Week 3 has arrived as the Panthers took down the Texans Thursday night. Sunday then offers up the Los Angeles Chargers versus the Kansas City Chiefs, the Cincinnati Bengals versus Pittsburgh Steelers, the Indianapolis Colts versus Tennessee Titans and the Seattle Seahawks versus Minnesota Vikings. There will also be a key Tampa Bay Buccaneers versus Los Angeles Rams marquee late-afternoon clash. The late week primetime games feature the Green Bay Packers versus San Francisco 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles versus Dallas Cowboys, with both clashes promising plenty of fireworks. Let’s turn our attention to a live look at NFL Week 3 odds at leading US sportsbooks.
NFL Week 3 odds
Live NFL Week 3 odds from the top sportsbooks in the US are available to wager on below with point spreads, moneylines and over unders.
- Eli Hershkovich: My Week 3 NFL Best Bets
How the NFL Week 3 odds are changing
Here we look at how NFL Week 3 odds are changing in the days leading up to the games. Below are the lookahead lines.
- Panthers (-4) at Texans (+4)
- Cardinals (-6.5) at Jaguars (+6.5)
- Colts (+3.5) at Titans (-3.5)
- Washington (+8.5) at Bills (-8.5)
- Saints (+1) at Patriots (-1)
- Chargers (+7) at Chiefs (-7)
- Bears (+9.5) at Browns (-9.5)
- Falcons (+2.5) at Giants (-2.5)
- Dolphins (+1.5) at Raiders (-1.5)
- Jets (+8.5) at Broncos (-8.5)
- Buccaneers (+1.5) at Rams (-1.5)
- Seahawks (-2.5) at Vikings (+2.5)
- Packers (+3) at 49ers (-3)
- Eagles (+3.5) at Cowboys (-3.5)
|Game||Lookahead lines||Monday spreads||Current spreads||Moneyline|
|Panthers at Texans||Panthers -4||Panthers -7.5||Panthers -8||Panthers -410, Texans +330|
|Cardinals at Jaguars||Cardinals -6.5||Cardinals -7.5||Cardinals -7.5||Cardinals -375, Jaguars +300|
|Colts at Titans||Titans -3.5||Titans -5||Titans -4.5||Titans -245, Colts +200|
|Ravens at Lions||Ravens -9.5||Ravens -9.5||Ravens -7.5||Ravens -400, Lions +315|
|Washington at Bills||Bills -8.5||Bills -8.5||Bills -7||Bills -375, Washington +300|
|Saints at Patriots||Patriots -1||Patriots -3||Patriots -3||Patriots -146, Saints +124|
|Chargers at Chiefs||Chiefs -7||Chiefs -7||Chiefs -7||Chiefs -320, Chargers +260|
|Bears at Browns||Browns -9.5||Browns -7.5||Browns -7.5||Browns -335, Bears +270|
|Bengals at Steelers||Steelers -4.5||Steelers -4.5||Steelers -3||Steelers -166, Bengals +140|
|Falcons at Giants||Giants -2.5||Giants -3||Giants -3||Giants -154, Falcons +130|
|Dolphins at Raiders||Raiders -1.5||Raiders -4.5||Raiders -3.5||Raiders -180, Dolphins +152|
|Jets at Broncos||Broncos -8,5||Broncos -10.5||Broncos -10.5||Broncos -590, Jets +440|
|Buccaneers at Rams||Rams -1.5||Rams -1.5||Buccaneers -1.5||Buccaneers -126, Rams +108|
|Seahawks at Vikings||Seahawks -2.5||Seahawks -1.5||Seahawks -2.5||Seahawks -134, Vikings +114|
|Packers at 49ers||49ers -3||49ers -3.5||49ers -3||49ers -166, Packers +140|
|Eagles at Cowboys||Cowboys -3.5||Cowboys -3.5||Cowboys -3||Cowboys -176, Eagles +148|
Thursday, Sept. 23
Carolina Panthers at Houston Texans
The Panthers moved to 2-0 at the Saints’ expense on Sunday on the strength of another pair of strong performances from Sam Darnold and Christian McCaffrey, in addition to a suffocating effort by their defense. The Texans, meanwhile, continued to look better than many expected by giving the Browns a legitimate test at home before falling, 31-21. It was a game that saw starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor sit out the second half of due to a hamstring injury. That injury will also keep Taylor out of the Thursday night affair.
