive core of Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor. They added to their defense by picking up Cassius Marsh at pick 108, Kevin Pierre-Louis at 132 and Eric Pinkins at 208.
The Denver Broncos are right there with the Seahawks at 6/1, as it looks like Peyton Manning will return for another year. After all, anytime you have Manning leading your offense, you have a legit chance at making an incredible run. The Broncos did make some additions on the defensive side, adding Bradley Roby at 31 with their first pick in the first round. Roby will look to help a defense that has lost a few key players during the offseason, including Champ Bailey after his release. Manning also got some help on offense during the draft, as the Broncos selected wide receiver Cody Latimer at 56 and offensive tackle Michael Schofiled at 95th overall.
The San Francisco 49ers had a lot to celebrate before draft day, as they picked up Stevie Johnson from the Bills to give Collin Kaepernick another target to throw to. Johnson will line up across from Anquan Boldin and also free up more space for Kaepernick to run, as defenses will have to adjust to both of these key receivers. As for the draft itself, the 49ers had 12 selections, including Marcus Martin as the 70th pick. Martin could come in as a starter at center to take the place of Jonathan Goodwin. The 49ers are expected to be in the thick of things with 8/1 odds.
At 10/1 odds, the New England Patriots also had a big day during the draft, as they added nine players in total. The most surprising might’ve been quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, who was picked up in the second round at pick 62. Is it likely that Garoppolo is going to start over Tom Brady? No chance. But picking a quarterback so high could be a sign of the transition of this team. The Patriots also drafted three offensive linemen to help protect Tom Brady, who, in 2014 had his highest sack total since his rookie year. They used their last pick, at 244, to get Jeremy Gallon as a receiver to add to the core group of Brady targets.
Drew Brees has one of the best targets in the game in Jimmy Graham. But now that the New Orleans Saints added wide-out Brandon Cooks with the 20th overall pick, Brees will have even more options to look to. Cooks led college football last year with 32 receptions that were 20 yards or more. The Saints also added corner Stanley Jean-Baptiste, linebackers Khairi Fortt and Ronald Powell, as well as safety Vinnie Sunseri to beef up their defense.
The only team in the NFL last year who didn’t have an interception from a safety was the Green Pay Packers. That’s probably why they drafted Ha Ha Dixon with the 21st overall pick in the draft. With their second pick they nabbed Davante Adams at 53 overall, so Aaron Rodgers will look to get things going with him next season. The Packers sit at 15/1 odds to win the Super Bowl next season.
The Philadelphia Eagles let DeSean Jackson go a few months ago, which might be the reason they nabbed receivers Jordan Matthews with the 42nd and Josh Huff with the 86th overall picks. With their first pick, the Eagles selected defensive end Marcus Smith, who will hope to give the NFC East fits all season long. They also grabbed Jaylen Watkins, who could be matched up against Jackson when the Eagles and Redskins player twice this season. The Eagles sit at 25/1 odds with a stellar offense and, what they hope, will be an equally as dangerous defense.
The Cincinnati Bengals had an interesting draft, which is surprising considering the success they had last season. Despite having Andy Dalton as their quarterback, the Bengals selected former Alabama play-caller AJ McCarron with the 164th overall pick. Despite regular season success, Dalton has lost the first three postseason starts of his career. With their first pick at 24, the Bengals picked up Darqueze Dennard, who will hopefully come in at cornerback as a starter next season. The Bengals sit at 30/1 odds, and it’ll be interesting to see if there is any type of quarterback controversy in the coming months.
The Indianapolis Colts didn’t do too much during the draft, as they only picked up five players. However, with Andrew Luck as the savior that they picked at number-one two years ago, they could already be on the right path anyways. After all, they have 30/1 odds to win the Super Bowl in 2015. During the draft the Colts selected Jack Mewhort at 59 to protect Luck, as well as Donte Moncrief at 90 to give Luck another option to throw to. The Colts are also still in dreary the AFC South, so they have that going for them as well.
The Chicago Bears went into the NFL Draft with the goal of beefing up its defense. They did just that by selecting five defensive ends and two defensive tackles. Their surprise pick may have been Ka’Deem Carey, who was in the hunt for the Heisman last season while at Arizona. The irony of the Bears draft selections may be that they picked up quarterback David Fales with the 183rd pick. After releasing Josh McCown earlier this offseason to give more confidence to Jay Cutler, it’s a bit of surprise the Bears would immediately get another quarterback. If Cutler was to get hurt, which he’s been known to do, and Fales came in and played well, which we’ve seen rookie quarterbacks do, it could be a complete mess in Chicago. In the mean time, the Bears currently sit at 30/1 odds with a bevy of other teams.
The Carolina Panthers had a nine-game winning streak last season, the best in franchise history. Their draft day results weren’t nearly as impressive, adding little depth to positions that needed it on this team. Sure, the Panthers have Cam Newton at quarterback and one of the best defenses in the league, but they picked Kelvin Benjamin as receiver at the 28 spot in the draft. Benjamin was great for the BCS National Champion Seminoles last year, but USC receiver Marqise Lee was still on the board and he could’ve been a huge addition to the Panthers offense. Carolina is at 30/1 odds as well.
Two teams that had huge draft days were the Jacksonville Jaguars and the St. Louis Rams. Sure, the Jags have had big drafts that quickly fizzled before, but they did their part to grab a bunch of potential future stars. First they picked up Blake Bortles with the third overall pick. They then grabbed Marqise Lee at 39 to give Bortles an option to target as the two start their rookie seasons together. That could be a lasting connection that has the potential of finally getting the Jags out of the bottom of the AFC South. The Rams might’ve had the best overall draft, grabbing to linemen in the first 13 picks. Greg Robinson was selected 2nd overall and will help protect Sam Bradford, while Aaron Donald fell to 13, despite being projected to go much higher. Donald will help add to the St. Louis defense that struggled last season. The Jags, at 225/1, and Rams, at 80/1, may not win the Super Bowl next season, but they both had great drafts that could shock some teams in 2014. And for their sake, they’ll hope that their draft selections this past weekend will at least be the foundation for building to the future.
Here are the remaining odds for other teams in the NFL for the 2015 Super Bowl.
Kansas City, Atlanta, Dallas, San Diego, Houston, New York Giants and Baltimore : 40/1.
Arizona and Washington : 50/1.
Detroit and Miami: 60/1.
New York Jets: 70/1.
Cleveland and Tennessee: 75/1.
Tampa Bay and Buffalo: 80/1.