NFL Week 7 Betting Tips & Strategies: Back These Disrespected Underdogs

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At the beginning of the season, I outlined some key concepts for betting the NFL. We’ll continue to use those betting tips and strategies to make weekly picks as we head into NFL Week 7.

Through the first third of the season, we’ve seen our fair share of blown calls and blown leads, and last week was no different. A number of heavy favorites lost outright, as the Steelers upset the Buccaneers, the Jets trounced the Packers, and the Falcons took down the 49ers.

Aaaaaaaaand we didn’t pick any of those games. Well done, everyone.

We DID go 1-1 last week on our underdog moneyline picks, with the Seahawks coming through for us against the Cardinals. The Chiefs lost a banger at Arrowhead against the Bills, but backing Mahomes as an underdog has simply been too profitable to ignore. I stand by the bet!

Overall, we’re still profitable on the season. Let’s dive into our NFL Week 7 Betting Tips and Strategies.

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NFL Week 7: Target Underdogs

As I outlined in my NFL Strategy Guide, recreational bettors typically bet the favorite. Fans think the better team should win and tend not to take the point spread into account.

Sportsbooks know this. They have a tendency to skew their lines towards the favorite by a point or two. Knowing we’re getting the better of it, sharp bettors focus the bulk of betting on underdogs.

With that in mind, there are two NFL Week 7 underdogs to target this week.

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Atlanta FALCONS (+7) vs. Cincinnati BENGALS

The Atlanta Falcons continue to get no respect from the betting market.

This team is 3-3 on the season, which is somehow enough to have them tied atop the NFC South. They’re a perfect 6-0 against the spread, yet find themselves a full touchdown underdog against the Cincinnati Bengals?

That’s too high. Like, WAY too high.

Marcus Mariota and the Atlanta Falcons highlight our NFL Week 7 best bets
Marcus Mariota and the Atlanta Falcons highlight our NFL Week 7 Best Bets (AP Photo/John Munson)

The Falcons are coming off a downright impressive shellacking of the San Francisco 49ers. While the 49ers were dealing with a number of injuries, they’re still one of the best teams in the NFC. Watching this Falcons team beat anyone by two touchdowns is impressive, but when it’s a Super Bowl contender? Even more so.

The Falcons have been able to move the ball downfield at an impressive clip, currently ninth overall in total offense. Their multifaceted rushing attack has been the backbone of this team and ranks third overall in the league. Add quarterback Marcus Mariota’s efficient passing, throwing one incompletion against the 49ers, and you’ve got a recipe for offensive success.

Pre-season expectations for the Falcons were non-existent, and sportsbooks continue to misprice them as such. One of the issues might be that NO ONE has been paying attention to them. Ask yourself, have you watched a single down of any Atlanta Falcons game this year?

I didn’t think so.

Against a Bengals team that’s also 3-3, this line is just simply too high. The Bengals currently rank 21st overall in rush defense and will have a terrible time stopping the Falcons from running the ball. The perception is that these Bengals are the impressive team they were last year, but the talent gap between them and the Falcons is much narrower than this point spread indicates.

We’re getting a ton of value on the underdog, and I grabbed this point spread at Falcons +7 when the line first opened. Most sportsbooks have already moved this down to +6. Bet it before it drops even further.

Editor’s note: Falcons +7 no longer appears to be readily available as of Tuesday afternoon. FanDuel offers +6.5.

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Seattle SEAHAWKS +7 vs. Los Angeles CHARGERS

The Seahawks are another team that continues to get no love from the sportsbooks.

Another franchise that was pegged as one of the worst pre-season teams has over-performed expectations through six weeks. I wrote last week about their impressive offense under Geno Smith, who was somehow the No. 1 NFL quarterback through five weeks.

The Seahawks offense currently ranks inside the top five for both passing and rushing yards per play. Yet for all the points they score, their red zone scoring has actually been a disaster – ranking next-to-last in red zone touchdown percentage on the year. That’s bound to regress back to the mean, as these Seahawks move the ball too easily to remain anemic near the end zone.

That will be a problem for a Los Angeles Chargers team that struggles on defense. They’re ranked 25th in the league against the pass and dead-friggen-last against the rush. While those numbers improved slightly after Monday Night Football, forgive me if I’m unimpressed with an overtime win against the Denver Broncos.

Playing primetime on Monday means the Chargers will be facing the Seahawks on a short week. That extra day of rest could be the difference-maker for Seattle in an offensive shootout. If the Seahawks fans show up in Los Angeles as much as the Broncos fan base did, Herbert will have his work cut out for him under center.

I expect fireworks in this one. Both teams can put up a ton of points, and I love getting the Seahawks as a touchdown underdog. I was able to lock in Seahawks +7 when the line opened, but would play this down to +6 where it sits at most sportsbooks.

Editor’s note: Seahawks +7 no longer appears to be available as of Tuesday afternoon. Seattle +6.5 is the consensus number.

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NFL Week 7: Wait For Key Number

When hunting for the best point spreads, it’s important to pay attention to the key numbers in football. Football winning margins end with a point differential of exactly 3, 6, 7, 10, and 14 more than 40% of the time. That makes these the key numbers in betting football.

Pittsburgh STEELERS vs. Miami DOLPHINS (-7 or better)

We’ve got ourselves a great spot here to play contrarian thanks to some recency bias.

The Pittsburgh Steelers just pulled off the upset of the season, winning outright at home against Tom Brady and the Buccaneers. Heading into that game, the Steelers were 10.5-point underdogs, making it their biggest upset win in franchise history.

The Miami Dolphins just lost to the Minnesota Vikings, with backup QB Teddy Bridgewater under center for most of the game. If you didn’t watch this one, you might believe the Dolphins were outplayed by a superior team.

Well… they weren’t.

The Dolphins were moving the ball with reckless abandon against the Vikings, outgaining their opponent almost two-to-one on offense. The Dolphins generated more than 450 offensive yards, while the Vikings could only muster 234. If it wasn’t for a series of ridiculous penalties, including one stretch which saw the Dolphins penalized in five out of seven plays, the Dolphins would have won this game outright.

Star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is expected to make his return for the Dolphins in NFL Week 7 after clearing concussion protocol. Before suffering back-to-back concussions, Tua was in the NFL MVP conversation. Before their most recent win, the Steelers were in the worst-in-the-league conversation. If the Dolphins had won last week and the Steelers lost, we’d likely be looking at a 10 point spread, so there’s some value backing the home favorite.

The Dolphins currently sit as -7.5 point favorites. I’m happy to grab it if that’s the best it gets, but I’m waiting to see if we get a steam move on the Steelers after their shocking win last weekend. If you see a sportsbook offering Dolphins -7 or better, jump on it.

Also read: NFL Week 7 Odds | Super Bowl 57 Odds 

About the Author
Jim Robinson

Jim Robinson

Jim Robinson is a writer and contributor to Gaming Today. An entertainment professional with twenty years experience as an actor, writer, producer and comedian. Jim recently transitioned into the world of sports media as both a writer and content creator. He has more than fifteen years experience as a sports bettor, poker player and card sharp. He is proficient in all forms of betting and in-game wagering but his expertise is the PGA Tour.

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