Betting on week 1 in the NFL is exciting. It is the closest you will get to a “competitive edge” over oddsmakers. They have minimal history to go off and the media isn’t dominantly swaying better’s opinions just yet. With that being said there are still some surprises every year. I don’t think many people saw Denver putting up 49 points on the Super Bowl champions, trouncing them by 22.
Each week I will take at least 3 of my top plays and share them with you, along with an explanation as to why I believe the spread will be covered. These spreads are accurate as of 1:30 PM on 9/6/13 from www.sportsbook.com and are likely to move by Sunday. Half points do matter, so hit me up on Twitter if you want my opinion on a play after the line has moved.
Kansas City -4.5
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Kansas City was decimated by injuries last year. What projected as a solid defense ended up as a catastrophe. The defense is healthy now and Andy Reid is here to jump-start the offense. With Jamaal Charles leading the charge, they should have no problem putting up 24+ points against the Jags defense. I don’t think I need to talk down Jacksonville, but Gabbert has a sore thumb leaving their offensive situation looking even murkier. Chad Henne has never proven to be anything more than a serviceable backup, and he’d be taking over an offense with MJD and Shorts as his only weapons. Jamaal Charles puts up over 150 total yards and the Chiefs win by at least a touchdown.
New coaches always add an extra dimension to the offseason and Norv Turner has done just that. I like this offense much more with Josh Gordon on the field, but Trent Richardson is in for a monster year. You can bet Norv is going to come out and feature his feature back behind one of the league’s premier offensive lines. And Cleveland’s defense is highly underrated. They have plenty of playmakers on that squad including the top corner in the league, Joe Haden. I think Miami has a nice bounce-back season this year, but it’s going to take some time for them to vibe together. The talent is there but they lack experience. Unless the competition is lopsided, I always feel good in taking the home team in what is essential a pick-em game.
Washington is coming off an undefeated preseason in which RG3 didn’t even play. I’m banking on RG3 being full healthy here as his role in the Pistol ups this offense to another level. Alfred Morris and Roy Helu are quite the duo in the backfield and Garcon seems to be fully healthy. Let’s not forget how bad Philly’s defense was last year. I love the hype surrounding Chip Kelly and his offense; I’m just not buying into it until they prove it. They will run a lot of plays and control the tempo, but Vick is Vick. And he’s turnover prone. The game is projected to be a shootout, but one or two costly turnovers could quickly turn this game into a double digit win for the home team.