Hot games and best bets for the weekend of 9/18
The king of all sports betting, NFL football, did not disappoint in Week 1 of the new 17 game season. The upsets, including the Packers and Bills and the wild Monday Night Football game made for an interesting, and for some, profitable weekend. College Football betting is front and center for Saturdays, now heading into Week 3 of the season.
NCAA Football Betting
Last week showed that the PAC-12 is alive and kicking, with Oregon making a statement in a 35-28 win over Ohio State. UCLA is rolling and Arizona gives the conference three teams to watch, for a change. Meanwhile, the BIG 10 is struggling. The loss by Ohio State is in addition to losses by Wisconsin and Indiana, the three highest-ranked BIG 10 teams in the preseason. And Notre Dame is doing their best to not win just two games into the 2021 college football season. And, the Irish are 0-2 ATS.
Purdue at #10 Notre Dame
Saturday, 9/18 at 2:30 PM ET
Line: Notre Dame (-7.5) at WagerWeb
Purdue heads to South Bend with a 2-0 record so far, defeating Oregon State at home in Week 1 and crushing a terrible UConn squad last week 49-0. The aforementioned Fighting Irish have underwhelmed and needed a miracle drive in the final two minutes to eek out a win vs. Toldeo.
Purdue is currently ranked 84th in college football vs. the pass and Notre Dame has two prime-time quarterbacks that can lead the team. The Irish are 8th in the nation in passing. The Notre Dame defense is a bit suspect vs. the run, giving up 198 yards per game, but Purdue's offense is built to be careful with the ball and control the tempo. Not exactly a winning formula against a team that can score almost at will.
The Irish should win this game, but after their first two performances, giving more than a touchdown does not seem like the winning side.
This also a hot game for many sports betting analysts, including the top prognosticators at OSGA. On the OSGA YouTube channel, Ross Benjamin and Craig Trapp break down the game.
#1 Alabama at #11 Florida
Saturday, 9/18 at 3:30 PM ET
Line: Alabama (-14.5) at all of the top online sportsbooks
Apparently Nick Saban was not happy with a 48-14 victory over and FCS school, Mercer, last weekend.
This week the Tide head to the Swamp and there most likely will be a reckoning. Florida is 2-0 but they are 0-2 ATS. This will be by far the best defense that Alabama has faced thus far in the young 2021 season, but they are still going to score. The question is, "Can Florida put enough points on the board to cover or win?"
Or, does that even matter?
The Tide will be focused on the first 'big game' of the season, unlike last Saturday. They get back starting cornerbacks Josh Jobe and Jalyn Armour-Davis, though their replacements each recorded an interception last week. Gators' coach Dan Mullen is regarded as one of the sharpest offensive minds in college football, but in 12 seasons as a head coach his teams have lost to Saban and the Tide a whopping 10 times. Finally, this is a rematch of the 2020 SEC Championship Game, when Alabama defeated Florida by six points, 52-46. Look for the Tide to Roll and cover the pointspread. This number opened at 15, but will most likely rise again as Saturday approaches.
The betting odds for Week 2 of the NFL season are much tighter and reflect some of what we saw last week. However, there are three double-digit spreads on the board with Tampa Bay favored by up to 13 points at some mainstream sportsbooks over Atlanta, Cleveland hosting Houston and laying 10.5 and Green Bay, who got smoked last week, favored by 11 at home vs. Detroit.
Las Vegas at Pittsburgh
Sunday, 9/19 at 1 PM ET
Line: Pittsburgh (-5.5) at BetAnySports
Let's face it, the fact that these two teams are 1-0 is amazing. But the real shocker was the Monday Night Football classic that went to OT and ended with a Raiders win. The Steelers and Big Ben proved they've still 'got it', though the defense carried much of the load in an upset over Buffalo. One thing is for sure, they silenced most of the critics. They get the Raiders, off that emotional win, on a short week for their home opener. and let's face it, the Raiders rode their emotions to that MNF win. Look for the Terrible towels to fly and the Steelers to cover the spread.
New England at New York Jets
Sunday, 9/19 at 1 PM ET
Line: New England (-5.5) at GTBets
The line on this game has been one of the biggest movers on the board and expect the Patriots to be even larger favorites comes Sunday. It features rookie quarterbacks Mac Jones and Zach Wilson, and is a test of which quarterback can be more efficient. FairwayJay did some analysis on rookie quarterbacks a few weeks back and his betting tips are worth checking out prior to wagering on any of the top rookies under center. This number is more of a reflection of the loss by New England last week, than the Jets having any chance to win this game. Belichik may be as mad as Nick Saban and the Patriots will continue to beat up on the Jets at the meadowlands, where they have own five straight. We'll back the Pats again this week and see a win by a TD or more.
New Orleans at Carolina
Sunday, 9/19 at 1 PM ET
Line: New Orleans (-3) at BetOnline
The Saints were mighty impressive against the explosive Packers offense and the D should carry them again on Sunday and throughout the season. The Panthers, behind Sam Darnold, looked goo but it was against the Jets. We see their offense struggling mightily. The Saints have a more talented roster and they matchup well against the Panthers’ receiving corps. The D-line should show Darnold the type of pressure he saw when he was a Jet.
New Orleans has won four consecutive times at Charlotte, while covering three times - each by 21 or more points. But that was with Drew Brees. If Winston can play within himself and avoid the turnovers, this is a Saints win. But regardless, this game goes under the posted total at pretty much every online sportsbook of 44.5.