Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) scrambles during the second half of the NFL Super Bowl 55 football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Sunday, Feb. 7, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 31-9. (AP Photo/Steve Luciano)
- These wins totals reflect a 17-game schedule, which has been extended by one game
- Chiefs top the win total with 12; Tampa is listed at 11.5, while Houston is lowest at 4.5
- We compare the odds for all 32 teams and examine which teams may surprise, either up or down
The Kansas City Chiefs made it to the Super Bowl two straight years, but this past season they ran into the GOAT, Tom Brady.
But with Brady a little older and Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes a little more mature – and with something to prove – the win total for the Chiefs have been set at 12 and Tampa’s has been set at 11.5
On the other side of the ledger, the Houston Texans are listed at 4.5 for 2021. Of course, the lingering questions over quarterback Deshaun Watson’s status played a part in this projection. And many questions revolve around who would start at QB if Watson is traded or suspended.
Opening win totals and odds are available for all 32 teams at DraftKings.
Opening 2021 NFL Win Totals and Odds
|Team||Win total||Over odds||Under odds|
|Kansas City Chiefs||12||-110||-110|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||11.5||-110||-110|
|Green Bay Packers||10.5||-143||+118|
|San Francisco 49ers||10.5||+123||-150|
|Los Angeles Rams||10.5||+123||-150|
|New England Patriots||9||-143||+118|
|New Orleans Saints||9||-110||-110|
|Los Angeles Chargers||9||+103||-125|
|Washington Football Team||8||-110||-110|
|Las Vegas Raiders||7.5||-110||-110|
|New York Giants||7||-110||-110|
|New York Jets||6.5||+123||-150|
Odds from March 30th
Looking back at last season’s NFL win totals, we see that the Chiefs were given the highest win total as well at 13.5. They were tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers, whose projected win total came down from 14.5 to 13.5 after they lost their first game of the season in December.
The lowest projected win total in 2020 was the Washington Football Team at 4.5 wins. They ended up winning the NFC East Division with a 7-9 record. Jacksonville finished 1-15 last season, but the Jaguars have been given a projected win total of 6.5 for 2021.
It is almost written in stone that they will selected Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence with the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL draft.
In one of the most can’t-miss games scheduled for next season, Mahomes and the Chiefs will play host to Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in KC’s 17th game of the season.
Watson Will Be Difficult to Move
In Houston, it’s likely that Watson is un-tradeable for the foreseeable future after leading the NFL in passing during the team’s 4-12 campaign in 2020. And to make matters worse, after losing stars like J.J. Watt and DeAndre Hopkins the last two off-seasons, the Texans won’t be picking until early in the third round.
Houston Texans general manager Nick Caserio addressed the mounting allegations of sexual misconduct against Watson this week. As of Tuesday, Watson has been accused by 19 different women in separate civil lawsuits of various forms of sexual assault and harassment during massage sessions.
Intriguing 2021 regular-season games created today with the official addition of a 18th week:
🏈New Orleans at Tennessee
🏈Tampa Bay at Indianapolis
🏈Green Bay at Kansas City
🏈N.Y. Giants at Miami
🏈Dallas at New England. https://t.co/YtZb65rNr2
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 30, 2021
The NFL is investigating the allegations. But while this probe goes on, it’s difficult to see Watson being traded and he maintains he will not play another down for the Texans. The No. 2 on the Houston depth chart right now is Tyrod Taylor.
Prior to the latest allegations against Watson, it was believed that there was a trade to be made with the New York Jets. The Texans would move up to No. 2 in the draft and take BYU quarterback Zach Wilson, but now that kind of deal seems far-fetched.
Questions Remain in Philly
In Philadelphia, whose win total has been set at 6.5, Jalen Hurts is seen as the presumptive starter to replace Carson Wentz, though the Eagles could be in the market for one of the promising quarterbacks in this draft with the sixth-overall pick headlining their 10 picks total.
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) March 30, 2021
The Detroit Lions are next to last in the projected win total with five. The Lions made a big deal to trade quarterback Matthew Stafford for Jared Goff and a pair of first-round draft picks.
But even if Goff meshes well with his new team, it’s not clear how Detroit will turn around the NFL’s worst defense from last season with a roster that’s been stripped for parts. The Lions have just six picks in the draft, so they would be in a prime spot to move back from No. 7 overall if all the top quarterbacks are off the board in the NFL draft.
Who Could Surprise?
The one team I like going over the win total is the Buffalo Bills. Their win total now is projected at 10.5, even though they finished 13-3 last season. And they should be better. Although they cut John Brown, the Bills filled in with another elite receiver in Emmanuel Sanders, who gives Josh Allen another weapon in their burgeoning passing attack.
Allen has improved his completion rate from a terrible 59% to a respectable 69% between years two and three, and the Bills are clearly the biggest threat blocking the Chiefs from reaching their third straight Super Bowl.
The team that I see going under the win total of 10 is the Indianapolis Colts with the retirement of quarterback Philip Rivers. The Colts have given the reins to Wentz, who has to prove himself all over again in a new city.
Back in May, the Colts gave up a third-round pick in this year’s draft and a conditional second-round pick in the 2022 draft for Wentz, who was 3-8-1 as a starter for the Eagles and threw 15 interceptions last season.
Wentz thinks he can regain the form that made him an MVP candidate in Philadelphia before a torn ACL ended his season early in 2017. Colts coach Frank Reich will play a big part in trying to get Wentz, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 draft, back on track.
Curtis has been a sports writer for more than 40 years, contributing to the Toronto Star, New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, the Guardian and Forbes. He has covered the NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB, PGA, ATP and WTA. Curtis resides in Toronto.