Indianapolis Colts will take on Seattle Seahawks in the opening round of the NFL 2021 season this weekend. Both sides want to secure places in the playoffs, as they managed to do that last season.
The Colts reached playoffs in 2020 thanks to an 11-5 regular-season record. They shared the top spot in AFC South with Tennessee Titans and faced Buffalo Bills in the first knockout round. However, they suffered a tight 27-24 defeat that ended their campaign. On the other hand, the Seahawks topped the NFC West with a 12-4 record. Despite completing the regular season with four straight wins, Seattle stumbled on the first step in the playoffs by losing to Los Angeles Rams.
Indianapolis Colts – Can they overcome injury troubles?
The hosts head to the new campaign after an excellent preseason. They managed to book all three victories after being better than the Panthers, the Vikings, and the Lions. However, Indianapolis will face selection troubles ahead of the regular season kickoff. Carson Wentz needed to go on surgery, but he should be ready for the premier match. The NFL’s best guard, Quenton Nelson, could also miss out on the Colts roster for this match, while the home side cannot count on T.Y. Hilton.
Indianapolis’ defense, led by DeForest Buckner and Darius Leonard, is among the best in the league. On the other hand, Eric Fisher strengthened the offensive line, which should probably focus on the throwing game in the first few matches. It could be a potentially fun campaign for the Colts, who believe they are not too far from challenging a place at Super Bowl.
Expected Line-Up (Offense): Jonathan Taylor, Michael Pittman Jr., Zach Pascal, Parris Campbell, Jack Doyle, Julie’n Davenport, Chris Reed, Ryan Kelly, Mark Glowinski, Braden Smith
Expected Line-Up (Defense): Al-Quadin Muhammad, DeForest Buckner, Grover Stewart, Kwity Paye, Darius Leonard, Bobby Okereke, Zaire Franklin, Rock Ya-Sin, Khari Willis, Julian Blackmon, BoPete Keyes
Quarter Back: Carson Wentz
Kicker: Rodrigo Blankenship
with best odds
Seattle Seahawks – Will they pull off a special season?
The Seahawks threw away their first two preseason games, losing pretty comfortably to the Raiders and the Broncos. However, Week 3 saw them winning against Los Angeles Chargers 27-0. Although they missed the playoffs just once in Russel Wilson’s era, the visitors have searched for a real playoff success since their 2014 Super Bowl. There is a certain amount of pressure on the Seahawks to step up this season, but they will face some challenges.
Besides Russel, Seattle has serious offensive weapons, especially in receivers Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf. On the other hand, defense now seems to be a weaker part of the team. The Seahawks are well-known for their solid defending, but we’ll see how they will handle departures of K.J. Wright and Shaquill Griffin. However, there are still enough superstars in Seattle’s defense, which will rely on Bobby Wagner and Jamal Adams.
Expected Line-Up (Offense): Chris Carson, DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett, Freddie Swain, Gerald Everett, Nick Bellore, Duane Brown, Damien Lewis, Kyle Fuller, Gabe Jackson, Brandon Shell
Expected Line-Up (Defense): L.J. Collier, Poona Ford, Al Woods, Carlos Dunlap II, Jordyn Brooks, Bobby Wagner, Cody Barton, Tre Flowers, Jamal Addams, Quandre Diggs, D.J. Reed
Quarter Back: Russel Wilson
Kicker: Jason Myers
Expert Pick #1 – Seattle Seahawks -3 @-110
I anticipate a close matchup here, and there is a slightly higher hype around the Colts among bettors. However, the Seahawks have more than a respectable team, while the hosts need to deal with injury problems. Therefore, I bet on the Seahawks to cover the spread as the first pick.
Expert Pick #2 – Seattle Seahawks to Win ML @-150
If you doubt the Seahawks will beat the spread, then you may like the moneyline market. The odds are a bit lower than in the first pick, but you can still count on some juice. I believe the visitors can get back home with a win.
Expert Pick #3 – Under 48.5 @-110
Dipping into the totals market, I can see the value in backing the Under here, as both defenses are strong. Since it might be a close matchup, give me the Under here as the third bet!