My power ratings are designed to be a starting point for point-spread betting between two teams. They take into account recent performances, long-term injuries, coaching, and strength of schedule. These ratings are intended to help predict performances in the present, but they’re not necessarily predictive for the rest of the season.
I will take my Power Ratings into account when I make my weekly against the spread picks, but I’ll also consider current injury reports, home-field advantage, weather, and other factors that may be relevant. I hope you find these ratings useful and good luck with your wagers!
Example: My top-rated team, the Chiefs (7), would be 15-point favorites on a neutral field over my worst-rated team, the Texans (-8). Using a typical three-point adjustment for home-field advantage, the Chiefs would be 18-point favorites over the Texans at home and 12-point favorites over the Texans on the road.
|Rank||Team||Power Rating||2020 Record (ATS)||Super Bowl LVI Odds|
|1.||Kansas City Chiefs||7||14-2 (7-9)||+500|
|2.||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||6.5||11-5 (9-7)||+600|
|3.||Buffalo Bills||5.5||13-3 (11-5)||+1000|
|4.||Green Bay Packers||4.5||13-3 (10-6)||+1300|
|5.||Los Angeles Rams||4.5||10-6 (9-7)||+1400|
|6.||Cleveland Browns||4||11-5 (6-10)||+1600|
|7.||Baltimore Ravens||4||11-5 (10-6)||+1400|
|8.||San Francisco 49ers||3.5||6-10 (7-9)||+1400|
|9.||Seattle Seahawks||3||12-4 (8-8)||+2000|
|10.||New England Patriots||2.5||7-9 (7-9)||+3500|
|11.||Pittsburgh Steelers||2||12-4 (10-6)||+4500|
|12.||Tennessee Titans||2||11-5 (7-9)||+3000|
|13.||Minnesota Vikings||2||7-9 (6-10)||+5000|
|14.||Miami Dolphins||1.5||10-6 (11-5)||+3500|
|16.||Los Angeles Chargers||1.5||7-9 (9-7)||+3000|
|17.||New Orleans Saints||1||12-4 (9-7)||+3000|
|18.||Denver Broncos||1||5-11 (9-7)||+4500|
|19.||Indianapolis Colts||.5||11-5 (8-8)||+3500|
|20.||Dallas Cowboys||.5||6-10 (5-11)||+3500|
|21.||Arizona Cardinals||0||8-8 (7-9)||+4500|
|22.||Chicago Bears||-.5||8-8 (8-8)||+6500|
|23.||Atlanta Falcons||-1||4-12 (7-9)||+8000|
|24.||Las Vegas Raiders||-1||8-8 (8-8)||+10000|
|25.||New York Giants||-1.5||6-10 (9-7)||+8000|
|26.||Carolina Panthers||-2||5-11 (9-7)||+9000|
|27.||Philadelphia Eagles||-2||4-11-1 (6-10)||+10000|
|28.||Jacksonville Jaguars||-2.5||1-15 (7-9)||+13000|
|29.||Cincinnati Bengals||-3||4-11-1 (9-7)||+15000|
|30.||New York Jets||-3.5||2-14 (5-11)||+15000|
|31.||Detroit Lions||-4||5-11 (7-9)||+20000|
|32.||Houston Texans||-8||4-12 (6-10)||+30000|
Week 1 Risers
Teams who improved from the last Power Ratings update after the NFL Draft on May 10.
Green Bay Packers — You may have heard but the reigning league-MVP Aaron Rodgers ended his bizarre standoff with the only organization he’s ever known by reporting to training camp on time. He brought Randall Cobb along with him as part of his terms for playing in 2021, and the Packers remain well-positioned to make a run at their third straight NFC Championship appearance.
Pittsburgh Steelers — The backlash against the Steelers off of their abysmal end to the 2020 season may have gone too far this off-season. Ben Roethlisberger showed improved arm strength in August, their revamped offensive line showed some promise, and new OC Matt Canada showed some much-needed wrinkles to give this offense some hope in 2021.
Tennessee Titans — The Titans made a splashy move by trading for Julio Jones at the beginning of June, which gives Ryan Tannehill the most dynamic WR duo in the league between Julio and A.J. Brown. If Julio can stay on the field, they’ll have three of the league’s scariest offensive players if you factor the two-time defending rushing champion, Derrick Henry, into the mix.
New England Patriots — The Patriots’ swagger is back this off-season thanks to a revamped defense that’s ready to return to a top-five status. They also got a major upgrade at quarterback with Mac Jones acclimating himself well to OC Josh McDaniels’ offense, which made the underwhelming Cam Jones expendable.
Denver Broncos — HC Vic Fangio’s job is on the line this season — he has the shortest odds to be fired first — and he made the right decision to go with Teddy Bridgewater at quarterback. Teddy gives him the best chance to stick around for the entire season and he gives the Broncos the best chance to be competitive on a weekly basis. Bridgewater has covered the spread at an incredible 73.5% rate in his career with a 36-13 ATS record.
Week 1 Fallers
Teams who worsened from the last Power Ratings update after the NFL Draft on May 10.
Baltimore Ravens — The Ravens had a tough go of it during training camp and the preseason with most notably J.K. Dobbins tearing his ACL. They’ve also dealt with a number of injuries at wide receiver and Lamar Jackson didn’t get to practice with many of his receivers since he missed a large chunk of time with COVID-19, so this offense may not be firing at full capacity right out of the gates.
Los Angeles Rams — The Rams, by design, had an extremely quiet summer with HC Sean McVay resting his most important players throughout the preseason. Unfortunately, they suffered a big loss before training camp even started with Cam Akers going down for the season with an Achilles injury.
New Orleans Saints — The Saints and Michael Thomas are on shaky terms after their star WR waited until June to get surgery on his troublesome ankle, which will keep him out for at least the first five weeks of the season. They’ll also be displaced from New Orleans for at least the first couple weeks of the season after New Orleans got ravaged by Hurricane Ida, which is a less-than-ideal way to start their season.
Indianapolis Colts — The Colts’ offense could get off to a rocky start this season after they dealt with a handful of injuries in training camp with key contributors Carson Wentz (foot/COVID protocols), T.Y. Hilton (neck), and Quenton Nelson (foot) all missing time. They could also have a major issue at left tackle to open the year with Eric Fisher still recovering from his Achilles injury and with Sam Tevi going down for the year with a torn ACL.
New York Giants — The Giants have had some of the worst vibes all August long, and they somehow keep getting worse as the season nears to a start. Kenny Golladay basically missed all of training camp with a hamstring injury while Kadarius Toney has barely been on the field all summer while disappointing the franchise at every turn. Evan Engram (calf) and Darius Slayton (ankle) also got banged up in the final preseason game. And multiple reports out of training camp have indicated that the Giants’ offensive line has really struggled, specifically second-year tackles Andrew Thomas and Matt Peart.
Jacksonville Jaguars — I had some optimism for an exciting offense when the Jaguars partnered with Urban Meyer at the beginning of the off-season, but that optimism has waned this August. First-round pick Travis Etienne (foot) won’t play a snap as a rookie and first overall pick Trevor Lawrence could be fed to the lions behind one of the league’s worst offensive lines.