2015/16 NFC South Futures

The NFC South features one of the NFL’s three undefeated teams, the 7-0 Carolina Panthers who are unsurprisingly a -210 favorite to win the division at online sportsbook Bovada. Seven straight wins has given them a great head start, but the Atlanta Falcons (+225) are just two games behind, while the New Orleans Saints (+900) have rattled off four wins in their past five games.

The Falcons started the year hot with five straight wins, but they’ve lost two out of their last three. The Saints looked like one of the worst teams in the league over the first three weeks, but Drew Brees and company have turned things around. Of the four teams in the division, the Saints have the easiest second half schedule as their remaining opponents have combined to win just 44 percent of their games.

Bringing up the rear in the NFC South is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+5000), whose three wins are pretty much on par with what people expected of them this season.

The first place Panthers and second place Falcons will play each other twice in the second half.

2015/16 NFC South Champion

Odds as of November 5 at Bovada

  • Carolina Panthers -210
  • Atlanta Falcons +225
  • New Orleans Saints +900
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers +5000

Archived Articles

The Carolina Panthers staged an improbable run to the playoffs last season, winning five of their final six games to finish their campaign with a 7-8-1 record, good for top spot in the underachieving NFC South.

With quarterback Cam Newton, who piloted the Panthers to last year's division title and playoff berth, entering the final year of his rookie contract, Carolina is just a step behind the Atlanta Falcons at +210 to claim their third straight NFC South title at Bovada.

The Falcons posted an impressive 5-1 record against division rivals in 2014, but struggled in contests against teams outside the NFC South, finishing the season at 6-10 and going under .500 for a second straight year after recording 36 total wins in their three previous seasons. Atlanta is at +200 on the NFC South odds.

Quarterback Drew Brees will once again lead the New Orleans Saints, who finished last year with a poor 7-9 record after entering the season as -150 favorites to claim the NFC South. Speculation continues as to whether this year will be Brees' last season running the offense for the Saints, who closely trail the favorites at +225 on the NFC South futures at Bovada.

And many eyes will be on Jameis Winston, the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner and the top pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, when he suits up with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season. The Bucs have nowhere to go but up after winning just two games in 2014 and finishing dead last in the conference in points scored.

While Winston may have the potential to kickstart the team's moribund offense, Tampa Bay remains a longshot to go from worst to first in the NFC South at +550 odds at Bovada.

2015/16 NFC South Champion

Odds as of August 22 at Bovada

  • Atlanta Falcons +200
  • Carolina Panthers +210
  • New Orleans Saints +225
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers +550
2015/16 NFC South Champion

Odds as of July 20 at Bovada

  • Atlanta Falcons +200
  • Carolina Panthers +200
  • New Orleans Saints +225
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers +650
2015/16 NFC South Champion

Odds as of May 5 at Bovada

  • Atlanta Falcons +200
  • Carolina Panthers +200
  • New Orleans Saints +225
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers +750

Archived Articles

2014 NFC South Odds Preview

The Carolina Panthers surged to the NFC South crown in 2013, but it's Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints that are set as the favorites on those division futures at the sportsbooks heading into the 2014 season.

At Bovada the Saints are listed as the -150 favorites on the odds to win the NFC South, after they ended up one game back of the Panthers in the division standings at 11-5 last season. New Orleans won five of their six games against the other NFC South teams.

New Orleans Saints Odds to Win NFC South -150
Atlanta Falcons Odds to Win NFC South +450
Carolina Panthers Odds to Win NFC South +450
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Odds to Win NFC South +550

Carolina also went 5-1 in the division last season en route to their 12-4 overall record, but they're tied for second on the NFC South odds at Bovada at +450 with the Atlanta Falcons. Atlanta is coming off an ugly 4-12 season in which they went just 1-5 against NFC South teams.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers also went 1-5 in division play and 4-12 overall last season, and they're fourth at +550 on the NFC South odds at Bovada for the 2014 season.


2013 NFC South Odds Preview

With Sean Payton suspended for the entire season last year, the New Orleans Saints faltered, leaving the NFC South wide open for the Atlanta Falcons to take it and run. Atlanta won the division by six games last year, and the race was never really in doubt.

This year, things could be different. While Atlanta is still the favorite, New Orleans should be back at full strength, and Carolina and Tampa Bay could both show signs of improvement as well. The Saints won the division in 2009 and 2011 and the Falcons won it in 2010 and 2012. Who will prevail this season?

