Corey Parson’s 2023 NFL Playoff Early Picks
With NFL training camps quickly approaching, Corey Parson, aka @TheFantasyExec, shares some NFL To Make the Playoffs odds and picks.
Carolina Panthers To Make the Playoffs (+190)
The Carolina Panthers enter the 2023 season with a brand new Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback leading the franchise. Outside of the New York Jets, the Panthers may have made the biggest offseason splash when they traded up to the top spot in the draft to select Alabama Quarterback Bryce Young. Young may already be the best starting quarterback in the division. That alone will go a long way in helping the Panthers reign supreme in the NFC South. Carolina has a good team, but they have just been quarterback-needy since prime Cam Newton. Last year with three different starting signal-callers, the Panthers won 7 games. Young will get them to at least 10 wins this season.
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Cleveland Browns To Miss the Playoffs (-150)
Maybe it’s just me, but these odds seem pretty short for the Browns to miss the playoffs. Now, I’m not saying the Browns are a bad team or that they have no shot to get in the tournament, but in the AFC playoff births will be hard to come by. In the AFC North, they will have to deal with a pair of MVP candidates at quarterback in Baltimore and Cincinnati, as well as a Hall of Fame head coach in Pittsburgh. I think Deshaun Watson and the Browns will be improved this season, but I also think they will bring up the rear in the toughest division in football. Not only do the Browns have to compete in a tough AFC, they also have to deal with San Francisco and Seattle from the tough NFC West. Laying -150 on a future prop bet is not ideal, but this should cash fairly easily.
Detroit Lions To Miss the Playoffs (+135)
This is the first time I can remember the Detroit Lions having plus odds to make the playoffs before the season began. Well, now it’s time for the optimism to show up as wins. That’s where I think things will get tricky. The optimism around the Lions is so strong that the NFL put them in prime time to open up the season. I hate to throw water on the Lions’ optimism parade, but let’s slow down a bit. Detroit played well down the stretch last year, but I’m still not sold on the Lions’ quarterback, head coach, or defense. Detroit will not sneak up on anyone this season. Teams will face the Lions ready to play. I think teams like the Commanders, Packers, Panthers, and Falcons are closer to the Lions than they are the Cardinals. Detroit will have to win the division to get in the playoffs. The franchise has not done that since 1993. When a team is hyped coming into the season, that’s a good sign to fade that team. Look at last year’s Broncos and the 2021 Browns.
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