Every year, multiple Vegas sportsbooks allow the public to bet on the win totals for every team in the NFL. Every team is given a specific win total projection and sports bettors can either bet that that given team will go over or under their projected win total. With about four months before the NFL season begins, the South Point Hotel in Las Vegas has already made these win totals available for the public to bet on. Here are my predictions for every AFC team’s win total:

AFC East

New England Patriots: 11 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

As defending Super Bowl champions, the Patriots are poised to potentially repeat with their high powered offense and very underrated defense. In addition to getting Rob Gronkowski back from injury, the Patriots were very active during the offseason and picked up several pieces like wide receiver Brandin Cooks, defensive back Stephon Gilmore and defensive end Kony Ealy. The Patriots also have the benefit of playing in the weak AFC East and should dominate their division foes on another easy route to a division title. Barring any injury to Tom Brady, this team should fly over the 11 win projection and finish 13-3.

Miami Dolphins: 7.5 wins

Prediction: Under the win total

After shocking the NFL and making the playoffs at 10-6, the Dolphins will try to get back to the playoffs with Ryan Tannehill returning from injury. At first look, this win total looks suspiciously low for a team that just made the playoffs last season. However, I like the under. I think that last year was a fluke and expect the Dolphins to come crumbling back to their usual realm of mediocrity. Ryan Tannehill is not a good NFL quarterback and I expect him to struggle again. I also expect Jay Ajayi to struggle after bursting onto the scene last year with a classic case of the sophomore slumps. This team has the potential to be solid with a strong offensive line but their secondary is vulnerable and their quarterback play has been too inconsistent for the Dolphins will have a winning record again. I think the Dolphins will finish the season at 7-9.

Buffalo Bills: 6 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

After finishing last season at 7-9, the Bills decided that it was time to clean house and decided to fire Rex Ryan as head coach. Usually, I am not the biggest fan of backing teams with new coaches, but this Bills team is practically the same team as last season with the exception of Stephon Gilmore. Tyrod Taylor is not a great NFL quarterback, but he is very serviceable. LeSean McCoy returns as the team’s starting running back after a very solid season along and should continue to be a workhorse moving forward. Personally, I do not see this team being that good. However, I think that they have a pretty solid defense and their offense should be able to put up a decent amount of points. I think the Bills go 7-9.

New York Jets: 5.5 wins

Prediction: Under the win total

After going 5-11 last season, the Jets look to rebound in the hopes of potentially saving Todd Bowles’ future as their head coach. The Jets suffered several key losses over the offseason including center Nick Mangold and wide receiver Brandon Marshall. The Jets also decided to part ways with defensive back Darrelle Revis after a poor season as well as his personal issues during the offseason. As a Jets fan, I can confidently say that this team is going to be awful. With a suspect offensive line, no receivers outside of Eric Decker and unproven Christian Hackenberg at quarterback, this team is going to struggle to score points and should end up being 4-12 when the season is over.

AFC North

Pittsburgh Steelers: 10.5 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

After going 11-5 last season, The Steelers look to return to the AFC championship game in the hopes of getting Big Ben another Super Bowl trophy before he retires. This Steelers team retains most of their team from last season and is reunited with talented wide receiver Martavis Bryant after missing last season due to a drug suspension. This Steelers offense should continue to be a well-oiled machine with playmakers Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell carrying the load. The Achilles’ heel for the Steelers has been their suspect defense but they addressed that issue in the Draft by improving their defensive line via T.J. Watt. This team should continue their AFC North dominance and win another division title. Barring an injury to Big Ben, this team should go 11-5.

Baltimore Ravens: 9.5 wins

Prediction: Under the win total

After going 8-8 last season, the Ravens hope to return to the playoffs with their relatively old roster. This team has struggled in recent years to score offensively with Joe Flacco at the helm. Their struggles will only intensify with the loss of wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. as well as their inability to run the football. However, their defense is solid and has improved over the offseason with the additions of defensive backs Brandon Carr and Marlon Humphrey. This team will rely heavily on its defense to keep them in close games but a lack of offensive playmakers will be their undoing. I think the Ravens will go 8-8.

Cincinnati Bengals: 8.5 wins

Prediction: Under the win total

Last season, the Bengals underachieved and finished 6-9-1. This season, the Bengals look to return to the playoffs and finally win a playoff game under coach Marvin Lewis. This team has made several moves over the offseason in search of playmakers on both sides of the field. The Bengals signed defensive end Michael Johnson and drafted troubled running back Joe Mixon and extremely fast receiver John Ross III to help produce game changing plays. However, I have never been an Andy Dalton fan and expect him to underachieve. Pair that with Lewis’ inability to win big games and I see another average season before the Bengals finally fire him this offseason. I think the Bengals will go 8-8.

Cleveland Browns: 4 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

Last season, the Browns were awful and went 1-15. However, that allowed them to draft defensive end Myles Garrett with the first pick in the draft. The Browns also selected safety Jabrill Peppers and tight end David Njoku in the first round. The Browns should continue to struggle on offense due to inconsistent quarterback play. However, I think their defense is decent and should be able to keep them in several games during the season. The Browns also drafted kicker Zane Gonzalez to compete with Cody Parkey for the starting spot. Now I am not saying that this Browns team will be good, but they have a manageable schedule and a lot of playmakers on the defensive side of the ball. I think the Browns go 5-11.

