Week 1 of the NFL preseason kicks off Thursday with two games (Patriots-Giants, Ravens-Titans) bringing intriguing odds and potentially profitable betting opportunities. The remainder of the preseason begins this weekend with five games on Friday, eight games on Saturday and one game on Sunday.
Information is crucial, especially in the pre-season. Knowing how specific teams approach preseason can make you profitable. That being said, some teams will rest starters completely (Buccaneers, Cardinals), while others will want their first teammates to get reps (Bears, Lions). The betting market has adjusted to this information but there is still a chance to get some action this weekend.
Below we take a look at the current preseason week 1 odds from DraftKings Sportsbook and see if any potential bets stand out as particularly good values.
DOMINATE YOUR FANTASY DRAFT: Ultimate 2022 Cheat Sheet
All odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook
Best NFL Preseason Week 1 Bet vs. Spread: Chiefs vs. Bears
Bears vs Chiefs spread
- Chiefs +2: -110 (implied probability 52.38 percent)
- Bears -2: -110 (implied probability 52.38 percent)
Best Bet: Bears -2 (-110)
It would be crazy to see the Bears priced in as a 2-point home favorite against the Chiefs in the regular season, but in the preseason every team is priced differently in the betting market. Chicago head coach Matt Eberflus told the media his starters will play “a lot,” and as a result, the Bears are favored.
Justin Fields made his preseason debut in Week 1 of preseason last year, leading the Bears to a win over the Dolphins. He will not replace Andy Dalton this time as he is now the QB1 in Chicago. The Bears’ backup QBs Trevor Siemian and Nathan Peterman are certainly not the flashiest, but they are capable of moving the ball to the Chiefs’ reserve defense en route to a Week 1 win.
Other Worthwhile Preseason Teams in Week 1: Eagles (PK) against jets, lions +1 against hawks
Best Over/Under Week 1 NFL Preseason Bet: Jaguars vs. Browns
Jaguars vs Browns over/under
- Over 37.5: -110 (implicit probability 52.38 percent)
- Below 37.5: -110 (implicit probability 52.38 percent)
Best Bet: UNDER 37.5 (-110)
The Jaguars-Browns total is the highest over/under on the board right now, and it makes sense considering both teams’ QB1s are expected to play. It’s going to be a rough sight when Deshaun Watson gets a rep under center with a threat of a six-game (and possibly more) suspension. We don’t know exactly how many series Watson and Trevor Lawrence will play, so bet against the steam by playing the points UNDER 37.5.
Other Worthwhile Preseason Week 1 Totals: lion-hawk UNDER 35, Seahawks Steelers BELOW 36.5