The NFC West should feature a two-team race for the division crown in 2023. The San Francisco 49ers are a formidable Super Bowl contender and winning the NFC West is the first goal on the path to finishing off a championship mission.
San Francisco’s top likely competition will be its top rival, the Seattle Seahawks. In 2022, Pete Carroll’s crew surprised everyone by making the playoffs, and now Seattle has bigger achievements in mind after bolstering its roster further in the offseason.
The Los Angeles Rams will be aiming to regain respectability, and the Arizona Cardinals may end up as one of the worst teams in the NFL this season.
NFC West Winner Betting Odds 2023
Note: These NFC West betting odds are courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook and are current as of Wednesday, July 5, at 10 a.m. ET. Be sure to stay on top of the latest changes, as many of these NFL odds may shift as we get closer to the 2023 NFL season.
- San Francisco 49ers (-160)
- Seattle Seahawks (+195)
- Los Angeles Rams (+1000)
- Arizona Cardinals (+2500)
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The 49ers would be a near-lock to win the division if their quarterback situation did not generate some skepticism. But they do have a deep array of playmakers for Brock Purdy or any other QB to benefit from, along with the league’s premier defense.
Seattle’s odds improved after what was widely considered a strong NFL Draft showing. The Seahawks continued to benefit from the Russell Wilson trade and came away with key potential impact performers on both sides of the ball.
Los Angeles is coming off the worst season ever for a defending Super Bowl champion, winning five games while dealing with major injuries. A healthy combination of Matthew Stafford and Cooper Kupp, plus still having Aaron Donald should at least keep the Rams out of the division basement despite some other key offseason departures, including Jalen Ramsey.
The Cardinals have a new general manager (Monti Ossenfort) and head coach (Jonathan Gannon) as the franchise looks to reset after a four-win campaign. The uncertain return date of Kyler Murray from ACL surgery makes an already dim outlook even bleaker.
NFC West Winner Best Bet
San Francisco 49ers (-160) | DraftKings Sportsbook
Last season’s unlikely rookie sensation, Purdy, is expected to be the starting quarterback when he is completely recovered from elbow surgery. If he cannot recapture the form that helped the 49ers advance to the NFC Championship Game, then San Francisco can look to either of two recent No. 3 overall picks in the NFL Draft, Trey Lance or Sam Darnold.
Whoever ultimately settles in as the consistent starter will be in a comfortable position to lean on a supporting cast that includes superstar running back Christian McCaffrey, four-time Pro Bowl tight end George Kittle, yardage after the catch demon wide receiver Deebo Samuel, and WR Brandon Aiyuk, who had a breakout season in 2022 with 1,015 yards and eight TD receptions.
On the defensive side, the rich became richer when the 49ers stole standout defensive tackle Javon Hargrave from the Philadelphia Eagles in the offseason. Opposing offenses are going to have continued great difficulty coping with a unit that already boasts reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year Nick Bosa and 2022 first-team All-Pro selections Fred Warner (inside linebacker) and Talanoa Hufanga (strong safety).
The 49ers lost defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans, but the transition to replacement Steve Wilks should be smooth. San Francisco has the best-looking depth chart in the division and in the NFC outside of the QB position.
NFC West Winner Sleeper Pick
Seattle Seahawks (+550) | DraftKings Sportsbook
Seattle lost by 18 points at San Francisco in last season’s NFC wild-card round. General manager John Schneider and team executive vice president/head coach Carroll sought to close the gap between the Seahawks and 49ers with key offseason acquisitions and a healthy NFL Draft haul.
In free agency, the Seahawks made a significant addition with former Denver Broncos defensive lineman Dre’Mont Jones. They also acquired ex-New York Giants safety Julian Love to join an already solid pass defense.
In the NFL Draft, the team snagged top cornerback Devon Witherspoon. Seattle’s secondary could be one of the best in the game, as Witherspoon will combine with last year’s fifth-round gem, Tariq Woolen at cornerback. The safety crew can be top-flight with Quandre Diggs, Love (who can also slide in at nickel back), and a hopefully healthy Jamal Adams, while there is also good depth behind all the projected secondary starters.
On offense, the Seattle brain trust landed one of the draft’s premier rookie wide receivers, Jaxon Smith-Njigba, to join DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett in forming what might be the best WR trio in the NFC. Last season’s NFL Comeback Player of the Year, Geno Smith, is out to prove his 2022 showing was no fluke, and the organization has shown confidence that he can be the best QB in the division again by giving him a three-year contract and another prime weapon.
NFC West Winner By Year
|Year||NFC West Winner||Record|
|2017||Los Angeles Rams||11-5|
|2018||Los Angeles Rams||13-3|
|2019||San Francisco 49ers||13-3|
|2021||Los Angeles Rams||12-5|
|2022||San Francisco 49ers||13-4|