NFL betting Week 3: Focus on QB pressure for your teaser

Week 2 of the NFL season proved to be about balancing the overreactions from the opening week. After Buffalo was upset at home by a stout Steelers defense, the Bills rebounded in a 35-0 win over Miami. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh laid an egg in a 26-17 loss to the Raiders. A few things that remained true: the Falcons stink, the Jets are pretty awful and the Chiefs still can’t cover a spread.

On to Week 3! With a 2-0 teaser record, it’s time to lay out the options for this week’s matchups.

As a reminder, here is the basic teaser strategy. If you want a bit more of an explanation, refer back to the Week 1 teaser article

  • Play 6-point teasers in games with a total of 49 points or less.

  • Tease home favorites of 7.5, 8, 8.5, or 9 points down.

  • Tease home underdogs of 1, 1.5, 2, 2.5 points up.

  • Tease road underdogs of 1, 1.5, 2, or 2.5 points up.

Week 3 NFL six-point teaser betting options

Using the above rules to a tee, the games that could be used as a teaser leg for this week include:

Panthers (-1.5) at Texans

Washington at Bills (-1.5)

Saints (+8.5) at Patriots

Falcons (+9) at Giants (the exception)

Buccaneers at Rams (+7)

Seahawks at Vikings (+8)

Why teasing the Falcons from 3 up to 9 is an exception to the rule

If you see an underdog of +3 trending as if it might make the move from +3 to +2.5, then getting the dog at +9 in teasers before it moves everywhere makes some sense.

Take the Eagles last week. The line was Philly +3 at (-120) juice and fell to +2.5 by kickoff. Philadelphia at +3 did not cover but getting Eagles at +9 on a teaser did, as did a +8.5 teaser if you got that line.

This isn’t a classic strategy. However, if indicators are strong that a fall to 2.5 is probable, like the Falcons at +3 (-120), then that becomes a teaser-leg option.

Why Cardinals (-1.5) are not the best option

With a game total of 52, this is the reason I left Arizona out of the mix. Though you do cross through the 3 and 7, the total is too high. If you are convinced of the Cardinals this week, just tread softly, as points become less valuable with a high total.

Through two games, Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence is averaging just a 50% completion rate, a far cry from the Heisman contender we saw at Clemson. However, facing the Cardinals could be a good matchup as they allowed Kirk Cousins three passing touchdowns and just one sack on two touches. I think we have yet to see what Lawrence is capable of, so for me, leaving the Cardinals off as an option is the best move.

As you can see, there are quite a few options for this week, which could make things tricky. Keep it simple and stick to the fundamentals. What I like to look at first typically is quarterback pressure. For this week, this simple thought helps me to consider taking quarterbacks who won’t be pressured and fade quarterbacks who will be.

Week 3 six-point teaser: Panthers (-1.5) and Rams (+7.5)

Through two weeks of football, the Panthers lead the league in quarterback sacks. Against the Jets and rookie QB Zach Wilson, the Panthers generated six sacks on 51 touches and one interception. Against Jameis Winston and the Saints, the Panthers generated four sacks on 31 touches, and two interceptions. This after Winston was on a three-start streak of throwing zero interceptions.

Now, the Panthers get a rookie quarterback in his first start in Davis Mills with Tyrod Taylor out from injury. In his college career, Mills had an 18-8 touchdowns-to-interceptions ratio and was sacked 23 times. As the relief QB in last week’s 31-21 loss to the Browns, Mills had just a 44% completion rating, a single passing touchdown and one interception, plus one fumble. 

Matthew Stafford has always been a stud, but now we are seeing him shine under a better coach with a team that has a great offensive line and great offensive weapons.

The Bucs had a top-five pass rush last year, but through two games this season it has generated just two sacks on just 19 touches. Very un-Tampa Bay like. Give Stafford the time, he’ll make some plays and keep this close.