The calendar has officially flipped to October, which means we have just a couple more months left of 2020. The MLB playoff bonanza and Game 1 of the NBA Finals gave us plenty of betting action on Wednesday, so what does Thursday have in store?
Well, we have more baseball playoffs. We also have some Spanish soccer action, with Lionel Messi and Barcelona taking on Celta Vigo in La Liga, as well as a Thursday Night Football showdown for the ages. The winless New York Jets will host the winless Denver Broncos at MetLife Stadium. Get excited!
BetOnline.ag is offering boosted odds ahead of Thursday’s action, as always.
Barcelona had a forgettable end to the 2019-20 campaign. The Blaugrana blew a sizable lead at the top of the league table to lose the title at the hands of rivals Real Madrid. Barca were then embarrassed in Champions League in an 8-1 thrashing to Bayern Munich in the quarterfinals.
Those results ultimately got Quique Setien sacked, and it nearly caused Lionel Messi to skip town, too. Messi remains, but Luis Suarez is gone. The new-look side got off to a positive start under new manager Ronald Koeman, with a 4-0 triumph over Villarreal to begin league play on September 27. Barca scored all four goals before halftime in an easy win.
Barcelona are hefty -205 favorites on the road in this one, though they are merely one-goal favorites. Celta Vigo played Barcelona to a 2-2 draw in their most recent clash, though they are just 1-2-0 through their first three matches in La Liga this season.
Barca have not won away at Celta Vigo since 2015, but I think that streak ends today. The lack of home-field advantage without fans in the stadium will be meaningful, so Barcelona should come away with all three points.
The Denver Broncos are only one-point underdogs tonight at the Jets despite the fact that Denver is already on its third quarterback of the young season. Brett Rypien, who has thrown a total of nine NFL passes, will get his first career start tonight on the road.
The Broncos were a trendy pick to nab a Wild Card spot out of the AFC this season, but they’re off to a winless start thanks in large part to injuries. Even without Drew Lock, Courtland Sutton, and (likely) Phillip Lindsay, oddsmakers are expecting a close game.
With Lindsay expected to miss this game with a toe issue, Melvin Gordon should see the bulk of the workload in the Broncos’ backfield.
I would also think Gordon will be relied upon more heavily with Rypien taking the snaps. Gordon carried the ball 19 times two weeks ago, but he got just eight carries last week after Denver fell into an early hole against Tampa Bay.
Gordon also gets a decent amount of work in the passing game, so he should be the focal point offensively with the Broncos down so many other key pieces. Denver should be running the ball with a good amount of regularity in this one, which makes Gordon to score the game’s first TD awfully alluring at +600.
Can the Jets win tonight? They likely won’t have a better opportunity all season. The New York Jets have looked like the most clueless team in the NFL through the first three weeks, as they have been beaten by a cumulative score of 94-37. They looked completely hapless on both sides of the ball in last week’s 36-7 shellacking in Indianapolis.
Tonight, though, they’re favored by default. They’re facing a rookie QB at home, and a Denver offense in general that is missing most of its talent. Of course, the Jets aren’t without their own injury woes. Le’Veon Bell and Breshad Perriman are out. Chris Hogan, Jamison Crowder, and Mekhi Becton are all questionable.
I think the Jets stand a solid chance of winning tonight, but the over on 41.5 points feels like a reach. In terms of DVOA through the first three weeks of the season, the Broncos rank 30th, and the Jets rank 31st. Only the Washington Football Team has been more impotent offensively. These are some very bad offensive teams.
Frankly, none of these are great options. Betting on the first player to score a touchdown in a football game is a risky endeavor, and you’re banking on an awful lot of things going right for that to happen.
However, the +600 odds on Gordon to score first make sense. He might be the best offensive player in the entire game, which is really something when you consider that Melvin Gordon is essentially an average NFL running back. That’s how bad these offenses are.
As a result of that, and with the odds being the way they are, I think it’s viable to take a stab at Gordon to be the first to find the end zone tonight. The +600 odds give you plenty of bang for your buck.
I’ll pass on the other NFL bet, mostly because I seriously doubt either team’s ability to score enough points to hit the over. It’s really that simple.
The soccer bet is passable, as well. The over on 3.5 goals may be a bit dicey, but Barcelona are fully capable of scoring four-plus goals all by themselves. When you add in Celta Vigo having one of Spain’s best strikers in Iago Aspas leading the line, it’s not crazy to think the home team can also contribute here.
If you want safety, bet on Barca to win plus the over on 3.5 goals. If you’re looking for more upside, betting on Melvin Gordon to score the NFL game’s first TD at +600 is reasonable enough.
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