This Philadelphia Team Is The Best Bet To Win A Championship This Year

There's upside betting on the Eagles, Phillies, 76ers or Flyers

Phillies (+2000)

  • The Philadelphia Phillies are coming off of an 81-81 season and will look to not only break an eight-year playoff drought, but also contend for a World Series title.

  • First baseman Rhys Hoskins is primed for a breakout season based on offseason alterations and peripheral 2019 statistics and this Phillies lineup will be a force to be reckoned with. The additions of Didi Gregorius and Andrew McCutchen will give new manager Joe Girardi the ability to stagger his lineup with lefties and righties, which is a very important element to pay attention to since the three-batter reliever rule will be in effect if/when the season is played.

  • J.T. Realmuto, Bryce Harper and Jean Segura will continue to be mainstays in the starting lineup while others like Scott Kingery and Adam Haseley project to be given everyday responsibilities at second base and center field, respectively.

  • The addition of Zach Wheeler solidified the top end of Philly's starting rotation which now consists of Aaron Nola, Wheeler and Jake Arrieta. Zach Eflin flashed potential and could emerge as a valuable fourth starter and while there are some major question marks around who the fifth starter would be, perhaps it wouldn't be a glaring issue in a shortened season, especially if the team ends up being able to carry more than the proposed 26-man roster.

  • Losing Seranthony Dominguez (elbow) hurts Philly's bullpen, but this layoff could help David Robertson (elbow), who is recovering from Tommy John surgery. He will presumably join Hector Neris, Jose Alvarez, and others like Adam Morgan, Victor Arano, Tommy Hunter and Ranger Suarez in the bullpen. All-in-all, this Philadelphia's glaring weak spot and could be an area to improve in before the Trade Deadline (whenever that will be).

  • However, the Phillies should be able to improve on the numbers they put up last season when they scored 4.78 runs per game (below the 4.83 league average) and allowed 4.90 runs per contest (above the 4.83 league average) based on the improvements they made in the offseason. The major question will be if they can have season-long success against the Atlanta Braves and New York Mets, both of which should be tough opponents within the NL East.

Eagles (+2000)

  • The Philadelphia Eagles are coming off of a 2019 season in which quarterback Carson Wentz carried the 9-7 club to the playoffs. They ended up losing to the Seattle Seahawks in the Wild Card Round, but just getting to that spot after the wild number of injuries they suffered was admirable and unexpected.

  • This offseason, the Eagles quietly assembled the most dangerous offense in the NFC (on paper). GM Howie Roseman and his staff selected wide receiver Jalen Reagor out of TCU with the 21st overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft and he will join Alshon Jeffrey, DeSean Jackson and newcomer Marquise Goodwin in arguably the most explosive projected passing attack in the league considering that both Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert demand attention from the tight end position.

  • Not only that, but the Eagles drafted Jalen Hurts in the 2nd Round. Not only will Hurts likely be a viable backup quarterback, but there’s a chance that he will also play a role in the team’s offense based on his elite athleticism (think Taysom Hill of the New Orleans Saints). At Oklahoma last season, Hurts threw for 3,851 yards with 32 touchdowns and added another 1,323 yards and 20 touchdowns on the ground through 14 games played. Having a weapon like that on the sidelines will allow coach Doug Pederson to be creative since he’s going to continue calling the plays with no offensive coordinator in 2020. 

  • While it's important not to put too much stock into this, the Eagles have the 25th-toughest schedule in the NFL based on last season's win-loss records. Their opponents went a combined 124-131-1. They also have the 20th-toughest schedule in the NFL based on this season's projected win totals.

76ers (+2200)

  • The good: before the hiatus, the Philadelphia 76ers went 39-26 and ranked 6th in the Eastern Conference standings. They're also went an NBA-best 29-2 in front of their home crowd (18-11 against the spread).

  • The bad: they went 10-24 on the road (8-25 ATS) and if the playoffs started tomorrow, they wouldn't have the home-court advantage in any round. At home, the Sixers had a 113.0 Offensive Rating and 102.7 Defensive Rating which resulted in a +10.3 Net Rating (2nd in the NBA among all home teams behind the Milwaukee Bucks). On the road, Philly had a 106.7 Offensive Rating and a 111.8 Defensive Rating which resulted in a -5.1 Net Rating (24th in the NBA among all road teams).

  • There's no denying that Philadelphia's roster is built for the playoffs. In fact, their starting five of Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Tobias Harris, Al Horford and Josh Richardson average a combined 85.3 of the team's 109.6 average points scored per game. The team's bench production ranks 26th in the NBA and coach Brett Brown would most likely rely on all five of his starters to push 40ish minutes in the postseason.

  • The Sixers have star power in Embiid, Simmons and Harris, but since the Bucks, Toronto Raptors, Boston Celtics, Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers all rank ahead of them and pose serious threats, it's tough to envision the 76ers not only advancing past all of them, but then beating whoever comes out of the Western Conference.

Flyers (+1300)

  • The Philadelphia Flyers were surging right before the hiatus, winning 9 of their last 10 games to improve to 41-21-7 on the year. Not only did that vault them past the Carolina Hurricanes and Pittsburgh Penguins in the standings, but it also got them within one point of the Washington Capitals for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division.

  • The Flyers have a +36 goal differential which is the 3rd-best mark in the Eastern Conference behind the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning and is 4th in the entire NHL.

  • The Flyers have middling stats in both power play and penalty kill percentages, but pride themselves on a balanced approach. Travis Konecny (24), Kevin Hayes (23), Sean Couturier (22) and Claude Giroux (21) all have 20-plus goals and Jakub Voracek (12) has goal-scoring ability as evidenced by the fact that he's hit the 20 goal plateau in six of his seven seasons with the team.

  • 21-year-old goaltender Carter Hart was also coming into his own within the crease before the hiatus. He had a 2.42 goals against average, .914 save percentage and was 24-13 overall and is arguably the top youngster at his position across the entire league.

  • As seen with the St. Louis Blues' historic run in last year's Stanley Cup Playoffs, a team's momentum can play a large part in determining their future. Unfortunately, this break came at the wrong time for the Flyers, who were riding a major hot streak. But, they should be firmly in the mix if and when the season restarts.

Best Bet

  • The return of the NBA and NHL seasons is completely up in the air. Since many of those teams share arenas, it seems likely that they'll operate with the same general plans. The MLB also has to get through a lot of hoops to begin its season. Not only does the NFL look like the most probable league to start its schedule, but it also has a major financial interest at stake when it comes to television deals (with less of an impact felt from losing gate revenue than other leagues). The Eagles are therefore the best bet by default, but it's important to note that if the aforementioned seasons don't play out and you place a bet on the championship winner, the bet will be canceled and you will be refunded on reputable sportsbooks.

  • The Eagles won a Super Bowl title in 2018 and re-stocked their team on both sides of the ball this offseason. They are clearly the Philadelphia team to target when betting on these futures. But if you believe that the NBA, NHL and MLB will return, there's a case to be made for the other three Philadelphia teams as well, as seen above.

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