The NFL regular season is less than two weeks away, so you don't have long to lock in your win total bets! Not everyone likes having their money locked up until January, but there's value to be found in these lines. For example, the Green Bay Packers went 13-3 for the second straight season last year, when their Over/Under win total was 9! And at plus money (+100)! Another interesting total from last year was Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who had their win total at 9.5 (-130 on the Over.) Of course they covered with an 11-5 record, and went on to win the Super Bowl.
Every year, the CBS Sports NFL staff sits down and picks a couple of Over/Under win total bets that each of us really like. It's something we keep note of for bragging rights. As for the esteemed members making their picks in this article? Here's the rundown: NFL insiders Jason La Canfora and Jonathan Jones, senior writer Pete Prisco and Pick Six Podcast host Will Brinson, plus writers John Breech, Ryan Wilson, Chris Trapasso, Jordan Dajani, Jared Dubin, Josh Edwards, Tyler Sullivan, Bryan DeArdo, Cody Benjamin and Jeff Kerr.
One important note to remember is that the 2021 season will feature 17 games instead of 16. Keep that in mind as you view totals this year. Without further ado let's jump in -- starting in alphabetical order.
All NFL odds are via Caesars Sportsbook.
Over 8 (-140) | Under 8 (+120)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Over after Kyler Murray and Co. improved again, finishing 8-8 last season.
Over 7.5 (-130) | Under 7.5 (+110)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Under with plus-money as a first-year head coach finds himself in what could be a sneaky tough division.
Over 10.5 (-145) | Under 10.5 (+125)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Over as Lamar Jackson has a revamped wide receiving corps.
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Over 11 (-115) | Under 11 (-105)
Brinson: Over 11. In the interest of full disclosure I should note that I took this at 10.5 much earlier in the offseason (and have been telling people over and over on the Pick Six Podcast, CBS Sports' DAILY NFL podcast, to take it). But I still think 11 is a good look here. The Bills don't have the BEST roster in the AFC, but they might have the deepest and most balanced roster in the AFC (I'd go NFL but Tampa has them beat I think). Josh Allen is a legit MVP candidate, the skill position guys might have been a bit controversial this year but they are deep and complement each other. The offensive line has been together for years. And the defense was bad last year for most of the season, but it's loaded with talent and should be primed for a bounce-back. Sean McDermott always finds a way to steal one or two games on the schedule and might be the most underrated coach in football. 11 wins SOUNDS like a ton, but an 11-win season in 2021 means a team went 11-6, which isn't actually that great. Buffalo has a first-place schedule for sure -- @KC and @TB isn't ideal! -- but also draws the AFC South (3-1 worst case) and the Jets twice. One of those is in Week 17 but they should be chasing or fighting off the Chiefs in that top seed late so I'm giving them five wins there. Split with the Dolphins and Patriots (7 wins), handle Carolina, Washington, Pittsburgh and Atlanta at home (11) and you're there. Sweep the AFC South or one of those division opponents and we're going over. This is a 13- or 14-win team to me and I'm seeing it at 11.5 elsewhere so there's some value.
Kerr: Over 11. The Bills are a really good football team, so good it's hard to fathom how this team has an over/under set at 11. Perhaps it's the COVID drama that has taken over Orchard Park, but Buffalo arguably has the league's top wide receiver group with Stefon Diggs, Emmanuel Sanders, Cole Beasley, and Gabriel Davis. Josh Allen is one of the best quarterbacks in the game and will be a MVP candidate again. The defense will improve from its middle of the pack ranking in points and yards allowed with an improved pass rush. Buffalo is better than an 11-7 team. A healthy Bills team should win at least 12 games.
Over 7.5 (+100) | Under 7.5 (-120)
No best bets.
Over 7.5 (+105) | Under 7.5 (-125)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Over with the excitement first-year quarterback Justin Fields could potentially bring.
Over 6.5 (-105) | Under 6.5 (-115)
No best bets.
Over 10.5 (-110) | Under 10.5 (-110)
DeArdo: Over 10.5. Cleveland won 11 games in the NFL's final 16-game regular season. They improved their roster this offseason and shouldn't have much of an issue winning at least 11 games in the NFL's first 17-game regular season.
Over 9 (-130) | Under 9 (+110)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Over with how loaded this offense is on paper.
Over 8.5 (-130) | Under 8.5 (+110)
Prisco: Over 8.5. The defense will be special. It will be a unit that carries them to 10 victories and a playoff berth. No matter who was picked to pay quarterback, it was always about the defense.
