2018 NFL Preseason Week 1 Betting Preview

Posted by Derrick Harper on August 1, 2018 in

Some people will scoff at the importance of preseason games in the NFL, especially the first week of action. But after such a long offseason, isn’t it nice just to have football back in our lives? Plus, there are plenty of intriguing storylines and position battles that will start to take center stage early in the preseason. Here are some things worth paying attention to the 2018 NFL Preseason Week 1.

2018 NFL Preseason Week 1 Betting Preview

New Coaches

There are seven NFL teams with new coaches this season, with most of them being first-time head coaches. These are the coaches who are most likely to play preseason games to win rather than just getting a look at players who are competing for jobs.

There’s also a guy in Oakland named Jon Gruden who has been in the broadcast booth for many years. It’ll be interesting for NFL fans to see him roaming the sidelines again, even if it’s just the exhibition season.

 

Jets Three-way Battle

The Jets may have the most intriguing quarterback battle of the preseason, with three candidates all with a viable chance to win the job. Josh McCown is the incumbent and the favorite, which should leave a lot of snaps for Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Darnold. Bridgewater has been forgotten about, mainly because we haven’t seen much of him since that devastating knee injury two years ago.

But if he’s anywhere close to healthy, he’s a threat to McCown and he should have a chance to prove it in the preseason opener. Darnold, meanwhile, should see plenty of action when the Jets host the Falcons. He was seen as a guy who made need some time before he’s ready, and extended action in a preseason game should let us know if that’s true or not.

Andrew Luck

After sitting out all of last year while he waited for his shoulder to heal after surgery, Andrew Luck is back in training camp and back throwing the ball. It’s been confirmed that he will play in his team’s first preseason game.

Andrew Luck is expected to play in 2018 NFL Preseason Week 1.

How much he plays remains to be seen. But it’ll be our first chance to see how comfortable he looks and whether the shoulder problems have had a lasting impact on his velocity or accuracy. We can expect him to be a little rusty, but we should be able to learn something from his first taste of preseason action.

Baker Mayfield

Last but not least, the first week of the NFL preseason will be worth watching to see the number one overall pick in this year’s draft. Baker Mayfield isn’t expected to start for the Browns right away, which means he’ll be seeing plenty of action early in the exhibition season. But with a strong performance, he may be able to push Tyrod Taylor for the starting job, so that’s something to watch.

In fact, the Browns as a whole will be worth watching in the preseason after all the moves they made over the offseason. Of course, Cleveland went 4-0 last August and then 0-16 during the regular season, so take what you see with a grain of salt.