The NFL preseason is underway. While the 2023 Hall of Fame Game took place on Thursday, August 3 the first official preseason weekend starts on Thursday, August 10. Every team is expected to be in action, with games spread between Thursday and Sunday. On a rare Friday full of football action, six games are scheduled for Friday, August 11.
Here we break down some of our favorite bets for Friday’s NFL game slate.
All odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
NFL picks for Friday in Week 1 of preseason
Pittsburgh Steelers to win (-142)
The Steelers are heading into an important season where they need to get back to the playoffs for the sake of head coach Mike Tomlin and offensive coordinator Matt Canada. While the starters aren’t likely to be on the field for very long in the first preseason game, the offensive scheme should still be the same. This one comes down to who has the better depth chart since we will see so much of it, and the needle points towards the Steelers having the edge.
Washington Commanders vs. Cleveland Browns, under 38.5 (-110)
The preseason is typically not the time for high-scoring games. This matchup could see a change in that with the depth of quarterbacks on hand, but I’m betting that it doesn’t. Each team needs to figure out what they are doing in the backfield for their running back depth, which should spell the ball being kept on the ground. The Hall of Fame Game finished with 37 points scored, and I think we see the under hit.
Arizona Cardinals +5.5 points (-110)
Arizona will begin the regular season with a backup quarterback under center. Starter Kyler Murray is still recovering from his ACL injury that sidelined him for the end of the 2022 season. Veteran Colt McCoy and the rookie Clayton Tune will be duking it out to see who wins the honor of being named the interim starter. They will take on the Denver Broncos, and I think Arizona’s depth will help keep them in the game.
Miami Dolphins to win (+114)
The Dolphins will face the Atlanta Falcons on Friday. Miami is the better team on paper when all their starters are playing, but I think they also have the edge regarding reserves. The Falcons improved in the offseason, but things will likely get ugly when the starters come out. I think the Dolphins are deeper, and it will lead to their pulling off the “upset” win.