If you’re interested in NFL futures, you should look at these betting markets a few times during the offseason.
The first time is when lines are first released. The second is immediately after the NFL Draft when the core of each roster is close to finalized. The third is when the schedule order is released.
You can make win total bets in the days after the schedule release and plan out times during the season to bet. Let’s discuss a few of those options.
When to Bet on Win Totals
Win Total: 11.5
The Philadelphia Eagles are well positioned to start fast through their first five games: at NE, vs. Min (TNF), at TB (MNF), vs. Wash and at LAR. That looks like a 4-1, if not a 5-0 start for the defending NFC Champions.
Things take a dramatic turn for the worse through the Eagles’ next nine games: at NYJ, vs. Mia (SNF), at Wash, vs. Dal, Bye, at KC (MNF), vs. Buf, vs. SF, at Dal (SNF), at Sea.
That is an absolutely brutal stretch where the Eagles could realistically lose any of these matchups. A 5-4 record through this nine-game run would be a relative win.
This is a prime example of why the schedule order matters when betting win totals. If you’re interested in the over on the Eagles, you should make that bet before opening day. Since that number has jumped to 11.5, if you like the Eagles over, you should consider waiting for a better line this summer.
That might not happen, but Philadelphia’s win total is likelier to dip than take another jump.
If you want to bet on the Eagles’ under, consider waiting for Philadelphia to get through that initial five-game stretch. If the Eagles start 4-1 or better, their 11.5-game win total could reach 12.5 during the season.
San Francisco 49ers
Win Total: 10.5
We still do not know who the San Francisco 49ers’ opening-day quarterback will be. That uncertainty makes the early schedule difficulty more important for San Francisco than most teams. Thankfully for 49ers enthusiasts, they start: at Pit, at LAR, vs. NYG (TNF), vs. Arz.
The 49ers have appeared in three of the past four NFC Championship games and have a loaded roster. Even with the quarterback uncertainty, that looks like a 3-1 or better start.
The 49ers’ next 11 games are far less kind: vs. Dal (SNF), at Cle, at Min (MNF), vs. Cin, Bye, at Jax, vs. TB, at Sea (TNF), at Phi, vs. Sea, at Arz, vs. Bal (MNF).
Games against Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Arizona Cardinals are likely wins, but they could realistically lose to every other opponent during that stretch. A 6-5 record through this run would be a reasonable expectation.
Like the Eagles, if you want to bet on the 49ers’ over, you should do it before opening day. If you’re looking at San Francisco’s under, you should wait until after its matchup with the Cardinals in Week 4 to see if the line jumps to 11.5 wins.
We discussed the Eagles and 49ers win totals on our podcast, which you can find here.
>> READ: Should 49ers Start Lance or Darnold?
Green Bay Packers
Win Total: 7.5
The Green Bay Packers are volatile but have a realistic path to exceeding expectations. The Packers’ defense underachieved last season, but they have a ton of high-end talent on that side of the ball.
If Green Bay’s defense plays like a top-five unit, the Packers can be a tough out, especially if Jordan Love can be an efficient game manager. That forecast has several ifs, but such an outcome is possible for the Packers.
The Packers’ early schedule could help them get off to a strong start: at Chi, at Atl, vs. NO, vs. Det (TNF), and at LV (MNF). Green Bay could head into its Week 6 Bye with a 3-2 or better record.
The Packers have some mountains to climb through the rest of the season, but their remaining schedule isn’t that bad: at Den, vs. Min, vs. LAR, at Pit, vs. LAC, at Det (Thanksgiving), vs. KC (SNF), at NYG (MNF), vs. TB, at Car, at Min, vs., Chi.
If the Packers start with a 3-2 record, they could go 5-7 through the rest of the season and still hit their over. That’s not out of the question.
If you’re considering the Packers’ over, you could take a wait-and-see approach through their first four games. If the defense looks good and Love is playing well, it might be worth hitting this before Green Bay’s trip to Las Vegas if this line is still 7.5 games. Opening day against the Chicago Bears could be a decision point.
We’ll discuss these options and much more in season in our Discord.