Now that the 2020-2021 Thanksgiving NFL games are approaching, many bettors are looking toward the playoff futures odds and potential postseason seeding.
The Kansas City Chiefs are still atop the Super Bowl 55 championship odds, where they’ve sat comfortably since wrapping up their victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl 54 last February.
The remaining spots have fluctuated a bit, so taking a snapshot following the NFL’s Week 10 games, we’ve used the division championship odds, conference championship futures, and Super Bowl LV betting lines at Bovada Sportsbook to compile a 2020-2021 NFL Playoff bracket and predict how the tournament will proceed.
2021 AFC Wild Card Weekend
- Kansas City Chiefs – Bye Week
- (7) Las Vegas Raiders @ (2) Pittsburgh Steelers
- (6) Tennessee Titans @ (3) Buffalo Bills
- (5) Baltimore Ravens @ (4) Indianapolis Colts
2021 NFC Wild Card Weekend
- Seattle Seahawks – Bye Week
- (7) Arizona Cardinals @ (2) New Orleans Saints
- (6) Los Angeles Rams @ (3) Green Bay Packers
- (5) Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ (4) Philadelphia Eagles
As previously mentioned, the Kansas City Chiefs will secure the #1 seed and the bye week in the AFC, and the Seattle Seahawks will claim the #1 seed in the NFC, a spot that was predicted to go to the 49ers in the preseason.
San Francisco will miss the playoffs and will be the only team in the NFC West that doesn’t qualify for the postseason. The Philadelphia Eagles will win the pathetic NFC East and will promptly lose to Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
At some point, the Pittsburgh Steelers will need to lose a game or two if they are going to be anything less than the #1 seed in the AFC. They’ll handle the Las Vegas Raiders easily and move on to the divisional round, as will the Baltimore Ravens and Buffalo Bills.
2021 AFC Divisional Round
- (5) Baltimore Ravens @ (1) Kansas City Chiefs
- (3) Buffalo Bills @ (2) Pittsburgh Steelers
2021 NFC Divisional Round
- (5) Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ (1) Seattle Seahawks
- (3) Green Bay Packers @ (2) New Orleans Saints
Ok, now it’s down to the big boys, as the top 8 teams clash for a chance to advance to their respective conference championship games.
In the AFC, the home teams are expected to hold according to the NFL betting odds, but that’s not the case in the NFC.
The New Orleans Saints will protect their Mercedes Benz Superdome turf, but Brady and Tampa Bay will travel to Seattle and hand the Seahawks a defeat in one of the toughest venues to visit on the planet.
2021 AFC Championship Game
- (2) Pittsburgh Steelers @ (1) Kansas City Chiefs
2021 NFC Championship Game
- (5) Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ (2) New Orleans Saints
Because KC has been the top betting options in Super Bowl LV futures all year, the Chiefs advancing is pretty much a foregone conclusion. The real shock here is that the Buccaneers are predicted to advance all the way to Super Bowl 55 without hosting a playoff game.
If Tampa Bay has what it takes to defeat Seattle at home, then they can certainly handle the Saints in New Orleans, but they’ve already lost to them twice in 2020.
Super Bowl 55
- (AFC) Kansas City Chiefs vs. (NFC) Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Super Bowl 55 Winner
- Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City repeating as NFL champions is by no means a revelation. What has been exposed by this potential bracket is the potential for Tampa to go all the way, and sportsbooks are giving Brady a ton of credit for his past performances.
It is hard to describe the 9-0 Steelers as a sleeper, but they’ve got something working right now and aren’t getting the respect that they deserve.
20 NFL teams have been 9-0 in the Super Bowl era, with Pittsburgh being the 21st. 11 of those teams advanced to the Super Bowl, with 7 of them winning the championship.
Our takeaway from this data is to investigate the Pittsburgh Steelers and their betting odds, and temper expectations for Tampa Bay’s unrealistic path to the Super Bowl.
Source: CBS Sports