Over 5 (+120) | Under 5 (-140)
Jones: Under 5. If we think the Lions are going to be one of the two worst teams in the NFL with the Texans, then they're absolutely going to win fewer than five games. Six NFL teams last year won fewer than five games, albeit in a 16-game season. New GM Brad Holmes knows this is a long project, and I'm not convinced first-year head coach Dan Campbell is going to will this group (led by Jared Goff) to five-plus victories this season.
Trapasso: Under 5. The Lions are at the ground floor, demolition stage of their rebuilding process. There's not one area of the roster that, compared to the rest of the league, would be considered a strength. Beyond having to face Aaron Rodgers twice in the division, they get Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers Week 1, Lamar Jackson in Week 3, and matchups against Matthew Stafford, Ben Roethlisberger, Matt Ryan, Baker Mayfield, Kyler Murray, and Russell Wilson this season.
Green Bay Packers
Over 10.5 (-120) | Under 10.5 (+100)
DeArdo: Over 10.5. Green Bay, 13-3 a season ago, has just seven games against teams that had a winning record last season. They have several tough games on the slate (Week 1 at New Orleans, Week 9 at Kansas City, at Baltimore in Week 15 to name a few), but the Packers' talented roster is certainly good enough to win north of 11 games.
Breech: Over 10.5. I feel like Aaron Rodgers is going to be out to destroy everyone this year, especially people who bet the Under.
Dajani: Over 10.5. The Packers have won 13 games two years in a row. Now we are expected to think a 10-7 record is very possible in a 17-game season in a division they completely own with a motivated Rodgers coming off of an MVP campaign?
Over 4 (-110) | Under 4 (-110)
Sullivan: Under 4. As currently constructed, Houston is simply not a good football team and will likely finish with the worst record in the NFL when the season is all said and done. The Texans are coming into 2021 after a 4-12 campaign a year ago and that was with quarterback Deshaun Watson under center. With Watson likely not playing for the organization this year, it's hard to see them coming away with an improved record.
Edwards: Under 4. Houston has to win five games without Deshaun Watson for this bet to lose money? If sportsbooks are going to give you money, take it and run. Houston is implementing a new coaching staff and turned over nearly half the roster after finishing the 2020 campaign with a 4-12 record WITH Watson. You're adding a game to the schedule, but who believes this team is better?
Over N/A | Under N/A
No best bets, as odds are off the board
Over 6 (-140) | Under 6 (+120)
Dubin: Under 6. The Jags have a really bad defense and I do not trust Urban Meyer to put Trevor Lawrence in position to succeed.
Edwards: Under 6. Hand up, I was not a fan of the Urban Meyer hire when it happened and that remains true today. As much as I love Trevor Lawrence, I do not think the defensive personnel and coaching concerns will allow this team to win seven games. Once again, Jacksonville would have to go 7-10 for this not to cash. I do not see that happening, even with two games against Houston.
Kansas City Chiefs
Over 12.5 (-110) | Under 12.5 (-110)
Trapasso: Under 12.5. The Chiefs are going to be damn good, of course, a genuine Super Bowl contender. And Patrick Mahomes feels like an outlier creator. But for as dynamic as they were in 2020, the Chiefs went 8-1 in one-score games in the regular season and five of those victories came by three points or less. Outside of their division -- where they'll see Justin Herbert twice -- they have contests against Josh Allen, Ryan Tannehill, Aaron Rodgers, Dak Prescott, Baker Mayfield, Lamar Jackson, and Ben Roethlisberger. Plus, they're unlikely to see any rookie quarterbacks.
Benjamin: Over 12.5. Boring pick, maybe, but who cares? This is Andy Reid we're talking about, and now he's got an extra regular-season game to keep his streak of double-digit victories alive.
Over 7 (-120) | Under 7 (+100)
Benjamin: Under 7. We're entering Year Four of the Jon Gruden regime, and the Raiders are closer to a total collapse than a title run. Derek Carr and Darren Waller have chemistry, but what else says Las Vegas is going to be able to keep up with the rest of an explosive, improving division?
Over 9 (-125) | Under 9 (+105)
Jones: Over 9. Picking L.A. here means I believe in their ability to stay healthy and Justin Herbert not regressing significantly in his sophomore campaign. I do. I think they can go 4-2 in this division, 3-1 against the NFC East and split with the AFC North. Then they have to get at least a win (or a tie) against the Patriots, Vikings and/or Texans.
Over 10.5 (+110) | Under 10.5 (-130)
Dajani: Over 10.5. The NFC West is definitely the toughest division in football, but I think the addition of quarterback Matthew Stafford is absolutely huge. This elite defense carried the Rams to a 10-6 record last year and even won a playoff game. The offensive-minded Sean McVay acquiring a veteran signal-caller with a big arm should make this team better immediately.
Over 9.5 (+120) | Under 9.5 (-140)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Over with Miami adding intriguing pieces on both sides of the ball. Additionally, this team finished 10-6 last year.
