Finally, the wait is over, and football fans are back doing what they love: watching the National Football League. The brand-new season arrived on Friday, 8th September, when the curtain lifted at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Fans enjoyed an early-season thriller as two potential Super Bowl winners went head-to-head in the Detroit Lions and Kansas City Chiefs. It was a game worthy of bringing in a new campaign, with over 40 points scored and plenty of controversy.
The Detroit Lions raced into an early lead, winning the first quarter by seven points to zero, but any Lions faithful expecting an easy night were stunned. Kansas fought back in the second quarter to take control of the contest, heading into halftime with a 14-7 lead on the scoreboard. It’s early in the season, and mistakes are more common late in games, as shown by the error-strewn second half at Arrowhead Stadium.
When the battle was over, the Lions had won the game by a single point. The scoreboard read Detroit Lions 21 – 20 Kansas City Chiefs. Did we see the champion in action on Friday? Have your say on the Super Bowl winner at the leading sportsbooks. Whether you’re a fan of betting on the NFL or soccer or prefer the college football odds Las Vegas offers to bettors, your favorite bookmaker covers the NFL in-depth. Browse the betting odds, markets, specials, and bonuses.
Battle lines drawn
Following months of waiting and following the trades, followers of the NFL were delighted to have football back in their lives. The 2023/24 campaign promises to be the most unpredictable and exciting in a generation, with at least four teams considered genuine title challengers, including Detroit. Nothing was won in week one, but teams had a chance to draw battle lines in the sand and send a statement of intent to their rivals.
In most seasons past, it takes a few weeks for the table and results to settle before we get a clear view of the main challengers and the teams out of their depth. Fans will only want to read a little into the results from the opening week as they change little in terms of the Super Bowl winner and predicting a champion. But it’s always worthwhile to check the early pace-setters, what they bring to the party, and if they’re good enough to keep winning.
Is it a fast start or the beginning of a trek to the Super Bowl title? Detroit was only one team that caught our eye during the opening round of fixtures. The Lions and Chiefs played their part in opening the show in style, but there were other teams more impressive and stronger in game one. Keep reading as we talk you through the week one eye-catcher before browsing the updated odds offered by sportsbooks.
The 2023 regular NFL season is the first with widespread betting odds and markets available as more states remove gambling blocks and more teams take advantage. The Super Bowl final comes from the Allegiant Stadium in Paradise, Nevada, and the area will have its unique take on big-game gambling. Which side do you think wins the Super Bowl? Make predictions and ramp up your excitement with a wager.
Green Bay sinks Chicago
One of the standout fixtures from week one paired the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears. Fans were intrigued to see which team would win and the gulf in class between the pair this season. With Chicago popular in early Super Bowl predictions, fans hoped for a winning start, but the NFL rarely goes to plan. Green Bay beat Chicago with a bit to spare, showing they deserve the respect of critics.
Soldier Field in Chicago provided the backdrop, and with the stands packed with Bears fans, a decisive home win was on the cards. But the game took a different direction as the Packers silenced the home support with a 7-3 victory in the opening quarter. The second ended in a 3-3 draw, meaning Green Bay led at halftime. The scene was set for a second-half fightback from the locals, but it didn’t materialize.
The Packers scored a combined 28 points in the second half as they grew in confidence as the game progressed. Bears fans who expected a big second-half from their team had more questions than answers as Chicago slumped off the field after scoring just 14 points after the re-start. A weak fightback saw Chicago end on the wrong side of a 38-20 result. Fans demand better in week two.
Eagles edge Patriots
The game all football fans had marked on their ‘watch list’ in week one came from the Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, where the New England Patriots welcomed the Philadelphia Eagles. Again, it was another game involving two teams that wouldn’t look out of place lifting the Super Bowl trophy at the end of the campaign. The Eagles started the season as one of the bookies’ picks to end as champions, and the team started as they meant to go on.
A clash of two heavyweights so early in the season rarely makes for an action-packed game. The Eagles wanted to show themselves as the stronger of the two teams and raced into an early lead, winning the first quarter 16-0 but losing the second 14-0. Both teams composed themselves ahead of a big second half, and the points kept coming in an end-to-end classic. What had been billed as a nervy game descended into a shootout with both teams shooting for the win.
The Eagles won the first quarter of the second half, but not as convincingly as they did in the previous half. They managed just a 3-0 victory, meaning they had to prepare for a late onslaught in the final quarter from the Patriots, who smelled blood. The fourth quarter ended 6-6, handing the Philadelphia Eagles a hard-fought but thoroughly deserved 25 points to 20 win.
Week one update
Following the opening round of results, early leaders of the divisions include the New York Jets, Jacksonville Jaguars, Dallas Cowboys, and the Atlanta Falcons.