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NFL Week 1 Odds, Predictions & Best Bets To Back Today

Bill Speros for Bookies.com

Bill Speros  | 34 mins

NFL Week 1 Odds, Predictions & Best Bets To Back Today

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The NFL season - and NFL betting season - begins Thursday when the Detroit Lions visit Kansas City. The Chiefs will celebrate their Super Bowl 57 win against a team that was featured on “Hard Knocks” before the 2022 season. 

The Lions are everyone’s trendy pick to click this year, unless you want to count all those fans in Gotham who dug out their frayed Richard Todd jerseys to celebrate the arrival of Aaron Rodgers

Why the Lions?

Bettors have ruled the jungle backing the Lions on the past two seasons when it comes to NFL spread betting. Detroit is 23-11 (.705) ATS during that span. That is the best winning percentage of any team against the line during the past two years, including the postseason. 

Early money has already pushed this line from Kansas City -7 to -6.5. The Chiefs have historically struggled early in the season against the line and on the field. The total sits at a lofty 53.5 points. But be wary on that number. Week 1 is often opposite world when it comes to betting, as offenses usually lag. 

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There are some other major changes in store for how we watch games. 

This year, conferences are no longer aligned with specific networks. That means you may see the Chiefs playing at home on FOX, or the Cowboys in Jerry World on CBS. The NFL Sunday Ticket has moved to YouTube TV. And there will be an NFC playoff game streamed exclusively on NBC's Peacock. 

Nothing is sacred anymore.

Speaking of Rodgers, he begins his run with the Jets at home against Buffalo on Monday night. 

Welcome back to football season. On to our NFL picks for Week 1 2023:

NFL Week 1 Picks 2023 – Let The Games Begin

Here are our Week 1 best bets to back. Things are subject to change given the inevitably of injuries, the near-zero chance of another Tom Brady comeback, and other unforeseen shenanigans.

Oddsmakers on betting apps have now set betting lines for Week 1 matchups. Here are our NFL Week 1 picks and best bets: 

DateMatchupWeek 1 Picks
Thursday, Sep. 7Lions @ Chiefs Lions +6.5
Sunday, Sept. 10Texans @ Ravens Under 43.5
Sunday, Sept. 10Buccaneers @ Vikings Buccaneers +6
Sunday, Sept. 1049ers @ Steelers Steelers ML +135
Sunday, Sept. 10Bengals @ Browns Bengals -2.5
Sunday, Sept. 10Jaguars @ Colts Jaguars -4.5
Sunday, Sept. 10Cardinals @ Commanders Commanders -7
Sunday, Sept. 10Titans @ Saints Over 41
Sunday, Sept. 10Panthers @ Falcons Under 39.5
Sunday, Sept. 10Eagles @ Patriots Patriots +3.5
Sunday, Sept. 10Rams @ Eagles Rams +4
Sunday, Sept. 10Packers @ Bears Bears -1.5
Sunday, Sept. 10Dolphins @ Chargers Over 51
Sunday, Sept. 10Raiders @ Broncos Raiders ML +176
Sunday, Sept. 10Cowboys @ NY Giants Giants +3
Monday, Sept. 11Bills @ Jets Under 46

All NFL Week 1 best bets are courtesy of BetMGM Sportsbook and are accurate as of publication date. Our picks are subject to change. Use the BetMGM promo code BOOKIESFB200 a Bet $10, Get $200 in Bonus Bets Instantly deal.

Meanwhile, thanks to the Tennessee Titans social media teams, multiple NFL teams have new names this season.  

Thursday, September 7

Detroit Lions at Kansas City Chiefs, 8:20 p.m. (NBC)

Patrick Mahomes celebrates his second Super Bowl championship along about 70,000 of his closest friends. The Chiefs remain the betting favorite to win the AFC and repeat Super Bowl champions, according to the latest NFL futures odds. But the Lions are an NFL-best 23-11 (.705) ATS over the past two years, including the postseason. This game opened at KC -7 at -110. Now, Detroit +6.5 is fetching even-money odds. If you’re looking for another play or a small parlay – and we don’t believe in big ones – combing the Lions and the under might offer a nice return.

Best Bet: Lions +6.5 (-105) at DraftKings

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Sunday, September 10

Houston Texans at Baltimore Ravens, 1 p.m. (FOX)

Lamar Jackson is back in Baltimore to stay and got his bag in the process. The Texans, meanwhile, took Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud with the No. 2 overall pick in the NFL Draft. This will be Stroud's first NFL start. Against the Ravens defense. Ride the under on this one. We took at 45.5. 

