The 2014 NFL free-agent season officially kicks off at 4:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday March 11. However, there is a three-day negotiating period leading up to Tuesday that began on Saturday at 10:00 a.m. Note that the three-day negotiating period is open only for potential unrestricted free agents. This is an exciting time for teams and their fans, especially for teams with a lot of salary-cap space available to improve.
First, we want to see where our favorite teams stack up. Based on Las Vegas odds, we can see which teams are early preseason favorites for the 2014 NFL Season. We can also see which teams have the longest odds of winning the Super Bowl. Interestingly, the team with the most salary cap, the Oakland Raiders, also has the longest odds at 200:1. With salary cap space available, along with other related mean reversion categories, I believe that the Raiders’ organization has the potential to surprise many in 2014.
Elite teams are defined as teams that have 12:1 or better odds of winning the Super Bowl. These teams earn a current grade of A. These teams are currently: Seattle Seahawks, San Francisco 49ers, Denver Broncos, New England Patriots and Green Bay Packers, in this order.
These teams are contenders, with a grade of B, with odds of about 12:1 to 25:1, and they are the New Orleans Saints, Indianapolis Colts, Cincinnati Bengals, Carolina Panthers, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers and San Diego Chargers.
These teams have potential and are assigned a grade of C. These teams are listed as 25:1 odds to 40:1 odds to win it all: Atlanta Falcons, Kansas City Chiefs, Baltimore Ravens, Houston Texans, Dallas Cowboys, Chicago Bears, Arizona Cardinals, New York Giants and Detroit Lions.
The remainder of the teams are 40:1 or worse long shots to win the Super Bowl and receive a grade of D. The Jacksonville Jaguars and Raiders are listed with the longest odds to win the Super Bowl, both at 200:1 odds.
I can use this article as a placeholder to review analyst and odds-maker impressions as we enter the free-agent season, and then the 2014 NFL Draft. As the odds adjust during the offseason, I can grade teams on their free-agent activities, and then their draft.
Carlton Chin is a portfolio manager, quant researcher, and sports analysis contributor at Rant Sports. Please follow him on Twitter @QuantFacts, “Like” him on Facebook, or add him to your Google network.