Meaningful football is coming very soon, so there is no better time than the present to get started working on Week 1 of the 2018 National Football League season. There’s more than enough literature explaining why you need to know about and follow line movements, so we’ll get right to the NFL Week 1 line movements.
Atlanta Falcons @ Philadelphia Eagles | Sept. 6 | Eagles -4 | T – 46
This game hasn’t shown any big swings in the line, but I wanted to talk about the first game because I’m too damn excited! The start to the NFL season in Philly opened at -4 pretty much anywhere you look, with a few books at 4.5. The total has stayed close too, opening at 47.
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As we work our way through training camp and position battles and injuries work themselves out, we will keep our eye on this one leading up to kickoff with uncertainty at the quarterback position for the defending Super Bowl Champs.
These two met in the NFC Division game on January 13th, with the Eagles obviously coming out on top, winning 15-10. That total produced the third straight UNDER when these two meet dating back to September 2015. In those 3 games, the Eagles are 2-1 ATS and are 6-4 ATS in their last 10 meetings.
Buffalo Bills @ Baltimore Ravens | Sept. 9 | Ravens -6 | T – 41
There has yet to be any real movement in lines, even though lines have been posted for up to 5-6 months. Including the Falcon/Eagles game, four games have the same line, with a swing of 3 being the biggest change.
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Bills vs. Ravens is one of those with a swing of 3 after opening at Ravens -3, and currently at -6. As well, the total opened at 42.5 and now is at 41. Figuring out why this shift happened is what we need to figure out, to determine if we are going to go with the consensus or fade the public.
The legal trouble LeSean McCoy faces could point towards the public siding with the Ravens. Perhaps it’s word that Joe Flacco is having a great camp after Baltimore drafted Lamar Jackson in the 1st round a few months back.
Surprisingly these two AFC franchises have only met 8 times ever. Both the win/loss and ATS record are an even split at 4-4, with six of the 8 going UNDER the total.
Los Angeles Rams @ Oakland Raiders | Sept. 10 | Raiders +3 | T – 49.5
The last game of Week 1 is an interesting one with plenty of storylines for the ESPN Monday Night Football telecast. Hired by ESPN in May 2009, Jon Gruden will step on to the field as a head coach for the first time since 2008. On the field, two of the big name holdouts this year come from these teams, with Aaron Donald and Khalil Mack yet to report to their respective team camps.
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The Rams come into this season with high expectations after winning 11 games last season, losing in the Wild Card game to the more experienced Atlanta Falcons. They may have also had the best offseason of any franchise by getting a legit deep threat in Brandon Cooks. They also added to a defense that was already Top 6 in sacks and interceptions by adding cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib.
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This one opened at PK, but has also shifted 3 points, making the Raiders a home dog in Gruden’s return to the Black Hole. These two franchises have met a total of 5 times, with the Rams winning 3 of the five and hold a 4-1 record ATS. I’m really excited to see this one close out opening week. Hopefully both Donald and Mack figure out their contract stuff and are on the field for this heavyweight tilt.
Be sure to visit your online sportsbook often to check for line movements as we get closer to the regular season kickoff. Great value can be found if you can identify why a line moved and get on one side or the other on your way to a good opening week.