Best Bet: Under 43.5 at DraftKings

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Minnesota Vikings, 1 p.m. (CBS)

Both teams underperformed in the postseason. The Vikings (who by the way went  an NFL-record 11-1 in one-score games last year and thus a prime candidate for regression in '23) were toppled at home by the Giants, while the Buccaneers lost Tom Brady’s career finale in humiliating fashion to the Cowboys. Baker Mayfield has taken over the QB spot from Brady in Tampa Bay. He still has Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, plus a refurbished offensive line. Take the Pirate Ship over the Vikings ship. 

Best Bet: Buccaneers +6 (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook

 

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San Francisco 49ers at Pittsburgh Steelers, 1 p.m. (FOX)

Brock Purdy beat Trey Lance for the QB 1 spot. Lance was shipped to Dallas. Oddsmakers have the 49ers are the No. 2 pick in the NFC. Neither potential starting QB has started more 10 NFL games. The 49ers are stacked at the necessary offensive skill positions and are comfortable with Purdy. The Steelers are riding with rookie Kenny Pickett at QB. He was ranked 28th among all starting NFL QBs by CBS Sports in the preseason. This one is going to be a rock fight. The Steelers have bigger rocks.

Best Bet: Steelers ML (+136) at FanDuel

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Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns, 1 p.m. (CBS)

NFL Week 1 Odds, Predictions & Best Bets To Back Today 1

Photo courtesy of USA Today

The Battle of Ohio has an extra element of intensity this season with the addition of legal sports betting in Ohio. (It launched in the Buckeye State on January 1.) Deshaun Watson starts his first full season with the Browns. The Bengals are back and stacked for another run at the Super Bowl. Joe Burrow’s Cats are +1100 to win the Super Bowl 58 and +500 to take the AFC. Both a strong value plays. But you can start backing the Bengals in Week 1 as slight road favorites.

Best Bet: Bengals -2.5 (-110) at BetMGM Sportsbook

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Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts, 1 p.m. (FOX)

Two years ago, the Jaguars were the team with a young rookie QB and the Colts were led by an experienced veteran in Carson Wentz. Now, Trevor Lawrence offers a steady hand and firm arm for the Jaguars, who are favored to repeat as AFC South champions. The Colts are rebuilding around 21-year-old QB Anthony Richardson. He started only 20 games at Florida. The road to a repeat as AFC South for the Jaguars begins here. We got the Jaguars at -3.5 when this line opened.

Best Bet: Jaguars -4.5 (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook

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Arizona Cardinals at Washington Commanders 1 p.m. (FOX)

The Cardinals boast an NFL-worst over/under of 3.5 regular season wins. They still don't have a legit starting QB as of press time. The Commanders have a projected win total of 6.5. The NFL could not have set a worst projected Week 1 matchup if it tried. It did not. The Cardinals sacked Kliff Kingsbury at the end of last season. The Commanders kept Ron Rivera, despite winning just once in their final 5 games. Washington’s QB room is a Who’s Who? of potential USFL stars with Sam Howell likely to win the job be default. Meanwhile, Cardinals QB Kyler Murray is out until midseason after tearing his ACL last December. We grabbed the Commanders at -5.5. We’re thinking a 17-7 home win here. 

Best Bet: Commanders -7 (-110) at DraftKings

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Tennessee Titans at New Orleans Saints, 1 p.m. (CBS)

 

The Titans won the social media Super Bowl with their schedule announcement video. That provided a nice cover for an otherwise uneventful offseason. Ryan Tannehill survived NFL cut season and the draft as the Titans’ starting QB. The Saints recused Derek Carr from Las Vegas and should have real stability at the QB position for the first time since Drew Brees retired. The post-Tom-Brady NFC South is wide open. The Saints may finally have an offense good enough to win it.

Best Bet: Over 41 Points (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook

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Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons, 1 p.m. (FOX)

The Carolina Panthers chose Alabama QB Bryce Young with the No. 1 overall pick in the draft. Barring injury or catastrophe, Young starts in Week 1. Carolina’s defense may be enough to bridge Young’s apprenticeship. The Falcons are going with Desmond Ridder at QB and have stacked up at skill positions. The Dirty Birds grabbed Texas RB Bijan Robinson with the No. 8 overall pick to bolster their offensive backfield and take some pressure off Ridder.

Best Bet: Under 39.5 (-110) at DraftKings

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Philadelphia Eagles at New England Patriots, 4:25 p.m. (CBS)

NFL Week 1 Odds, Predictions & Best Bets To Back Today 2

If this game was in Week 2, the Patriots would get smoked. But it’s in Week 1, which is also going to be Tom Brady’s Post-Retirement Homecoming at Gillette Stadium. If Bill Belichick and Mac Jones ever needed a reason to get on the same page and prep for their in-season Super Bowl, Brady’s return is it. The Eagles are a solid pick to get back to the Super Bowl. But they may need a week or two to shake off their Super Bowl loss. The Hoodie will keep it close. Take Belichick’s defense as a home underdog. This line has moved from Philly - 5.5 down to Philly -3.5. We liked New England at the open and still do. 

