Each Monday morning during the season, I’ll preview three games with spreads that I think will move by the end of the week. This article is designed to help you get the best odds possible by helping you to decide if you should place a bet early in the week or if you should wait to wager until closer to kickoff based on potential line movements. I’ll include any early week leans and wagers that I make in my write-ups.
Note: These lines could swing wildly going forward with so many COVID-19 cases popping up across the country. I’m still going to bet games early in the week while acknowledging I’m going to be both helped and hurt by line movements throughout the week based on COVID-19 List additions. As always, bet within your means, especially with these early-week wagers.
Week 15 Opening Lines
Thursday Night Football
Los Angeles Chargers at Las Vegas Raiders (-3.5)
Carolina Panthers at Green Bay Packers (-9)
Buffalo Bills (-6) at Denver Broncos
San Francisco 49ers (-1.5) at Dallas Cowboys
Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts (-7)
Detroit Lions at Tennessee Titans (no line) — Matthew Stafford status
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-5) at Atlanta Falcons
New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins (-2.5)
Seattle Seahawks (-5) at Washington Football Teams
Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings (-3.5)
Jacksonville Jaguars at Baltimore Ravens (-13)
New York Jets at Los Angeles Rams (-16.5)
Philadelphia Eagles at Arizona Cardinals (-6)
Kansas City Chiefs (-3.5) at New Orleans Saints
Sunday Night Football
Cleveland Browns (-3.5) at New York Giants
Monday Night Football
Pittsburgh Steelers (-12) at Cincinnati Bengals
San Francisco 49ers (5-8, 5-8 ATS) vs. Dallas Cowboys (4-9, 3-10)
Opening Line: 49ers -1.5
Recent Results: The 49ers failed to cover for the fifth time in their last six contests in their 23-15 loss to Washington as three-point home favorites. The 49ers’ offense provided all the offense for the Football Team as Washington’s only scores of the day came on two defensive touchdowns. The Cowboys covered just their third spread of the season in their 30-7 victory over the hapless Bengals as three-point road underdogs. Cincinnati spotted the Cowboys 17 points with fumbles on three consecutive drives to open the game.
Injuries/Developments to Follow: It’s been a season to forget for Deebo Samuel, who could miss the rest of the season after he injured his hamstring for the second time this season. Brandon Aiyuk, Raheem Mostert, and Jeff Wilson will have to carry the offense this week. LB Fred Warner also left early with a stinger, which is an injury to follow this week. The Cowboys made it through Week 14 without any major injury news. Ezekiel Elliott nursed a calf injury before playing last week so that’s a situation to monitor.
Potential Line Movement: I’m not ready to give the Cowboys a ton of credit for going to Cincinnati and beating arguably the league’s worst team at the moment, which was greatly aided by fumbles on the Bengals first three drives last week. The 49ers have been an overrated commodity the last two weeks off of their victory against the Rams in Week 12, and this week’s line seems to be an overreaction to their performances against two good teams in the Bills and the 49ers. The 49ers should be at least field-goal favorites against the Cowboys this week because they’re still extremely weak against the run, which is the strength of the 49ers. The Cowboys also can’t get to the quarterback like Washington or even the Bills can, and Nick Mullens has been one of the more pressure-sensitive QBs. I’m still not impressed by the Cowboy offense that generated just 272 total yards despite scoring 30 points. I’m grabbing the 49ers now just in case this line climbs to a field goal or more later in the week.
Philadelphia Eagles (4-8-1, 5-8 ATS) vs. Arizona Cardinals (7-6, 4-9)
- Opening Line: Cardinals -6
- Recent Results: The Eagles played over the total and they reached 24+ points for the first time since Week 6 after inserting Jalen Hurts into the lineup for a struggling Carson Wentz. Philly won on the field, 24-21, over the NFC-leading Saints as 7.5-point home underdogs. The Cardinals snapped a five-game ATS losing streak in Week 14 as they knocked off a surging Giants squad in a decisive 26-7 victory as three-point road favorites.
- Injuries/Developments to Follow: The Eagles have some secondary issues to monitor this week after CB Darius Slay (concussion), S Rodney McLeod (knee), and CB Avonte Maddox (knee) each left early against the Saints in Week 14. The Cardinals also lost a pair of starters to injuries last week with LG Justin Pugh (calf) and DE Jordan Phillips (hamstring) leaving early against the Giants
- Potential Line Movement: I’m grabbing the Eagles at +6 early in the week because I see this line closing in the four-point range later this week with money likely to come in on the Eagles after Hurts’ impressive first NFL start. Hurts’ presence in the lineup kick-started the Eagles’ offense, especially their running game with Hurts and Miles Sanders combining for 32/221/2 rushing. Philly’s defense also kept another mobile QB Taysom Hill in check for most of the game until New Orleans’ final drive of the game with the Eagles holding a 10-point lead. The Cardinals won a lopsided affair against the Giants, but I thought New York beat itself more than the Cardinals beat them. The Giants managed just 3.2 yards per play with Daniel Jones laboring through a hamstring injury, which led to 79 plays and only 390 yards (4.9 YPP) for the Cardinals offense. The Eagles with Hurts are playing a style that’s conducive for close, lower-scoring games so I’m going to grab the extra point or two early in the week. I’m also doing a smaller parlay with the Eagles +6 and under 48.5 points. There’s no rush to bet on the Cardinals this week with the Eagles likely to find some new supporters after Hurts’ performance.
New York Jets (0-13, 4-9 ATS) vs. Los Angeles Rams (9-4, 8-5)
- Opening Line: Rams -16.5
- Recent Results: The Jets had no chance going against the Seahawks in Week 14 as they dropped a 40-3 decision as 16.5-point road underdogs in Week 14. The Rams may have a potentially dynamic running game to go along with one of the league’s best defenses after they covered their fourth spread in their last five games with a 24-3 victory over the Patriots as five-point home favorites. Sean McVay has anointed Cam Akers as his lead back as he dominated the Patriots on the ground with Akers running 171 yards on 29 carries.
- Injuries/Developments to Follow: The Jets really need rookie Denzel Mims back in the lineup after he missed Week 14 to attend to some family matters. He gives a struggling Sam Darnold a much-needed threat on the perimeter across from Breshad Perriman. The Rams escaped Week 14 relatively healthy with no major injuries to report.
- Potential Line Movement: I’m not one to typically rush to the window to lay north of two touchdowns, but I am this week with the Rams because I can only see this line going up after what we saw from the Jets and the Rams in Week 14. The Jets looked like they put a stamp on their season and mailed it in after Week 13’s debacle against the Raiders. New York got waxed by the Seahawks last week after showing some fight in recent weeks. New York will play another game on the West Coast this week and they decided to fly home between games, which I see as a negative for the Jets. Meanwhile, the Rams are coming off a dominant victory over the Patriots last week in which they choked out New England with their running game and with their top-five defense. The Rams should be able to name their score again this week. I wouldn’t be stunned if this line closes closer to 20 points by kickoff so I’m grabbing a 16.5 now for a little extra value. There’s no rush to get to the window with the Jets this week.
Brolley’s Early Week 15 Bets
Philadelphia Eagles +6
San Francisco 49ers -1.5
Los Angeles Rams -16.5