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Solid systems for betting rookie QBs

By Steve Makinen  ( 


(To view the chart associated with this report, subscribe to Point Spread Weekly)

Bettors are always extremely intrigued by the potential of rookie NFL quarterbacks since they have such a huge impact on the game. Their performance alone can dictate their teams’ success or lack thereof, making them integral parts of the handicapping recipe.

Over the years I have been able to center on a group of betting systems involving rookie QBs that can provide the foundation for even the most savvy bettors. It’s inarguable that the quarterback position is the most important in all of sports when it comes to wagering. Knowing how first-year starting QBs perform historically is of great advantage. Thankfully, some discernible patterns have developed in regard to rookie quarterback performance, and bettors should take notice and take advantage.

According to most experts, five quarterbacks who were drafted in the first half of the first round should get chances to start a good portion of their teams’ games this season — Trevor Lawrence of Jacksonville, Zach Wilson of the Jets, Justin Fields in Chicago, Mac Jones for New England and Trey Lance of San Francisco. Last year featured three rookie QBs who started nine or more games — Joe Burrow of Cincinnati, Tua Tagovailoa of Miami and Justin Herbert of the Chargers. Four started at least seven games in 2019, and six started eight or more in 2018. That 2018 figure was a 17-year high. 

If all five of this year’s rookies started the full 17-game schedule, that would represent 85 of the NFL’s 272 games, or more than 31%, further proof that it’s crucial to understand when these key players perform at their best and worst. 

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