Carolina impressively handled a New Orleans team that had looked unstoppable in its opener, and the difference in Darnold’s play compared to his Jets days is stark. The 2018 third overall pick is finally living up to his pedigree as he has completed 68.5 percent of his passes for 584 yards and three TDs thus far. Darnold is quickly building a rapport with the entirety of his pass-catching corps, including McCaffrey, who already has a 14-154 line through the air over the first two games.
Taylor was officially listed as “day to day” as of Monday afternoon, but given the tricky nature of hamstring injuries it would seem a lot to ask of the veteran to be ready for Thursday night. Taylor had gotten off to a red-hot start in the first half Sunday and actually pulled the hammy on a touchdown run, which left overmatched third-round pick Davis Mills to try and hold down the fort. Mills did manage a touchdown pass to Brandin Cooks and had the Texans within three points in the second half at that point. If Taylor can’t go, Mills will get the call, as reports are Deshaun Watson will remain inactive despite Houston potentially being in dire straits under center.
Sunday, Sept. 26
Washington Football Team at Buffalo Bills
The Football Team was fortunate to notch its first win in Week 2 on Thursday night, upending the division-rival Giants by a 30-29 score when Dustin Hopkins got a second chance at a game-winning field goal. The Bills bounced back from a season-opening loss to the Steelers to thoroughly dominate the Dolphins by a 35-0 score, benefiting from the fact Miami starting QB Tua Tagovailoa exited the game early with a rib injury.
Taylor Heinicke was a hit in his first start in place of Ryan Fitzpatrick (hip), throwing for 336 yards and two touchdowns. Heinicke’s rapport with Terry McLaurin (11-107-1) was especially evident, but the duo will be tested to replicate their success against a stingy Bills secondary. Antonio Gibson also went from a workload of 20 carries in the opener to just 13 in Week 2 partly due to game script, but he could be leaned on heavily to keep the pressure off the young quarterback in one of the league’s tougher road assignments.
Josh Allen and his weapons in the air attack have yet to enjoy their first true breakout game of the new season, although Sunday against Miami that was mostly by design with the Tua-less Fins never really threatening. Backfield mates Devin Singletary and Zack Moss were the primary beneficiaries of that development, but they’ll be in for a stiffer test in this matchup against a Washington front seven that is active and stopped the run very well against the Chargers in Week 1 before seeing Saquon Barkley break off a few positive gains against them last week.
Despite Washington’s Week 2 win and Heinicke’s strong showing, the Bills opened the week as comfortable touchdown-plus home favorites.
Chicago Bears at Cleveland Browns
The Chicago Bears put the nightmare of a Week 1 throttling at the hands of the Rams behind them in Week 2, notching a 20-17 win over the Bengals. The Browns also got in the win column for the first time, upending the visiting Texans by a 31-21 score in a game in which Baker Mayfield only threw two incomplete passes. Chicago’s most relevant development this past Sunday was early exit of Andy Dalton, who suffered a bone bruise in his knee and therefore gave way to rookie Justin Fields. Fields didn’t exactly set the Windy City aflame with his performance – he completed six of 13 passes for 60 yards and an interception while rushing for 31 more on 10 carries – but he got some extended regular-season experience under his belt and will be the starter in Week 3 against the Browns.
The Browns had their own key injury occur, as Jarvis Landry left Sunday’s game in the first quarter with what was subsequently diagnosed as an MCL sprain. Landry landed on IR this week and will miss at least three games. The Browns were already without Odell Beckham, Jr., who did manage to get a pregame workout in without setbacks and will likely be ready for this contest against Chicago.
Baltimore Ravens at Detroit Lions
The Ravens pulled off a long-awaited win over nemesis Patrick Mahomes and his Chiefs on Sunday night, notching a memorable 36-35 home win. The Lions hung with the Packers in the first half of their Monday night loss, but ultimately submitted to Aaron Rodgers and friends.
