For the handful of NFL teams who were starting largely untried quarterbacks on the NFL’s Week 1 on Sunday there was plenty of uncertainty.
However, what was largely predictable was that those green signal-callers were going to have trouble scoring points.
Some of those quarterbacks were first-round draft picks who were anointed into their jobs. A few of the newer QBs had some previous NFL playing experience, but not a whole lot. However, when the dust settled, the big winners were the legal online sportsbooks bettors who put their money on the Unders.
Going into Monday night’s game featuring the Aaron Rodgers-led New York Jets at home against AFC East rival Buffalo, with an Over/Under line of 45.5 at BetMGM Sportsbook, the Unders were dominant by an 11-4 margin for Thursday’s one contest and the 14 games played Sunday.
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NFL Betting Takes Advantage of First-Year QBs
Perhaps presaging the lowing-scoring opening weekend was the parade of untested quarterbacks stepping onto the field for their respective teams.
The draft’s No. 1 overall pick, Heisman Trophy-winner Bryce Young, couldn’t get the Carolina Panthers going against Atlanta who had their own relatively inexperienced quarterback, Desmond Ridder. The Falcons won, 24-10, and the Under prevailed against an O/U line of 40.5.
Still another game that had offensive futility written all over (and didn’t disappoint) was Arizona at Washington with the Commander’s Sam Howell (second NFL start) facing a shoot-out with the Cardinals’ first-time starter Joshua Dobbs (OK, we’re being a little cheeky now). The two combined for 334 passing yards, the Commanders won, 20-16, and that slid under the O/U of a modest 38.5 available with NFL betting promos.
The Houston Texans had their first-round QB C.J. Stroud take on the Ravens in Baltimore and the Ravens brushed aside the Texans, 25-9. Again, the Under was a winner against a 43.5-point line.
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One Rookie NFL QB Gets Job Done
The only game with a neophyte quarterback that managed to top the Over/Under on mobile sports betting apps was Jacksonville at Indianapolis. The Colts started their own first-round QB, Anthony Richarson. The Jaguars won, 31-21, but the combined 52 points topped the O-U line of 45.5.
A game that gets an asterisk is Green Bay at Chicago. Neither quarterback, the Packers’ Jordan Love nor the Bears’ Justin Fields, is a rookie and both have had previous starts but Love had just one start before yesterday. The Packers won, 38-20, and that total covered the O/U of 40.5.
Also, the three first-round quarterback picks from the recent NFL draft who started yesterday — Carolina’s Young, Houston’s Stroud and Indianapolis’ Richardson — not only lost their first trials-by-fire in the NFL but they all failed to cover the spread in their respective games.
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Bill Ordine was a reporter and editor in news and sports for the Philadelphia Inquirer and Baltimore Sun for 25 years, and was a lead reporter on a team that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News. Bill started reporting on casinos and gaming shortly after Atlantic City’s first gambling halls opened and wrote a syndicated column on travel to casino destinations for 10 years. He covered the World Series of Poker for a decade and his articles on gaming have appeared in many major U.S. newspapers, such as the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Miami Herald and others.