The new NFL season kicks off with a bang this week, as the New England Patriots host the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Gillette Stadium. Despite overcoming the Seattle Seahawks to win the Super Bowl last year, the Patriots have faced a rough patch thanks to 'Deflategate' and the long-running 'Spygate' scandal. Can Tom Brady, arguably the greatest quarterback of all time, lead the Patriots to another victory and put the naysayers to bed?
Perhaps surprisingly, the Patriots are not favourites to retain the Super Bowl title. At 4/1, former champions the Seattle Seahawks are attracting the best odds on Winner Sports, followed by the the Green Bay Packers at 7/1. The roots of this emerging rivalry stretch back to 1999, when Packers manager Mike Holmgren left to start a stint with the Seahawks.
The Patriots are currently attracting odds of 15/2, just ahead of the Indianapolis Colts at 9/1. The tension between these teams has taken on a new intensity after the release of a recent report which claimed that the Patriots' staff were involved in taping the Colts' hand signals to gain an unfair advantage. It seems that the 2007 'Spygate' scandal is set to continue well into the second half of 2015.
With odds of 10/3 at Betfred Sports, the Colts' Andrew Luck is odds-on favourite to make Most Passing Yards this season. Despite the fact that he'll hit the ripe old age of 40 before the next Super Bowl, Luck's predecessor Peyton Manning also has healthy odds at 10/1. Manning shouldn't be written off; he's the all-time touchdown pass leader and has an amazing 530 touchdown passes to his name. The Cincinatti Bengals' Andy Dalton is a decent outside bet at 80/1, since head coach Marvin Lewis has put together a strong team that will push the quarterback harder than ever.
Trying to pick a winner in the Most Receiving Yards market is a trickier task. The Pittsburgh Steelers' Antonio Brown leads the pack at 5/1, followed by Julio Jones of the Atlanta Falcons and Odell Beckham Jr. of the New York Giants, both of whom are attracting odds of 6/1. Beckham Jr. also finds himself enjoying good odds in the Most Touchdowns market at 10/1, though he'll face stiff competition from the Dallas Cowboys' wide receiver Dez Bryant and Packers running back Eddie Lacy.
The Most Valuable Player (MVP) award, which is decided by sportswriters' votes at the end of the regular season, is one of the NFL’s highest honours. The ever-impressive Peyton Manning, who has been awarded the MVP title five times in his illustrious career, may be in with a shot of a sixth – Betfred Sports gives him odds of 12/1. The odds-on favourites are Andrew Luck and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who are both valued at 4/1. 38-year-old Tom Brady of the Patriots, who has won the coveted title twice before, is currently looking at third-time-lucky odds of 14/1.
The Packers' coach Mike McCarthy is favourite to win the Associated Press Coach of the Year award, and is attracting odds of 8/1 at 888 Sports. Since taking over in 2006, McCarthy has led his team to one Super Bowl victory and a string of play-off finals. Seahawks coach Pete Carroll is trailing McCarthy's heels at 9/1; despite only having been with the Seahawks for five years, Carroll has already led his team to two Super Bowls.
If you've got a good feeling about the shining stars of the new season, visit Betfred Sports today to browse a wide range of exciting NFL markets!