Best Bet: Patriots +3.5 (-205) at Caesars

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LA Rams at Seattle Seahawks, 4:25 p.m. (FOX)

The Rams went from champs to chumps last season. The defending Super Bowl champs finished 5-12 as the team was ravaged by injuries and a massive hangover. Matt Stafford, Cooper Kupp, and Aaron Donald should be fully healthy in Week 1 (barring unforeseen injury) and they are ready for a strong bounce back year. The Seahawks are riding with Geno Smith at QB in the short term, hoping the Comeback Player of the Year can prove last year wasn't a fluke. This line opened with the Seahawks -5.5 and has since moved to -4. 

Best Bet: LA Rams +4 (-105) at BetMGM

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Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears, 4:25 p.m. (FOX)

The Jordan Love Era begins as a sub-plot NFL’s longest-running rivalry. The Packers will still be in the figuring-it-out stage for most of this season, especially in Week 1 on the road. The Bears finished 3-14 last season, falling a Miracle Mile short of their expectations, never mind win total. Chicago restocked its offensive and defensive lines in the draft. Justin Fields has a full season on his resume and could well overperform against a Packers team entering the post-Aaron Rodgers world. This game opened with the Bears at 2.5-point favorites and has shrunk to a point.

Best Bet: Bears -1.5 (-110) at DraftKings

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Miami Dolphins at LA Chargers, 4:25 p.m. (CBS)

The Chargers continued their record of being the NFL’s all-time underachievers last season. They were again stacked with talent. And they took their mediocrity to a new level with a playoff loss to the Jaguars in the Wild Card Round. Brandon Staley is already on the clock. Justin Herbert is a strong value pick for NFL MVP or Offensive Player of the Year, especially now that offensive guru Kellen Moore is calling plays. Meanwhile, the Dolphins’ offense should be in tune to avenge last year’s loss. The total has ballooned from 49.5 to 51. We'll take the under at that number. 

Best Bet: Over 51 Points (-108) at FanDuel

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Las Vegas Raiders at Denver Broncos, 4:25 p.m. (CBS) 

Josh McDaniels traded in his old (Derek) Carr for a used Jimmy Garoppolo. McDaniels coached Garoppolo in New England. Garoppolo is a perfect fit for McDaniels deliberate offense. Davante Adams has doubts about Garoppolo (and the general direction of the franchise). But Garoppolo is unflappable if nothing else.  No matter their potential offensive dysfunction, the Raiders will be able to rely on their defense to keep this game, and several others, competitive. Sean Payton is making his debut as Broncos coach at home. Payton and Russell Wilson have tremendous potential. Having a full offseason to work together guarantees an improvement over last year’s woeful performance. But this is Week 1. And crazy things happen. 

Best Bet: Raiders Moneyline (+170) at BetMGM  

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Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants, 8:20 p.m. (NBC)

The Giants will happily cede the back page to Aaron Rodgers and whatever calamities await Gang Green. Big Blue has never won with splash or flash. Both teams reached the Divisional Round of the playoffs last year with road playoff wins. The Cowboys swept this series last year. Brian Daboll is from the Bill Belichick Coaching Tree, so beating him three times in a row is going be a challenge. The Giants are home dogs at even money. Woof.  

Best Bet: NY Giants +3 (-102) at DraftKings

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Monday, September 11

Buffalo Bills at New York Jets, 8:15 (ESPN, ABC)

No matter what the Giants do Sunday night, Aaron Rodgers will occupy both the front and back page of Gotham’s tabloids on this Monday morning. The acquisition of Rodgers has propelled the Jets into the top echelon of AFC Conference favorites. The Bills have proven themselves to be a legit contender, despite falling short in the postseason the past two years. Buffalo has the playbook and pieces ready right now. While the Jets and Rodgers will be working to find the right vibe. The Jets went 2-0 ATS and 1-1 straight up against Buffalo last season as double-digit underdogs. Leave to the Jets to screw all that up by getting Rodgers. 

Best Bet: Under 46 Points (-108) at DraftKings

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About the Author

Bill Speros for Bookies.com
Bill Speros
Bill Speros is an award-winning journalist and editor whose career includes stops at USA Today Sports Network / Golfweek, Cox Media, ESPN, Orlando Sentinel and Denver Post.