Winning the Super Bowl is one of the hardest things to do in sports, and these three franchises can attest to that. The Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Chargers, and Atlanta Falcons are three of the 12 NFL teams to never win a Super Bowl. We are going to take a look at these teams and see what their current Super Bowl odds are. Some teams have better odds than others, and we will look at their 2021 roster and predict if they are an excellent NFL bet to make this year.
Arizona Cardinals (+3300)
The Arizona Cardinals were one of the most fun teams to watch in 2020 and one of the most frustrating if you are an Arizona fan or bettor. Arizona got off to a hot start, beating the defending NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers in week one to make a statement that they are legit. They proceeded to go on a 5-2 start and looked like a contender in the competitive NFC West, but they fell apart in the second half of the season.
After the electric “Hail Murray ” win in week ten, the Cardinals could not capitalize on the momentum, losing five of their final seven games. Arizona lost the last two games of the season and finished 8-8. Had they won one of those games, the Cardinal would have finished above the 8-8 Chicago Bears, who clinched the second wild-card spot.
This might be a make-or-break year for Arizona. Kliff Kingsbury seemed like a reach to NFL experts, and so far, it has not translated to playoffs. Kyler Murray has been excellent in his first two years, but more was expected from him with the pairing of DeAndre Hopkins. The Cardinals offense ranked sixth in yards but 13th in points, which is critical because five of their eight losses were within one possession.
The Arizona defense was middle of the pack, but they did make some upgrades in the offseason, most notably J.J. Watt. There were other defensive signings like Super Bowl XLIX hero Malcolm Butlers and others. The attention goes to the Cardinals’ offense, but the defense needs to step up for them to be successful this year.
In a competitive NFC West, the Cardinals have no room for error, all four teams could win the division, and Arizona has the lowest Super Bowl odds in the entire division. Maybe if Arizona played in another division, their odds to win the Super Bowl would be greater but pending a significant injury on the other teams, it is tough to see the Cardinals making the playoffs.
Just because they do not make the NFL playoffs does not mean they are a terrible team, but the team’s circumstances make them a tough bet. The potential is there in Arizona, but we predict they will be on the outside looking in when NFL playoff betting rolls around.
Los Angeles Chargers (+3300)
It is a new era in Los Angeles; the Chargers have hired a head coach Brandon Staley and have one of the best young quarterbacks in the NFL in Justin Herbert. Herbert was not expected to play when he did. Tyrod Taylor was a late scratch due to a team doctor puncturing his lung during a pre-game pain-killing injection for his bruised ribs. Herbert stepped into the starting role and never looked back, winning the Rookie of the Year Award with 4,336 passing yards, 31 touchdowns, and ten interceptions.
The former Oregon Ducks’ spectacular play did not lead to a winning record, the Chargers finished 7-9, but they did win the last four games of the season. Los Angeles’ offense racked up yards, ranking ninth in the league but had the 18th most points; the Chargers’ defense had the same issue, limiting teams in yardage but ranked 23rd in points allowed.
In the 2021 NFL draft, the Chargers looked to protect their quarterback by selecting Northwestern university guard Rashawn Slater with the 13th pick. In terms of free agency, the Chargers did not do much, and they are hoping that a coaching change will be the solution to turn their team around.
Playing in the same division as the Kansas City Chiefs is tricky, but that second spot in the AFC West is open. The Las Vegas Raiders seem to be the second-best team in the division, but they also did not do much to improve their team, and the Denver Broncos are expected to be one of the worst teams in the NFL.
Staley is a defensive-minded head coach, and that might be what the Chargers need to take the next step. With weapons like wide receiver Keenan Allen and running back Austin Ekeler, the Chargers offense should be fine unless Herbert suffers a sophomore slump.
The Chargers and the Arizona Cardinals have the same odds to win the Super Bowl, but for the odds to win their division and make the NFL playoffs, we like the Chargers in comparison to the Cardinals. The Bolts are in a weaker division; the unknown of the new coaching staff should improve the team, which should at least lead to an NFL Wild Card berth.
Atlanta Falcons (+5000)
The Atlanta Falcons suffered the most heartbreaking loss in Super Bowl history when they blew a 28-3 lead against the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LI. It seems like Atlanta was never able to recover from that historic loss, and they are in the middle of a rebuild.
2020 was the worst season for the Falcons in seven years; they finished 4-12 and were in the last place in the NFC South. Matt Ryan still put up spectacular numbers with 4,581 passing yards, 26 touchdowns, to 11 interceptions but the reason for his good numbers was that the Falcons had no running game, and the defense was terrible. The opposing defenses knew the only way the Falcons could move the ball was through the air, and Ryan was sacked 41 times, the fifth most in the NFL.
After an 0-5 start, the Falcons fired head coach Dan Quinn, who was already on borrowed time after the NFL Super Bowl loss. Raheem Morris filled in for the remaining 11 games, and Atlanta hired former Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith. The Falcons are sticking to their strengths, and that is the offense, but they will not have Julio Jones, one of the best receivers in the NFL, in 2021.
The 2021 offseason was filled with drama regarding the Falcons and Jones; the star receiver confirmed that he wants out of Atlanta and openly spoke about it. This transparency hurt Jones’ trade value, and in June, the Falcons traded the 32-year-old to the Tennessee Titans for draft picks. Jones has struggled to stay healthy, and with A.J. Brown and Derrick Henry, the Titans look to be one of the best offenses in the NFL.
Calvin Ridley emerged as a number-one receiver in 2020, leading the Falcons in catches, receiving yards, and touchdowns. In the 2021 NFL draft, Atlanta took Kyle Pitts with the fourth pick, a tight end from Florida. Pitts might be the best player in the draft and could fit in as an excellent replacement for Jones.
The Falcons did sign free agents to bolster their defense but no big names dominating the game. Running back, Mike Davis signed with Atlanta. He did an excellent job filling in for Christian McCaffery last season, but the Falcons have had talented running backs before and still could not produce.
Atlanta plays in a tough NFC South with the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bucs brought everyone back, so they are going to be dangerous. The New Orleans Saints lost Drew Brees, but they are a good team, and the Carolina Panthers hired a new head coach and acquired Sam Darnold, so they look to be a better team than last year.
The Falcons were good last year, and we do not see things changing in 2021. Losing Jones is a big blow to this offense which is the main reason why they were successful. The defense still looks to be the weak point of this team, and with a weakened offense, the Falcons’ record could be worse. The NFL sportsbook has the Falcons ranked 21st with their +5000 odds, and even that seems generous.
Looking at teams with the same odds, like the Carolina Panthers, the Chicago Bears, and the Washington Redskins, we like those teams’ chances to win the Super Bowl more than the Falcons. Atlanta might have some offensive players put up a lot of statistics this year, but that is because the defense is bad. They will need to put up a lot of points to keep up, but in terms of winning real football games, we do not see them going over their NFL Regular Season win totals of eight.
These three franchises have never won a Super Bowl, and 2021 might be another ringless year for each team. The Chargers and Cardinals are in that middle tier of talented teams but probably not enough to make a Super Bowl run, while the Falcons seem to be in a rebuild and will most likely be nowhere near the NFL playoffs.
The Falcons and the Chargers come into 2021 with a new head coach, and that change of leadership could boost their odds to win the NFC or AFC, respectively, but it is hard to tell just how big of an impact they will have. Winning a Super Bowl is one of the hardest things to do in sports, and these three fan bases know that all too well. A new season brings a new year of optimism, but we do not see any of these teams winning their first Lombardi Trophy.