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NFL Week 17 Opening Odds Analysis

Not since the preseason has there been such volatility in the NFL betting lines. Welcome to Week 17, where numbers appearing early could be drastically altered by kickoff as playoff berths and seeds get determined.

Oddsmakers usually play it straight going by power ratings to make their numbers. But during this last week of the regular season there is more line inflation on teams in must-win situations.

So the New York Jets are three-point road favorites against Buffalo and Pittsburgh is minus 10 at Cleveland. There are no Thursday, Saturday or Monday NFL games this week. The Steelers have to win and hope the Jets fall to the Bills and their former coach, Rex Ryan, if they're going to make the postseason ahead of the Jets.

Broncos, Chiefs Both Big Home Favorites

Denver can clinch the AFC West Division with a victory against San Diego. The Broncos are  7.5-point home favorites. Kansas City is a seven-point home favorite versus Oakland. The Chiefs would win the AFC West if they defeat the Raiders and Denver gets upset by the Chargers.

New England is nine-point road chalk versus Miami. If the Patriots defeat the Dolphins they earn the No. 1 seed. New England has lost each of the past two seasons at Miami.

Carolina is a 10.5-point home favorite against Tampa Bay. The Panthers would draw a bye throughout the playoffs if they beat the Buccaneers regardless of how Arizona does against Seattle. If the Panthers were to get upset by Tampa Bay then the Cardinals would be the No. 1 seed with a victory over the Seahawks. The Cardinals are 4.5-point home favorites.

No Early Line for Redskins, Colts Matchups

Bookmakers are hesitant to put out a line yet on Washington at Dallas until learning how Redskins coach Jay Gruden approaches the matchup. The Redskins captured the NFC East Division last week and with it a first-round home game. So Gruden may choose to rest starters.

Quarterback uncertainty is holding up the line between Tennessee and Indianapolis.

Green Bay is minus three with extra juice hosting Minnesota on Sunday night to determine the NFC North Division. Both teams are in the playoffs regardless of the outcome.

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