NFL Picks: Colts vs. Broncos Betting Odds & Predictions

Kevin Stott

Friday, September 5, 2014 3:22 PM UTC

Friday, Sep. 5, 2014 3:22 PM UTC

The Mile High City & Broncos will host the Colts for a game sure to draw a large number of viewers as well as a massive number of sports bettors.

Referee: Tony Corrente

Point Spread Odds: Broncos -7½ -110

Point Spread Decimal Odds: Broncos -7½ 1.925

Total: 55 (Over -110, Under -110)

Decimal Total: 55 (Over 1.952, Under 1.952)

Moneyline Odds: Broncos -330, Colts +289

Moneyline Decimal Odds: Broncos 3.890, Colts, 1.303

Source: Pinnacle 

NBC did fans of both the National Football League and high drama right when it decided to put this AFC showdown between Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos up against his former team—the Indianapolis Colts—to open up the schedule for its Sunday Night Football season. Bravo Jon Miller (NBC Sports’ President of Programming). 

Oddsmakers have made the defending AFC champion Broncos 7½-point favorites with the Total at 55 with some line movement up to 55½ at a couple of isolated places, so, to nobody’s surprise, this game has the highest total on the NFL board this opening week. When these two last played in Week 7 last season, the Colts (8/1 to win AFC, 18/1 Super Bowl, LVH SuperBook) defeated the Broncos at Lucas Oil Stadium, 39-33 as 6½-point underdogs (the total was 53½) and it’s really surprising to learn that the Colts have actually beaten the Broncos five straight times—and covered all five—by an average of over 10 points (39-33, 27-13, 28-16, 38-20, 34-31).

Revisit Our Initial NFL Week 1 Picks for this Matchup!

Regular Season Indianapolis Colts Player Specials To Contemplate
When you have Broncos QB Peyton Manning (108-89-6 ATS as Favorite, 68-63-2 ATS Home) and Colts phenom QB Andrew Luck (9-9 ATS Away) going at each other in the first game of the season on national television, you know there is going to be plenty of drama and plenty of passing and seeing as how we can’t bet on the drama part just yet, it’s best to focus on the many betting markets now available to the modern sports gambler. One often overlooked niche are some of the Player Specials which primarily focus on NFL offensive skill position players’ statistical performances throughout the regular season. Tying up one’s money until 2015 isn’t for everyone, but if you have the bankroll and the access, here are some unique bets that are out there right now.

Canadian-based Bovada has NFL odds posted for Indianapolis QB Luck in several different categories, including Total Passing Yards for the Regular Season: 4,200 (Over -115, Under -115); Total Passing Touchdowns for the Regular Season: 27 (Over -105, Under -125); Total Interceptions for the Regular Season: 13½ (Over -105, Under -125); and Total Rushing Yards for the Regular Season: 325½ (Over -115, Under -115). All look spot on.

Besides the odds for Luck and Indianapolis (Total Season wins 9½u -120, LVH SuperBook) RB Trent Richardson also available, other Bovada Player Props include some interesting ones for Colts receivers Reggie Wayne and TY Hilton. Veteran Wayne’s Total Receiving Touchdowns for the Regular Season: 5 (Over -115, Under -115) and Total Receiving Yards for the Regular Season: 850½ (Over -115, Under -115) are both intriguing—and the Over 5 touchdown catches seems doable. But there is one number posted on the 24-year-old Florida International University product Hilton that seems worth a wager as Luck and the youngster should really click this NFL season. The prop for Hilton’s Total Receiving Touchdowns for the Regular Season: 6 (Over -115, Under -115) seems like a very good wager (Over 6 -115), although he will be competing with Colts legend Wayne and Hakeem Nicks for receptions in the team’s evolving receiving corps. But Hilton’s diminutive size (5’9”, 183 pounds), quick feet and blazing speed (4.34 40-yard dash) will help him create at least three touchdowns on his own on pass receptions where defenders just can’t tackle him because of his buttery escapability and low visibility. These skills are why Hilton returns punts on special teams and was a star in college at FIU and why a three-touchdown reception game this season from him wouldn’t surprise anyone who follows the Colts.

Review the entire Week 1 NFL Betting Odds Report & Analysis for advice on other games. 

Any Value in Broncos WR Player Specials Now with Welker’s Suspension?
Broncos WR Wes Welker was suspended for four games for allegedly taking a substance which violated the league’s drug (amphetamine) policy so the talented veteran will miss this season opener and the rest of September, so, some of Manning’s other WRs should be the statistical beneficiary of this suspension. And when you score 606 points and nobody else in the league even gets 500, then it’s fairly obvious The Pass is your drug of choice. And Manning deals it so well. The 38-year-old veteran may not have led Denver (10-8 ATS on Sunday Night Football) to a victory in last season’s Super Bowl XLVII but that humiliating loss at the hands of the Seattle Seahawks will certainly stick in the craw of Manning and he, as well as his teammates, will no doubt be motivated all season by that last bitter memory in their minds. Peyton didn’t head out West to lose Super Bowls brother.

So Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders and Julius Thomas will have to pick up the Welker Slack and they will all definitely be willing to get those extra balls thrown their way. Bovada has Demaryius Thomas’s Total Receiving Yards for the Regular Season: 1,350½ (Over -115, Under -115) and Total Touchdown Receptions for the Regular Season: 11½ (Over -115, Under -115) seem a bit high, but he’s the main target and the numbers are justified. Former Pittsburgh Steelers WR Sanders Total Receiving Yards for the Regular Season: 900½ (Over -115, Under -115) and Total Touchdown Receptions for the Regular Season: 6½ (Over -115, Under -115) actually seem about 100 yards and 2 touchdowns light to me—I think he can get to 1,000 yards and 8 touchdowns with Welker out, despite having a minor thigh injury heading into this game against the Colts in which he is expected to play. And the always underrated Julius Thomas’s Total Receiving Yards for the Regular Season: 800½ (Over -115, Under -115) and Total Touchdown Receptions for the Regular Season: 9½ (Over -115, Under -115) props’ numbers also look right about where they should be.

Playing the Chargers, Raiders and Chiefs twice each in the mediocre AFC West also helps any Broncos (-333 To Win AFC West, bwin, Betfair Exchange) offensive statistics and Future Player Props. Here in Las Vegas at the LVH SuperBook, Denver (Total season wins 11½u -140) opened an almost embarrassing 1/4 favorite to win the division...which means that looking at the Chargers (+600, 6/1, William Hill) to somehow steal the division right about now may probably be a pretty good idea.

Examining Anytime Scorer Market in What Should Be a High-Scoring Game
Instead of betting the First Touchdown Scorer proposition, it seems handicapping and betting in the Anytime Touchdown Scorer marketplace seems much wiser from both a gambling and an entertainment point of view. For the Broncos, Montee Ball (-200 Sky Bet), Julius Thomas (-110) and Demaryius Thomas (-175) are all actually favorites (minus money) to score a touchdown (TD) Sunday night in the Mile High City while Emmanuel Sanders (+110), Ronnie Hillman (+200), little speedster Trindon Holliday (+225), Andre Caldwell (+300), Virgil Green (+400) and Manning (+1200) are all decent plusses for the homeboys.

For the Colts (4/7 To Win AFC South, LVH SuperBook), there are no minuses, just plusses in this Anytime Touchdown Scorer marketplace with Reggie Wayne (+162, Sky Bet), Trent Richardson (+200), Ahmad Bradshaw (+200), TY Hilton (+200), Hakeem Nicks (+225), Dwayne Allen (+300), Coby Fleener (+350) and Luck (+400) the leading candidates for the defending AFC South champs.

Both Anytime Defensive/Special Teams Touchdown props for both the Broncos and Colts are at 5/1 (+500) while the extremely rare No Touchdown is at 66/1 (+6600) at Sky Bet. And while we’re on the subject of potential NFL betting oddities and their odds, the Will Any Team Go 16-0? proposition bet (33/1, Ladbroke’s) is always a fun topic of conversation and, with the Seattle Seahawks performance last season, its’ unforgiving defense and the way the defending NFL champions looked on Thursday night—dismantling the Green Bay Packers in their season opener in the Emerald City, 36-16 on NBC—no doubt that 33/1 likely won’t be around come October 1.

For me, out of all these Bovada Player Props, the Hilton (+200) and Nicks (+225) Anytime Touchdown Scorer bets both look appetizing for the Colts while the Sanders (+110) one also caught my eye as a potential Broncos touchdown scorer in this game. There will be points and there will be passing. That’s for sure. (And there will be commercials.)


Best Betting Approaches In The End Considering All the Possibilities
The trends here that really stuck out for me—besides the Colts aforementioned 5-game straight up and ATS win streak against the Broncos—are Luck’s 9-2-1 ATS record against non-division opponents and Indianapolis’s 13-6 ATS Road record on Sunday Night Football. So, the visitors are even worth a look in the Winner/(Moneyline) marketplace here (+310, Betway), even despite the absence of OLB Robert Mathis. But before pulling the trigger on Luck and the Colts here, know that Indianapolis (+2900, 29/1 Odds To Win the Super Bowl, Matchbook) went just 11-5 straight up (SU) last season, with 6 of those 11 wins coming against its own feeble AFC South (6-0).

Cutting its equine teeth on the likes of the Jacksonville Jaguars (200/1 To Win Super Bowl, LVH SuperBook), the Tennessee Titans (100/1) and the Houston Texans (35/1) might not have gotten Indianapolis’s fangs as sharp as it needs them to be to try to win a Super Bowl just yet, but the team’s recent track record against Denver (5-0 SU, 5-0 ATS) the Old Teammates vs. Papa Peyton storyline and the 7½ points makes it just too hard to pass on the Colts here in Week 1 in what should end up being a fairly tight game in the end in this high-profile AFC Battle of the Hopeful Horses.

Prediction: Broncos 27 Colts 24

Free Picks: Colts  +7½  (Pinnacle, LVH SuperBook)

Prop Picks: TY Hilton Over 6 TD Catches for Regular Season (-115, Bovada)

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