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Do Your Homework Before Wagering NFL Futures This Off-Season

Mike Wallace

Knowing where guys like Wallace end up should factor in your wagering on a specific teams' 2013 chances.

My guess is that some of you out there are roughly the same age as I am and chances are you have similar interests. Football and gambling being a couple of those. I’m also guessing you have probably grown up with video games such as the Madden franchise and the NCAA franchise.

As much as I enjoyed playing the games I really loved the off-season features of recruiting or free agency or making trades depending upon the game.

We are now at that point in the National Football League season where cuts and contract discussions are well underway. In less than a month, free agency begins. In two months the NFL Draft will be here and throughout it all, there will be that crazy word used by the Chris Mortenson’s  and Adam Schefter’s of the world, SPECULATION!!!

Nick Foles
If Foles is traded, how will that affect the teams involved for 2013?

Yesterday morning the ‘speculatory process’ started when rumors that Kansas City was interested in Philadelphia’s Nick Foles were rolling across the ticker on ESPN. It’s with this in mind that you as a potential bettor must remember as you place futures wagers for the 2013 season.

For example, if the Eagles decide Foles just isn’t going to fit the new Chip Kelly system and trade him to KC for a second or third round pick, then that will have serious ramifications for where each of those teams could finish the 2013 season.

I like to break the NFL futures process down like this; Examine teams right after the Super Bowl ends and see where odds makers have them for 2013. The next phase is to monitor league transactions throughout February to help see the direction teams are going with their roster.

Let’s say you think the Detroit Lions will have better season in ’13. Are you aware they’ve released defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch? Are you also aware that the guy who plays opposite him, Cliff Avril will test the free agent market? That’s two key guys who could easily influence the outcome of games in a given season.

Once you get to March 13th, then you really have to stay in touch with the NFL transaction wire. This is when free agency starts and it isn’t just about the big stars either. Yes, you’ll need to pay attention to where a Mike Wallace goes or a Wes Welker goes, but you also need to pay close attention to the guys that fill substantial back-up and/or special teams roles.

This especially is crucial for quarterbacks. If you like the Pittsburgh Steelers to improve upon their 8-8 season I would like closely at their back-up QB spot. Ben Roethlisberger rarely plays a full 16-game schedule so an able back-up that isn’t 74 years old should enter your thinking.

You can’t really ever underestimate any free agent signing to be honest. Guys that were quite often after-thoughts have gone on to become stars. Wes Welker for example was ‘nice’ receiver and special teams guy before hitting it big in New England.

The next phase is of course the NFL Draft and this is where speculation becomes the ultimate. Every team is happy with their draft regardless of what Mel Kiper or Todd McShay say. What you must do is decide how many of these drafted players will be guys who make an impact.

Did anyone see Bobby Wagner in Seattle having the year he did? He’s a perfect example.

While playing futures can often be rewarding, it should come with research if you expect to be rewarded. Players are constantly moving and that slides the win and loss totals for each and every one of the 32 NFL teams.

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