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An early look at the opening spreads and intriguing spots in Week 3

The opening point spreads are out for Week 3, minus a few notable matchups. We take a look at some intriguing early spots.

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick greets Miami Dolphins head coach Adam Gase after the Dolphins defeated the New England Patriots at Hard Rock Stadium. Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

After two weeks, regardless of what happens in Monday Night Football, only ten teams remain undefeated. Three of those teams are in the NFC West, making for a very crowded division. The Buccaneers and the Colts lead the South divisions in their respective conferences, something that not many would have predicted, but is also unlikely to last. Now that we’re beginning to see the 2019-20 NFL season take form, we can also make more informed betting decisions (or so we tell ourselves.)

The betting odds may change as each game approaches its kickoff time. When that time is near, we’ll break down each matchup in more detail. In the meantime, here are a couple of the games that I have my eyes on.

Let’s address the elephant in the room. Two games jump off the page and are simply too big to ignore. As we all saw, the New England Patriots demolished the Dolphins in Miami, easily (and that’s an understatement) winning 43-0. There are two big takeaways. The first: this New England team is a force to be reckoned with. The Pats’ +73 point differential through two games is the largest in the league, and they’re the only team that has yet to concede a touchdown. The second: this Miami Dolphins team is laughably bad. Allowing 102 points in two games is hard to do, but the Fins found a way.

And now, the Patriots head back home to take on the Jets, opening as 17.5-point favorites, while the Dolphins make the trip to Dallas to get embarrassed by the Cowboys, opening as 21-point underdogs. I understand it’s hard to make bets on spreads that big, and maybe two weeks isn’t enough to go off of, but I’m confident in saying that these spreads aren’t big enough.

In a very frustrating Thursday night game, Cam Newton and the Panthers couldn’t get the offense going, losing to the aforementioned NFC South leaders. Tampa Bay gave Carolina its second loss of the season. The last time the Panthers began the season 0-2, they went on to win the division with a 12-4 record. Oddly enough, their third loss of that season (2013-14) came against the Cardinals in Arizona.

And here we are six years later, as the 0-1-1 Cardinals host the 0-2 Panthers in Week 3. Arizona is opening as a 2.5-point underdog, but I see this as a great spot for Kyler Murray to get his first pro win. The Panthers hung with the Rams in Week 1, but didn’t seem threatening in Week 2 against a far worse opponent. Meanwhile, the Cardinals kept it close against a sharp Ravens squad in Week 2. This game may end up being a shootout, but I could see the Cards handing the Panthers their first 0-3 start in the Cam Newton era.

Below are the spreads for each Week 3 matchup, excluding Lions-Eagles, Falcons-Colts, Saints-Seahawks, and Steelers-49ers. Those four have not been released on the DK Sportsbook, with the Saints and Steelers games pending significant injury updates on Drew Brees and Ben Roethlisberger.

Thursday Night

Titans at Jaguars (+1.5)

Sunday, 1pm ET

Jets (+17.5) at Patriots
Broncos (+8) at Packers
Bengals (+5.5) at Bills
Raiders (+7.5) at Vikings
Ravens (+6.5) at Chiefs
Dolphins (+21) at Cowboys

Sunday, 4pm ET

Giants (+6.5) at Buccaneers
Panthers at Cardinals (+2.5)
Texans (+3.5) at Chargers

Sunday Night

Rams at Browns (+2.5)

Monday Night

Bears at Washington (+4.5)

All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.