NFC West Division Odds
(The Spread) – The NFC West will once again be the toughest division to win in the NFL this season, but which team is currently favored heading into preseason? Let’s check out the odds.
According to oddsmakers from online sports book Bovada.lv, the 49ers are currently favored to win the NFC West Division at -120 odds, while the Seahawks are +130 and the Rams are +650. Unsurprisingly, the Cardinals are the current long shots to win the division at +2000.
The 49ers took a hit to their offense this offseason when Michael Crabtree suffered an Achilles injury in OTAs. While he might not miss the entire season, San Francisco can’t count on him to return any time soon. That puts extra pressure on third-year quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who was a revelation when he took over under center for the concussed Alex Smith halfway through the 2012 NFL season. With Kaepernick in the mix for a full season, the Niners expect to challenge for the Super Bowl again this year.
The Seahawks fell victim to the injury bug themselves this offseason, as it was announced newly acquired Percy Harvin would undergo hip surgery that would likely keep him on the sidelines for all of 2013. Harvin was supposed to take Seattle’s already dynamic offense to another level this season, especially in the big play department. That said, the Hawks would have been a run-first team even if Harvin was healthy, so look for Marshawn Lynch to have another big season. The development of second-year quarterback Russell Wilson will also be a focal point in 2013-14.
Meanwhile, there’s a ton of excitement and intriguing brewing in St. Louis. Thanks to a rising defense and the additions of Jake Long, Tavon Austin and Jared Cook this offseason, many people view the Rams as a sleeper playoff contender this year. The key will be fourth-year quarterback Sam Bradford, who will be counted on to take Brian Schottenheimer’s offense to that next level. If Bradford can be an efficient ball distributor in the Rams’ new-look offense, there’s no reason to believe St. Louis won’t challenge for at least a wild card berth this season. After all, they did finish 4-1-1 in the division a year ago.
In Arizona, the Cardinals have a new head coach in Bruce Arians, a new quarterback in Carson Palmer, and a new outlook heading into 2013. But while Arians was a miracle worker last year in Indianapolis, the lack of a running game and an unstable offensive line will likely hold Arizona back this season. Palmer certainly has enough left in the tank to keep the Cards competitive but his pass protection is a major question mark and the injury situations of Rashard Mendenhall and Ryan Williams have left the backfield decimated.
2013-14 NFC West Division Odds
San Francisco 49ers -120
Seattle Seahawks +130
St. Louis Rams +650
Arizona Cardinals +2000