2016 NFL season over/under win total picks for NFC: Bury the Eagles

The NFL Draft has come and gone, which means it’s the best season of the year: over/under season. We have win totals released for each and every NFL team, courtesy of Sportsbook.ag, and you can place a friendly wager on whether you think the teams will win more or less games than their perceived Las Vegas total.

Every year I break these down in May trying to predict how many wins every NFL team will have. Totally easy situation, but my favorite thing I write all season maybe. 

Last year I went a very underwhelming 7-8-1 in the NFC, although my two locks (Vikings over and Cardinals over) both hit. Leave your picks in the comments, yell at me for my picks on Twitter @WillBrinson and please denote locks are hit with the triple ***. You can find my over/under picks for the AFC here.

NFC East

Take the under on Philly. (USATSI)

Dallas Cowboys 9.5 Over (+105) / Under (-135) — You want to talk about a guy getting suckered by the Cowboys’ first-round pick of Ezekiel Elliott? This is your guy. Combine Zeke, Alfred Morris and Darren McFadden and you’re going to get a dominant running game for Dallas in 2016. Elliott will make Tony Romo better because he’ll keep him healthy, and he’ll make the defense better because he will limit time of possession (the jury is still out on science but it worked two years ago). A lower number would be a lock but this team will be closer to 2014 than it was last year.

VERDICT: OVER 

New York Giants 8.0 Over (-140) / Under (+110) — Everyone is buying into the Giants big time after their massive offseason, and it’s not hard to understand why. Janoris Jenkins and Olivier Vernon are big headline-grabbing talents. Eli Apple’s mom is amazing. Odell Beckham is going to be amazing again. Eli Manning should have some protection. This is a team that’s better than it was after spending tons of capital, a change from Tom Coughlin's final years. But sometimes I like to zag and I think this is a secretly questionable team — if they were the Dolphins people would be crushing them.

VERDICT: UNDER

Philadelphia Eagles 7.5 Over (+130) / Under (-160) — The Sam Bradford issue looms large. The hypothetical situation where Bradford refuses to play or retires and Chase Daniel has to start and then Carson Wentz has to start ... It’s a scary situation. It’s also a major red flag to see this price where it’s at — the reality is this thing could crash and burn. Wait until the number drops (at -160, it seems likely to eventually move down to 7.0 wins) and then take the under.

VERDICT: UNDER

Washington Redskins 7.5 Over (-115) / Under (-115) — The only reason to not jump on this team is because the Redskins' history says they won’t be consistent. But Scot McCloughan’s past tells us he can pull off back-to-back years of quality performance. The running back situation (Matt Jones/Chris Thompson/Keith Marshall) is questionable, and Kirk Cousins won’t do what he did last year, even with the addition of Josh Doctson. The defense is secretly tough. They should be the real favorite to win this division given how the team is built.

VERDICT: OVER

NFC West

When will Vegas start respecting the Cardinals? (USATSI)
When will Vegas start respecting the Cardinals? (USATSI)

Arizona Cardinals 9.5 Over (-140) / Under (+110) — For the third straight year, the world doesn’t give Bruce Arians’ team any respect. This is maybe the most dangerous team in football, and they only got better this offseason with adding Chandler Jones and Robert Nkemdiche to bolster the pass rush. Carson Palmer is aging well, there’s tons of talent at receiver (Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd and John Brown are the NFL’s best trio) and David Johnson could be scary if he builds on his rookie breakout. The defense will be stout again. The over price is steep but this is a double-digit win team and title contender. Huge bonus that they might not have to deal with Tom Brady in Week 1. They might have six or seven wins before their Week 9 bye. 

VERDICT: OVER***

Los Angeles Rams 7.5 Over (+115) / Under (-140) — The addition of Jared Goff at quarterback and the move to Los Angeles has everyone all aflutter. Goff could be a very good NFL quarterback but does he really fit what the Rams want to do on offense? Todd Gurley is the truth and Aaron Donald somehow remains underrated. The defense flies all over the place and will create turnovers. If Goff is great, the Rams will break .500 for the first time under Jeff Fisher. If he’s a rookie quarterback playing in a difficult division, it’s entirely possible they could end up winning seven games again.

VERDICT: UNDER

San Francisco 49ers 5.5 Over (-115) / Under (-115) — Personally I’m a big fan of Chip Kelly. He got a bad rap in Philadelphia because of how he ran the front office, and he should be better in San Francisco. But there’s not as much talent here. Carlos Hyde is going to blow up next year in his offense and Torrey Smith could do damage as well. But the quarterback situation is a major issue. Have you seen their opening schedule? The Rams at home, the Panthers and Seahawks on the road and then the Cowboys and Cardinals at home. 0-5 is a very real possibly to start. It’s hard to find more than four wins for this rebuilding team.

