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2019 NFL Week One Betting Lines Analysis

2019 NFL Week One Betting Lines Analysis
Davis Mattek April 22, 2019 10:55AM EDT

2019 NFL Week One Betting Lines Analysis From Our Simulation Model

Using a similar methodology to our look at 2019 NFL win total bets, the sports statistician at Sportsgrid has run a model looking at the Week One Betting lines from the Fanduel Sportsbook.  This same methodology was able to finish in the top 10 of 150 contestants in the Fantasy Pros Sports Betting accuracy challenge in 2018 and beat the rake on 5-Star plays.

The Week One betting lines can be found at the Fanduel SportsBook, where new users can receive a 100% deposit bonus.

Week One Line Bets From The Model

2019 NFL Week One Betting Lines Analysis 2

Week One Betting PICKS From The Model

(Author’s note: With six months to go, lines are very SUBJECT TO CHANGE. These are prices that Arturo’s model considers bettable)

Tennessee Titans +5 @ Cleveland Browns

No surprises here. The Cleveland Browns are getting a fair bit of respect from linesmakers and the betting public but of course, they still haven’t won anything. While the on-field product for the Titans was horribly depressing last season, they finished right around league average in DVOA. They were a very average team and I would argue that a healthy Marcus Mariota is close to an above-average NFL quarterback. I agree with the model that this is a bettable line.

Philadelphia Eagles -8 vs Washington

The reasons that this would be a bettable line are fairly clear. The Eagles were a diminished version of their Super Bowl selves last year and still finished at league average in DVOA while Washington lost their starting quarterback and were the fourth worst team in the league in DVOA. Washington will either be starting Case Keenum or a rookie quarterback in Week One while the Eagles will have a healthy Carson Wentz and re-tooled defense. This has the makings of an opening day blowout.

Kansas City -4.5 @ Jacksonville Jaguars

Another bet that feels almost intuitive. Kansas City was the best team in football last season and even projecting for some offensive regression, they are still a few tiers better than a Jacksonville team that finished third-worst in the NFL in yards per play in 2018. The Chiefs gained a full two yards per play more than the Jaguars in 2018. Despite having to travel on the road for the first game, this is a road favorite that is in a good spot to cover. In general, I am apt to bet on road favorites when their strength comes from the offensive side of the ball.

Los Angeles Chargers -3 vs Indianapolis Colts

The Colts are another darling team of both the media and the betting public. Long before Chris Ballard took the reigns and made the Colts into a formidable roster, the media had declared that Andrew Luck was the next best QB in the league. Lines towards the Colts have always been more favorable then they should, even when they were a legit bad football team. The Chargers, on the other hand, are a legitimately good football team (third in DVOA in 2018, third in yards per play) that is sort of disrespected by this opening line. It’s hard to keep your money locked up for six months for one game but this is a particularly weak line.

Seattle Seahawks -8 vs Cincinnati Bengals

I actually disagree with the model on this one and would go the other way in picking the game; however, I do completely see the logic behind it especially when tying in Vegas strength of schedule. Las Vegas definitely thinks that the Bengals are going to be bad a football team in 2019 but I’m not so sure. The assortment of talented playmakers they have on offense could be sort of special if Zac Taylor is a good offensive play-caller. There is no evidence of that as of yet but if you lend credence to his background with Sean McVay, it certainly has to come into play in terms of probabilities. I might end up looking like a fool but I am leaving the door open to the Bengals being sort of good. The model likes Seahawks -8 but I would say this is closer to a no bet, personally.

Dallas Cowboys -7 vs New York Giants

There is not a bigger laughingstock in professional football than the New York Football Giants. The Montreal Alouettes look down their nose at Dave Gettleman, John Mara, and Eli Manning. The talentless Giants roster has no EDGE rusher, no quarterback, no boundary corners or receivers and one really good running back whose offense was better with him off the field last season than on it. Until the Giants are frequently double-digit underdogs, they are a prime target to bet against. Dallas, despite running an archaic offensive scheme, is a good football team that ranked right at league average in  yards per play in 2018.

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Arizona Cardinals PK vs Detroit Lions

The Lions are somehow not thought of as a bad football team despite gaining only 5.0 yards per play on offense in 2018 and being less productive than the Jeff Driskel-lead Bengals in terms of Expected Points Added on offense. The Cardinals were the worst team in football last season but I count myself as a Kliff Kingsbury believer and more importantly, a Kyler Murray believer. The Cardinals are going to draft Kyler, trade or bench Rosen and be a better/more exciting football team in 2019. Being a PK at home vs an uninspiring Lions team makes them a prime candidate Week One betting spot for me.

New Orleans Saints -7.5 vs Houston Texans

The extra half point here does give me a second of pause. The Saints are definitely a better-projected team than Houston is and Sean Payton is sort of notorious for going for the jugular. However, New Orleans has been slowly shifting into a more run-heavy team over the last few seasons and I’m slightly worried about a lower number of plays/possessions in this game could move the spread into the 6-7 range by the start of the season.

Oakland Raiders -2.5 vs Denver Broncos

One of the strangest lines on the board and it is entirely about projecting what teams will look like with little information. The Broncos have a new offense, a new quarterback (Joe Flacco or potentially Drew Lock) and so will the Raiders. This article is being written before the NFL Draft so it is even possible that the Raiders have a new quarterback come Week One. All indicators seem to be that Oakland is going to have a better offense in 2019 and the defense should at least be able to put a little pressure on the quarterback instead of being the toothless unit that recorded only 13 sacks in 2019. While this is probably the weirdest Week One betting line of all, if you buy into the Raiders team construction at all, it’s a good spot to invest.

The Week One betting lines can be found at the Fanduel SportsBook, where new users can receive a 100% deposit bonus.

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