Baltimore literally needed every yard and a late Clyde Edwards-Helaire fumble Sunday night to pull off the comeback from a double-digit fourth-quarter deficit. The Ravens were able to get enough from their passing game to keep pace and saw Marquise Brown (6-113-1) turn in his second straight encouraging performance to open the season. Meanwhile, young Ty’Son Williams could be the savior of the Baltimore backfield after a jaw-dropping rash of injuries at the position just before the start of the season, as he gained 77 yards on 13 carries and saw more work than veterans Latavius Murray and Devonta Freeman.
The Ravens are unsurprisingly already installed as heavy road favorites.
Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans ()
The Colts surprisingly dropped to 0-2 to open the season Sunday with a narrow loss to the visiting Rams that saw Carson Wentz suffer sprains to both ankles. The Titans were able to notch their first win in dramatic fashion, coming back from a two-touchdown deficit in the second half to nip the Seahawks by a 33-30 score.
It is likely that Wentz will play in this Sunday’s game as he returned to practice on Friday. There’s clearly a major drop-off between Wentz, who’d been playing very well prior to the injury, and young backup Jacob Eason, who looked a bit lost against the Rams late.
The Titans naturally are thankful for the hard-fought victory over Seattle, but there’s no question the coaches have no shortage of issues to sort through on both sides of the ball. Tennessee’s pass protection remains a concern after Ryan Tannehill was sacked three times and hit on eight occasions overall Sunday, while the secondary particularly looks highly susceptible to the deep ball. Nevertheless, the fact that two of the team’s top offensive players – Derrick Henry (182 rushing yards, three TDs) and Julio Jones (6-128)– both rose to the occasion is certainly heartening after a very disappointing Week 1 result against the Cardinals.
Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs ()
The Chargers lost a heartbreaker to the Cowboys at home in Week 2, with Greg Zuerlein’s 56-yard field goal hitting as time expired to snap a 17-17 tie. The Chiefs lost in even more maddening fashion, as Clyde Edwards-Helaire fumbled when Kansas City appeared to be on the verge of a game-winning field-goal attempt. A subsequent fourth-down conversion by Lamar Jackson led to a one-point defeat against Baltimore.
The core quartet of Justin Herbert, Austin Ekeler, Keenan Allen and Mike Williams all seem to be very good fits for new coordinator Joe Lombardi’s scheme. Nevertheless, Los Angeles had trouble converting their 24 first downs and 408 total yards into enough points Sunday, something that won’t really be an option against the Chiefs if L.A. hopes to keep up and avoid falling to 1-2.
Patrick Mahomes and especially Andy Reid have been at this for long enough that the one-point loss won’t linger, particularly in front of the Arrowhead Stadium home crowd. The Chiefs offense managed to still light up the scoreboard Sunday night with Tyreek Hill stymied to the tune of just three receptions for 14 yards, which is encouraging in a sense, as both Mecole Hardman (5-55) and Byron Pringle (2-63-1) took on bigger roles and were generally productive within them.
The Chargers gave KC a difficult time out west last season in the first meeting before succumbing by a 23-20 score in overtime and then notched a Week 17 win against a Mahomes-less squad. Oddsmakers had the Chiefs listed as just under a touchdown home favorite as the week began.
Arizona Cardinals () at Jacksonville Jaguars
The Cardinals continued to get MVP-caliber play from Kyler Murray on Sunday and wound up edging the Vikings. Jacksonville looked like a rookie-quarterback-led team for the second straight week, struggling in their home opener against the Broncos.
Murray encouragingly began displaying some chemistry with offseason acquisition A.J. Green in Sunday’s win, getting the multi-time Pro Bowler more consistently involved. That should be a boon for an already powerful passing game that has seen DeAndre Hopkins, Christian Kirk and even rookie Rondale Moore (7-114-1 on Sunday) already thrive. The defense did take a step back Sunday while allowing Dalvin Cook, Adam Thielen and rookie K.J. Osborn to have some big performances, but their matchup does get notably easier Sunday.
Trevor Lawrence scuffled even more so against Denver than he had in his first NFL game versus Houston, throwing for just 118 yards and two interceptions. Lawrence does seem to have some instant chemistry with veteran Marvin Jones, but he’s yet to get anything going with D.J. Chark and could well have a target on his back in this matchup against an aggressive Cardinals defense with plenty of athleticism in its front seven.
Arizona gained a point on their projected advantage following Week 2 outcomes.
