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NFL Prop Betting Odds: Philip Rivers' Week 1 Team
16th March, 13:262020 NFL Prop Betting Odds: Philip Rivers' Week 1 TeamThis Philip Rivers Week 1 prop bet has some favorable and preferable odds. Where's the smart money going?Author:Roy LarkingPublish date:Mar 16, 2020
In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, sports betting options have become a rare commodity. Since the regular season still more than five months away - NFL props offers are the top bets available.
With sports leagues on lockdown across the globe, sportsbooks have taken a massive hit, and they are scrambling to populate their betting boards. To fill the void, until the sports world returns to normal, expect bookmakers to get creative with the betting options they offer.
William Hill sportsbook has posted several NFL futures props, including which team will have quarterback Philip Rivers to start the 2020 NFL season. After 16 years, with the Los Angeles Chargers, Rivers opted to leave the only team he has ever played for, and he is one of the top free agents this offseason. According to the bookmakers at William Hill, who have the Colts and Bucs as top favorites, here are the teams with the best odds to sign Rivers.
Indianapolis Colts (-175)
Thrust into the starting role, after Andrew Luck made his stunning retirement announcement, Jacoby Brissett led Indianapolis to a 7-9 record last season. The Colts opened with a 5-2 record, but injuries, plus mediocre play from Brissett, led to losses during seven of the final nine games. That prompted Colts GM Chris Ballard to state "the jury is still out" on whether Brissett would remain as the Colts starter heading into the 2020 season. It is doubtful he will.
If players like T.Y. Hilton and Parris Campbell return healthy, the Colts have playmakers that would benefit from having a gunslinger like Rivers guiding the offense. Indianapolis has the 13th pick in the draft, and a QB like Justin Herbert from Oregon or Jordan Love from Utah State may still be available at that point. Since Rivers wants to play another two years or so, he would act as a fantastic mentor if the Colts select a top quarterback in the 2020 draft.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+350)
Tampa Bay is the second favorite to land Rivers as the Buccaneers may move on from Jameis Winston. The 2015 first overall draft pick has not lived up to expectations as the Bucs are 32-48 over five seasons with Winston as the starter. Winston led the NFL with 5,109 passing yards last season, and he was second with 33 TD passes. However, he also led the league with 30 interceptions, lost five fumbles, and his 53.7 QB rating was 16th amongst starting quarterbacks.
Due to the lack of a running attack, the Bucs featured a high-volume passing offense last season. That would be a good fit for Rivers, who just moved his family from California to Florida. When he was with Arizona, Bucs head coach Bruce Arians extended Carson Palmer's career, and he may try to do the same with Rivers. As a negative, Rivers' age is catching up to him, and last year he had his lowest TD total (23) since he posted 21 TD passes during the 2007 season.
No Team/Retires (+600)
It is somewhat surprising to see "No Team/Retires" as the third favorite at William Hill. First, Rivers has publicly stated that he isn't ready to retire yet. Second, Rivers has posted at least 4,286 passing yards over the past seven seasons and has ranked in the top eight in that category each year. Add in the fact that Rivers has not missed a start over the past 14 seasons, and retirement seems even less likely. There has been talk that Rivers may end up as an analyst on ESPN broadcasts, but not landing a starting job is the only plausible scenario that would cause Rivers to retire.
Las Vegas Raiders (+750)
Las Vegas is the fourth favorite, but it's difficult to see that materialize. Rivers has a young family, with nine kids under the age of 19, and he won't want to commute between Florida and Vegas during the season. Also, although they weren't ringing endorsements, Raiders GM Mike Mayock and head coach John Gruden praised Derek Carr when they made statements in late February. Carr's passing yards (4,054) and completion percentage (70.4) were career highs last season. It seems unlikely the Raiders will replace their 29-year old starter with Rivers, who will be 39 in December.
New England Patriots (+800)
Rumors have been steady that Tom Brady will move on after 20 seasons and six Super Bowl titles with New England. The new CBA offers teams more flexibility, and that may help the Patriots bring Brady back. Part of the rumor had Brady heading to Tennessee to hook up with former teammate Mike Vrabel. Joining the Titans is out of the mix now, though, as Tennessee just signed Ryan Tannehill to a four-year, $118 million contract. If Brady does leave, Rivers would make sense as a two-year bridge to the Patriots next long-term starter, whether it's Jarrett Stidham or someone else.
Chicago Bears (+1100)
Chicago GM Ryan Pace has publicly stated that Mitchell Trubisky will remain as the Bears starting quarterback heading into the 2020 season. Pace has also said that the Bears are looking to bring in a veteran pivot to push Trubisky and serve as his backup since Chase Daniel and Tyler Bray are not expected to return. That makes Chicago an unlikely landing spot for Rivers, who is looking for a starting position and the sizeable salary that comes with it. Plus, the Bears have cap space issues, so free-agent quarterbacks like Marcus Mariota or Case Keenum are more affordable options.
Miami Dolphins (+1200)
Miami has three first-round picks (5, 18, and 26) in the 2020 NFL Draft, and the Dolphins are expected to use one of them on a quarterback. If Miami selects one of the top college prospects, like Tua Tagovailoa, with the No. 5 pick, it's doubtful they would chase a high priced free agent. Ryan Fitzpatrick proved to be a capable starter last season and is returning to complete the two-year contract he signed during the offseason last year. That will allow Miami a full season to develop whichever quarterback they select - with Harvard educated Fitzpatrick as a top-quality mentor.
MORE FROM SI: 2020 NFL Draft: Larking's Mock Draft
Carolina Panthers (+1200)
Bettors may want to stay away from Carolina as a possible landing spot for Rivers. That is primarily due to Panthers' new head coach Matt Rhule suggesting Cam Newton will remain in Carolina and regain the starter role if he is healthy. The Panthers training staff has been impressed by Newton's dedication during rehab, and he is expected to pass his physical in late March. The Panthers also re-signed Kyle Allen to a one-year contract, and he is expected to back up Newton.
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