NFL Win Total Matchups: Expert Predictions for Props
Season win totals in the NFL are a very fun way to bet on the league in the preseason and a good way to get a sense of what the perceptions of teams are - both from how the totals are set and how they move. It only makes sense, then, that matchups of teams based on their season win totals is a good way to bet on teams and seek out value as well. Here are five season win total matchups that offer some solid value:
Related: NFL Season Win Totals Predictions
Browns vs. Bengals - Browns -3.5 (+125): I have long been saying that people are overly optimistic about the Browns this year. They are giving the team too much credit - or at least they could be. The team made a ton of progress last year, and they won the offseason, but they still have no experience with winning when it really matters, they have an inexperienced coach who hasn't been great at handling adversity so far this preseason, and they are going to be facing a whole lot of pressure this year. They could do very well, but it is no certainty. They are a volatile team. That being said, I love them in this matchup. Really love them. The Bengals are a total mess. They have a very raw coach forced with making a total cultural overhaul with the team, and they are very short on talent or, seemingly, direction. I hate them as much as I hate any team in the league this year - with the possible exception of the Giants, and that is not good company to be in. The Bengals top out at five wins in my eyes - and aren't likely to get there. That means that the Browns need to win nine games. And they are going to do that. Probably. The price is very much right on the Browns here.
Steelers vs. Bengals - Steelers -3.5 (+105): Much of what I said before applies here. This is just another shot to go against the truly lousy Bengals by betting on a pretty decent team. It's an interesting situation in Pittsburgh this year. They have lost a world-class receiver this offseason, and a world-class running back last year, yet they could be in better shape because of it. Both guys were incredibly talented, but they were even more difficult, and the team has answers to replace them at both positions - guys who are much easier to get along with. I like the Steelers to beat the Browns to win the division - narrowly. So, I absolutely like them to get enough wins to beat up on the Bengals in this matchup.
Cowboys vs. 49ers - 49ers +0.5 (+105): This one is simple - I am bullish on the Niners, and bearish on the Cowboys, so the price certainly works for me. It hasn't been a strong preseason for the Niners yet, but they have improved this offseason, they have a healthy quarterback again, and the coaching staff is stronger than they have proved so far. The Cowboys, meanwhile, have one of the worst coaches in the league, a pile of contract-driven distractions hanging over them, and a lunatic of an owner. The Dallas win total of nine feels inflated, while the San Francisco total of 8.5 is loaded with value. That makes the Niners an attractive play here, too.
Eagles vs. Giants - Eagles -4 (-115): The only team I think that I hate more than the Bengals right now is, as I have said, the Giants. Daniel Jones has been a pleasant surprise so far in the preseason, but it is only the preseason, and that means little. Things are not going to go as well when the games matter. The talent isn't deep. Saquon Barkley, and all-world freak, is going to be ridden so hard this year that it would be a miracle if he survives the season. The coaching is a mess. The schedule is tough. It's a rough time to be a Giants fan. The Eagles are far more dependent than they have been on Carson Wentz staying healthy, but if he does then this is going to be a very dangerous team. Loaded. Experienced. Deep. Ready to do some damage. The Giants aren't going to win more than four games. The Eagles are absolutely going to win more than eight. The value is clear.
Bears vs. Packers - Bears -110: Aaron Rodgers is probably the most talented quarterback in the league right now. And I don't even sort of trust him right now. I don't trust him to stay healthy. I don't trust his attitude or determination to win at this point. And I am not at all convinced that he is going to play well with a new and very different coaching staff. He'll put up numbers - if he stays healthy - but I don't expect him to be at his best. And I don't think that the team is as competitive and deep as it could be. I am not convinced by this Packers team. Meanwhile, I am very high on the Bears. The defense should pick right up where it finished last year. Mitch Trubisky should take a step forward. The coaching is excellent. In a battle between these two teams, the Bears are a very easy pick from where I'm sitting.
Want free NFL picks? Doc's has you covered. New clients can take advantage of this great offer of $60 in free Doc's Sports members' picks for any handicapper on Doc's Expert Handicapper list. Just check out these guys' pages and see what great work they have done making money for themselves and their clients over the years. Get $60 worth of premium members' picks free . Also, get three handicappers for the price of one when you sign up for a full-season football package! Click Here for details . Get free NFL picks weekly on Doc's Sports free football picks page.
Read more articles by Trevor Whenham
Get all of this Weeks NFL picks
Get all of this Weeks Guaranteed Expert NFL Picks