New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots ()
The Saints were the biggest Jekyll-and-Hyde team of Week 2, looking nothing like the unit that had decimated Aaron Rodgers and company in the opener while dropping a 26-7 decision to the Panthers. New England found a way to rebound from a one-point season-opening disappointment against the Dolphins to topple the Jets on the road, 25-6.
Jameis Winston’s carriage turned into a massive pumpkin in Week 2, with the one-time first overall pick exhibiting many of the same ball-security issues that ultimately got him jettisoned from his original NFL home of Tampa Bay. Sean Payton only inserted Taysom Hill into the contest to run the ball even as Winston threw two interceptions and took four sacks, but it’s hard to imagine the coach showing the same restraint if things begin unraveling in similar fashion in the first half versus New England.
Mac Jones continued to validate the Patriots’ decision to cut ties with Cam Newton at the end of preseason, staying away from turnovers and managing the game effectively overall. Bill Belichick also gave Damien Harris room for atonement after his back-breaking Week 1 fumble, and the power back responded with a memorable 26-yard touchdown run. The Saints are still one of the toughest run defenses in the league as Aaron Jones and even Christian McCaffrey can already attest to this season, so Jones could have some bullets to dodge if his offense is turned one-dimensional.
With New Orleans’ coaching staff potentially still in flux throughout the coming week due to the team’s COVID-19 breakout and their putrid performance Sunday, the line notably grew two more points from the lookahead line in favor of the home squad as the week began.
Atlanta Falcons at New York Giants ()
The Falcons gave the Buccaneers a battle for three-plus quarters Sunday before seeing two fourth quarter pick-6’s do them in. New York, meanwhile, snatched defeat from the jaws of victory last week in Washington, dropping a 30-29 decision to their division rivals after a key special-teams penalty gave Dustin Hopkins a second chance at a game-winning field goal.
The good news for Atlanta in Sunday’s 48-25 loss was that the offense actually looked serviceable after flunking its first live run of new head coach Arthur Smith’s scheme in Week 1 against the Eagles. The Matt Ryan-Calvin Ridley connection was back in business, Cordarrelle Patterson thrived in his two-way role by scoring TDs through both the ground and air, and heralded rookie Kyle Pitts began flashing some his elite athleticism. The Giants do shape up as a favorable matchup for the passing game after allowing Teddy Bridgewater and Taylor Heinicke to carve them up over the first two games, so Atlanta could take another step forward in its learning curve in Week 3.
The good news amidst the Week 2 heartbreak for New York was strong play from Daniel Jones and improved efficiency and explosiveness from Saquon Barkley. The latter is sure to benefit from the extra few days of rest ahead of Week 3 as he continues to finish regaining full strength in his surgically repaired knee and should also be primed for closer to normal workload. The Falcons were strong against the run last season despite their losing record but have been a bit more vulnerable to open this season (127.5 RYPG allowed).
Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers ()
The Bengals were up against a tougher NFC North defense in the Bears on Sunday and it showed, as Chicago picked off Joe Burrow twice and sacked him four times on their way to a 20-17 win over Cincy. The Steelers had their own troubles and on their home field to boot, dropping their Heinz Field opener to a Raiders team that had to travel across the country and on a short week after playing on Monday night in Week 1.
Burrow’s stumble on Sunday is likely nothing to worry about over the long term, but it did give a divisional opponent with a ferocious pass rush in the Steelers a nice blueprint to go off of in preparations this week. Joe Mixon once again took on all the Bengals’ carries (20), an encouraging sign with respect to his health but also setting up what could be a highly frustrating afternoon Sunday against Pittsburgh’s brick wall of a defensive front.
Ben Roethlisberger and his pass catchers enjoyed more statistical success against the Raiders than in the Week 1 upset of the Bills, although that’s little consolation. Nevertheless, it does seem to indicate the various skill players are adapting to new coordinator Matt Canada’s scheme, and rookie Najee Harris’ touchdown reception gave Steelers fans and coaches a glimpse of what he’s going to bring to the table. However, as has often been the case for Pittsburgh the last season-plus, they finished with more injured players than they entered the game with, as T.J. Watt suffered a groin strain and Tyson Alualu fractured his ankle during the contest, while Joe Haden and Devin Bush were both inactives due to groin injuries. Watt will be out on Sunday against Cincy.
