Denver Broncos futures odds: Is it time to bet on Russell Wilson and Sean Payton?

The idea of betting on the Denver Broncos to win became highly questionable after they fell to 0-3 after a 70-20 beatdown at the hands of the Miami Dolphins. 

The outlook was as grim as it gets. But fast forward to Week 15, and that is no longer the case. The Broncos have rebounded, winning six of their last seven, going from 1-5 to 7-6, and are now in the midst of playoff discussions.

With how the season has played out for a few other teams, you have to wonder… Is it time to bet on the Denver Broncos futures market?

Broncos futures odds

To win the AFC West

Prior to beating the Chiefs in Week 8, Denver’s odds of winning the AFC West were +15,000 (via BetMGM). With the win over Kansas City, there was reason to believe they had resolved the issues that plagued them in the first half of the season.

But there was still one thing holding them back from winning the division, no matter how well they played down the stretch: the Chiefs.

They needed Kansas City, the winner of the last seven AFC West titles, to stumble in the second half of the season. After losing four of their last six, including a 24-9 defeat to the Broncos, the Chiefs have done just that.

However, Kansas City still has a one-game lead and owns the tiebreaker. 

Denver’s best shot would be running the table and the Chiefs losing two of four (at Patriots, vs. Raiders, vs. Bengals and at Chargers).

Kansas City shouldn’t lose two of those games, but with how they’ve played in recent weeks, stranger things have happened.

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To make the playoffs

A team that started the season 1-5, like the Broncos this year, has never gone on to win the Super Bowl. But three such teams were able to turn things around enough to make the postseason.

Since 1990, 163 teams got off to a 2-5 start and then went on to make the postseason.

With each win, their chances improved. Heading into Week 15, they are one of six teams in the AFC with a 7-6 record. If the postseason started today, they would not make it. But with four winnable games to go (Lions, Patriots, Chargers, Raiders), they could finish 11-6.

Last season saw two 10-win and two 9-win teams make the playoffs from the AFC. The last time an 11-win team did not make the playoffs was in 2008 (New England Patriots). But their outlook becomes less promising should they go 3-1 over their last four.

The last time a 10-win team missed the playoffs was in 2020, the Miami Dolphins.

To reach postseason as AFC Wildcard

Heading into Week 15, the Broncos are the No. 9 team in the AFC, two spots out of the postseason. The Colts hold the No. 7 spot with an identical 7-6 record, and the Steelers (also 7-6) the No. 6 slot. With an 8-5 record, Cleveland is the other AFC wild card team.

Houston (No. 8) holds the tiebreaker with Denver.

If they can win their last four games, the Broncos will have an excellent shot at making it in. But with the Steelers, Colts and Texans having quarterback problems, they may not need to win. They’ll need all three to lose at least one more game.

Regular season win total

The most formidable opponent the Broncos have on their schedule is the Lions. While the Broncos are underdogs (), Detroit has struggled in recent weeks.

But even if they lose to Detroit, with how the Patriots, Raiders and Chargers are playing, Denver should be favored in all three games.

Sean Payton, Coach of the Year +1600 (via BetRivers)

DeMeco Ryans has done a great job in Houston, as has Dan Campbell in Detroit. Mike McDaniel will be a popular choice simply because of the Miami offense. Kevin Stefanski deserves some consideration after getting Cleveland in the running for a playoff spot despite the Browns’ many quarterback issues.

Then there is Sean Payton. He took over a struggling team that bet the future on a “star” quarterback last year and lost. Six games into the season, it looked like the Broncos would not be any better this year.

Fast forward to Week 15, and not only do the Broncos have a solid shot at making the playoffs, but they even have a slim chance of winning the AFC West.

Win total: OVER

They will need to win three of their last four games. While they are underdogs against the Lions this weekend, the Broncos could pull off an upset and win considering how Detroit has been playing.

As for their final three opponents, Denver will likely be favored against all three (Patriots, Chargers, Raiders).

Bets to consider

  • To make the playoffs
  • To reach postseason as AFC Wildcard
  • Regular season win total
  • Win total: OVER
  • Sean Payton, Coach of the Year +1600 (via BetRivers)

Four of the five bets are directly related to each other. To make the postseason, the Broncos will need to win 10 or 11 games, which means they’ll go OVER the win total. But since the Chiefs have an inside track on the AFC West, they’ll have to make the playoffs as a wild card team.

Sean Payton has turned around a dismal team in-season. If Demeco Ryans does not win COY, Payton should.

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