2021 NFL Week 1 Odds: Early Thoughts on the Schedule

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Green Bay Packers. Dylan Buell/Getty Images/AFP

Spring has sprung and the weather is warming up which means NFL training camps can’t be too far away. Let’s check out the highlights of the Week 1 schedule and get a jump on our NFL picks right here at Bookmakers Review!

Dallas Cowboys vs. Tampa Bay Bucs (-6 ½)

Thursday, September 9, 2021 8:20 PM EDT at Raymond James Stadium

There is nothing like kicking off the NFL season with the defending Super Bowl champs hosting America’s Team in the tropical climes of Raymond James Stadium. The early, and I mean very early, NFL odds on this game show Tom Terrific and the Bucs as 6 ½ point favorites over Dak Prescott and the talented triumvirate of Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb, and Michael Gallup.

Dallas will definitely be younger and most likely much better on the defensive side of the ball as they used the No. 12 pick in the draft on a big hitter from Penn State, Micah Parsons, and followed that with a cornerback (Kelvin Joseph – Kentucky) in the second round followed by three third-round picks in defensive tackle (Osa Odighizuwa – UCLA), defensive end (Chauncey Golston – Iowa), and cornerback (Nahshon Wright – Oregon State). The Bucs will attract the square money to be sure so keep an eye on this line to see if you can get the Boys at +7 because if you can it looks like good value to me.

Seattle Seahawks vs. Indianapolis Colts (-2 ½)

Sunday, September 12, 2021 1:00 PM EDT at Lucas Oil Stadium

Russell Wilson is worth the price of admission alone but the Seahawks have much to atone for after winning the NFC West with a 12-4 mark only to quickly bow out in the opening round of the playoffs in a 30-20 loss to the Rams. Seattle picked up a shiny new toy for Wilson in the draft despite the absence of a first-round pick when they chose Western Kentucky speed merchant, D'Wayne Eskridge, in the second round to add to their receiving arsenal.

The Colts will be an interesting team to watch after copping a wild card berth last season and giving the AFC East champion, Buffalo Bills, all they could handle in a 30-27 first-round loss. It will be fascinating to see if Carson Wentz can turn the page on a new chapter in his young career and make this Colts’ offense come alive. Wentz has two young and potentially dynamic receivers in Michael Pittman Jr. and Parris Campbell with a seasoned veteran, TY Hilton, as the mainstay of this receiving corps. As for the line on this game, there are mainly 2 ½’s out there as of this writing but I do see some of the best online betting sites dealing 3’s which makes the Seahawks even more attractive.

Green Bay Packers vs. New Orleans Saints (-2 ½)

Sunday, September 12, 2021 4:25 PM EDT at Mercedes-Benz Superdome

Many of the top sportsbooks have yet to release their lines on this game because there are so many moving parts. First and foremost is the status of perennial Pro Bowl quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, and the unanswered question of will he or won’t he suit up for the Pack this season? If he does, then this 2 ½ points looks like a gift against a New Orleans team trying to navigate for the first time in forever without their future Hall-of-Fame quarterback, the recently retired Drew Brees. If Rodgers balks then we get to see why Green Bay was so enamored with Jordan Love that they took him in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft, which was the first shoe to drop in incurring Rodgers’s wrath.

On the other side, there is also intrigue as to who will be under center for the Saints to open the season? Will it be the versatile Taysom Hill or the mercurial Jameis Winston? Oh, and there is another passer in the wings, the winningest quarterback Notre Dame’s storied history, Ian Book, chosen in the fourth round. This is a complete and total crapshoot. With 15 other games on the Week 1 slate, why roll the dice on this one? Just sit it out and watch it just for fun. Who am I kidding? Packers plus the points.