Insider Trading - NFL Week One
The NFL returned in style on Thursday night, and with 13 hard-hitting clashes set for Sunday, our inside man Richard Churchill is here to provide his best bets of the weekend.
Whilst discussing the upcoming NFL season recently, I was informed that betting on the NFL was for idiots, and that it was too unpredictable to make sense. I then asked the person to whom I was speaking with his thoughts on that night's game:
"Manning will take advantage of the Ravens' disorganised defense and win by 10+ points," he responded. I asked him if he was confident enough to put a bet on it, and he declined. You can imagine that, when we spoke on Friday, he regretted that decision.
For, whilst it isn't easy to make money on NFL betting, it isn't half as difficult as he made it out to be, and this season, I will be picking out the week's best bets to save you time and research! This will be based on time spent assessing the individual matchups, market value, betting trends and more.
It is safe to say that not every bet will win. My friend is, after all, partially correct. The NFL is unpredictable at times, but whilst not winning every bet, if you stick with me through the season, I will guide you to a tasty profit. To note, I suggest that all bets follow a sensible scale, and that if using my tips, have the bigger bets on the 'Top Tips'.
Without further ado, we shall proceed.
Adrian Peterson isn't going to repeat his historic 2012 season this year, yet it is generally accepted he will rush for a minimum 1500 yards, which in itself could lead the league. That isn't to say that the Vikings will take this NFC North clash with ease, but in all season openers with Jim Schwartz in charge, the Lions haven't won by more than five points.
Of all starting QBs last season, Christian Ponder totalled the least number of yards thrown outside of the numbers, emphasising his preference to throw over the middle. This means that second-year TE Kyle Rudolph should see his stock rise this season
Top Tip: Vikings +5 - 10/11
Worth a Look: Kyle Rudolph Anytime TD - 14/1
The New York Jets have been unceremoniously panned this off-season for a plethora of perceived mistakes, and it is tough to see how they will compete for the post-season in the AFC. As they welcome the Bucs to MetLife, Tampa bay have questions to answer. Doug Martin has the potential to be the best back in the game, but can the offense keep him on the field long enough?
This is by no means a must-watch for those of you who have NFL GamePass, but with Revis Island having relocated to Florida from East Rutherford, it will be of interest to see what impact he will have on the game, especially with rookie QB Geno Smith under center for the Jets.
Top Tip: Buccaneers -3.5 - 10/11
Worth a Look: Away Team to score a Defensive TD - 9/2
The Pittsburgh Steelers have been perennial Super Bowl contenders, but in 2013, after having missed the playoffs last season, they may once against struggle to see January football. The AFC North is a competitive division, perhaps the tightest in all of football, so games against teams like Tennessee, who are neither great nor terrible, could prove vital in a potential Wild Card chase.
With Jake Locker at QB, the Titans will look for improvements, or changes are abound. Having relied on the ever-unreliable Chris Johnson for too long, Locker will have to make use of talented second year receiver Kendall Wright if they are to find success, but that may be hard to come by at Heinz Field.
Top Tip: Steelers -5.5 - 7/10
Worth a Look: Pittsburgh Steelers to win by 7-12 points - 4/1
Perhaps the most convincing improvement of any team in 2012 was that of the Rams, who, under Jeff Fisher showed glimmers of hope in the midst of a 7-8-1 season. They may have been blown out in a couple of games, but the league's youngest roster returns in 2013 eager to prove itself in the best division in football. A solid home record will be vital for the Rams, who last season boasted the best divisional record of any NFC West team.
The Cardinals do boast a solid defense, and with Carson Palmer throwing the ball, there are higher hopes in Arizona this season than there has been since the retirement of Kurt Warner. There are things to watch for in this game that will provide interest, and it should prove to be tight. Can explosive rookie WR Tavon Austin prove to be the difference?
Top Tip: Rams -3 - 4/6
Worth a Look: Tavon Austin to score the last TD - 12/1
The Houston Texans have been on the cusp of greatness for the past couple of seasons, and with some nice additions in the off-season combined with a weak division n 2013, this may be the year the make the leap. Matt Schaub is a perceived weakness under center, but that is a skewed view based on his fantasy numbers, not on his on field actions. He has consistently sprayed the ball, and when healthy, Andre Johnson is the difference maker against any team.
The Chargers on the other hand look to be a much weaker outfit than any season in recent memory, and all Bolts fans should not hold out much hope of success this season. They may be the most disappointing team of any in 2013, and this is only going one way on Monday Night Football.
Top Tip: Texans -3.5 - 10/11
Worth a Look: Texans to win by 13-18 points - 13/2
Each week, Richard Churchill will bring you the best value tips available with William Hill - the Home of Betting. As editor of Any Given Sunday Night, he is a regular contributor across NFL media in the UK. You can follow him on Twitter @WHRichBets.