Only the St. Louis Rams don’t figure into the picture in NFL preseason odds for the NFC West.
NFL preseason bet odds list the 49ers as the 6-5 favorite to win the NFC West this season. Arizona is the 8-5 second choice with Seattle at 3-1 followed by St. Louis at 10-1. The Cardinals are the reigning champs in this division but without quarterback Kurt Warner who retired and receiver Anquan Boldin who went to Baltimore, the Cardinals are no longer favored in the NFC West. That honor goes to San Francisco, but just barely.
The 49ers have a lot of young talent but they still have Alex Smith at quarterback so that is a major concern. They can run the ball with Frank Gore and they have exciting receivers like Michael Crabtree and Vernon Davis but Smith doesn’t always get them the ball. The defense is led by Patrick Willis but they do have concerns, especially in the secondary.
The success of Arizona this season hinges on the play of quarterback Matt Leinart. This is his final chance to show he can be an NFL quarterback. Warner is gone so it is up to Leinart to get the job done. The Cardinals still have Larry Fitzgerald and Beanie Wells so the offense is not without talent. The defense is going to miss Karlos Dansby and Antrel Rolle this season.
The Seattle Seahawks have a new head coach in Pete Carroll and a lot of optimism for 2010. Matt Hasselbeck is still the quarterback and he may not have the ability to lead a team like he did years ago. The team will get Lofa Tatupu back from injury and he will greatly help the defense.
The Rams have number one pick Sam Bradford and running back Steven Jackson and not much else. Head coach Steve Spagnuolo is doing a nice job but the Rams still are lacking talent in a number of areas.
The hot pick in the NFC West in NFL preseason odds is San Francisco but they are no lock to win what looks like the weakest division in the NFL.