Are The Broncos Deshaun Watson Odds A Way To Gin Up Interest In Sportsbooks?

Written By Ian St. Clair on 02/22/2021 - Last Updated on March 21, 2024

Deshaun Watson and the Denver Broncos favorable trade odds is a hot topic.

And not just the from the people excited about the possibility, but from the skeptics.

There are some who view the Watson trade odds as unfounded. It’s a way to build interest in the new Colorado sports betting market. And with it, the various sportsbooks.

The oddsmakers are just throwing numbers against the wall. They know as much as the people betting on this.

Since the Houston Texans aren’t even taking calls from teams, perhaps the skepticism is warranted.

But that hasn’t stopped the multitude of reports linking the Broncos to Watson.

And with it the excitement from Broncos Country.

Broncos linked to Deshaun Watson

First, there is Jeremy Fowler with ESPN saying Watson is “intrigued” by the Broncos.

That was followed by NFL Network’s James Palmer saying that if Watson becomes available, Denver will be “aggressive” in trying to get him.

Then on Sunday, Broncos insider Mike Klis with 9News added even more fuel to the Watson fire when he reported:

The Texans’ star quarterback wants to be traded. So far, the Texans aren’t accommodating him but if they eventually cave to his request, the Broncos are expected to be among the teams on Watson’s short list.

Klis also added this fascinating nugget about the current quarterbacks on the Broncos’ roster, Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Jeff Driskel:

Of these three, Rypien figures to have the best chance of returning. Lock will either be the starter for 2021, or possibly involved in a trade package involving Watson.

That has led the various sportsbooks to adjust their odds.

In fact, both Betfred Sports and FanDuel Sportsbook now have the Broncos as the favorites to get the star quarterback.

At DraftKings Sportsbook, the odds have moved from Denver +1,200 to now +400.

The sportsbook that started all of this,, now has the Broncos tied for the second-best odds.

For now, though, Watson remains a pipe dream.

Until the Texans start fielding calls, no move can happen.

Broncos next QB
Who will Deshaun Watson play for in 2021? (Top five)Panthers +150
Texans +300
Broncos +400
49ers +400
Jets +600
Dolphins +800
Panthers +150
Texans +300
Broncos +400
49ers +400
Jets +600
Dolphins +800
Dolphins +250
Broncos +300
Jets +300
Panthers +600
Saints +700
Bears +1,200
Washington +1,200
Eagles +1,200

Are Deshaun Watson odds a way to build betting intrigue?

As noted at the top, that also has led some to suggest the sportsbooks are simply offering this type of wager as a way to gin up interest.

Though from a betting on the Broncos perspective, a Denver fan doesn’t gain much if a trade does happen (at least now).

Remember those DraftKings odds?

For some added background, Colorado is one of the markets that allows this type of wager.

In Indiana, for example, Indianapolis Colts fans couldn’t wager on a Carson Wentz trade.

So the fact this kind of bet is available only adds to the entertainment and intrigue.

Nevertheless it’s an interesting theory.

What do the sportsbooks think?

As Scott Cooley, the odds consultant, told PlayColorado:

“When a high-profile player, such as Deshaun Watson, is involved in trade rumors, we are going to offer a market on where that player might take his next snap. There isn’t an algorithm or model to work off of when creating our numbers, but with a market like this we’re going to look at trade assets such as draft picks and personnel, cap space and team needs. We’re not going to arbitrarily throw up numbers for the sake of it, we’re going to do our homework. Do we hope the market will attract customers and publicity? Of course we do, that’s the business we’re in.

“We really do believe the Broncos are legitimate candidates to trade for Watson given their draft capital and current players who could be dealt. Do we think they have the best chance? No, which is why they have the second-best odds, behind the Dolphins. If I were any of those top 5 teams on our odds board, I’d give up the farm in picks and/or personnel for Watson.”

Photo by AP / Paul Sancya
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Ian St. Clair

Ian is an award-winning sports journalist and a University of Northern Colorado graduate. He’s a Colorado native and has over a decade of experience covering college and professional athletics. He broke into the gambling industry right as Colorado launched legal sports betting in 2020. Ian now manages the sites for some of the biggest gambling markets in North America and is an analyst for PlayColorado.

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