NFL Odds Imply Offense to Rule in Tonight's Colts vs. Broncos

Jordan Sharp

Sunday, September 7, 2014 12:54 PM GMT

In what is projected as the the highest scoring game of Week 1, the Colts and Broncos hook up from Mile High Stadium tonight. The Broncos are just over a touchdown favorite, and the total for this one is the highest of the week at 55 ½ points.

Defense! What defense?
Whoever wins this game is going to have to get stops, but with a total of over 55 points on the NFL odds, the sportsbooks seem to think there won’t be much defense. The Colts’ have tried to beef up their run defense this offseason but I’m not sure they have improved it enough to make them a good run defense. Even if they are just average in this game, it likely won’t be enough to slow down Montee Ball, the young running back for the Broncos who could have a huge game and year. If the Broncos spread the ball out on the Colts, Ball could have some very nice running lanes in this game, and it could contribute to a higher score.

The Colts’ passing defense is going to obviously have their hands full in this game, but with Vontae Davis and LaRon Landry on one side, the Broncos will likely focus on the opposite side of the field. However that doesn’t mean that Demaryius Thomas won’t have a big day. Thomas is going to get a lot more targets this season with the exit of Eric Decker to the Jets, and against the Colts softer defense, he’ll be a big part of what the Broncos do this week.

The Broncos’ defense on the other side should be improved from last season, but not enough to completely stop the Colts. Last season the Colts played the Broncos well early in the season, and if they can channel some of that in this Week 1 game on national television, this game is going over the total. The Colts’ offense may even bet better this season. If Reggie Wayne can come back and be productive, and if the Colts can find their running game, this week, even at 55 1/2 this total has a great chance of going over.

 

The Sharp Pick
Last season the Broncos went 4-0 cashing the 'Over' in the month of September, and even though that might have been due to the undervaluing of the offense early on, it’s interesting at the very least for a game like todays. Overall the Broncos are one of the better 'Over' cashing teams in the NFL, as they’ve hit over in 50 of their last 75 games.

For the Colts, the over has cashed at 14-5 in their last 19 games as road underdogs between 3 ½ and 10 points, and the 'Over' is 4-1 in their last five games as an underdog in the same position whether it was at home or away.

I expect to see plenty of passing, especially out of the Colts if they want a chance to win this game, and with both teams having 30-point upside against one another, 55 ½ doesn’t seem as daunting as it would with any other teams in this spot. Nationally televised games are normally a little higher scoring, and this being Week 1, I expect offense to rule the early part of the season for our NFL picks before the defense kicks in.

NFL Pick: OVER 55 ½ at Bovada

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