NFL Preseason Week 1 Odds and Trends
A full slate of NFL betting returns this week with the kickoff of Week 1 of the preseason. Rookie debuts, the return of injured players, and faces in new places highlight Week 1.
We’ll start on Thursday with the Cleveland Browns at New York Giants. At the Bovada Sportsbook the Giants are 1-point favorites after opening the week as 3-point chalk.
Cleveland should get their first look at offseason acquisitions Tyrod Taylor and Jarvis Landry. It may be a short look since it’s the preseason. Bettors should also be eager to see rookie Baker Mayfield’s first snaps at quarterback. For the Giants the draw is rookie running back Saquon Barkley.
Cleveland was surprisingly a smart bet last year in the preseason with a perfect 4-0 record straight up and against the spread. Also worth noting, they’re 11-0-1 UNDER in their last 12 preseason games. New York has lost five straight preseason contests when favored, and they’re 6-2-1 UNDER in their last nine.
Also on Thursday Andrew Luck makes his long-awaited return when his Indianapolis Colts visit the Seattle Seahawks as a 2-point underdog. In Luck’s first game in 19 months the Colts may be a good pick, as they’ve won five straight preseason games ATS as the underdog.
However, don’t immediately jump on the Colts. Seattle seems to care about the preseason more than most teams, and head into this one having won six straight both SU and ATS. In their last 10 preseason games they’re 9-1 SU and 8-2 ATS.
Jets are Friday betting favorites hosting the Falcons
Moving on to Friday night, the New York Jets will begin to figure out their quarterback situation when they host the Atlanta Falcons as a 2.5-point favorite.
The Jets have Josh McCown, Teddy Bridgewater and rookie Sam Darnold all fighting for two spots at quarterback. All three will likely see action Friday as the Jets try to extend their five-game SU winning streak in the preseason.
The Falcons may be the team to do it against. Atlanta has dropped four in a row SU in the preseason and six straight ATS. As an underdog in the preseason Atlanta is 2-11 SU and 5-8 ATS in their last 13.
Finally, on Saturday the Minnesota Vikings will debut new quarterback Kirk Cousins as a pick’em against the Denver Broncos.
Minnesota also welcomes back running back Dalvin Cook from a knee injury. Speaking of injuries, the Minnesota offensive line will be shorthanded in this one due to a plethora of injuries. That could extend their three-game ATS preseason losing streak.
Case Keenum makes his first start for Denver against the team he took to the NFC Championship Game a season ago. The Broncos have won four in a row in the preseason at 3-0-1 ATS.