The 2020 NFL season will be a unique one, no doubt. The stands will be empty, while some speak about the potential bubble.
Howsoever, the 2020 NFL schedule has been announced, as well as the lines and odds for win totals. Taking future bets early is always fun, so while we’re waiting for the NFL season, here’s my top 5 picks for the 2020 NFL win totals.
2020 NFL Win Totals
|Kansas City Chiefs||11.5|
|New Orleans Saints||10.5|
|San Francisco 49ers||10.5|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||9.5|
|New England Patriots||9.5|
|Green Bay Packers||8.5|
|Los Angeles Rams||8.5|
|Los Angeles Chargers||7.5|
|Las Vegas Raiders||7.5|
|New York Jets||6.5|
|New York Giants||6.5|
Buffalo Bills over 8.5 at -145
The Bills are coming off a 10-6 season, and I don’t see why they should regress in 2020. Buffalo’s defense is undoubtedly one of the best in the league, while the Bills strengthen their offense, acquiring WR Stefon Diggs from Minnesota.
Josh Allen played very well in his second NFL season, tossing for 3089 yards, 20 touchdowns, and nine interceptions. He also carried the pigskin 109 times for 510 yards and nine touchdowns. Allen needed a vertical threat, and Stefon Diggs looks like a perfect acquisition.
The other three AFC East teams are pretty much a mystery. The Patriots lost Tom Brady; the Jets traded All-Pro safety Jamal Adams to Seattle, while the Dolphins have a bunch of young and unproven players. The Bills finally have a huge opportunity to win the division title. They’ve been waiting for it since Tom Brady entered the league.
The Bills’ schedule seems tricky, but that’s why the line has been set at 8.5 games. Buffalo host the Rams, Chiefs, Seahawks, Chargers, and Steelers and travel to Las Vegas, Tennessee, Arizona, San Francisco, and Denver.
Pittsburgh Steelers over 8.5 at -160
The Steelers mightily struggled with injuries in 2019 and still went 8-8. Ben Roethlisberger suffered a season-ending injury in Week 2; James Conner missed six games due to knee and shoulder problems, while Juju Smith-Schuster played half of his 12 games on one leg.
Despite all injury problems, the Steelers were 8-5 and in the playoff picture after Week 14. However, they suffered three straight losses to finish the season while scoring exactly 10 points in each of those three contests. That tells you enough how bad the Steelers’ offense was, while their defensive unit was fifth in the league in points allowed (18.9) and total yards surrendered per game (304.1).
The Steelers should continue to raise defensively. They have so many talented individuals on the roster, selecting defensive players in the first round in seven of the previous eight drafts.
T.J. Watt, Devin Bush, Terrell Edmunds, and Bud Dupree are top-notch players and should continue to torture their rivals.
Pittsburgh will play tough games against Baltimore and Cleveland, but the Penguins’ non-divisional matchups look encouraging. They will visit the Giants, Jaguars, Titans, Cowboys, and Bills while hosting the Broncos, Eagles, Washington, Colts, and Texans.
With healthy Big Ben and Juju, the Steelers will certainly do a much better job offensively. They averaged paltry 18.1 points per game last season (27th in the NFL). I think the Steelers will win at least nine games this term, expecting them to avoid key injuries after a tough 2019 season.
Carolina Panthers over 5.5 at -140
The Panthers went 5-11 in 2019 and finished at the bottom of the NFC South, a couple of games behind Atlanta and Tampa Bay. They were 5-3 after Week 9 when a terrible eight-game losing streak started. Interestingly, the Panthers started 0-2 with Cam Newton under center and then won four games in a row with Kyle Allen as a starting QB.
Allen finished the season as a starter because of Cam’s injury. Anyway, the Panthers decided to split ways with both these guys and selected Teddy Bridgewater as their new starting signal-caller.
Bridgewater had a wonderful 2019 season, going 5-0 in five starts for the New Orleans Saints. He got an opportunity because of Drew Brees’ injury and proved everyone that he’s good enough to start games in the NFL. Back in 2015, Bridgewater led the Minnesota Vikings to the 11-5 record in his sophomore season.
Teddy will need some time to bond with new teammates. The Panthers’ receiving corps is loaded with talented players, so I expect a lot from their passing game in 2020. D.J. Moore had 87 catches for 1175 yards and four touchdowns in 2019. Curtis Samuel tallied 627 yards and six scores, while Robby Anderson had 779 yards and five touchdowns.
Finally, Christian McCaffrey will do everything for the Panthers. Last year, CMC led the NFL in yards from scrimmage (2392) and the number of touches (403). He ran for 1387 yards and 15 scores while adding 116 receptions for 1005 yards and four touchdowns.
The Panthers lost Luke Kuechly in the offseason, and that’s a huge blow for their defensive unit. The five-time All-Pro hung up the cleats, so the Panthers could struggle on the defensive end.
The NFC South is stronger than ever with Tampa Bay acquiring Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski. The Saints are Super Bowl contenders, while the Atlanta Falcons hope for a good season. Still, I think the Panthers will grab one more win than they did in 2019.
Carolina will play some winnable non-division games at home. The Panthers welcome Las Vegas, Arizona, Chicago, Detroit, and Denver, so I have to bet on them to win six or more games in 2020.
Kansas City Chiefs over 11.5 at -140
I’m wagering on the Chiefs to win 12 or more games in 2020, and only some serious injuries can stop me from winning this bet. First, the Chiefs’ schedule is hilarious, considering they are reigning Super Bowl champions. None of their division rivals is a heavyweight team, while the Chiefs have some pretty winnable non-division matchups.
Kansas City welcome the Patriots, Jets, Texans, Falcons, and Panthers, while the Chiefs travel to Tampa, New Orleans, Buffalo, Miami, and Baltimore. There are four tough games away from home, but I’m pretty sure the Chiefs will pull off a couple of upsets.
Keep in mind that Kansas City is 18-2 in its last 20 games against the AFC West. The Chiefs are 11-1 in their last 12 meetings with the Chargers, 9-0 in their previous nine meetings with the Broncos, and 10-1 in their last 11 encounters with the Raiders.
Patrick Mahomes has been absolutely unstoppable over the last two years. The Chiefs’ offense is loaded with playmakers, so they can afford to play lousy defense and still win games in sequences. That’s why I say only injuries will stop me from winning this wager. Give me the Chiefs in the over.
Washington under 5.5 at -140
Washington Football Team or the former Redskins went 3-13 last season and I’m looking for more of the same in 2020. Even if they find a way to improve, I don’t believe Washington will win six or more games.
First, their schedule is tough. Washington visits Arizona, Cleveland, Detroit, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh. Also, they will host Baltimore, Seattle, Carolina, Cincinnati, and LA Chargers. From this point of view, there are four or five winnable matchups including a couple of games against the New York Giants.
Washington drafted Chase Young with the second pick overall, and the former Ohio State Buckeyes will improve their defense for sure. However, Washington’s offense will be a big issue, as it was in 2019 when the Redskins averaged the fewest points per game in the NFL (16.6).
Dwayne Haskins should get the starting job, and he has to show a massive improvement after some terrible performance in his rookie season. He went 2-5 in seven starts and two relief appearances, throwing for 1365 yards, seven touchdowns, and seven picks.
Washington signed Kyle Allen from Carolina, while Alex Smith returns from a devastating injury he suffered in 2018, so Haskins will have to work hard and play well to keep his job. Anyway, Terry McLaurin is the only reliable wideout on the roster, while Washington’s offensive line doesn’t promise a lot.