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2011 NFL Gambling: Lines | Week 1 Matchups & Predictions

NFL Week 1 Preview & Predictions

The 2011 NFL regular season gets underway this Thursday night as all 32 teams begin another quest for a Super Bowl title. While championships are not won in September, there are a number of intriguing matchups on the opening day schedule as well as some solid value to be found in the current point spreads and total lines.

The following is a brief betting preview and prediction for my top three games on the schedule this week.

All odds quoted are courtesy of Bodog SportsBook

Thursday, September 8
New Orleans Saints at Green Bay Packers (-4)
Over/Under: 47

This game is a matchup between the last two Super Bowl Champions and a possible preview of this season’s NFC Championship Game.

The Saints are 5-1 against the spread in their last six season openers and 6-2 ATS in their last eight games played in September. The total has gone ‘over’ in four of New Orleans’ last five road games.

The Packers are 5-1 ATS in their last six home games and 7-2 ATS in their last nine games as a favorite. The total has stayed ‘under’ in six of Green Bay’s last seven season openers.

Head-to-head, the favorite is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings and the total has gone ‘over’ in all five of those games.

Green Bay is tough to beat at home even if the weather is nice, but take Drew Brees and Co. to keep things close enough to cover.

The Pick: Green Bay 24     New Orleans 21

Sunday, September 11
Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens (-2.5)
Over/Under: 36

You cannot ask for a better matchup on opening day than one of the fiercest rivalries in the NFL. The winner of this one gets to stake a claim as the early favorite to win in the AFC North by taking a crucial edge in what has been a tight race over the past few seasons.

The Steelers are a perfect 6-0 ATS in their last six games against the AFC North and 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games as an underdog. The total has gone ‘over’ in seven of Pittsburgh’s last nine opening day games.

The Ravens are 2-6-1 ATS in their last nine games against the AFC North but 4-1 ATS in their last five games as a favorite. The total has stayed ‘under’ in 10 of Baltimore’s last 13 season openers.

Head-to-head, Pittsburgh is 5-1-1 ATS in the last seven meetings overall and 9-4-1 ATS in its last 14 games played in Baltimore. The total has gone ‘over’ in seven of the last 11 meetings.

This game will be a battle to the bitter end as four of the last five meetings have been decided by three points. Keep the same margin of victory this time as well with Baltimore coming out on top by a late field goal. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

The Pick: Baltimore 16   Pittsburgh 13

Monday, September 12
New England Patriots (-7) at Miami Dolphins
Over/Under: 45.5

The first of two division matchups to kick-off a Monday night Week 1 double-header features a team that is trying to get back to the Super Bowl against one that is just trying to get back over .500.

The Patriots are 4-1 ATS in their last five games against the AFC East and 5-2 ATS in their last seven games overall. The total has gone ‘over’ in 11 of New England’s last 14 season openers.

The Dolphins are 11-3 ATS in their last 14 games as an underdog, but just 1-4 ATS in their last five games against the AFC East.

Head-to-head, the road team is 6-2 ATS in the last eight meetings and the total has gone ‘over’ in four of the last six games overall.

Tom Brady already looks like he is in mid-season form while Chad Henne looks like he could use one or two more tune-up games. This one gets out-of-hand early as the Patriots romp on opening day.

The Pick: New England 34    Miami 13

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