NFL Handicapping: The North
Looking for 2020 AFC North Predictions? There were no shortage of surprises from the AFC North last season. The Cleveland Browns were the offseason darlings but fell flat on their face when the games counted. The Pittsburgh Steelers were thought to be a contender but instead were an afterthought when they lost Ben Roethlisberger to an injury. Ready to bet on NFL Futures odds namely the AFC North teams’ lines? Click for updated odds on today’s games plus grab your 50% bonus up to $1000 now at MyBookie.ag.
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And the Baltimore Ravens established themselves as the team to beat entering the postseason before they were unceremoniously dumped in their first playoff game. Three teams will again contend for top spot in this competitive division.
2020 AFC North Predictions: Baltimore Ravens
Ravens Odds to Win 2021 Super Bowl: +650
Ravens Odds to Win AFC Conference: +325
Ravens Odds to Win AFC North Division: -200
Lamar Jackson had all offseason to think about his 0-2 postseason record – a thought that will no doubt linger throughout the regular season as well, and certainly until he gets that elusive first win.
The Ravens front office is doing all they can to make that happen, surrounding their star quarterback with top-end talent.
The team pried defensive lineman Calais Campbell away from the Jacksonville Jaguars for just a fifth-round pick, also adding Derek Wolfe to an improved pass rush. They also re-signed Marcus Peters, keeping him in the fold in their deep secondary.
Replacing offensive line mainstay Marshal Yanda will be tough, but they went with a pair of guards in the draft to compete for that spot.
They’ll be on the market for a wideout who can take the top off the defense, but beyond that, it’s difficult to find many flaws on this roster. If Jackson can stay healthy for 16 games, they’ll compete to win every one of them.
2020 AFC North Predictions: Pittsburgh Steelers
Steelers Odds to Win 2021 Super Bowl: +3000
Steelers Odds to Win AFC Conference: +800
Steelers Odds to Win AFC North Division: +300
The Steelers didn’t add much to their roster in the offseason to improve the team in the short-term, though it’s important to remember this year’s first-round pick was spent acquiring Minkah Fitzpatrick to improve a defense that was rock-solid by the end of last season and should be again this year.
The big change for the Steelers is the return of Ben Roethlisberger under center. He returns to a bevy of offensive weapons, including new addition Eric Ebron, and should be able to get the offense back to respectable form.
Even with poor quarterback play a year ago, this is a team that was good enough to fight for a playoff spot right down to the final week of the regular season.
2020 AFC North Predictions: Cleveland Browns
Browns Odds to Win 2021 Super Bowl: +3500
Browns Odds to Win AFC Conference: +1500
Browns Odds to Win AFC North Division: +400
The Browns were active again this offseason, though not nearly as flashy as a year ago. They signed tight end Austin Hooper and right tackle Jack Conklin, also bringing back running back Kareem Hunt for depth behind Nick Chubb.
In addition to Conklin, the team spent its first-round pick on Alabama offensive tackle Jedrick Wills to shore up that position of need.
Those are all nice, complimentary pieces, but at the end of the day it’s the core players like Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham Jr. who’ll decide how this team fares in 2020.
New head coach Kevin Stefanski has a lot of pressure on him to get this team to perform immediately or he could be the latest Browns coach to get the boot.
2020 AFC North Predictions: Cincinnati Bengals
Bengals Odds to Win 2021 Super Bowl: +30000
Bengals Odds to Win AFC Conference: +15000
Bengals Odds to Win AFC North Division: +2500
The Bengals aren’t usually active in free agency, but the team opened its pocket book to address some positions of need, specifically on the defensive side of the ball.
And the offensive side was addressed in a big way when they drafted Joe Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick.
A bit of a gluttonous second pick in Clemson wide receiver Tee Higgins as the team is pretty deep at the position if A.J. Green is healthy, and they had bigger needs on the offensive and defensive lines, but this is a much-improved team that has a chance at a quick turnaround if Burrow figures out the pro game quickly.
Cappers Picks 2020 AFC North Predictions
The Bengals will be improved, the Browns should be better, but the Ravens are the class of this division, no question about it.
Even so, their price is aggressive, and this could boil down to more of a coin flip between them and the Steelers than the odds indicate, especially if Jackson is forced to miss any time.
2020 AFC North Free Betting Pick — Steelers +300
Futures Odds to win all 8 divisions for the 2020 NFL season.
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