NFL Week 1 Over & Under Team Props
by Richard Gardner | Bodog Sportsbook Manager - 9/9/2010
It was a humiliating experience for the New England Patriots, a 33-14 home defeat to the Baltimore Ravens in last year’s playoffs in which the ball was essentially jammed down their throats.
When all was said and done, Ray Rice and his Ravens had racked up 234 yards rushing on a whopping 52 carries. Not surprisingly, the hometown crowd was left seriously unimpressed.
"I'd have been booing us, too, the way we played," Pats quarterback Tom Brady said. "Playing the way we played today, we weren't going to beat anybody."
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From a betting perspective, it will be interesting to see in Week 1 when the Pats (-4.5) host the Bengals how much our players weigh that game in their minds. I think New England still has a wining identity with bettors, but it’s safe to say the luster has started to wear off. This isn’t the dominant Pats of a few years ago.
Heading into 2010 there remain concerns about the Pats’ defense, including questions about the pass rush and the secondary. In Week 3 of the preseason, rookie quarterback Sam Bradford and the lowly Rams rolled into town and won 36-35, with St. Louis accounting for 462 total yards, 326 of them through the air.
Of course, New England still has Brady and a very potent offense, which is why we’ve set the total for the Cincinnati game at 45, the fourth-highest number on the board. (The highest is 49, for the Vikings-Saints opener on Thursday.) So far action on the New England-Cincinnati total has been mixed, which I suppose isn’t a huge surprise considering it’s the Bengals that are playing and not a high-octane team like the Colts. Cincinnati has a great defense and its offense was average at best last season, though it did look good at times in the preseason.
The lowest total we’ve got on the board is 36 for the Monday night affair between Baltimore and the Jets in New York. Even with such a conservative number we’ve been booking a good deal of action on the under, which is now costing bettors $115 to win $100. Meanwhile, the over’s moneyline is at -105 in hopes of attracting some interest.
One other total that our bettors seem to be playing both ways with enthusiasm is the one for the Washington-Dallas game, which we set at 40. I think a lot of this has to do with Donovan McNabb, who gives the Redskins a better option at quarterback than in the recent past, but on the other hand is less than 100 percent with a sprained ankle. Depending on which way you look at it, there’s a convincing reason to go over or under.
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