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Betting on AFC Teams to Make the Playoffs

Betting on AFC Teams to Make the Playoffs

By Loot, NFL Handicapper,

Betting on a team to make the AFC playoffs can be rewarding on several different levels. Naturally, the rewards can be quite handsome and that's especially the case with the more off-the-grid teams you take. A lot of times during your journey as an NFL fan or bettor, your powers of observation allowed you to hone in on a team that a lot of people weren't looking at. It's a bet that allows you to capitalize on any unique perceptions you may have developed. And from a mileage standpoint, this is a bet that gives you a lot of bang for your buck. With a bet on whether an AFC team will make the postseason, you have a vested interest in all of that team's games, or at least until it's been determined if they're going to make the playoffs or not.

We're looking for a few different things here with this bet. First of all, we want to be right—that goes without saying. But beyond that, we're looking for good value. Good value in a betting sense is much like the concept of value in other walks of life. When we get more than what we pay for or if the price is lower than what we project, it's good value. The same applies here. Sure, there might be a team where it's hard to envision them making the playoffs. But if you're getting +500 odds on a team making the playoffs and you think their real chances are more in the +300 range, you could bet that team even if you don't see them getting to the playoffs just in a straight-up sense.

There are a lot of things to consider in a bet of this nature. Sure, you want to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the team itself. Beyond that, you want to determine how easy their path to the playoffs will be. Look at the strength of their division. After all, they have to play each of those teams twice and outrun them in the standings. Also look at other divisions to get a sense of what the wild card picture might look like. And take a look at their non-division schedules. Delve into it a little bit. Let's take a look at the betting odds to make the playoffs for all AFC teams, along with our picks!

New England Patriots make playoffs -1600
New England Patriots won't make playoffs +1050
Our Take: Not much here. The Pats will almost certainly make the playoffs. It's too chalky to make the pick and too dicey to pick against them.

Miami Dolphins make playoffs +320
Miami Dolphins won't make playoffs -390
Our Take: We think there is some value on Miami to make the playoffs at +320. They made a nice run last season after a tough start and appear to be on the rise.

Buffalo Bills make playoffs +525
Buffalo Bills won't make playoffs -750
Our Take: We don't think Buffalo is going to make the postseason. If all the stars line up, they could, but it's hard to get behind either side of this bet.

New York Jets make playoffs +1800
New York Jets won't make playoffs -3600
Our Take: On one hand, they look like they're going to be ragged this season. Anything could happen and they did win 10 in 2015. We're staying away from this one.

Pittsburgh Steelers make playoffs -360
Pittsburgh Steelers won't make playoffs +300
Our Take: Neither side of this looks that appetizing, unless a chalky bettor wanted to lay -360 that they'll go to the postseason. If they didn't, you'd want more than +300.

Baltimore Ravens make playoffs +130
Baltimore Ravens won't make playoffs -150
Our Take: A good toss-up wager for those who feel strongly one way or the other about the Ravens in 2017. We tend to feel +130 for Baltimore to make the playoffs is pretty good.

Cincinnati Bengals make playoffs +155
Cincinnati Bengals won't make playoffs -175
Our Take: The price of +155 isn't bad for a perennial playoff factor that missed the postseason last season when a lot of things went wrong. Decent value here.

Cleveland Browns make playoffs +1700
Cleveland Browns won't make playoffs -3400
Our Take: -3400 leaves us without many options for not making the playoffs. And if they did somehow manage to get in, +1700 almost seems like not enough for calling it right.

Tennessee Titans make playoffs +120
Tennessee Titans won't make playoffs -140
Our Take: One of the more-improved teams in the league last season and nearly division champs, we like the Titans at +120 to find their way into the postseason mix.

Houston Texans make playoffs +150
Houston Texans won't make playoffs -170
Our Take: The price of +150 is very good for a two-time defending division champion. Those forecasting a downturn, however, might have a pretty good case.

Indianapolis Colts make playoffs +175
Indianapolis Colts won't make playoffs -210
Our Take: After a few down seasons and an offseason where a lot of key areas were addressed, a +175 price on Indy isn't all that bad in what might be a bounce-back season for the Colts.

Jacksonville Jaguars make playoffs +365
Jacksonville Jaguars won't make playoffs -460
Our Take: It seems like every year around this time, we hear reasons why the Jags should be better. They actually should be this year and if you're projecting big things, +365 would be a nice pick-up for calling it right.

Oakland Raiders make playoffs -150
Oakland Raiders won't make playoffs +130
Our Take: It's unclear why a 12-win team from last season would tumble and even if a few close ones don't go their way, they should be in there for a decent price of -150.


Kansas City Chiefs make playoffs -135
Kansas City Chiefs won't make playoffs +115
Our Take: The division is crowded and could be tight at the top. Not every team can thrive. But recent developments tell us KC should again be good.

Denver Broncos make playoffs +190
Denver Broncos won't make playoffs -230
Our Take: We think Denver is still in the mix and should still be tough, especially on "D," but -230 for them not getting into the playoffs isn't an altogether bad proposition.

Los Angeles Chargers make playoffs +255
Los Angeles Chargers won't make playoffs -310
Our Take: We see things going a lot better for the Chargers this season and with any luck, they could do big things. We see both sides of this bet being viable, with then not making the playoffs probably having the superior value. Tired of your credit card not working for sportsbook deposit? End that problem today and bet on teams to make the AFC playoffs by signing up at Bovada Sportsbook where your credit card WILL work and where you'll receive a generous 50% sign-up bonus!

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