If someone gave you $5,000 to bet on the 2020 NFL season, you probably wouldn't put it all on the Cincinnati Bengals to make it to the Super Bowl, but that's exactly what one bettor did this week. According to BetMGM, someone walked into one of their sportsbooks and placed a $5,000 bet on the Bengals to win the AFC at 240-to-1 odds, which means our daring bettor will take home a cool $1.2 million in winnings if the Bengals somehow manage to shock everyone by being the AFC's representative in the Super Bowl.
If this bet is going to pay out, the Bengals will have to do something that they haven't done in 29 years, which is win a playoff game. As a matter of fact, to get to the Super Bowl, the Bengals will have to win at least two playoff games, but that's only if they get the AFC's top seed. If they get stuck with any seed between two and seven, they'll have to win three playoff games to reach the Super Bowl.
Now, this is the part where I remind you that the Bengals currently have the longest drought in the NFL without a playoff win. The team's last postseason win came in January of 1991 against a team (Houston Oilers) THAT DOESN'T EVEN EXIST ANYMORE EXCEPT ON TECMO SUPER BOWL (To be fair, they technically do exist: They moved out of Houston and changed their name to the Tennessee Titans).
The Bengals will also be starting a rookie quarterback this year, and unfortunately for our bettor, no rookie quarterback has ever led his team to a Super Bowl. The Bengals also finished the 2019 season with the NFL's worst record and they play in the same division as the team that finished with the league's best record, which obviously isn't ideal.
On the other hand, maybe this bet isn't as crazy as it seems. Being bad in one season doesn't mean you can't make the Super Bowl the following season. If you need proof of that, just look at last season: The 49ers went 4-12 in 2018 before making it to the Super Bowl in 2019.
The fact that Cincy finished at the bottom of the AFC North in 2019 isn't that big of a deal, and that's because the Bengals actually have some serious experience going from worst-to-first. The Bengals have won the AFC title two times in franchise history, and in both instances they won the conference after finishing in last place the prior season.
Oh, and let's not forget that if there's one longshot quarterback you want to put big money on, it's Joe Burrow. Back in June 2019, one smart bettor put $50 down at 200-to-1 odds on Burrow to win the Heisman and that longshot bet paid off with $10,000 for the bettor after Burrow took home the trophy.