VERDICT: UNDER

Seattle Seahawks 10.5 Over (-140) / Under (+110) — No sleeper business here from Las Vegas. Seattle is the favorite to win the NFC West and is tied with Green Bay and Carolina for the highest win total in the NFC. Unlike last year, there shouldn’t be a slow start (the Dolphins, Rams, 49ers and Jets open things up) before the Week 5 bye. Ten or 11 wins is well within range, which means you’ve got to trust the better schedule here and assume a quality team will win the games it should. No drama this offseason or early on as people wonder if the “Seahawks’ dynasty is dead.”

VERDICT: OVER

NFC South

It may finally be time for the Bucs to make the leap. (USATSI)
It may finally be time for the Bucs to make the leap. (USATSI)

Atlanta Falcons 7.5 Over (+110) / Under (-140) — Good gravy, look at their opening set of games. Bucs at home, Raiders/Saints on the road, Carolina at home and then Denver/Seattle on the road. Good bet that Dan Quinn, even if this team is better, has a reverse opening from last season. 0-6 is a real possibility, and that’s before home games against San Diego/Green Bay and road games against Tampa and Philadelphia. At least there are only six games after the bye, and four of those are at home.

VERDICT: UNDER 

Carolina Panthers 10.5 Over (Even) / Under (-130) — Carolina’s NFC defense opens up on Thursday night in the first ever Super Bowl opening night rematch, but things get much easier before their Week 7 bye. The 49ers, Vikings, Falcons, Buccaneers and Saints offer up a strong early slate to beef up the schedule. The real tester are all the West Coast trips. Eleven wins feels like the best case for Carolina, even with plenty of talent remaining.

VERDICT: UNDER

New Orleans Saints 7.0 Over (Even) / Under (-130) — Another team with a tough early bye (Week 5), the Saints finally have decent preseason expectations. Drew Brees and Sean Payton are desperate, and the team definitely made the defense better in the offseason. Coby Fleener is an upgrade at tight end, but Brandin Cooks/Michael Thomas/Brandon Coleman/Willie Snead are the wideouts here. It’s possible to buy into defensive improvement but difficult to accept a massive leap forward.

VERDICT: UNDER

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7.5 Over (+105) / Under (-135) — The shift on defense without Lovie Smith will be the telltale sign here. If the defense can get better — and they can, given the talent of Gerald McCoy and Lavonte David — this team could make a jump forward. Jameis Winston is a legit candidate to “take a leap,” and the offensive line will be more cohesive and experienced. Doug Martin and Charles Sims are dangerous, and Mike Evans is getting slept on as a guy who could have a big-time season.

VERDICT: OVER

NFC North

The Bears will be the NFC's biggest surprise team. (USATSI)
The Bears will be the NFC's biggest surprise team. (USATSI)

Chicago Bears 7.5 Over (-120) / Under (-110) — There’s something brewing here with this defense after the Bears added Danny Trevathan and Jerrell Freeman in free agency and picked up Leonard Floyd and Jonathan Bullard in the draft. They’re going to rush the passer more than people expect. The question is, will the offense survive Adam Gase’s departure? Getting Kevin White back (free first-round pick!) and adding Cody Whitehair could lead to another good season from Jay Cutler. Smokin’ Jay re-emerging wouldn’t be a stunner. 

VERDICT: OVER***

Detroit Lions 7.0 Over (-125) / Under (-105) — The departure of Calvin Johnson makes this team impossible to figure out. Retaining Jim Caldwell was weird, but Jim Bob Cooter got the best out of Matthew Stafford down the stretch last year. Are Marvin Jones and Golden Tate decimating defenses? Can Ameer Abdullah stop fumbling? There’s a lot of investment on the offensive line and a lot of talent on defense but some serious questions about how life will be post-Megatron.

VERDICT: UNDER

Green Bay Packers 10.5 Over (-160) / Under (+130) — This is the priciest double-digit over I can remember in a long while. With a healthy Aaron Rodgers and Jordy Nelson back at full speed and Eddie Lacy so freaking cut, the Packers should win more than 10 games every year. But the price you’re paying to assume they’ll get 11 wins is out of this world. And then you look at the schedule. Barring a Rodgers injury, this team is going to win 11 games. Taking the over isn't very profitable because it’s too pricey, but taking the under would be silly too.

VERDICT: OVER

Minnesota Vikings 9.5 Over (-115) / Under (-115) — So much love for last year’s hottest team. Can’t blame Vegas, considering how stacked this defense is and the addition of Laquon Treadwell on offense. Mike Zimmer and Rick Spielman deserve tons of credit for building out this roster, but asking them to win double-digit games may be a bit much. There’s an assumption they’ll be great without just being good. Ten wins wouldn’t be shocking, but nine wouldn’t be either.

VERDICT: UNDER 

CBS Sports Senior Writer

Will Brinson joined CBS Sports in 2010 and enters his seventh season covering the NFL for CBS. He previously wrote for FanHouse along with myriad other Internet sites. A North Carolina native who lives... Full Bio

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