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Bettors get look at NFL Week 1 lines at Las Vegas sportsbooks

Updated April 20, 2019 - 4:51 pm

Caesars Entertainment sportsbook director Bill Sattler said there’s “a lot of talk about the NFL schedule but not a lot of action” on the Week 1 games.

Not yet, anyway.

“They’re just taking a look at it and talking about it,” Sattler said. “As far as action goes, nothing earth shattering to be concerned about.”

The NFL released its 2019 schedule Wednesday, and Las Vegas sportsbooks then unveiled their lines for Week 1, giving bettors spring and summer to prepare for the openers.

The Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers open the season Sept. 5 in a game that Sattler figures could draw a considerable handle, with most books favoring the Bears by 3½ or 4 points. Notable Sunday matchups include the Tennessee Titans at the upstart Cleveland Browns, and the Indianapolis Colts at the Los Angeles Chargers.

The defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots are 6-point favorites over the Pittsburgh Steelers on “Sunday Night Football.”

“So far, I see a lot of values for players on some of the ’dogs, based on the opposing line,” Sattler said. “The Titans-Browns is interesting. The Browns are the sexy team now. Everybody’s talking about them. The Titans are going to go in there, and I think there will be pressure on the Titans … first game going into the Dawg Pound, that’s going to be an interesting game.”

Station Casinos released its Week 1 lines Saturday, and Sunset Station sportsbook director Chuck Esposito also is intrigued by the Bears-Packers matchup and expects a hefty handle.

“Kind of a reversal, for the Bears to be the favorite after so many years of dominance from Green Bay. It’s funny how it’s turned,” Esposito said. “There’s so many questions with the Packers right now, with a new coach, and did they do enough to upgrade right now to help (quarterback Aaron) Rodgers.”

Esposito also points to the Titans-Browns and Colts-Chargers games as Week 1 highlights and said there’s considerable interest in the Raiders’ season opener against the Denver Broncos on “Monday Night Football.”

“Week 1 always draws well,” Esposito said. “The earlier and earlier the numbers go out, when tourists come to town and even locals, they’re picking and choosing games and looking for value. The fact that they’re up before the draft right now, a lot could be contingent, possibly, on what happens draft day. I don’t think you’ll see a lot of movement.”

Contact reporter Sam Gordon at sgordon@reviewjournal.com. Follow @BySamGordon on Twitter.

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