The New England Patriots are 3/1 favorites to win Super Bowl LII according to bookmakers in Las Vegas and offshore. The odds are the second shortest tagged to a preseason Super Bowl favorite in the last 17 years with only the 2007 Patriots as bigger chalk at 5/2.
Good news for Patriot fans? Maybe not.
The Pats, despite winning five Vince Lombardi trophies in the last decade and a half, are one of the only two preseason favorites to win the Super Bowl since 2001: last season's New England squad and the 2007 Indianapolis Colts both at 6/1 odds.
Parity, it would seem, is alive and well in the NFL. Ten of the last 16 Super Bowl champions were 11/1 or higher to win the championship before the start of the season.
From the chart above, we can tell the Patriots aren't only Colin Cowherd's favorite team. They appear to be the betting public's as well. This year marks the seventh time in the last 11 years New England will open the campaign as the Super Bowl favorite.
The biggest disappointment on this list has to be the 2002 St. Louis Rams, who didn't make the playoffs despite sitting at 7/2 to win the Super Bowl in late August. Things really went south in a hurry for the Rams, didn't they?
The biggest Super Bowl long shots to cash both involve the Patriots. New England was +6,000 to win the championship before the start of the 2001 season, while the Giants were +3,000 the year they destroyed the Pats' perfect season.
The average preseason price for the eventual Super Bowl winner over the last 16 seasons is about +1,622. The teams that fit into this range for 2017 are the Atlanta Falcons (+1,400), the Denver Broncos (+1,600), the Kansas City Chiefs (+1800) and the Oakland Raiders (+1,800).
The Falcons will enter the campaign hoping to shred the dreaded Super Bowl hangover curse after giving away a 28-3 second-half lead to the Patriots in last year's Big Game.
The Broncos have a new head coach (Vance Johnson) and play in suddenly highly-competitive AFC South division with the Chiefs and Raiders along with the recently relocated Los Angeles Chargers.