New York Jets at Denver Broncos ()
The Jets and Zach Wilson in particular took an unsurprising step back Sunday against the savvy veteran defense of the Patriots while falling by a 25-6 score. Meanwhile, the Broncos were impressive while moving to 2-0, taking care of business against another big-name rookie QB in Trevor Lawrence on the way to a 23-13 road win.
Wilson got the proverbial NFL rookie hazing from Bill Belichick on Sunday, throwing four interceptions and taking four sacks. The first-round pick had to play without sure-handed veteran Jamison Crowder (groin) again and saw No. 1 wideout Corey Davis taken out of the equation to the tune of just two grabs. On the brighter side, rookie Michael Carter (88 total yards) appears to be carving out a lead-back role and the defense hasn’t been a total abomination, but it will be challenged by a red-hot Teddy Bridgewater on his home field.
Speaking of the veteran QB, he appears to have no intention of allowing Drew Lock to take back the top QB job anytime soon, now having completed 77.1 percent of his passes and forging a 4:0 TD:INT over his first two games. Courtland Sutton (9-159-1 in Week 2) seems to be all the way back from last year’s knee injury, while Carter’s college backfield mate Javonte Williams (13-64 on the ground Sunday) is also making inroads into playing time alongside Melvin Gordon.
The line has unsurprisingly moved another two points in Denver’s favor since the open considering the 2-0 Broncos have also made an early impression with a defense that now has both Von Miller and Bradley Chubb back in the fold.
Miami Dolphins at Las Vegas Raiders ()
The Dolphins would undoubtedly strike their Week 2, 35-0 embarrassment at the hands of the Bills from the official NFL 2021 record if they could, and on top of the disheartening home loss, they now are without their starting QB. Tua Tagovailoa will be out on Sunday and could miss multiple weeks due to fractured ribs. The Raiders, meanwhile, are living their best life in comparison, having opened the season with wins over AFC powerhouses Baltimore and Pittsburgh and accomplishing the latter victory without Josh Jacobs.
How different Sunday’s debacle against Buffalo would have turned out for Miami with a healthy Tagovailoa will never be known, but Miami’s breakdowns went beyond the quarterback position. Head coach Brian Flores and staff will have an abundance of issues to harp on this week ahead of a tough road battle, although having Will Fuller available for his long-awaited team debut and veteran Jacoby Brissett having the opportunity to prepare as the starter this week should help matters.
The Raiders will hope to have Jacobs back from his toe and ankle injuries for this matchup, especially after Kenyan Drake and Peyton Barber netted all of 41 yards on 20 carries against the Steelers. Then again, the Dolphins’ front seven certainly isn’t anywhere near as tough a matchup – Devin Singletary offered up a reminder of that Sunday – and Drake could have a bit of extra motivation against his old squad and the coach that cut him loose from Miami. Meanwhile, the elite caliber of Derek Carr’s play through two weeks can help Vegas get by with just nominal contributions from the running game.
Following Week 2 results and factoring in Tua’s injury, this line is on the move in favor of the Raiders after opening up at just -1.5 late last week.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Los Angeles Rams ()
This marquee matchup is preceded by impressive Week 2 wins by each squad. The Buccaneers pulled away from the Falcons late and scored a total of seven touchdowns (five offensive, two defensive) in the 48-25 win.
The Rams may not have been anywhere as prolific, but the Matthew Stafford-Cooper Kupp connection continued to sizzle in the 20-17 road win over the Colts.
Tom Brady now clearly knows Bruce Arians’ aggressive downfield attack like the back of his hand after learning it on the fly last season, and that naturally is foreboding news for the rest of the league. Brady tossed five TDs Sunday – two went to Rob Gronkowski, who looks like he’s turned back the clock to his Patriots heyday – and the defense, despite some breakdowns against Atlanta, continues to be a force. They’ll get a stiff test Sunday against the Rams invigorated passing attack and a potential 1-2 punch of Darrell Henderson and Sony Michel in the backfield.
