WagerTalk NFL Week 1 Odds Report
The beginning of the 2019-20 NFL season is only three days away, and if you participated in a fantasy football draft over the weekend, you already know what I’m about to say: There are some huge questions that still need to be answered.
Chicago Bears -3 vs. Green Bay Packers (o/u 46)
Will Matt Nagy's preseason strategy work? After seeing other teams suffer significant injuries, the Bears’ coach decided to completely punt on the preseason. Quarterback Mitch Trubisky did not throw a single pass during the preseason, and only saw three snaps of in-game action. Defensive stars like Khalil Mack, Akiem Hicks, and Eddie Jackson never took the field in the Bears’ four preseason games. There’s no question that Chicago will be fresh for their Week 1 game with the Packers, but will they be ready? Chicago is a 3-point home favorite at most shops, with a couple 3.5’s in the marketplace.
LA Rams -3 at Carolina Panthers (o/u 50.5)
Is Cam Newton 100-percent? Carolina's quarterback suffered a sprained foot in the preseason. The Panthers are saying that Newton is good-to-go, but a Rams defense with Aaron Donald, Dante Fowler Jr. and Cory Littleton is not something you want to face with limited mobility. Sharp bets continue to come in on the Panthers, however. Despite 79-percent of the action on the Rams, some offshore books have moved the spread under the key number of LA -3.
New York Jets -3 vs. Buffalo Bills (o/u 40)
Which quarterback will make the second-year jump? Top-10 draft picks Josh Allen and Sam Darnold both displayed flashes of success in their first year. Will either of them be able to lead their teams toward a challenge against New England for the AFC East crown? The Jets surrounded Darnold with some offensive weapons, namely Le’Veon Bell. The Bills, however, are loaded on defense and added defensive end Ed Oliver to the mix. This contest could be an under-the-radar game of the week. Buffalo plays the Giants and Bengals over the next two weeks. With a win in Week 1 over the Jets, a 3-0 start is very achievable.
Dallas Cowboys -7 vs. New York Giants (o/u 45.5)
Will Ezekiel Elliott be on the field for the Cowboys? The two sides sounded optimistic at the end of last week, but Yahoo’s Charles Robinson is now reporting that conversations have stalled and Dallas’ front office is frustrated. Some Giants money is beginning to show up in the marketplace, with Heritage sports book moving the number below a touchdown (Dallas -6.5). The under is also getting some play thanks to the uncertainty surrounding the Zeke situation. According to WagerTalk’s Live Lines page, 71-percent of bets are on the under, which has dropped from 46.5 to 45 at some shops.
New Orleans Saints -7 vs. Houston Texans (o/u 53.5)
When was the last time you saw a potential division winner/playoff team turn its roster over AFTER Week 4 of the preseason? After running back Lamar Miller suffered a torn ACL, the Texans went on a shopping spree. Bill O'Brien acquired RB Carlos Hyde, cut former Pro Bowl left tackle Matt Kalil, traded several draft picks to the Miami Dolphins for left tackle Laremy Tunsil and wide receiver Kenny Stills, and shipped Pro Bowl defensive end Jadeveon Clowney to Seattle. How quickly will these new pieces gel? Houston opens the season as a 7-point underdog at New Orleans for Monday Night Football.
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