AFC South

Tennessee Titans: 9.5 wins

Prediction: Under the win total

The Titans had a very solid season last year finishing 9-7. Their season could have been even better had quarterback Marcus Mariota not suffered a devastating leg injury towards the end of the season. They also got Mariota another weapon after drafting wide receiver Corey Davis in the first round. In order for this team to be successful, they will have to lean on running backs DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry to ensure the safety of Mariota for the entire season. Besides Davis and tight end Delanie Walker, this team has no other quality targets for Mariota to throw the ball to. If the Titans go down early in a few games, I doubt that they will have the offensive firepower to score quickly to come back. I also have to question Mariota’s mobility after the leg injury as well as his confidence in his running ability with the potential of sustaining another terrible injury. I think that Titans will return to being average and go 7-9.

Indianapolis Colts: 9 wins

Prediction: Under the win total

Last season, the Colts went 8-8 due to inconsistent offensive line play and a poor defense. Andrew Luck and T.Y. Hilton will continue their success in this upcoming season but Frank Gore is getting older and I question his ability to remain an effective running back in the league throughout the whole 16 game season. The Colts also addressed some of their defensive issues by drafting safety Malik Hooker in the first round. However, the Colts did nothing to fix their offensive line and still have a questionable secondary and pass rush. I think the Colts go 8-8 and Chuck Pagano is finally fired as head coach.

Houston Texans: 8.5 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

The Houston Texans won the division last season after going 9-7 despite having consistently terrible quarterback play from Brock Osweiler. The Texans managed to address this concern by drafting quarterback Deshaun Watson in the first round. This team already had an elite defense and has several playmakers on offense including running back Lamar Miller and wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. The only piece this team was missing was quarterback and now they have adequately filled that need. I think this team cruises to another division title and goes 11-5.

Jacksonville Jaguars: 5.5 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

The Jaguars struggled last season and went 3-13 which resulted in the firing of coach Gus Bradley. The success of this team will be determined by quarterback Blake Bortles and first round draft pick Leonard Fournette out of the backfield. If Bortles can stop turning the ball over and gets some protection from his offensive line, the Jaguars have capable receivers in Allen Hurns and Allen Robinson to produce several big plays per game. The Jaguars also have an underrated defense that played well towards the end of last season. I expect their defense to continue to play at this improved level and think the Jaguars will go 6-10 as a result.

AFC West

Oakland Raiders: 9.5 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

Last season, the Raiders went 12-4 and made the playoffs thanks, in large part, to quarterback Derek Carr who performed at an MVP quality level. Unfortunately, Carr suffered a devastating leg injury last season causing the Raiders to struggle mightily against the Texans in the first round of the playoffs. Carr is back and is expected to be healthy by week one which is essential for the Raiders to have any success this season. The Raiders made a huge splash in free agency after signing running back Marshawn Lynch out of retirement and adding tight end Jared Cook. The Raiders issues last season were primarily on the defensive side of the ball. The Raiders addressed some of those issues in the draft by picking cornerback Gareon Conley in the first round. Assuming that Carr stays healthy and that Conley’s rape allegations are dropped, the Raiders should return to the playoffs and finish 10-6.

Kansas City Chiefs: 9 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

Last season, the Chiefs won the division with a 12-4 record due to solid defensive play as well as the emergence of playmaking receiver Tyreek Hill. The Chiefs return the majority of their starters from last season and should continue their success this upcoming season. Assuming that Alex Smith continues to limit the team’s turnovers, the Chiefs should be able to rely on their elite defense and solid running game to win a lot of games. I think the Chiefs make the playoffs again and go 10-6.

Denver Broncos: 8.5 wins

Prediction: Under the win total

Last season, the Broncos went 9-7 and missed the playoffs due, in large part, to inconsistent play from quarterback Trevor Siemian. The Broncos will continue to rely on their elite defense to dominate play and wreck havoc on opposing quarterbacks. The Broncos also added running back Jamaal Charles to produce several big plays out of the backfield and complement C.J. Anderson. However, this team did nothing to improve their quarterback situation over the offseason. They tried to get Tony Romo in free agency and failed without producing any type of backup plan. This team underachieved due to poor quarterback play last season and will probably suffer from that same issue this upcoming season. I think the Broncos go 7-9.

Los Angeles Chargers: 7.5 wins

Prediction: Over the win total

Last season, the Charges went 5-11 and fired coach Mike McCoy as a result. During the offseason, the Chargers made tons of headlines due to their decision to move to Los Angeles starting this upcoming season. As for the team, they drafted wide receiver Mike Williams to help complement fellow receiver Keenan Allen in the passing game. However, the offensive success of this team will be determined by former Badger running back Melvin Gordon who had a phenomenal season before suffering a hip injury at the end of the season. The Chargers also dealt with a plethora of injuries on the defensive side of the ball last season and should be a relatively solid defensive unit now that everyone is healthy again. Although the Chargers went 5-11, they were winning a lot of games last season before blowing a ton of leads in the fourth quarter. With a healthy defense and more offensive weapons for Philip Rivers, I think the Chargers go 8-8.

Advertisements