Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) rolls to the outside during an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts, Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Zach Bolinger)
- Week 3 of the NFL season got underway with Thursday’s Carolina Panthers-Houston Texans game
- Which betting line has moved the most since opening? What’s the smallest spread of the week?
- All of the wagering information on every NFL game is listed below
Remember all that talk regarding the home-field advantage and how the empty NFL stadiums caused by COVID-19 had taken away that edge in the betting odds? This season, though, with fans back and packing every nook and cranny, home teams would surely regain their power.
Yeah, about that. Never mind. Through two weeks of the NFL season, come from away isn’t a broadway show. It’s a way of life on the gridiron.
Entering Week 3, there were just as many unbeaten away teams (13) as there were unbeaten home squads.
While we’re at it, here’s another ancient betting axiom that holds water about as well as the Louisana levee system during a tropical storm. Home underdogs are a great play against the spread.
This season, it’s away underdogs who are dominating. Factor in the spread and away underdogs have been twice as successful as home underdogs. A dozen road underdogs are perfect against the spread in the NFL odds, led by the 2-0 Dallas Cowboys. Only six home underdogs can boast of umblemished ATS marks.
As Willie Nelson once sang, bet on the road (team) again. Well, it went something like that.
Factors to keep in mind as we analyze the Week 3 NFL betting lines to see which movers are shaking things up.
NFL Week 3 Odds
|Carolina Panthers||-410||-8 (-110)||O 43.5 (-105)|
|Houston Texans||+310||+8 (-110)||U 43.5 (-115)|
|Chicago Bears||+270||+7.5 (-115)||O 45 (-110)|
|Cleveland Browns||-350||-7.5 (-105)||U 45 (-110)|
|Baltimore Ravens||-435||-8 (-110)||O 50 (-115)|
|Detroit Lions||+330||+8 (-110)||U 50 (-105)|
|Arizona Cardinals||-380||-7.5 (-105)||O 51.5 (-110)|
|Jacksonille Jaguars||+290||-7.5 (-115)||U 51.5 (-110)|
|Los Angeles Chargers||+250||+6.5 (-105)||O 54.5 (-110)|
|Kansas City Chiefs||-320||-6.5 (+115)||U 54.5 (-110)|
|New Orleans Saints||+135||+2.5 (+100)||O 42.5 (-110)|
|New England Patriots||-155||-2.5 (-120)||U 42.5 (-110)|
|Indianapolis Colts||+205||+5 (-110)||O 48 (-110)|
|Tennessee Titans||-255||-5 (-110)||U 48 (-110)|
|Washington Football Team||+290||+7.5 (-115)||O 46 (-110)|
|Buffalo Bills||-380||-7.5 (-105)||U 46 (-110)|
|Atlanta Falcons||+130||+3 (-115)||O 47.5 (-110)|
|New York Giants||-150||-3 (-105)||U 47.5 (-110)|
|Cincinnati Bengals||+155||+3 (-105)||O 44 (-110)|
|Pittsburgh Steelers||-180||-3 (-115)||U 44 (-110)|
|New York Jets||+450||+10.5 (-115)||O 42 (-110)|
|Denver Broncos||-630||-10.5 (-105)||U 42 (-110)|
|Miami Dolphins||+175||+4.5 (-115)||O 44 (-110)|
|Las Vegas Raiders||-210||-4.5 (-105)||U 44 (-110)|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||-125||-1.5 (-115)||O 55 (-110)|
|Los Angeles Rams||+105||+1.5 (-110)||U 55 (-110)|
|Seattle Seahawks||-125||-1.5 (-110)||O 55 (-110)|
|Minnesota Vikings||+105||+1.5 (-110)||U 55 (-110)|
|Green Bay Packers||+155||+3 (+100)||O 50.5 (-110)|
|San Francisco 49ers||-180||-3 (-120)||U 50.5 (-110)|
|Philadelphia Eagles||+160||+3.5 (-115)||O 52.5 (-110)|
|Dallas Cowboys||-190||-3.5 (-105)||U 52.5 (-110)|
Odds as of September 23td at DraftKings.
QB Or Not QB
Injuries to starting quarterbacks are the root cause of a pair of line movements that saw the point spreads shift by a whopping 3.5 points. Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores revealed that Tua Tagovailia (fractured ribs) is out for Sunday’s game against the 2-0 Las Vegas Raiders. Jacoby Brissett will get the start under center.