Over 9 (-110) | Under 9 (-110)
No best bets.
New England Patriots
Over 9.5 (+100) | Under 9.5 (-120)
Dubin: Over 9.5. New England went 7-9 last year playing with like half a team. Over 9.5 seems like free money.
Sullivan: Over 9.5. New England will likely still be looking up to the Buffalo Bills in the AFC East, but Bill Belichick should enjoy a bounce-back season in 2021. The Patriots have the potential of owning a top-five defense in the league thanks to the additions they made over the offseason and the offense should be improved from last season's 7-9 squad. No matter if it's Cam Newton or Mac Jones, the passing attack should be a bit more dynamic thanks to some big free agent additions like tight ends Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith. With this roster, Belichick and company should be able to squeeze out double-digit wins, especially with a 17-game schedule.
Breech: Over 9.5. Bill Belichick somehow got this team to seven wins last year even though he had a new quarterback and a defense with a lot of holes. This year, the team is better at nearly every position and I don't like betting against Belichick, so I'm going with the Over.
Over 9 (-105) | Under 9 (-115)
Over 7 (-130) | Under 7 (+110)
Kerr: Under 7. The Giants are a better team than last season on paper, but having a good quarterback and offensive line is the key to success in the NFL. I'm not sure New York has either. Daniel Jones can have all the offensive weapons he needs, but if the offensive line can't protect him -- what's the point? Jones also has the most fumbles in the NFL since entering the league (2019), so betting on him protecting the football is a risky one. Even though the NFC East appears to be a bad division again, this Giants team could crash and burn just as easily as competing for the NFC East title. Hard to bank on that offensive line against the Eagles and Washington's pass rush four times this year.
New York Jets
Over 6 (-105) | Under 6 (-115)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Under as New York works in a new quarterback and head coach.
Over 6.5 (-140) | Under 6.5 (+120)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Under with questions concerning Nick Sirianni and Jalen Hurts.
Over 8.5 (+100) | Under 8.5 (-120)
Wilson: Over 8.5. Big Ben is another year removed from elbow surgery and will be joined by Najee Harris in the backfield, and perhaps more importantly, a young offensive line has a chance to be much-improved over a unit that struggled a season ago.
San Francisco 49ers
Over 10.5 (+105) | Under 10.5 (-125)
Prisco: Over 10.5. As long as this team stays healthy, they will win the NFC West. In doing so, they will get to 11 wins. Kyle Shahanan coached the heck out of this team last year with no talent. Now he will get to do it with a lot of it.
Over 10 (+110) | Under 10 (-130)
No best bets.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Over 12 (+100) | Under 12 (-120)
No best bets, but the lean is to the Over with the reigning Super Bowl champs.
Over 9.5 (-105) | Under 9.5 (-115)
Dajani: Over 9.5. The Titans won the AFC South for the first time since 2008 last year, and appear poised to repeat in 2021. The Texans aren't expected to be any kind of threat, the Jaguars have a new head coach and questions on defense, while the Colts have Carson Wentz quarterbacking. The Titans can at least get 10 wins this year after recording 11 last season.
Washington Football Team
Over 8.5 (-110) | Under 8.5 (-110)
Brinson: Over 8.5. Is this line a mistake? I think it might be. In Ron Rivera's first season coaching Washington, he engineered a massive defensive turnaround, taking the WFT from 27th in Football Outsiders' defensive DVOA to third in the same rankings last year. Oh and he did it with no real offseason, roughly 15-20 different controversies swirling around the club and, oh yeah, while battling cancer. Not too shabby! The offense was dead last in DVOA, however, which is why they were a seven-win team last season. Dwayne Haskins was the bottom-ranked QB in value per play at FO. Alex Smith? One spot above him. Enter Ryan Fitzpatrick, who is the definition of an average quarterback. That's not an insult! Average is a massive upgrade for this team. The defense essentially returns everyone while adding potential stud rookie linebacker Jamin Davis in the first round of the draft. Chase Young could take a LEAP in his second year and while defensive production is difficult to replicate year over year, I trust Rivera and Jack Del Rio to keep this team sturdy on that side of the ball. Scott Turner has weapons on the offensive side with Terry McLaurin and Antonio Gibson good "breakout" candidates this season. Washington added Curtis Samuel, Adam Humphries and Dyami Brown while retaining Logan Thomas, so Fitzmagic has plenty to work with. Nine wins in an expanded season is essentially playing .500 football. Given the depth and talent on this roster and the relatively stable floor Rivera brings, plus a weak division, I think nine wins is a perfectly fine expectation. There are some tough matchups on the schedule, particularly early in the year, but if WFT can tread water, things get pretty easy around Thanksgiving.