Week 10 NFL Odds: Lookahead Lines Report
When I take a position on a lookahead line, I believe the current number will beat the closing line. It's an effort to get ahead of the market movement to land the best number. Basically, I'm parlaying my handicap. In essence, if I'm right in my Week 9 evaluation of the team and market, I will have an advantage in predicting where the line movement will come first in Week 10.
Friends don't let friends bet NFL sides on game day. I understand the appeal of getting action down on a game about to kick off, but please, for the love of all things sacred, don't do it. I understand that most casual bettors out there don't have time to comb through every news blurb and injury report the moment it comes out. It's difficult for most bettors to feel informed early in the week, or even more, right when next week's line is posted on Sunday evening for the following week's games.
In my opinion, the only way to consistently put yourself in a position to gain positive expected value (+EV) while betting on NFL sides is to beat the closing line. Sportsbooks gradually increase the limits they let bettors get down as the week progresses, indicating that the book feels they've priced the game correctly. So unless you're waiting later in the week because you're betting five-to-six figures on a side, you're +EV increases if you can get down on a number before it's sharpened by the whales.
Each week of the season, I'll provide a first glance at the upcoming NFL slate through the lens of lookahead lines. This brief lookahead window offers a sneak peek at how teams are valued by bookmakers before the start of the week. It's also an opportunity to act before the games are posted and sharpened on Sunday evening—after the previous week's games are complete. These lines are a true indicator of how bookmakers value each team, without the influence of the recency bias that comes after watching eight hours of football earlier in the day. Depending on the bookmaker, and bettor for that matter, you may or may not be able to get the type of action down you'd like, depending on your unit sizing. The key is understanding where the value is on the board in any given week, and that is easier to do once you know what the opening number is.
For reference, I'll use the initial odds released by Westgate back in May to show you how the game opened. Then, I'll note the consensus for each current Week 9 lookahead line, with the spread listed based on the home team:
|GAME||CURRENT LINE (11/3)||PRESEASON LOOKAHEAD LINE|
|Falcons @ Panthers||+1.5||-3|
|Seahawks @ Buccaneers||-2.5||-9.5|
|Vikings @ Bills||-9.5||-7.5|
|Lions @ Bears||-1.5||-1.5|
|Broncos @ Titans||-2||PK|
|Jaguars @ Chiefs||-9.5||-10|
|Browns @ Dolphins||-5.5||N/A|
|Texans @ Giants||-6||-3|
|Saints @ Steelers||+2.5||-1.5|
|Colts @ Raiders||-3.5||-2|
|Cowboys @ Packers||+3||-4|
|Cardinals @ Rams||-3||-6|
|Chargers @ 49ers||-3.5||PK|
|Commanders @ Eagles||-10.5||-3.5|
Week 10 Lookahead Lines Takeaways
- I'm always on the hunt for scheduling and travel advantages. These things are mostly already baked into the number, but there are instances each week that aren't accurately accounted for in the market.
- Bye Weeks: Ravens, Bengals, Patriots, Jets
Falcons @ Panthers (+1.5)
This is a quick run back of Week 8's matchup, which was a snoozefest for over two hours until the lid popped off in the fourth quarter. Did you come out of that game thinking the Falcons are clearly the better team? One that should be favorites on the road just two weeks later? Yeah, neither did I.
Seahawks @ Buccaneers (-2.5)
This is back-to-back road games for the Seahawks, this time with a long flight from Seattle to Tampa Bay for what's looking like a key matchup in the NFC playoff race. A look back at the preseason line here indicates what a surprise that is, as the Buccaneers opened as 9.5-point favorites. It feels like the betting public has moved past the waiting stage for Seattle to come back down to earth while optimism on Tampa Bay righting the ship remains. A Buccaneers win against the Rams this week, regardless of what happens between the Cardinals and Seahawks, and this re-opens at Tampa Bay -3.
Lions @ Bears (-1.5)
The Bears are a lot more interesting if they're going to let Justin Fields run more often. This may be one of the last winnable games for both of these clubs, and Week 9's results could move this around the zero on either side, but it's unlikely we'll reach -3 either way. I don't have an early lean, but my preference would be the Moneyline for whoever ends up as the underdog.
Texans @ Giants (-6)
Folks were all bent out of shape that the Giants were road underdogs in Seattle last week. But it was a long road trip to face a plucky Seahawks team in one of the league's toughest spots to play, so it made sense. But now they're home off their bye against this dysfunctional Texans team, and they're less than a touchdown favorite? This is disrespectful. After the Eagles curb stomp the Texans on Thursday night, this will move to 7.
Saints @ Steelers (+2.5)
For the Saints, this is a road game on short rest against a team coming off of their bye. Not great. Situational bettors will love backing the Steelers here, and they're a great teaser leg at this number.
Cowboys @ Packers (+3)
I doubt Aaron Rodgers has been a home dog more than a handful of times in his NFL career, but I'm sure they're excited to return home after three straight on the road. The matchup here is tough for the Packers unless they can figure out how to stop the run. Even with Dak Prescott returning, the Cowboys have remained a run-centric offense, and the Packers defense ranks among the bottom five in rush EPA per play, rushing yards per game, and explosive rush rate allowed.
Cardinals @ Rams (-3)
I'm down on the Rams and know I'm not alone. I struggle to see them moving the ball consistently against anyone right now, and this blitz-heavy scheme from Arizona could cause Matthew Stafford problems. I also can't understand why the Cardinals are the only team that routinely makes Cooper Kupp look human, but he's topped 100 yards against them just once in nine tries and was held to four catches and 44 yards in their first meeting back in Week 3. The Cardinals make another terrific teaser leg.
Commanders @ Eagles (-10.5)
The scheduling gods continue to smile upon the Eagles. This time they get a home game on Monday night after playing on Thursday night the week before. Two straight Sundays off, with the extra day's rest on top of the extra rest that comes from playing on Thursday night, is such an added bonus at this time of the year.
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