It’s here. IT’S FINALLY HERE!!! The 2016 NFL season kicks off Thursday night with a Superbowl rematch. The Carolina Panthers will make their way to Denver to take on the defending Superbowl champion Broncos. Now we can all stop scratching our faces like a feening meth addict, and finally place some bets on football that counts.
Some people will bet with their friends and some will go with an online bookmaker. Either way, there’s nothing better than getting paid after a win.
Here are TSB’s picks for the featured games in week 1.
Broncos +3 vs Panthers
The defending Superbowl Champs had pretty shoddy QB play for much of last season and still wound up winning the Superbowl. QB Trevor Siemian will be making his first career start and I can only imagine that he will be handing the ball off a lot. The defense that stymied Cam Newton for most of SB 50 is still in tact. I don’t necessarily like the Broncos to win, but I do like them to cover in a close game.
Jaguars +4.5 vs Packers
This Jaguars team really intrigues me. After Blake Bortles breakout sophomore season in which he threw 35 TD passes, the Jags offense should be something that they can lean on. This game could easily become a shootout as the Packers (Jordy Nelson & Randall Cobb) and Jags (Allen Robinson & Allen Hurns) each posses one of the best pass catching duos in the league. I love home dogs who can score. The Jaguars should certainly be one of those teams.
Seahawks -10.5 vs Dolphins
The Seahawks at home are as good of a bet as any. Especially when they are playing a team that struggles to move the ball. The Dolphins only scored more than 20 points in three games last year. They tried to add to the offense this year by signing former Pro-Bowl RB Arian Foster, but everyone knows how brittle he is. This game could easily be 24-3 by halftime Seahawks in a blowout.
Cowboys -1 vs Giants
Before the schedule came out, you could have probably penciled this game in as a lock for a week 1 matchup. The only wrinkle this year will be the absence of Cowboys QB Tony Romo, who was hurt in a preseason game against the Seahawks. Welcome to the Dak Prescott era America. The Mississippi State rookie lead the NFL preseason with a 137.8 QB Rating and accounted for 7 total touchdowns (5 passing, 2 rushing), while completing 78% of his passes. Now, will this translate into success once the real season starts? Quite possibly. The Giants are a team that notoriously ignores the TE, and who better to have as a safety valve than future Hall of Famer Jason Witten? Eli will get his 350 yds passing and OBJ will get his 2 TD’s, but it will probably come down to the leg of a kicker. In a toss-up, I’m going with the Cowboys.
Cardinals -6 vs Patriots
If Tom Brady wasn’t sitting out this game due to suspension, I would have been all over the Patriots getting any points. But I just can’t trust Jimmy Garoppolo to get it done on the road against one of the top 5 defenses in the league. Cards QB Carson Palmer looked pretty darn awful this preseason, but should shake off the rust to be his normally efficient self. I’m just not convinced that the Pats can score enough points to keep the game close.
Steelers -3 vs Redskins
This is going to be a point scoring bonanza. Each QB will probably chuck it up nearly 40 times each and fantasy points will be leaking out of your television screen. CB Josh Norman will be lining up against the best WR on the planet (Antonio Brown) in his first game as a Redskin. Good luck buddy! Steelers 41-35
Rams – 2.5 @ 49ers
Cause F U Colin Kaepernick