At some point soon (maybe very soon if you believe the latest reports), Michigan is going to join the ever-growing list of states with online sports betting.

That much we all know.

It was not a week into legalized gambling in Michigan before the COVID-19 pandemic shut down casinos across the state, but it is expected to be a big hit now that they are back open.

But just how successful will it be for the online portion?

One just has to take a quick look at what has happened in New Jersey, before the pandemic of course, to see just how massive online betting can be in the near to distant future.

The two states, while vastly different in area (about 88,000 square miles, give or take), are pretty similar in population numbers (9.98 million for Michigan, 8.88 million for New Jersey). But Michigan will hope to do anywhere close to what the Garden State did sports betting wise, as do many of the other states that have just passed the laws, or are trying to get back on track with the return of sport across the world.

From the time betting was legalized in June of 2018, it took New Jersey online sports betting apps one year to pass Nevada as the king of American gambling, with over $300 million coming in during June of 2019. But those numbers paled in comparison to the take for the first two months of 2020, right before the virus hit.

New Jersey books took in $540.1 million in January, and another $454.8 million in February, to total over $1 billion for those 60 days. March was off to a hot start before the shut down, and the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament would have probably seen another record month. This is all with numerous casinos/ brick and mortar sites available within a decent driving distance, something that might not be the same for many people in Michigan.

For the people backing the new ventures across the state, there is hope that online sports betting in Michigan will be a huge hit, especially if it is up and running for the upcoming NFL season. With sports returning all over America, and many already back across the world, the people of Michigan will have their pick of sports to bet, when it finally becomes available.

Detroit Lions & upcoming NFL season

Speaking of the upcoming NFL season, most sportsbooks do not think the Detroit Lions will be able to mount much of a challenge in the NFC North, let alone for the NFC or Super Bowl.

The Lions are picked last in the NFC North (+800 or so), behind the Green Bay Packers (+150), Minnesota Vikings (+160), and Chicago Bears (+375). None of those teams are even in the top six to win the NFC, with the defending champion San Francisco 49ers +400 to repeat and return to the Super Bowl, and the New Orleans Saints and Tampa Bay Buccaneers both at +550. The Dallas Cowboys (+750), Philadelphia Eagles (+900), and Seattle Seahawks (+1000) round out the top six.

But if you do have faith that 2020, and then the first month of 2021, is finally the Lions’ year, you can get some pretty enticing odds: +8000 or so at last glance.

Hey, those are better odds the Tigers have to win the World Series (+100000, or 1000-1), even in a shortened season. But stranger things have happened, especially in the NFL, when there always seems to be one team that goes from worst to first.

Could it be the Lions?

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