NFL Picks: Week 1 Value Bets

Doug Upstone

Tuesday, September 2, 2014 8:25 PM GMT

It’s finally here! The National Football League is back and those making NFL picks, football handicappers and sportsbooks alike are thrilled at the chance to go head to head one more time.

Last year against the betting odds, I was 34-17 ATS, 66.6 percent writing about NFL value plays for sports picks and the videos that went with them here at Sportsbook Review. While I might not do quite that well in 2014, I have a proven track record here the last four years and look forward to scoping out more winners for you.


Bengals vs. Ravens: Ravens on the Rise
Let’s face it, Baltimore did a poor job defending their Super Bowl trophy last year, however, it was really no surprise since they had a lot of veteran players who were let go or retired and last season was about retooling.

If you have been reading about the Ravens, the younger players on the defense now have a year more experience and are very athletic in the mold the Ravens typically draft.

The offense will have a more up-tempo approach, which suits quarterback Joe Flacco just fine and the addition of receiver Steve Smith will be a huge benefit to him as a go to guy.

Cincinnati is still a really good football squad, but they 1-4-1 ATS at M&T Bank Stadium since 2008 and with the Ravens less than a three-point favorite, we have value with one of the top home teams in the NFL.

NFL Football Free Pick: Baltimore -1.5

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Jaguars vs. Eagles: Grab the Massive Points with Jacksonville
The Philadelphia Eagles by all appearances are an improved club and one year more familiar with Chip Kelly’s system. From a talent perspective, the Eagles are clearly better than Jacksonville, nonetheless, this is still the NFL, with the top tier of talent.

If this was later in the season, I would probably have no problem backing such a big number, but Week 1 of the NFL season, have to look to the other side.

Jacksonville was much more settled in the preseason and close followers of the team talked about their best camp in years. In addition, consider underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points like the Jaguars, who won only 25% to 40% of their games last season, are 24-5 ATS in this exact situation versus the NFL odds.

NFL Football Free Pick: Jacksonville +10 at BookMaker

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Panthers vs. Buccaneers: Carolina Not Crumbling Just Yet
It is a given the chances of Carolina matching last year’s 12-4 regular season and division title are slim. Cam Newton is realistically less than 100 percent healthy, the new receivers are not completely aligned with Newton running routes and the defense suffered a few losses.

Yet from a wagering perspective, for the Panthers to fall from -2.5 to +1 at Tampa Bay, that is hard to swallow.

Yes, Lovie Smith has added excitement in the Tampa area, but his team is still woefully thin at too many areas and is at four to five points worse on a power ratings grid based on talent.

Since Carolina is 8-5 SU at Tampa Bay with teams far worse than this one, good value play on the Panthers.

NFL Football Free Pick: Carolina +1

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