Week 1 of the NFL regular season is finally upon us, and the league wasted no time in setting up several intriguing matchups to start the season off with a bang. We preview the top matchups for Week 1, and break down the odds and game lines that’ll make the NFL’s opening day a can’t miss.

 

Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots (-9.5) Thursday at 8:30 PM ET on NBC

The combination of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick has been the cornerstone of the New England Patriots franchise since 2001. The dynamic duo will look to push for their sixth Super Bowl Championship this season. However, Brady will be without his top receiver in 2017, as Julian Edelman went down with a torn ACL in the third game of the preseason and will be out for the season.

In Week 1, the Pats will be up against a Kansas City Chiefs team that finished with an impressive 12-4 record last season. Quarterback Alex Smith has been a model of consistency since joining Kansas City in 2013, and finished last season will a career-best 3,502 passing yards. Smith will be complemented by a committee of running backs entering Week 1; Charcandrick West and Kareem Hunt will battle for carries and the starting job to start the season.

 

New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys (-3.5) Sunday at 8:30 PM ET on ESPN

Week 1 showcases two teams that have high expectations entering the 2017 season. Dallas surprised the football world in 2016 by winning 13 regular season games on the backs of two rookies: Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott. Although Elliott will be on the field for the ‘Boys for Week 1, the star running back was handed a six-game suspension by the NFL for his role in a domestic violence case from July 2016 and won’t return until November.

On the other side of the field, New York’s number one wide receiver, Odell Beckham Jr., suffered an ankle sprain during an August 21 preseason game and has not practiced with the team since. Giants’ staff are remaining silent on the wideout’s availability for Week 1, so it’ll be interesting to see what Giants team takes the field Sunday night.

 

New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings (-3) Monday at 7 PM ET on ESPN

Vikings’ hero, and now Saint, Adrian Peterson, will make his New Orleans debut this Monday. The career Viking tallied 11,747 rushing yards and 97 touchdowns for the purple and gold through 10 seasons. On Monday, he’ll dawn a new jersey for the first time in his career.

The Vikings’ dominant defense will look to quiet Peterson’s homecoming, however, and give quarterback Sam Bradford a chance to spread the ball around to a combination of wideouts and backs in a tactical short-game attack.

 

*Odds as of September 7, 2017