NFC West division odds (Can Seattle win the division in 2023?)

The 49ers won the division at 13-4 last year, but they have big questions at quarterback after Brock Purdy's elbow injury.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith (7)
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith (7) / Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Despite losing two quarterbacks last year, Kyle Shanahan and the San Francisco 49ers turned to Brock Purdy and he led the team to the NFC West title.

It helped that the Arizona Cardinals only won four games and that the Los Angeles Rams completely fell apart after winning Super Bowl 56 and went 5-12. 

The Seattle Seahawks found something with Geno Smith, so now it’ll be a battle between two of the league’s most unlikely starting quarterbacks to win the division. Seattle went 9-8 a year ago and San Francisco went 13-4 on its way to the NFC Championship game. 

The 49ers are big favorites out West, so let’s get into the odds for this division and I’ll give you my best bet. 

NFC West odds

NFC West best bet to win the division

OK, let’s be serious, Kyle Shanahan is a great coach, but he’s not a wizard.

He couldn’t win games with Nick Mullens or CJ Beathard, so there is some limit to his sorcery. The 49ers clearly have unbelievable talent at the skill positions, but they’re relying on Brock Purdy coming off of elbow surgery, and behind him they have Sam Darnold and Trey Lance.

One has struggled at the NFL level (Darnold) and the other is a bit of a wild card given the fact that he's only played a few NFL games (Lance).

That’s not something I can trust as a favorite to win the division. I’m not sure how much a healthy Brock Purdy would get me excited about a team that’s trying to win a Super Bowl, but he couldn’t throw for most of the offseason.

Sure, the 49ers have some of the best skill talent in the sport, but would anyone be surprised if Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel and George Kittle missed time with injuries?

I certainly wouldn't, and that’s going to limit what this offense is capable of. So, is their offensive line, which is not good outside of Trent Williams. 

The Seattle Seahawks on the other hand have Geno Smith, who I saw more than enough from last year to trust. Smith has three great receivers in DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett and Jaxon Smith-Njigba plus Kenneth Walker III in the backfield.

It’s not as good as San Francisco, but it’s very close.

The Seahawks also have an up-and-coming offensive line that could be one of the best in football with second-year tackles Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas. So, while the 49ers lost depth from their offensive line, Seattle is getting better up front. 

The 49ers did add Javon Hargrave to their defensive line which is huge and will plug the gaping hole in the run-game that was created by Javon Kinlaw.

Kinlaw was consistently victimized in the playoffs by Philadelphia and was their biggest defensive weakness. That’s a minor upgrade, but they have serious questions at cornerback. 

Once again the Seahawks closed the gap on that side of the ball by drafting Devon Witherspoon to pair with Tariq Woolen at corner. They also brought back Bobby Wagner which will be massive at linebacker, and the addition of Dre’Mont Jones will be a big help to their pass rush. 

The 49ers still have a slightly better roster, but the Seahawks are closing the gap by adding young players and developing them into stars. I’ll take the team that’s on the rise with the better quarterback despite Shanahan’s offensive genius. 

Follow all Josh Yourish’s bets HERE

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