Top Betting Odds and Picks for NFL Week 1
Thanks to the 2016 NFL free agents and draftees, the hype train in the league is full to capacity with deranged supporters making wild predictions in the name of hope for a better season. Yes, that includes the overrated Oakland Raiders who many believe to be sleepers in the Super Bowl LI odds. Newsflash to you Raider fans; the NFL is not like English Premier League soccer where you will be able to pull a Leicester City-like stunt, not even with Tom Brady being suspended for the first four games of the season or Peyton Manning no longer available in Denver.
As for the regular season NFL betting lines, the guys at CG Technology already did us a solid one by releasing the odds over a month ago, so we have a rough picture of what to expect in the year. A few changes can be expected here and there, but for the most part, we anticipate the cream of the league to remain pretty much intact. Keeping that in mind, here are our NFL Week 1 top betting odds and picks:
Top Betting Odds and Picks for NFL Week 1
Carolina at Denver (-1.5), Thursday Sept. 8
Week 1 NFL Pick: Carolina (+1.5)
Get off your Super Bowl 50 celebrations and face the facts. No way the erratic Mark Sanchez will be able to measure up to Carolina’s defense that remain as solid as ever. And that is before we talk about Cam Newton going full throttle (both aerially and on the ground) to get his revenge against Denver. Give me Carolina and the outright win here.
Cleveland at Philadelphia (-7.5), Sunday, Sept. 11
Week 1 NFL Pick: Cleveland (+7.5)
The Browns are not a great team by any means, but being favored by more than a touchdown over a Philadelphia team doesn’t have much edge in this game (outside home field advantage) is an exaggeration of the how high the Eagles can fly. Robert Griffin III will make a game out of this clash to at least cover the inflated point spread.
Oakland at New Orleans (-1.5), Total: 50.5, Sunday, Sept. 11
Week 1 NFL Pick: OVER 50
Okay Oakland fans, maybe I stepped on your toes a little earlier, so receive my insincere apologies. Truthfully, I think your team will improve this season, I just don’t think your improvements will be that huge as is being pummeled by every media pundit I know. Oakland beating New Orleans is a possibility, but that is a gamble I am not ready to take with Drew Brees using his big arms to throw the ball on the other side of the field. Instead, I will go with the popular pick of an OVER total in this game. Brees is good enough to throw 2-4 TDs in this season opener, probably with the sensational Derek Carr matching a similar output against New Orleans’ porous defense. Toss in a couple of field goals into the mix, you get both teams totaling 25 or more points, or one team scoring 30 and the other hauling in 20 points. Either way, 50 points is a genuine possibility here, so jump on the OVER in the current price before the line soars higher as we approach the start of the new season.
Miami at Seattle (-8.5), Sunday, Sept. 11
Week 1 NFL Pick: Seattle (-8.5)
The Dolphins will be a better-coached team than they were last season, but Seattle at home is a different animal altogether. Expect a double-digit thumping of the Fins here, with the Seahawks taking care of the ball splendidly on both sides of the field.
Detroit at Indianapolis (-4), Sunday, Sept 11
Week 1 NFL Pick: Indianapolis (-4)
Andrew Luck will be making his much-awaited return in this game and that should count for something, given he is still a top 5 QB in the league. Mathew Stafford can spoil the party here, I agree, but until further notice, I will be leaning on Indy for both the win and cover here.
Pitsburgh (-3) at Washington, Monday, Sept 12
Week 1 NFL Pick: Washington (+3)
Trap! Trap! Trap! Yes, the Big Ben and the Steelers are a helluva team and could be due for big things this season. But Washington is not the easiest of teams to beat at home and Pittsburgh has never been the best of road favorites. Add to the fact that Kirk Cousins proved capable of hanging with nearly any QB in the league last season, I’ll easily take Washington and the points in this dicey game.