Miami were the victims of the 35-0 drubbing at the hands of the Buffalo Bills last week with Tua. Without him, the line increased from Raiders -1 to Las Vegas -4.5.
Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa has fractured ribs and will not play Sunday against the Raiders, head coach Brian Flores announced.
Jacoby Brissett will start at QB for Miami on Sunday. pic.twitter.com/SFs5qIWA3t
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) September 22, 2021
In Pittsburgh, the line adjusted in the opposite direction. Home losers to the Raiders last week, Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger is dealing with a pectoral issue. That news caused the line to shrink from Pittsburgh -6.5 to Steelers -3 in their home game against the Cincinnati Bengals.
There’s no chance Tagovailoa is playing this week, so that line is done moving. However, if Big Ben is cleared to play, expect Pittsburgh to regain some of those lost 3.5 points.
Pile Up Those Points
If last week’s games are any indication, there appears to be only one way for the Seattle Seahawks and Minnesota Vikings to win. They need to outscore the other team. These two squads play defense about as often as Bill Murray in Space Jam.
The injuries just keep piling up.
Hope Dalvin Cook is okay. This sucks. pic.twitter.com/jlZxki5Wum
— SB Nation (@SBNation) September 19, 2021
The total on this game jumped from 51 to 55 points. It might come back down, though, if Vikings’ All-Pro RB Dalvin Cook (ankle) can’t go.
The Seahawks-Vikings game and the Los Angeles Rams-Tampa Bay Buccaneers contest share Week 3’s shortest point spread. The Seahawks and Bucs are both the 1.5-point road chalk.
Russell Wilson to Freddie Swain for a 68-yard score! #Seahawks
— NFL (@NFL) September 19, 2021
A pair of 2-0 teams who’ve been flexing their muscles, expect the Tampa Bay-LA line to stick. Again, the Cook scenario will have bearing on Seattle-Minnesota betting.
It’s The Jets
Remember two weeks ago when the season was starting and New York Jets fans were touting Zach Wilson as NFL OROY? Two losses and five interceptions later, the touts have the 2-0 Denver Broncos as 10.5-point home favorites over the hapless Jets.
Here is a video of all 4 Zach Wilson interceptions and none of them are the offensive line’s fault. Very concerning decision making by the rookie. pic.twitter.com/DyhCcvjSp0
— olinestats (@olinestats) September 19, 2021
This line isn’t going to get any shorter. But it probably won’t get any longer. The Broncos likely aren’t as good as their record indicates. Then again, neither are the Jets. If it’s possible to be worse than 0-2 after two weeks, they may be pulling it off.
Slumber Of 42
The Jets and Broncos also are combining for the smallest total offering of the week at 42 points.
Soooo y’all still complaining about Teddy Bridgewater?
•STILL ZERO Turn Overs pic.twitter.com/boDvNRR4lg
— (@AlexVSports) September 19, 2021
The total has gone under in four of the last five Jets games. Six of the past seven Jets at Denver games also hit on the under. But a total can’ go lower than this number can it?
Matt And The Goat
The same two games with the smallest spreads this week also offer the largest totals. Both the Rams-Buccaneers and Seahawks-Vikings are set at 55 points.
With Mathew Stafford at QB, Rams games are producing 49.5 points per game. Tom Brady is also off to a magical start. Tampa Bay games are accounting for 53 ppg. Based on those calculations, the total might be a bit high.
🏈271 receiving yards
Becoming a favorite of Matthew Stafford. pic.twitter.com/eT1QuHsrB9
— NFL Stats (@mynflstats) September 23, 2021
Minnesota games are averaging 59 ppg. Seattle’s two-game totals work out to 53.5 ppg. Neither teams play much in the way of effective defense.
Both of these games show the potential to put a massive total number up on the board. Movement either way is unlikely. Again, though, the only factor that could come into play here is the health of Minnesota RB Dalvin Cook.
An industry veteran, Bob literally taught the course on the history of sports at Elder College. He has worked as a Sports Columnist for Postmedia, appeared as a guest on several radio stations, was the Vice President of the Society For International Hockey Research in Ontario, and written 25 books.