Are NFL Teams & Players Matching Their Economic Expectations?
Even though it doesn’t seem all that long ago the last campaign ended, another new NFL campaign is just around the corner. Last season, it was the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who defied all expectations, quite literally swashbuckling their way through the NFL Playoffs, going all the way to win Super Bowl LV.
What made that triumph all the more glorious to savor was that it was achieved at their very own Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay. Often seen as a curse more than a blessing, no team had ever won the Super Bowl in their home stadium, until the Buccaneers finally achieved the feat in February 2021.
Led by living legend Tom Brady, the Buccaneers and their iconic quarterback upset all the odds by triumphing last season. Often regarded as the greatest NFL player of all time, Brady had spent the entirety of his incredible professional career with the New England Patriots, before heading south to Florida, just like many normal people do in their twilight years.
Another Super Bowl-winning year for @TomBrady. 🏆
What was his best game of the season? pic.twitter.com/EKhbZVME7c
— NFL (@NFL) July 2, 2021
With the addition of Brady on the Tampa Bay roster, the 43-year-old superstar proved he still has plenty of gas in the tank, going on to become the only player to ever win seven championship rings. Nobody saw that coming, especially at a franchise that hadn’t even reached the playoffs for 12 seasons in a row. The inspirational veteran was clearly the missing ingredient for his team.
For millions of sports fans, whenever the new season approaches, making predictions and playing the futures markets adds extra fun to following American football. According to current NFL odds on bet365, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are tipped at +700 to lift the Vince Lombardi Trophy again, although they aren’t the favorites.
The Kansas City Chiefs are widely regarded to have the strongest overall roster of players in the NFL, priced at +450 odds to win the next Super Bowl. They boast stars like wide receiver Tyreek Hill, tight end Travis Kelce, plus quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who is the highest-paid player in the NFL. 25-year-old Mahomes has a contract with the Kansas franchise worth $45 million.
— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) June 14, 2021
Since appearing as the tenth overall selection in the 2017 Draft, there’s no doubt that Mahomes has proven his worth. Still just 25, he won the NFL Most Valuable Player (MVP) award in 2018. He has also broken many NFL records, including the fastest to 10,000 career passing yards and fastest to 100 career touchdowns, before helping the Chiefs win Super Bowl LIV in February 2020.
However, it’s not always the richest or the most powerful teams on paper who win championships, which is what makes betting on the NFL futures all the more interesting. The Dallas Cowboys are valued at $5.7 billion by Forbes, which makes them the wealthiest sporting organization of any kind in the world, yet they are way downtown at longshot +2800 odds to win the next Super Bowl.
Remarkably, the Cowboys haven’t won a Super Bowl since 1996. For all their economic wealth and influence, none of that has mattered when it comes to influencing performance on the field of play. That’s the beauty of the NFL, given that underdogs can often defy expectations and win championships, making the predictions game all the more exciting.