ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — It’s time for another year of Feldman’s Favorites, and what a year it has been in the gambling world.
Online sports betting became legal in New York at the start of the year and with it brought a slew of new gamblers, great promos, and endless commercials.
With it might come an added interest in this article, so it’s important to point out some very boring things that your mom might say to you growing up.
Make sure you know your bankroll. The terms “bankroll” and “units” mean different things to different people, but generally bankroll means the amount of money you’re willing to spend on your hobby/addiction while a “unit” is 1% of that total.
You don’t have to quite do the math on it, but just make sure that you’re wagering a responsible amount and aren’t betting past your limits. The sportsbooks would like you to think that gambling is easy and anyone can make money off of it. It’s not. There’s a reason casinos keep being built.
With that out of the way, it’s time to make some preseason predictions. Last year, my preseason picks went 6-5-1 en route to a 65-59-3 finish for the season. In 2020, I went undefeated in my preseason picks. Let’s see if we can do that again.
I’m continuing my strategy of literally picking every single game. I’m not joking. I go to a website like Playoff Predictors, take the time to pick every game, and see where I think every team is actually going to finish. It’s an inexact science, but it gives you a good sense of how you view a team it’s worked well so far.
Preseason unders are typically a better play than overs because people are optimistic to start the year and injuries can derail a season quickly.
Also, now that you’ve got a multitude of sportsbooks to choose from, I’ll be highlighting the best odds you can find at the time of this article’s publication. Though
Before We Get Started…
I’m not making any preseason bets on the Bills. Their number is 11.5. I think that’s about right. If I had to lean a certain way, I’d probably say over and wouldn’t fault you for making that bet.
But with the uncertainty at cornerback, especially to start the season, a 3-4 start is within the realm of possibility. They’d then have to close the season at 9-1 for that bet to cash.
As for the division, I’m probably higher on the Dolphins the most so I don’t think tying up your money in the -240 odds is worth it.
Patriots Under 8.5 wins
You can find this line with +105 odds at most books. And I absolutely love it. I’ve got the Patriots losing their first four games of the season and limping to a five or six-win season.
I’m very happy betting against Mac Jones and his island of misfit weapons led by Matt Patricia and Joe Judge.
In a conference that’s going to be dominated by quarterbacks, I’m not sure the Patriots have the firepower to compete. The back end of their schedule is also brutal — at Minnesota, home Buffalo, at Arizona, at Las Vegas, home Cincinnati, home Miami, at Buffalo.
It’s a risky bet going against Bill Belichick, but he can only do so much.
Jaguars Under 6.5 wins
You’re telling me I can bet against the Jaguars and all they have to do is not get to seven wins?
The Jaguars have reached seven wins just once in the last eleven years. They’ve only hit six wins twice in that span.
Getting Urban Meyer out of town will help as will the return of Travis Etienne, but I have no problems hating on franchise that backed up the Brink’s truck for Christian Kirk.
Pointsbet has the best odds at -115.
Seahawks Under 5.5 wins
You’ve got a terrible team led by a terrible quarterback that has to play in the hardest division in football. And if you want to argue that the AFC West is the toughest division in football, congratulations, they play them too!
Play it at FanDuel at +115.
Panthers Under 6.5 wins
Once again I bet against Matt Rhule. It worked last year, so let’s do it again.
The Panthers absolutely fell apart at the end of last season, losing their last seven games of the season. If Christian McCaffrey is healthy, they might be decent this year. But that’s a massive question that many fantasy owners have been asking themselves at draft time this season. I’ll lean towards unhealthy.
The roster isn’t terrible, but Rhule hasn’t shown anything at the NFL level so far and until he does (or he’s fired) I’ll keep making this bet. You can get it most places at +100.
Colts to win AFC South (-135)
The best line I found for this was on DraftKings. It’s my favorite “positive” future this year.
Last season, the only thing the Colts were missing was a quarterback and now they found one in Matt Ryan.
Everything you’ve seen coming out of training camp is how much Ryan has changed the offense. Ryan is an accurate quarterback and Carson Wentz is not. It’s amazing what that can do to a team.
They’ve got the defense, they’ve got the running game, and now they have a signal-caller under center. I expect a big resurgence for Ryan and the Colts while the Titans have been identified by many as a prime team for regression this year. They were 20th in DVOA last year for a reason.
Buccaneers to win NFC South (-230)
This line can be found on Fan Duel. Every year there’s one division winner prop where I’m more than happy to suck it up and take a heavy favorite. This is the one.
Last year, they won the division by four games. I have it as a similar result this time around.
The Saints are their biggest (and only) obstacle. James Winston back under center is nice, but a new head coach for the Saints combined with Tom Brady having one of the best rosters in the league will mean another green ticket by Week 15.
Dolphins over 8.5 wins
Well, if I hate the Patriots’ line I’ve got to love someone else’s in the division, right?
After starting the season 1-7 (including three close losses), the Dolphins rose from the dead and won seven straight to nearly make the playoffs.
Tua is fully healthy and they’ve added a dynamic playmaker in Tyreek Hill. The roster is strong and while I’m certainly not the biggest Tua fan in the world, he can be consistent enough to get them to ten wins and the final playoff spot in the AFC.
FanDuel and Caesar’s has it at -135.
Bengals Over 9.5 wins
Offense is always an easier thing to replicate year-over-year and the Bengals have one of the best young offensive cores in the league.
I was so wrong on the Bengals last year, but I’m making up for it this season.
The schedule lines up well for Cincy with them getting their bye before they face the Steelers on the road, as well as getting the Browns on the road before Watson returns from his suspension. They get to feast on the NFC South and can more than manage the AFC East, especially with them getting the Bills and Dolphins at home.
The Bengals invested heavily in their offensive line this offseason, their biggest weakness for years. Burrow and company will feast as a result.
FanDuel at -130 is the place for this bet.