NFL Week 7 early lines and thoughts

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Taking a look at the NFL Week 7 schedule

Major injuries are the theme as we inch towards Week 7. Monday Night Football is yet to come and my right-hand man Zachary Cohen put out a Cowboys vs. Chargers preview and some player props to think about. But, my focus is on looking ahead to the upcoming round of games.

In looking at things on Sunday night and on into Monday morning, the list of dinged-up or downright injured QBs is quite extensive and it starts with Jacksonville’s Trevor Lawrence on a short week for Thursday Night Football against the Saints. We don’t know about Justin Fields, Deshaun Watson, Jimmy Garoppolo, Ryan Tannehill, and Daniel Jones. There are also plenty of skill-position guys and offensive linemen that we don’t know about as well.

So, it’s tough to look at some lines that might make good bets, but speculating can lead to some good line value. Oh, and make sure to keep an eye on the forecasts. We had a lot of early-week totals moves for Week 6. Some worked out and some didn’t, but a lot of Unders got hit.

NFL Betting Odds | NFL Betting Splits | NFL Matchups  | Week 7 Hub

Here are some Week 7 thoughts:

(odds as of 10/15, 7:10 p.m. PT)

Jacksonville Jaguars (-1, 41.5) at New Orleans Saints

Thursday, 8:15 p.m. ET

Most of the market sits on pick ‘em for this game, but the Jaguars were -1 at time of writing for this exercise. Lawrence left very late in a game that was already over except for showing 00:00 on the clock, so who knows if he would have been able to come back or not. Head coach Doug Pederson didn’t say much after the game and Lawrence was walking around okay after the victory, but you never know on a short week. That may keep this line in a bit of a holding pattern, but the Jags have won three in a row and have looked good in the process after a slow start. As long as we don’t hear anything bad on Lawrence, I think this line goes up on the Jaguars side.

Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-2.5, 40)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

The most important position on the field is the one occupied by Desmond Ridder. Even though the Buccaneers and Baker Mayfield didn’t look very good coming off of the bye against the Lions, I would think they’d be the preferred side here for a lot of bettors. Having a bad QB almost makes a team toxic in the NFL and Atlanta is wasting a lot of talent around Ridder by running him out there on a weekly basis. Bettors may not want a part of either team, but I think fading Ridder will be popular.

Detroit Lions at Baltimore Ravens (-2.5, 44.5)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

The Ravens opted not to take their bye week after the trip to London, so they’ll be back in action this week against the Lions. The super early forecast is calling for temps in the low 60s and sunny weather, but wind could be a factor. For most bettors with Jared Goff and the Lions, the biggest factor is cold, as Goff has some pretty ugly home/road splits for his career that become very extreme based on the temperature. If the weather isn’t going to be that much of a factor here, I think the Lions will be the preferred side. Baltimore is winning games, but it hasn’t been pretty.

Miami Dolphins at Philadelphia Eagles (-2.5, 53)

Sunday, 8:20 p.m. ET

Sunday Night Football could be fun, as two very gifted offenses face off. The Dolphins have really only stepped up in class once this season and got punched in the mouth repeatedly by the Bills. The Eagles lost their perfect record to the Jets, as Jalen Hurts made some very uncharacteristic plays in the second half. The Philly offense is loaded with talent, but Shane Steichen seems to be missed, as Brian Johnson isn’t really getting it done with the play-calling. I’d also argue that the defense hasn’t really been as dominant. But, the Eagles are more proven on big stages than the Dolphins, so this is going to be a really intriguing line to watch.

Early lines I like for Week 7:

San Francisco 49ers (-7, 45) at Minnesota Vikings

Monday, 8:15 p.m. ET

With six teams on bye weeks and all the injuries, it is hard to like any games this early in the process, but the 49ers in a bounce back spot against the Vikings make sense to me. The injuries to Christian McCaffrey and Deebo Samuel are huge worries, but Brock Purdy gets to go inside, as the weather clearly impacted him in Cleveland.

This is more of a fade of Minnesota, though. Justin Jefferson’s absence was absolutely felt, as the Vikings had just four yards per play and 220 yards of total offense. They only had one trip into the red zone. I don’t think the Niners need to score a lot to cover this number, as their defense should win a lot of battles on Monday Night Football.