NFL Week 1 Betting Lines, Odds With 2021 NFL Schedule Reveal
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The NFL begins its 2021 schedule in Week 1 loaded with tantalizing games for fans of NFL betting.
The Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers begin the season at home on Thursday, Sept. 9, against the Dallas Cowboys. That matches Tom Brady against Dak Prescott, who is expected to be starting his first game since suffering an ankle injury in October of last season.
The Week 1 Sunday games on the Sept. 12 NFL schedule include a blue-collar, Rust Belt showdown between the Steelers and Bills at Buffalo, an AFC playoff rematch featuring the Kansas City Chiefs and Cleveland Browns, and a potential NFC postseason preview as the Chicago Bears and rookie QB Justin Fields visit SoFi Stadium and the LA Rams for the first Sunday night game. The Rams feature Matt Stafford at QB. SoFi Stadium will play host to the Super Bowl in February.
Jets fans will get to see how well the Sam Darnold trade worked out in Week 1. Gang Green visits Charlotte and the Panthers in Week 1. The Jets shipped Darnold to Carolina and chose BYU QB Zach Wilson with the No. 2 overall pick in April’s draft. Here is the complete NFL Week 1 schedule with the latest available NFL betting lines via DraftKings:
|Cowboys at Buccaneers||TB -6.5||52.5||DAL +220; TB -278||(Sept. 9) 8 p.m. NBC|
|Jaguars at Texans||JAX -1.5||45||LAC -117; WAS -104||1 p.m. CBS|
|Steelers at Bills||BUF -6.5||50.5||PIT +215; BUF -270||1 p.m. CBS|
|Cardinals at Titans||TEN -2.5||51.5||ARI +112; TEN -136||1 p.m. CBS|
|Chargers at Washington||WAS -1.5||45||LAC -117; WAS -104||1 p.m. CBS|
|Vikings at Bengals||MIN -2.5||45||MIN -165; CIN +135||1 p.m. FOX|
|49ers at Lions||SF -7||45||SF -385; DET +300||1 p.m. FOX|
|Eagles at Falcons||ATL -3.5||46.5||PHI +165; ATL -200||1 p.m. FOX|
|Seahawks at Colts||IND -2.5||52.5||SEA +112; IND -136||1 p.m. FOX|
|Browns at Chiefs||KC -5.5||53||CLE +210; KC -265||4:25 p.m. CBS|
|Dolphins at Patriots||NE -2||45.5||MIA +108; NE -130||4:25 p.m. CBS|
|Broncos at Giants||DEN -1.5||42.5||DEN -117; NYG -105||4:25 p.m. FOX|
|Packers at Saints||NL||NL||NL||4:25 p.m. FOX|
|Bears at Rams||LAR -7||45||CHI +260; LAR -335||8:20 p.m. NBC|
|Ravens at Raiders||BAL -5.5||51.5||BAL -286; LVR +225||(Sept 13) 8:15 p.m. ESPN|
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This is the first week of a 17-game season with the AFC team getting the extra home game. The final Sunday of the NFL season is Jan. 9.
NFL Week 1 Schedule Highlights
Cowboys at Buccaneers (Thurs., Sept. 9, 8:20 p.m.): Brady kicks off the quest for an eighth Super Bowl title at home as he and the Bucs fire the cannons, lower the banner and celebrate the championship won at Raymond James Stadium in February.
The Bucs are the first team in the free-agency era to bring back all 22 starters after winning a Super Bowl and they continue to shine in NFL futures odds. The Cowboys went big on defense in the NFL Draft, taking linebacker Micah Parsons after moving down to No. 12. Prescott’s return after a ghastly ankle injury in October and follow-up surgery in December appears on track. Expect lots of yards and plenty of points.
Bears at Rams: (Sunday, Sept. 12, 8:20 p.m.) The first Sunday night game of the season features two teams looking to unseat the Bucs in the NFC. Each team swapped out its quarterback in the offseason. The Bears mercifully ended the Mitch Trubisky “Error” and dealt up in the draft to No. 11 for Ohio State QB Justin Fields. The Rams moved Jared Goff to Detroit in exchange for Matt Stafford.
However, the hallmark of both teams here is defense – see Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald, who is the favorite to win that award again in the latest NFL DPOY odds. And that will be the determining factor here as SoFi Stadium welcomes NFL fans on game day for the first time.
Ravens at Raiders: (Monday, Sept. 13, 8:15 p.m.) There will be no Opening Week NFL Monday night doubleheader this year. However, this game packs enough potential for two games. For one, this will be the first time NFL fans have been allowed to watch a regular-season game in Las Vegas. The opening of Allegiant Stadium has “Vegas spectacle” written all over it - in neon lights, of course.
The Ravens missed out on the AFC North title by a game last season to Pittsburgh. They now will battle Cleveland for supremacy in the division. Baltimore added offense in the offseason. Look for quarterback Lamar Jackson to make a nice statement early here.
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Other NFL Schedule Storylines
Keep in mind, the NFL will have a 17-game season in 2021 with the AFC team getting the extra home game. While the schedule and dates after Week 1 become official Wednesday evening, there are already some key dates to keep in mind.
The most-hyped NFL regular-season matchup in several years will occur on Sunday night, Oct. 3, in Week 4 when Brady returns to Gillette Stadium to face the Patriots, his former team of 19 seasons.
Bill Belichick reloaded New England's roster this past offseason through both free agency and the draft after it missed the playoffs in its first season of the 21st century without Brady and finished 7-9. In addition to spending nearly $160 million in guaranteed money on 10 key free agents and returnees, Belichick then chose Alabama QB Mac Jones with the 15th pick of the NFL draft, leaving the fate of incumbent Cam Newton in question.
Two NFL games are headed for London in 2021. The Atlanta Falcons and Jacksonville Jaguars will each have a “home game” at London’s Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. The Falcons and Jets play in England on Sunday, Oct. 10 and the Jaguars – with No. 1 pick Trevor Lawrence – face off against the Dolphins a week later.
Christmas Day falls on a Saturday this year, and the NFL will be present with an old-school matchup straight out of central casting. The Cleveland Browns and Baker Mayfield visit the Green Bay Packers. Lambeau Field on Christmas – with or without Aaron Rodgers – means the NFL is serious about dethroning the NBA as the go-to league on Christmas.
The Thanksgiving Day matchups are expected to feature the Lions playing host to the Bears, the Cowboys at home against the Raiders and the Bills at the Saints in the nightcap.