NFL fans are always ready for a challenge, and Circa Sports just announced one that tests bettors’ judgments not only about the quality of a team, but also about their schedule.
Circa, along with Caesars Sportsbook Kansas, is offering odds on what NFL team will go the longest undefeated and, on the flip side, what NFL team will be the last one to win a game.
In something of a surprise, defending Super Bowl Champion Kansas City does not have the shortest odds to be the team that goes the longest undefeated. Instead, the Philadelphia Eagles, the team the Chiefs defeated in February for the Vince Lombardi Trophy, gets that distinction.
The Eagles are listed at +650 to go the deepest into their schedule before losing.
Meanwhile, the Chiefs are +775, tied with the Cincinnati Bengals, who Kansas City defeated in the AFC Championship Game. San Francisco, which simply ran out of competitive quarterbacks in the NFC Championship Game against the Eagles, is +850 along with Buffalo.
The Kansas sports betting odds for Caesars are slightly different, with Philadelphia at +700, Cincinnati and Kansas City at +750 and Buffalo at +800.
Chiefs Not Known For Opening Win Streaks
Despite the fact the Chiefs have been a dominant team over the last several years and have two Super Bowl wins and a third appearance in the championship game during the Patrick Mahomes-era, they haven’t had extremely long winning streaks to start their seasons.
In fact, since 2018, the Chiefs’ best start was five wins, and that was in Mahomes’ first campaign as a starter in 2018. Since then, Kansas City has had a couple of four-win starts in 2019 and 2020.
However, in the longest undefeated prop bet, the wagering strategy needs to not just consider the strength of the better teams in the NFL, such as the Chiefs, but also their schedules over the course of the first couple of months.
For Kansas City, the first half of the 2023 season goes this way (in order): Detroit, Jacksonville, Chicago, N.Y. Jets, Minnesota, Denver, L.A. Chargers, Denver, and Miami.
Then, it gets quite interesting. After a off week for both teams, Philadelphia comes to Kansas City for a Monday Night Game on Nov. 20. As an aside, the Chiefs are favored by Kansas betting apps in all 10 of the above-mentioned games including as 3-point favorites (at DraftKings Sportsbook Kansas) for the Eagles showdown.
Injuries Can Derail Prop Bets
Of course, such a prop bet is highly subject to the vagaries of injuries. If any team’s star quarterback misses a game, that club’s chances are greatly affected.
And then there’s the bottom side of a season-opening streak, meaning the last team to win a game.
From an odds perspective, that dubious distinction belongs to the Arizona Cardinals, who figure to struggle badly without injured starting quarterback Kyler Murray. Murray is trying to come back from a knee injury and his return is cloudy at the moment.
As an underdog, the Cardinals are big favorites. Circa has Arizona at +460 to be the last team to get a win in 2023. Tampa Bay is No. 2 on the pessimism scale at +775.
Looking at the odds to be the last team to get a win among franchises with unfavorable forecasts: Houston, +1100; the L.A. Rams, +1100; Tennessee, +1300; Indianapolis, +1400; Carolina, +1400, and Las Vegas, +1500.
BetMGM Sportsbook Kansas lists the odds of any team having an undefeated regular season or a winless regular season as +1000.
Here’s a footnote on tie-breakers, from Circa. If multiple teams go undefeated, the team that goes further in the playoffs would be considered the winner, and if multiple teams are the final teams to get their first win of the season on the same day, whoever wins later in the day will be considered the last winless team.