2023 NFL Playoff Futures: Predicting Which Bubble Teams will Make the Postseason

Dan Favale
By , Updated on: Apr 9, 2024 08:00 PM
2023 NFL Playoff Futures: Predicting Which Bubble Teams will Make the Postseason

Entering the Week 11 slate of games, 25 teams are still laying odds to make the NFL playoffs. That’s a wild number this late into the season. And we’re here to make sense of it by identifying the best opportunities from this crop of 2023 NFL playoff futures.

In this space, we’ll be focusing on the bubble teams—squads that aren’t necessarily guaranteed to make the postseason. To crack the playoffs, they’ll either need to maintain or seize divisional leads or snag a spot via the Wild Card race. Before we get started, here’s a look at the NFL online betting odds for 2024 playoff futures.

To Make PlayoffsBetOnlineBovadaBetUS
Detroit Lions-8000-8000-8000
Kansas City Chiefs-6000-6000-6000
San Francisco 49ers-6000-6000-6000
Dallas Cowboys-1800-1800-1800
Miami Dolphins-950-950-950
Baltimore Ravens-800-800-800
Jacksonville Jaguars-450-450-450
Seattle Seahawks-340-340-340
Minnesota Vikings-230-230-230
Buffalo Bills-220-220-220
Cleveland Browns-176-176-176
Cincinnati Bengals-144-144-144
Houston Texans-122-122-122
Pittsburgh Steelers-118-118-118
Tennessee Titans+1120+1120+1120
Tampa Bay Buccaneers+172+172+172
Atlanta Falcons+184+185+185
Los Angeles Chargers+210+210+210
Chicago Bears+25000+25000+25000
Indianapolis Colts+300+300+300
Green Bay Packers+490+490+490
Denver Broncos+520+520+520
New York Jets+570+570+570
Las Vegas Raiders+630+630+630
Washington Commanders+790+790+790

As usual, you will want to double-check these online NFL betting odds until you actually submit your wagers. Our NFL playoff futures are accurate entering Thursday, November 16. With the playoffs not scheduled to begin until January 2024, this gives the best NFL online betting sites plenty of time to make adjustments. And rest assured, they will tweak these online NFL playoff betting odds on a weekly basis, as the postseason picture continues to change relative to game results.

Also, as a brief reminder, seven NFL teams from each conference make the playoffs. Every divisional winner is guaranteed a spot in the Super Bowl quest, and then the AFC and NFL will send three Wild Card teams apiece to the winter dance. 

Which bubble teams offer the best chance to capitalize on the latest 2024 NFL playoff futures? Read on to see our predictions!

NFL Playoff Futures: Which Teams are Locks to Make the Postseason?

Before we dig into our NFL futures predictions, let’s run through all the teams who are currently playoff locks. These squads for the most part appear here because their divisional leads are so commanding they won’t miss the postseason unless they suffer a massive collapse:

  • Detroit Lions (-8000)
  • Kansas City Chiefs (-6000)
  • San Francisco 49ers (-6000)
  • Dallas Cowboys (-1800)
  • Miami Dolphins (-800)
  • Jacksonville Jaguars (-450)

That about does it for locks in the NFL playoff futures department. And with six spots sewn up, that leaves another eight slots up for grabs. We aren’t here to predict them all. What follows is instead a list of teams laying NFL playoff betting odds we would absolutely pounce on even though they're not guaranteed a postseason spot at the moment.

Are the Buffalo Bills Still a Worthy Postseason Bet?

This would have seemed like a dumb question months ago. The Buffalo Bills (-220) entered the NFL regular season with top-tier odds to win the Super Bowl. Entering Week 11, though, they find themselves at .500, with their postseason hopes flickering.

Turnovers and late-game mistakes have punctuated their tumble down the standings. Quarterback Josh Allen has been easily rattled, and the offensive line isn’t holding up especially. 

And yet, we aren’t too worried. The offense can still be elite, and the defense mostly holds its own. Indeed, the Bills having the 10th best record in the AFC is not ideal this late into the game. But a handful of teams in front of them are due for regression. Buffalo will get in, even if they don’t win the AFC East Division

Buffalo Bills To make the 2024 NFL playoffs

Do Not Shy Away from the Houston Texans’ NFL Playoff Futures

Public sentiment of the Houston Texans (-122) is only just starting to catch up with reality.

Too many still write them off as a non-threat going through the motions of a gradual rebuild. However, quarterback CJ Stroud has developed into a superstar. He is a whiz at extending plays with his legs and has perfected his decision-making. The Texans offense is now second in total passing yards and first in total interceptions thrown under his guiding force. 

Houston’s defense remains questionable. And they will be hard-pressed to win the AFC South division with the Jacksonville Jaguars playing much better. But a win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 10 suggests this Texans squad is ready for primetime.

Houston Texans To make the 2024 NFL playoffs

Can the Seattle Seahawks Fend Off the Competition to Secure a Postseason Spot?

We came very close to declaring the Seattle Seahawks (-340) as playoff locks. But we can’t guarantee their spot in the NFC West division will stand the test of their remaining schedule. 

Seattle has two games remaining against the division rival San Francisco 49ers and a late-season date with the reigning NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles. Those three games could easily culminate in three losses. 

But even if we presume the Seahawks lose those contests, that still puts them at .500. The offense has been good enough to pick up wins elsewhere, even if quarterback Geno Smith has started struggling to protect the ball. Truth be told, their NFL playoff futures could look a lot less enticing in a week or so. The time to jump on them is now.

Seattle Seahawks To make the 2024 NFL playoffs

The Cincinnati Bengals’ NFL Playoff Futures are Looking a Lot Better

We wrap up this NFL playoff futures shindig with the Cincinnati Bengals (-144)

This is fairly bold given that they currently sit last in the AFC North division. They have also turned in a bunch of Jekyll-and-Hyde moments. Is the offense for real? A paper tiger? Incapable of stringing together consistently high-scoring performances? Any answer is possible.

Still, quarterback Joe Burrow is healthier than he was at the start of the season. And the Bengals have picked up victories against the Seahawks, 49ers and Bills in recent weeks. That doesn’t happen by chance.

Moreover, some of the teams in front of them are currently ticketed for pullback. The Cleveland Browns just lost quarterback Deshaun Watson for the season. And with a combined three matchups remaining against the Browns (one game) and Pittsburgh Steelers (two games), the Bengals control their own fate more than their record suggests.

Cincinnati Bengals To make the 2024 NFL playoffs

Take a look at this list of the top online sportsbooks so you can find one that works for all of your 2023 NFL betting:

Meet the author

Dan Favale

Dan Favale leverages over 12 years of sports journalism expertise in his role as New York staff writer. He provides in-depth analysis across the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, tennis, NASCAR, college basketball, and sports betting. Dan co-hosts the popular Hardwood Knocks NBA podc...

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