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Super Bowl 2021 odds: Chiefs are early favorites, but put your money elsewhere

The Chiefs might look like they’re equipped to repeat, but history is stacked against them.

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It is never too early to start looking at Super Bowl odds.

Even though strands of confetti from Super Bowl LIV are still probably lingering around Hard Rock Stadium, Vegas has already started looking ahead to the 2020 season. Caesars Sportsbook released every team’s championship odds for next year’s Super Bowl LV, and unsurprisingly, the Chiefs lead the way at 6-1.

While repeats are exceedingly rare in the NFL — the 1998-99 Broncos were the last non-Patriots team to win two straight Super Bowls — it makes sense for the Chiefs to be leading the pack. But that doesn’t mean you should bet your hard earned cash on a repeat.

The five teams with the best early odds of capturing the Lombardi Trophy at the end of Super Bowl LV are below, followed by analysis on whether they should be your pick:

Chiefs (6-1):

The Chiefs are the only team in NFL history to come back from three deficits of 10 points or more in a single postseason. Patrick Mahomes earned his MVP in the fourth quarter, throwing two touchdown passes in the period to lead Kansas City to victory.

While Mahomes still has one year left on his rookie contract, it’s likely the Chiefs will extend him this offseason. That’s great news for Mahomes, since he’s projected to be the NFL’s first $200 million man. It’s not great for the Chiefs, however, since they’ll be forced to cut elsewhere on their roster.

Last offseason, Kansas City addressed its biggest weakness and got tougher on defense with the additions of Tyrann Mathieu and Frank Clark — along with new defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo. This year, the Chiefs will probably stand pat, and count on a healthy Mahomes to lead them to another AFC West title.

While that part is likely, recent history is against the Chiefs repeating as champs. Don’t bet.

Ravens (7-1):

Baltimore should be back in the upper-echelon of the AFC next season, despite its disheartening loss to the Titans in the AFC Divisional Round. With another year of experience, expect Lamar Jackson to be even more dangerous in 2020.

The Ravens have one of the best quarterbacks in the league and a stout defense. Given the uncertainty within the rest of the AFC, they are smart bets to pick as champs.

49ers (8-1):

On paper, the 49ers seem like locks for another deep playoff run. They have a ferocious defense, capable young quarterback, and Super Bowl choke jobs aside, an excellent and innovative head coach.

But sometimes the intangibles are too much to overcome.

For starters, Kyle Shanahan will now have to wear his reputation for blowing Super Bowl leads. The two biggest collapses in Super Bowl history happened under his watch, and fair or not, he will be forced to answer those questions until one of his teams captures the Lombardi Trophy. It’s a tough ask.

Also, besides the 2018 Patriots, the last Super Bowl loser who returned to The Big Game the following season was the 1994 Buffalo Bills. History is working against a Niners championship.

Saints (11-1):

The Saints are usually a smart preseason Super Bowl pick, but there is uncertainty surrounding the quarterback position. If Drew Brees retires — which he hinted at the Pro Bowl is a distinct possibility — then New Orleans will entrust its QB spot to either Teddy Bridgewater or the dynamic, yet inexperienced, Taysom Hill.

Check back on the Saints in August. For now, they’re too risky to bet.

Patriots (14-1):

Much like the Saints, the Patriots currently have too many questions at quarterback. The club has no contingency plan for Tom Brady, and could be starting sophomore Jarrett Stidham in his place.

And even if Brady does return, there’s no guarantee he’ll play at a championship level at 43 years old. He’s coming off his worst season since 2002.

The Patriots’ dynasty appears to be over.

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