Betting news, trends, odds and predictions for Saturday, April 21, 2018 from various handicappers and websites
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An Early Look at NFL Week 1 Lines for the 2018 Season
Date 20th Apr 2018
Last Updated: 2018-04-20
With the NFL Draft coming up next week and training camp roughly three months away, a lot of people are thinking about football. We’ve seen a round of college football season win totals for the SEC from DSI Sportsbook and now we’re seeing NFL Week 1 lines from a variety of sportsbooks, ranging from the brick-and-mortars in Vegas to the offshores like BetOnline and 5Dimes.
We’ll focus on the numbers from BetOnline Sportsbook, which have $1000 limits on the sides and $500 limits on the totals. Some of these numbers may move around a little bit based on trades at the draft and the selections themselves. Most importantly, these numbers allow us to get a barometer from the sportsbooks in terms of their power ratings and allow us to get a feel for what the public perception of certain teams looks like out in the betting market.
Without further ado, here are the Week 1 lines per BetOnline Sportsbook:
Thursday September 6
Atlanta at Philadelphia (-4, 46.5)
Sunday September 9
Pittsburgh (-6.5, 47) at Cleveland
San Francisco at Minnesota (-4.5, 46.5)
Cincinnati at Indianapolis (-1 (-115), 47)
Buffalo at Baltimore (-3.5 (-115), 42.5)
Jacksonville (-3.5, 44) at New York Giants
Tampa Bay at New Orleans (-7, 51.5)
Houston at New England (-6.5, 51.5)
Tennessee (-2.5, 46.5) at Miami
Kansas City at Los Angeles Chargers (-3 (-105), 47.5)
Seattle at Denver (-1.5, 42)
Dallas at Carolina (-2.5, 44)
Washington at Arizona (Pk, 44.5 (un -115))
Chicago at Green Bay (-8 (-115), 47.5)
Monday September 10
New York Jets at Detroit (-6.5, 43.5 (ov -115))
Los Angeles Rams (-1.5, 49.5) at Oakland
As mentioned above, putting action on these may not be in your best interest, but it is invaluable information to see how these teams are being priced as we look ahead to the 2018 season.
Let’s talk about a few lines that stand out:
Atlanta at Philadelphia (-4): The Eagles play in the NFL kick-off game as the reigning Super Bowl champions. Carson Wentz will be back behind center, as Super Bowl hero Nick Foles resumes his place on the sideline backing up the former first-round pick. Doug Pederson will serve as his own offensive coordinator in the absence of Frank Reich, who took the head coaching job in Indianapolis. John DeFilippo took the OC job with the Minnesota Vikings, replacing Frank Reich. Jim Schwartz is still around and obviously the playbook had Pederson’s fingerprints all over it, but the Eagles have gone through some changes and will also have a big ceremony prior to the game.
Atlanta’s coaching staff remains in tact and that means Steve Sarkisian will get a clean slate in Year #2. Atlanta won six of eight down the stretch to get into the playoffs and has revenge in this spot against the Eagles, as a goal-line stand prevented the Falcons from advancing to the NFC Championship Game for the second straight year.
Pittsburgh (-6.5) at Cleveland: The Browns were catching 10 at home in Week 1 against Pittsburgh last season, so obviously perception has changed. Following an 0-16 season, the Browns inexplicably kept Hue Jackson, but acquired Tyrod Taylor, traded away DeShone Kizer, and will likely have either Sam Darnold or Josh Allen after next week’s draft. Taylor will be the Week 1 starter. Ultimately, it was turnovers that really killed Cleveland last season. The Browns turned it over 41 times in 2017, with 28 interceptions. Taylor had one of the lowest interception rates in the league last season. The Browns may actually be competent.
On the other side, the Steelers have some concerns. Aging Ben Roethlisberger ponders retirement whenever the wind changes direction. Le’Veon Bell has some long-term contract plans to consider and he may be a holdout once again. Ryan Shazier may never play again. Could the new-look Browns, fresh off of the embarrassment of going winless, be a good bet in Week 1? Even at the lower price?
And, hey, how about this? Former Steelers OC Todd Haley faces his former team right away.
Cincinnati at Indianapolis (-1): When reading through the tea leaves, it seems like the Colts are pretty optimistic about Andrew Luck and the likelihood of a return. This had to be the toughest line to set because Luck is worth, even in his current state, probably 4-5 points to the line. The Bengals retained Marvin Lewis, which seems like an uninspired move. Meanwhile, the Colts have new head coach Frank Reich and a new set of first-year coordinators in Nick Sirianni and Matt Eberflus. While not the best game of the first week, it certainly is one of the more interesting ones.
Tennessee (-2.5) at Miami: Call me crazy, but I think the Dolphins will be a buy team as we get ready for the season. Dowell Loggains is thought of as an up-and-coming offensive mind in the business and he goes from a toxic situation in Chicago to a different situation in Miami. Dolphins head coach Adam Gase is also a pretty gifted offensive mind. Last season, the Dolphins turned the ball over 29 times and had less than five yards per play. They were also -14 in turnover margin. Big TO margin outliers often get some love the following year and Miami fits that description.
Tennessee was 9-7 with a negative point differential. The Titans have a lot of good players and have been a sharp side entering the season for the last couple of years, but they aren’t flying under the radar anymore.
Los Angeles Rams (-1.5) at Oakland – The final game of Week 1 comes on Monday Night Football in California. The Rams are laying a small road price to the Raiders. A lot of people expected the Rams to take some enormous strides last season, but Sean McVay’s team went 11-5, hosted a playoff game, and had the second-best point differential in the NFC. The coaching staff remains in tact and veteran DC Wade Phillips has another year with his charges.
On the Oakland side, things have changed dramatically. Jon Gruden is back on the sidelines and he’ll have veteran DC Paul Guenther by his side. Oakland was a massive disappointment last season, although injuries played a pretty huge role. Derek Carr was hurt most of the year and there were several guys that missed at least half of the season or more due to injuries, including first-rounder Gareon Conley.
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