Atlanta Falcons (Odds to Win Division at Bovada +130)

Coming off of a second 13-3 SU season and second NFC South title in three years, the Atlanta Falcons appear to have solved the regular season. The next step will be getting results in the playoffs.

RB Steven Jackson should add an established running game to an elite passing attack that features Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez. This was already one of the league’s best offenses, and Jackson’s addition only makes it stronger. Atlanta will put up big numbers again in 2013 and steamroll most opponents; whether or not the Falcons win the division along the way will likely come down to head-to-head matchups against the Saints.

New Orleans Saints (Odds to Win Division at Bovada +150)

New Orleans actually finished last season on a decent 7-5 SU and ATS run, but the writing for the Saints’ season was already on the wall after an 0-4 SU and ATS start.

Drew Brees was sensational, and the Saints passing attack continues to torch defenses around the league. Last year, the issue was on defense, where New Orleans had one of the worst defensive performances in NFL history. A new defensive coordinator and defensive scheme can only help matters as there is nowhere to go but up for that unit. Sean Payton’s presence should get the team re-focused and back to an elite level.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Odds to Win Division at Bovada +500)

Rookie RB Doug Martin was a breakout star in 2012, and his play led the Buccaneers to a 6-4 SU and 8-2 ATS start. Unfortunately for the Bucs, the league’s worst passing defense eventually caught up to the team as it finished 1-5 SU and 1-4-1 ATS down the stretch.

If healthy, CB Darrelle Revis should make a huge impact on the passing defense as one of the best shutdown corners in the game. But in order to keep up in the NFC South (or more realistically, to fight for a wild card spot), Tampa Bay will need Josh Freeman to step up.

Carolina Panthers (Odds to Win Division at Bovada +550)

It was a tale of two seasons for the Carolina Panthers last year, who went 1-6 SU and 3-4 ATS over their first seven games and 6-3 SU and ATS over their last nine. Which version of the team will we see this season?

The answer rests on the huge shoulders of QB Cam Newton. The team’s leading passer and rusher, Newton is the focal point of the offense and the pressure lies on him to produce. If he plays to his potential and grows as a leader, the sky is the limit for him and the Panthers; will this be the year?


2012 NFC South Odds Preview

The New Orleans took quite a beating from the league over the Bounty-Gate scandal during the offseason. Will it be the end of the Saints on the field too, or will they rise above it all? The NFC South has been an tough division to call since it inception. No team has repeated as NFC South division champ ever. That isn't good news for the Saints, who won the division last season with a 13-3 mark.

That long standing trend may be one reason the Saints and Atlanta Falcons are co-favorites, both at 13/10 to win the division this season at Bovada.

The Saints begin the new season without head coach Sean Payton, with a new defensive coordinator and a number of their 2011 defense either gone or suspended. What they do still have is Drew Brees and a very deep corps of receivers led by Marques Colston and tight end Jimmy Graham.

With Brees at the helm the offense remains in good hands. The defense though is another story. Jonathan Vilma is out for the season, Will Smith is suspended for four games and Tracy Porter, Shaun Rogers, Jo-Lonn Dunbar and Aubrayo Franklin are all gone.

That could give the defense a chance to rebuild after ranking 24th in the league last season.

The Falcons have some big playmakers of their own on offense and it could push them ahead of the Saints, if New Orleans stumbles at all this season. Matt Ryan leads an Atlanta offense that boasts one of the best wide receiver tandems in the league in veteran Roddy White and rising star Julio Jones.

Veteran tight end Tony Gonzalez is back for one more season and the running game looks solid with Michael Turner and Jacquizz Rodgers. Atlanta quietly brought in corner back Asante Samuel during the offseason which should help a pass defense that ranked near the bottom the league last season.

The Carolina Panthers had a pretty good season last year despite their sub par 6-10 record. The chances of them repeating or even improving upon that record will likely depend on Cam Newton' ability to avoid a sophomore slump.

The oddsmakers are listed the Panthers as a 4/1 underdog in the NFC South at Bovada and that may be a tad generous. If Newton even takes a small step back this season the Panther could end up in the division basement.

Nothing went right for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last season. They suffered a total meltdown on both sides of the ball and it costs head coach Raheem Morris his job. His replacement Greg Schiano does have some new pieces to work with after the Bucs went out and grabbed Vincent Jackson, Dallas Clark and drafted running back Doug Martin.

Any chance of the Bucs improved rests mainly on quarterback Josh Freeman, who regressed badly last season. If Tampa Bay can turn it around they could be an interesting pick as a 15/1 longshot.