NFL Week 1 Betting Advice: Point Spreads, Over-Unders, and Picks for Atlanta-Kansas City and Philadelphia-Cleveland

In yet another new feature for football season here at MSF, the folks at will be regularly bringing you the “The Ole Computer’s” take on the biggest games in the NFL this season, as well as those closest to the heart of the Midwest.

[To see our point spreads, over-unders, and picks for all Week 1 matchups, click here.]

Here is MSF managing editor Jerod Morris sitting with The Ole Computer.

The Ole Computer is a powerful tool that has the ability to project millions of calculations per second to predict important things like:

  • How many days will Chad Johnson’s next marriage/team last?
  • How many people will get knocked out this year by a Lambeau Leap?
  • Or even, how many gallons of toilet water are used this year by America while waiting for reviews on scoring plays?

But yet, all we’re asking it to do is predict the scores on the field.

For this Sunday’s slate, we’ll give you a take on one of the two strongest projections The Ole Computer is making and some basic analysis as to why it may be so.

Atlanta Falcons at Kansas City Chiefs

  • Falcons-Chiefs Date: Sunday, September 9
  • Falcons-Chiefs Kickoff Time: 1 PM
  • Falcons-Chiefs TV Network: FOX
  • Falcons-Chiefs Point Spread: Falcons -3
  • Falcons-Chiefs Over-Under Odds: 43.5

The Falcons are very much a favorite in the public eye in Week 1 despite a poor pre-season. They ended up in the playoffs last year with a 10-6 record, while the Chiefs’ 7-9 record was reflective of their yo-yo season.

The Falcons ended their regular season scoring 133 points (34 ppg) in their final four games, but then scored just 2 in their only playoff game against the Giants.

The Chiefs ended the year 3-2, almost ending up 4-1 if not for the overtime debacle versus the Raiders. But they showed a lot of life down the stretch. Not many seem to remember the Chiefs’ strong close to last season, particularly when most of the write-ups on this game talk about how Tony G’s return to Arrowhead will make the Chiefs pay for letting him go.

The Ole Computer sees through the emotion of a game like this. It sees a more positive outcome for the Chiefs.

Here is an interesting statistic that allows us to see into the minds of the linesmakers who set the edge in this game to the Falcons winning by at least a field goal.

  • In Week 1, +1 to +3 home dogs within a margin of turnovers that favor the home side = 12-4-0 (+6.6 ppg) since 1990.

Computer Projects a Final Score of:


Not only does The Ole Computer not respect the Falcons to win by a field goal, but it says they will lose by almost a touchdown.

It’s saying that the public, which is wrong more often than it is right, will be looking positively at the Falcons while not realizing that if the Chiefs’ protect the ball – which they clearly will be focused on doing and more prepared to do with their offense healthy again – they are likely to score the victory.

The line was near even, (Atl -1) many moons ago, but the more hype this game brought, the more the people remember how “good” the Falcons are (were), but they seem to forget why the Chiefs’ went 7-9 last year (injuries, poor coaching) and that many of those elements are gone.

The departure of Todd Haley has clearly left QB Matt Cassel more at ease. Combined with the returns of stars like Jamaal Charles and Eric Berry, Kansas City should be better than 7-9 this season.

The Total (Over/Under) of 43.5, has moved up dramatically, from as low as 40.5. Something clearly is telling the people that are betting lots of dough that this game has the potential to be a shootout.

The Play:

  • 1 Unit -110 KC +3 ($11.00 to return $21.00)
  • 1 Unit – KC/Atl Over 43.5 ($11 to return $21.00)


***If you’d like to get the full stats, on every team in the league – as well as the best bets of the night via email – sign up now to the website, or signup to the free email list.

Bonus game!

Philadelphia Eagles at Cleveland Browns

  • Eagles-Browns Date: Sunday, September 9
  • Eagles-Browns Kickoff Time: 1 PM
  • Eagles-Browns TV Network: FOX
  • Eagles-Browns Point Spread: Eagles -9.5
  • Eagles-Browns Over-Under Odds: 43.5

One of the active trends The Ole Computer sees here the past decade is again in the Turnover margin, which in this case of processing the numbers is 46-13-4 (+5.8 ppg, 77.9% ATS) on the Eagles. Within this system there is also a small trend that says that 3+ road / 5+ home favorites are 4-0 ATS / 4-0 SU.

Also from an oddsmaker point of view, there is a lot of “dead space” here from 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9, and 9.5. Essentially, from one casually watching the point spread move up this past week, it means very little as very few games actually fall on 8, and 9. They are trying to make it so that Phily seems like they have to win by A LOT of points, and hope you take the lowly Browns.

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