What’s a long shot to win the Super Bowl? A long shot to win the Super Bowl is a team that has a flaw that should prevent it from winning its conference. That’s the first criteria. The second criteria for a long shot are for it to have huge odds in comparison to the favorites and even the underdogs.
If the long shot can get past its flaws, it could win its conference and then go into the Super Bowl with a puncher’s chance. What’s interesting is that the 3 teams I’ve chosen as my long shot picks are all division winners. Cincinnati won the tough AFC North Division. Minnesota beat Green Bay in Week 17 to take home the NFC North Division. Washington won the NFC East Division. Keep reading to find out why I like the teams that I like to possibly win the Super Bowl at big odds.
A Closer Look At My Super Bowl 50 Long Shot Picks
Cincinnati Bengals 25/1
The Bengals flaw is QB Andy Dalton’s injury. The offense becomes much more one-dimensional, the Bengals rush the football more, with Dalton on the bench and A.J. McCarron under center. But, Andy Dalton is day to day meaning that he could return to the starting line-up at any time during the playoffs. Not only hasn’t that, but McCarron, after throwing 2 interceptions versus Pittsburgh in his first start, hasn’t thrown a pick since. McCarron has made smart decisions in the Bengals last 4 games. Cincinnati has a defense, it’s ranked second in points allowed per game at 17.4, that could bail it out until Dalton is ready to suit up. This team has the pieces to get past its flaw.
— NFL (@NFL) December 29, 2015
Minnesota Vikings 35/1
Minnesota’s flaw is its inability to make adjustments on either side of the ball. That’s why Seattle, Minnesota’s Wild Card Round opponent on Sunday, Jan. 10, destroyed the Vikings 38 to 7 in a Minnesota home loss on Dec. 6. But since the loss, Minnesota has played very well. The Vikings dominated the Giants 49 to 17 on Dec. 27. The score implies that the Vikings’ coaches made adjustments on the offensive side of things. Minnesota beat Green Bay 20 to 13 in Week 17. The score in that game implies that Minnesota made adjustments on the defensive side of things. Minnesota can get past its flaw in the playoffs because it’s already shown the ability to do so.
— USA TODAY Sports NFL (@usatoday_nfl) January 4, 2016
Washington Redskins 38/1
Washington’s major flaw is its defense. Washington’s defense won’t get any better during the playoffs. The D allows an average of 380.6 total yards. 258 of those yards are allowed via the pass. 122.6 of those yards are allowed via the rush. Even though Washington gives up a lot of yards, opponents only average 23.7 points per game against. That small window is how Washington can get past their flaw.
— NFLonCBS (@NFLonCBS) January 3, 2016
Washington has the ability to outscore its opponents in the playoffs because of QB Kirk Cousins and WR DeSean Jackson. Cousins threw for 4166 yards during the regular season. He threw 29 touchdown passes to only 11 interceptions. He completed close to 70% of his passes. Jackson caught only 30 passes in 8 games. But 4 of those passes were for touchdowns. Throw in TE Jordan Reed, Reed caught 87 passes in 14 games for 952 yards and 11 touchdowns, and all of a sudden Washington has one of the top passing offenses in the NFL.