This article is part of our Soccer Picks series.
Bundesliga is not like any other league, or at least any major league. After only seven matches, Bayern Munich are -1115 to win the title and Borussia Dortmund are closest behind at +800. While those are fun odds if you want to bet against the favorite, no one wants to do that. Bayern have 27 goals through seven matches, 11 more than anyone else. They won it by 13 points last season and have won the last eight, a ridiculous number for any professional sports league.
The result of it being a top-heavy league is that most futures betting will likely come from the middle of the table. Even Borussia Monchengladbach at +120 to finish in the top four isn't enticing enough, considering they have to deal with their first Champions League season since 2016/17.
Most of the value in the Bundesliga is found outside of the top-five teams. Most notably, Eintracht Frankfurt, Hoffenheim and Hertha Berlin are expected to be the biggest competition for sixth place, but all of them are in the bottom half of the table through seven matches. Wolfsburg are the favorite at +150 to finish top six, but they have an almost identical team as last season when they finished seventh. The problem with betting any of these teams to finish in the top six is that you're basically betting between 10 or so teams to finish in one spot and the difference could be how many goals they lose to Bayern Munich by.
Union Berlin seem like good value at +2000, but they've had an easy schedule with only one match (1-1 draw at Gladbach) against a top-five team. Similar to the top five, there's an obvious cut-off between the top nine teams in the league and the rest. In addition to Wolfsburg, there are three sides with at worst -400 odds to finish in the top 10: Frankfurt, Hoffenheim and Hertha. While taking a chance on Stuttgart +125 or Freiburg +200 top finish top 10 isn't a terrible idea, the odds could be better. Stuttgart, who are newly promoted, have almost even odds to finish in the top 10 despite sitting tied for eighth after only one match against a top-five side. I wouldn't fall for the bait.
The better route to betting may be to focus on early schedules. Freiburg have had one of the more difficult schedules, hence their spot in the table (14th). While I like them to finish top 10, they're at just +200 odds, which should probably be closer to +250 or +300 if the sportsbooks weren't scared of losing money. That said, there's a chance they put together a few wins given an easier upcoming schedule and those odds could soon be closer to +100.
For similar odds, you can get Freiburg +160 to finish above Stuttgart in the table. Stuttgart seem to be a bit overrated in the odds, especially with Hoffenheim, Bayern and Dortmund in the immediate upcoming schedule. Not to mention, Freiburg opened the season by winning 3-2 at Stuttgart and they finished eighth in the table last season. If you want to capitalize even more on those odds, I think fading Stuttgart is a reasonable strategy in coming weeks (Hoffenheim are a +110 favorite for the Nov. 21 match).
If you're fine betting heavy odds, Dortmund are -250 to finish above RB Leipzig in the table. Dortmund finished just three points ahead of Leipzig last season, but not having a true forward in the attack is going to take a toll at some point. Timo Werner compiled 28 goals and eight assists last season, and they didn't really replace that production unless Alexander Sorloth and Hwang Hee-Chan pick up the pace (neither one of them has scored this season).
GOLDEN BOOT ODDS
Robert Lewandowski is -2000 to win the Golden Boot, as he already has 11 goals, four more than anyone else. If you want to bank on an injury, Erling Haaland is undoubtedly the next-best option and he's +900 to score the most goals. It's not a terrible idea, since injuries are popping up more often with the loaded Champions League schedule, but it also seems like a waste of money given how dominant Lewandowski has been.
If you aren't cold-hearted and don't want to bet on injuries, Thomas Muller at +100 to finish with the most assists is a decent play. He has five assists in seven matches after racking up 21 last season, five more than anyone else. Even better, there's a chance he takes more corners than usual because of the injury to Joshua Kimmich, which would only create more chances for him to assist. Jadon Sancho was second in the league last season with 16 and no one else had more than 13. Sancho is +600 to have the most assists, but his numbers are lacking this season with just two from 10 chances created (Muller has five assists from 25 chances created).