The matchup of the Rams secondary against Brady and his arsenal of pass catchers will be a fascinating one to watch, while on the other side, Kupp will look to continue a sensational start that’s seen him rack up 16 receptions for 271 yards and three touchdowns over his first two games. The Bucs secondary did notch a pair of pick-6s off Matt Ryan on Sunday but present less resistance than their nearly impenetrable front seven, so Stafford could be in for a busy afternoon once again.
This game will naturally get plenty of betting action and will be a particularly interesting one to monitor during the week. It was a Pick ‘Em at some sportsbooks on Monday evening after opening as Rams -1.5 late last week.
Seattle Seahawks () at Minnesota Vikings
The Seahawks have some soul searching to do after blowing a 30-16 fourth-quarter lead against the Titans on Sunday, ultimately dropping a 33-30 decision in overtime. The Vikings have their own disappointment to get over, as they weren’t able to make good on a game-winning field-goal attempt as time expired to lose by a point to the Cardinals.
Seattle, despite the blown lead, has little concerns on offense, where Russell Wilson and Tyler Lockett have hit the ground running in the new season. Chris Carson was stymied by Tennessee on Sunday but is healthy and is running hard, while it’s just a matter of time before a D.K. Metcalf breakout week. The matchup sets up beautifully for the whole group in Week 3, as Minnesota has allowed 420 total yards per game through two weeks.
The Vikings, much like the Seahawks, looked very good on offense and leaky on defense in Week 2. Kirk Cousins has been impressive over the first pair of games and has finally found himself a reliable third target in rookie K.J. Osborn to go along with the lethal starting duo of Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson. Dalvin Cook (22-131 on ground Sunday) also looked back to himself against Arizona, and after what Derrick Henry did to Seattle’s defense, the star back could also be in for a big day in this matchup.
The Seahawks have seen their projected advantage shrink from an open of -2.5 to as low as -1 in some sportsbooks as of Monday evening, while the total for this game is already even with Chargers versus Chiefs on the Week 3 slate at 55.5 points.
Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers ()
The Packers bounced back from a Week 1 rout at the hands of the Saints when they took down the Lions at Lambeau Field. The 49ers moved to 2-0 on Sunday with a hard-fought 17-11 road win over the Eagles.
There was no Trey Lance appearance for the 49ers in Week 2 and Jimmy Garoppolo helped make sure of that with a solid mistake-free effort that saw him score through both the ground and air. The veteran continued to lean heavily on Deebo Samuel (6-93) in the passing game as Brandon Aiyuk continued to struggle to get his feet underneath him, and the both players – plus tight end George Kittle – could be in for busy days against a Green Bay defense that saw Jameis Winston toss five TDs against them Week 1. San Fran’s backfield is dealing with multiple injuries after all three previously healthy backs sustained injuries versus Philly, so that could be a factor in Week 3.
Prior to the Packers’ Monday night game, this line sat at an additional point in favor of the Niners from the open, with the fact Green Bay will be traveling on a short week having to be factored in.
Monday, Sept. 27
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys ()
The Eagles took a step back in Week 2 against a tough Niners defense after exploiting the Falcons in the opener, dropping a 17-11 decision at home. The Cowboys played well on both sides of the ball this past week and toughed out a 20-17 victory in Los Angeles against the Chargers on a game-winning 56-yard field goal by Greg Zuerlein.
Jalen Hurts threw for only 190 yards against San Fran, but he stayed turnover-free and also added 82 rushing yards and a score on the ground. A whopping 91 of his passing yards came on a pretty connection with speedy Quez Watkins, and a Cowboys defense that should be a bit more yielding than the Niners’ could set up Hurts and his crew for a resurgence. The Cowboys did see some solid work from their secondary in the Week 2 win in terms of a pair of picks, but Justin Herbert still threw for 338 yards on 31-for-41 passing.
Dak Prescott took a back seat to his backfield duo of Tony Pollard and Ezekiel Elliott against the Bolts, with the pair combining for 180 rushing yards and two scores on 29 carries. Philadelphia does present a tough front to run against, so Prescott and his talented receivers could be back in the spotlight. Amari Cooper, who was the star of Week 1, was notably quiet in Week 2 with a 3-24 line on five targets yet could reemerge in the primetime home opener.
Week 2 results didn’t budge the opening line, as the Cowboys remained standard home favorites for a game that should feature a sellout, raucous crowd at their expansive stadium.