Pro handicappers give their 2015 NFL season win total Over picks

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Week 1 of the NFL season is barely a spec in the distance on the sports betting calendar but already one sportsbook operator in Nevada is taking wagers on NFL win totals for the 2015 season.

CG Technology, which operates such books as the Venetian, M Resort, Tropicana and Cosmopolitan, was first out of the gate when they hung their season win numbers last week – the earliest we’ve ever seen these futures available.

We turned those odds over to our roster of Covers Experts handicappers and asked them to give their favorite Over picks for the 2015 NFL season win totals:

Doc’s Sports: Oakland Raiders Over 4.5 – “We found out last year that the AFC West was not as good as advertised and I see Oakland winning at least five games in 2015. They have a new head coach with a defensive identity and also a young quarterback in Derek Carr who showed some positive signs last year. The division is very old and I just don’t see San Diego, Kansas City, and Denver as Super Bowl contenders.”

AAA Sports: New England Patriots Over 11
– “The defending champs will have a target on their back each and every week, but still remain in a pretty weak division. It’s hard to imagine Buffalo, Miami or New York putting up much of a fight this year. The Patriots should roll to at least 12 victories.”

Bryan Power: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Over 5 – “I discussed a likely Bucs improvement in a recent article. Needless to say, a 1-9 record in games decided by eight points or less won’t be repeated, neither will a 0-8 home record. They pick first in the draft, are likely to take a QB (Winston or Mariota), and note that the last four teams to pick No. 1 overall in the draft have improved their win total by an average of seven games. The last two (Kansas City and Houston) did so despite really getting nothing from their top picks. With a new QB and better luck, Tampa Bay can easily be a .500 team next year and even challenge for the division title in the weak NFC South.”

Matt Fargo: Oakland Raiders Over 4.5
– “The Raiders have not won more than four games since 2011 when it put together its second straight 8-8 season. I think that changes in 2015. The main reason is coaching, as bringing in Jack Del Rio was a great move. He led numerous Jacksonville teams that overachieved and he has been quoted as not looking toward the future but making the Raiders relevant right away. Quarterback Derek Carr was pretty solid as a rookie and will only get better.”

Nick Parsons: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Over 5
– “If the Bucs draft Jameis Winston No. 1, I am playing the Over. I like Winston and think he will do well in the NFL. If Lovie can get the defense to step up and play well, it will take a lot of pressure off of Winston at the beginning. I think Winston can have a Cam Newton/RGIII type of rookie season and Tampa Bay should go Over five wins.”

Sean Murphy: New England Patriots Over 11
– “I honestly feel the Pats come out with a huge fire under them after their Super Bowl victory. Everyone will be gunning for them not just because they’re the defending champs but also as a result of the deflated balls scandal. That’s just how Bellichick and Brady like it. The AFC East will once again be manageable to say the least. Pats win at least 12.”

Jesse Schule: Houston Texans Over 8.5 – “The Texans won nine games last year without No. 1 overall pick Jadeveon Clowney and a banged-up Arian Foster. This team needs to improve at the quarterback position, but the good news is that there is nowhere to go but up. On the defensive side of the ball, they are as good as any team in the league.”

Will Rogers: Oakland Raiders Over 4.5 “The Raiders were obviously bad last year, according to their win total, but things look to be on the rise for the Silver and Black. Oakland lost seven games by a touchdown or less in the 2014 season. Derek Carr will be a year older and has already shown signs of improvement in his short time in the NFL. Latavius Murray could be the running back of the future for Oakland. They still need a WR but that can be found in the draft or free agency (maybe Randall Cobb). New head coach Jack Del Rio will be able to build a defense with some of the impressive players he has on that side of the ball. Khalil Mack is a nice place to start on the defensive side.The division is still tough but Oakland will be better.”

Steve Merril: Indianapolis Colts Over 9.5 –
“Indianapolis has proven to be a regular season bully as it’s gone 11-5 SU in each of the last three seasons. The Colts have the best young quarterback in the league with Andrew Luck, and they have the luxury of playing in one of the worst divisions in football. Indianapolis will play the AFC East this season and games against rebuilding Buffalo and New York will push the Colts Over their season wins total.”

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