NFL Week 3 Betting Odds and Early Predictions
Casual sports bettors learned a valuable lesson in handicapping last week, as the Baltimore Ravens and New England Patriots both got caught looking ahead to their AFC championship rematch from a year ago.
Tom Brady will likely receive points for the first time during the regular season, as the Patriots are currently listed as three-point road underdogs in the Week 3 NFL betting odds (courtesy of SBR Forum), while the total sits at 48.5.
Let's take a closer look at the numbers that were just released in the betting market and make some early pro football predictions along the way.
New York Giants vs. Carolina Panthers
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The New York Giants opened up as 1.5-point road favorites against the Carolina Panthers, but that number has fallen by a half point at most sports books.
It's not a surprising move based on what the betting public saw in Week 2, especially with the Panthers scoring a 35-27 victory over the New Orleans Saints as three-point home underdogs.
The quick turnaround on the schedule likely favors the defending Super Bowl champions, as Giants head coach Tom Coughlin has a lot more experience on the sidelines than Ron Rivera.
Week 3 Betting Odds: New York Giants -1
St. Louis Rams vs. Chicago Bears
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Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler was absolutely dreadful in the team's 23-10 loss to the Green Bay Packers on Thursday night, as he completed just 11 of 27 passes for 126 yards. He should have success throwing the football in this matchup against a secondary that's given up some yards.
The St. Louis Rams earned their first victory in the Jeff Fisher era, while improving to 2-0 against the spread (ATS) in the early going.
Sports bettors will find that the Bears are 8-2 ATS at home off a straight-up loss against a divisional opponent, which may be helped by a few extra days off due to playing in the middle of Week 2.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Chicago Bears -8
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Dallas Cowboys
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The Dallas Cowboys were unable to build off their season-opening victory over a division rival, as they were bruised and battered in a 27-7 setback to the Seattle Seahawks as three-point road favorites.
America's Team will now face an opponent that took the defending Super Bowl champions to the brink, which happens to be the same team it defeated in Week 1.
Sports bettors will find that the Cowboys are 7-0 ATS in their last seven games versus NFC South opponents.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Dallas Cowboys -7
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Washington Redskins
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Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III will make his home debut during the 2012 regular season, as the franchise split its two-game road trip against the St. Louis Rams and New Orleans Saints.
The second overall selection in the 2012 NFL draft should find some room in the Cincinnati Bengals secondary, as that group has been torched in the first two weeks.
Sports bettors need to be careful laying the points in this spot, as the Redskins are 0-7 ATS as non-conference home favorites.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Washington Redskins -4
New York Jets vs. Miami Dolphins
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Miami Dolphins running back Reggie Bush has broken the century mark in rushing in five of his last six games, which could prove troublesome against an opponent that may not be able to ground and pound like they want to offensively.
Sports bettors will still take notice that the New York Jets are 7-2 ATS in their last nine trips to South Beach, but head coach Rex Ryan has failed to cover seven of the team's last eight games after suffering a double-digit setback.
The Jets were handed a 27-10 loss in the Steel City in Week 2.
Week 3 Betting Odds: New York Jets -3
Kansas City Chiefs vs. New Orleans Saints
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Really a must-win situation for both teams, especially for the New Orleans Saints, as their disastrous offseason has carried over into the first two weeks of the regular season.
The Kansas City Chiefs are known for slow starts, posting a 7-19 combined record in Weeks 1 and 2 since the 2000 campaign.
Early action landed squarely on the road underdogs in this matchup.
Week 3 Betting Odds: New Orleans Saints -9
Buffalo Bills vs. Cleveland Browns
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The Buffalo Bills may have evened their record after two games with a 35-17 win as three-point home favorites, but they've dominated the Kansas City Chiefs recently.
Cleveland's rookie combo of quarterback Brandon Weeden and running back Trent Richardson made great strides in their second week, as the offense gained 439 total yards in a 34-27 divisional loss to the Cincinnati Bengals as seven-point road underdogs.
Very difficult game to handicap, which is why the oddsmakers sent out a key number on the board.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Buffalo Bills -3
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Arizona Cardinals
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The Philadelphia Eagles have turned the ball over at least four times in each of their two games but will head to the desert in a Week 3 contest featuring a pair of undefeated teams.
Arizona snapped a five-game losing streak to the New England Patriots, capturing a 20-18 victory as 14-point road underdogs.
Sports bettors need to be careful in backing the road favorite in this spot, as they have a home game against the New York Giants on deck, while also going 1-6 ATS when laying points versus an opponent off back-to-back wins.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Philadelphia Eagles -4
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Oakland Raiders
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The Oakland Raiders lost their first of five trips to the Eastern Time Zone, suffering a 35-13 setback to the Miami Dolphins as three-point road favorites. Quarterback Carson Palmer was the lone bright spot, finishing with 373 passing yards.
Pittsburgh approached Sunday's 27-10 win over the New York Jets as a must-win situation, with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger starting to gain more comfort in Todd Haley's offensive system.
Sports bettors will notice that the Steelers have their bye on deck, but they've gone 2-8 ATS as road favorites of three or more points when playing outside of the division.
The Steel City is on upset alert.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Pittsburgh Steelers -4.5
New England Patriots vs. Baltimore Ravens
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The Baltimore Ravens and New England Patriots will both be looking to bounce back from disappointing Week 2 losses, but one of these teams will be revenge-minded from last year's AFC championship game.
There's no doubt that the Ravens will be seeking payback, which could happen due to their 14-2 ATS mark as home favorites of fewer than 10 points in the first quarter of a season.
Definitely keep an eye on Aaron Hernandez's injury, as the Patriots were unable to break through against the Arizona Cardinals offensively—despite gaining 387 yards.
I'm not going to make a pick right now, but it's hard to ignore Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's 11-1 straight-up and ATS record as an underdog when coming off a loss.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Baltimore Ravens -3
Green Bay Packers vs. Seattle Seahawks
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The Seattle Seahawks will certainly be tested in hosting the Green Bay Packers, but they did managed to win their fourth consecutive home opener in Week 2.
Green Bay bounced back from its season-opening loss to the San Francisco 49ers, handling the Chicago Bears with ease, but now the Packers hit the road for the first time in 2012.
A key battle in this game is the Seahawks offensive line keeping Packers linebacker Clay Matthews out of the backfield. The unit didn't allow Cowboys defensive star DeMarcus Ware to tally a sack on Sunday.
Sports bettors will find that the Packers are 0-4 ATS as road favorites of three or more points versus a conference opponent off a straight-up underdog win.
Can the Seahawks fly again getting points?
We'll find out soon enough.
Week 3 Betting Odds: Green Bay Packers -3.5