Money To Be Made With Raiders & Packers Despite Possible Rodgers Absence

Raiders vs Packers

Wednesday, August 17, 2016 2:39 PM GMT

The Oakland Raiders beat the NFL odds in their preseason opener. The Green Bay Packers didn't even get to play theirs. Who will rule this Thursday night at Lambeau?

There, that wasn't too difficult, was it? The Oakland Raiders were in Friday's NFL picks here at the ranch for Week 1 of the 2016 preseason, laying three points on the road to the Arizona Cardinals, and pretty much everything went according to plan. Oakland's backup quarterbacks (Matt McGloin, Connor Cook) outplayed Arizona's back-up QBs (Matt Barkley, Drew Stanton, Jake Coker), leading the Raiders to a smooth 31-10 victory.

Things went a lot better than they did for our first pick of the season. The Green Bay Packers didn't even get to play the Indianapolis Colts at the Hall of Fame Game. But they did beat the Cleveland Browns (PK away) 17-11 Friday at Lambeau Field. The Packers will stay right there for Week 2 of the preseason; they'll host the Raiders Thursday night at 8:00 p.m. Eastern, and at press time, it's Green Bay laying the requisite three points on our NFL odds board.

Wesley Crusher
Let's start with a bang: Here are the preseason records for the two coaches in question:

Jack Del Rio, Raiders: 22-17-2 ATS, 23-18 OVER
Mike McCarthy, Packers: 21-19 ATS, 27-14 OVER

That's a pretty compelling case right there for the OVER. However, this game has the largest total on the Week 2 odds board at 42.5 points. People have been doing their homework. There isn't enough survey data yet to produce a consensus report for the total, but 62 percent of early bettors are on Green Bay, while Oakland is pulling 64 percent on the moneyline as a +150 underdog. Interesting.

Even more interesting when you consider that Aaron Rodgers isn't likely to play for the Packers on Thursday. He didn't take a snap against the Browns, and he probably won't suit up until Week 3 in San Francisco. With that in mind, here are the QB depth charts for the Packers and Raiders, as they appear at Rotoworld:

Raiders: Derek Carr, Matt McGloin, Connor Cook
Packers: Aaron Rodgers, Brett Hundley, Joe Callahan, Marquise Williams

Callahan has moved up the ranks in Green Bay. He got the start against Cleveland with Hundley nursing a sprained left ankle, and he threw 16-of-23 for 124 yards and a touchdown. Callahan won the Gagliardi Trophy last year as the top player in Division III, racking up 4,190 yards (46 TD, 10 INT) for the Wesley Wolverines. You gotta like that.

Hundley's well enough to start Thursday night, and he's been a preseason stud, so maybe the Packers are worth a shot here. But we're more interested in that OVER we were talking about. Del Rio has got a good thing going in Oakland, and he wants to win these games. Why fight it? We'll take our chances with the total, and may the prolate spheroid be with you.

Free NFL Pick: OVER 42.5 (–107)
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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