Are you ready for some football? While it may just be the preseason, pigskin fanatics are more than excited to welcome in the first full weekend of NFL action - even if it will be played mostly by rookies and players trying to make the squad. Nevertheless, there are several nice matchups on the schedule this weekend, even if the final score doesn’t matter. The Bears vs Ravens game [VIDEO] got people excited, not its really time for the preseason schedule to begin.

Marquee matchups

Tom Brady, who is an MVP candidate, [VIDEO]won’t be screaming “let’s go,” and the 12th Man in Seattle will be loud, but not jet-engine deafening, but that’s okay.

All that fans care about is football is back! Some of the Week 1 matchups look nice on paper and could be possible playoff matchups down the line.

Thursday’s schedule has some nice contests on the docket, including the Dallas Cowboys taking on the San Francisco 49ers, New Orleans squaring off with the resurgent Jacksonville Jaguars, and the Pittsburgh Steelers facing the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles.

Friday evening (August 10) will feature two new coaches who are entering their jobs with very high expectations as Matt Patricia leads the Detroit Lions into Oakland to face Jon Gruden and the Oakland Raiders. According to FOX Sports, fans won’t see a lot of, if any of Matt Stafford or Derek Carr, but with all of the changes both teams made in the offseason, the buzz will be there for Lions and Raiders fans.

Both teams have the raw talent to make some noise in 2018, and both are being hyped by many NFL experts to finish above .500 and make a run at the postseason.

Wagering on preseason NFL? You bet!

It may be the exhibition season, but Las Vegas sportsbooks don’t care! The lines are set, and yes, fans love to wager on the preseason games. While big money is usually not wagered in the preseason portion of the schedule, many fans still try their luck. Over $500 million is wagered on average each NFL season, and all the madness all begins Thursday!

Below is the schedule and current odds for the Week 1 preseason. The NFL Network will be carrying five games nationally this weekend as indicated below. The schedule is displayed with East Coast times.

Thursday, August 9

  • Bears at Bengals (-2) 7:00 PM
  • Panthers at Bills (-3) 7:00 PM
  • Cleveland (-1) at N.Y. Giants 7:00 PM -- NFLN
  • New Orleans at Jacksonville 7:00 PM
  • Steelers at Eagles (-3) 7:00 PM
  • Bucs at Dolphins (-1.5) 7:00 PM
  • Rams at Ravens (-2) 7:30 PM
  • Washington at New England (-3) 7:30 PM
  • Titans at Packers (PICK) 8:00 PM
  • Houston at Kansas City (-3) 8:30 PM
  • Cowboys at 49ers (-3.5) 10:00 PM -- NFLN
  • Colts at Seahawks (-2.5) 10:00 PM

Friday, August 10

  • Falcons at Jets (-3.5) 7:30 PM -- NFLN
  • Lions at Raiders (-3) 10:30 PM -- NFLN

Saturday, August 11

  • Vikings at Broncos (-1) 9:00 PM -- NFLN
  • Chargers at Cardinals (-2) 10:00 PM