Starting the week with a win on Thursday is something I’ve done quite a bit this year. Getting that first win sets the tone for my picks for the rest of the week. It’s not that I’ll be a little more risky with my picks after a Thursday win or more cautious if I had lost but the confidence is stronger and there’s less second guessing. I’m on my road to magical numbers and I haven’t lost sight of the overall goal (56%-60%) winners.
I told you the Steelers are just a different team at home, however I didn’t expect the cover win by 23! Mariota didn’t look too comfortale early and that ruined whatever confidence he had coming into the ketchup bottle. If you liked that pick and took it, you’re going to love these. On to Sunday’s games:
|Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears, 1p (Bears +3, O/U: 41)
The Bears are coming off a shocking loss against the Packers. Mitch-a-palooza had to strap up his work belt extra tight given that his rushing game was non-existant. Howard had 15 carries for 54 yards (3.6 yards per carry) but one rush snapped off for 25 which puts his other 14 carries at just over 2 yards per carry. Bears can’t put that much on Trubisky’s shoulders and expect to win. The Lions had trouble putting the Browns away last week. Being tied with the Browns heading into the 4th quarter at home, has me nervous about them along with both teams record against the spread (5-4) and the Lions away ATS record (3-1) and the Bears home ATS record (4-1). Take the Lions to cover in the over, 27-20.
|Jacksonville Jaguars at Cleveland Browns, 1p (Browns +7.5, O/U: 37)
The Browns come into this game with one of the lowest scoring offenses (15.9) in the league while facing one of the best defenses who has allowed the least amount of points to it’s opponents (14.9). The Browns held it together for three strong quarters agains the Lions in Detroit last week which tells me that they still repect their coach and will play hard, even being winless. The Jaguars pulled out an OT win against the Chargers who are a very strong road team. Bortles slipped into his old was with low completion percentage and more picks than TD’s but were able to steal a win. Take the Jaguars to cover in the under, 24-10.
|Baltimore Ravens at Green Bay Packers, 1p (Packers +2, O/U: 38)
The Packers picked up a crucial win against the Bears last week, and right when I wrote off Hundley. Unfortunately for the Packers, Montgomery and Jones are both likely to miss this game meaning Jamaal Williams will have to fill in, which he did very successfully last week. Baltimore had a bye week but the week before, they nearly knocked off the Titans in their own house. This coming from a team that just seems very bland and not really excitting, especially on the road. Take the Packers to cover in the over, 21-20.
|Arizona Cardinals at Houston Texans, 1p (Texans -2, O/U: 37.5)
In a league where your quarterback is the most valuable player on your team (and highest paid player), it’s inheriantly important that they stay healthy. With Palmer and Watson out, it becomes a battle between Stanton and Savage. Get ready for 50% completions and a bunch of running. These kinds of games make picking a winner very hard. You litterally have to go through the rosters and base it off of the position matchup and then if you’re still baffled, go to coaching. Here, I like the coaching and the offense of the Cardinals so take them to cover in the under, 17-13.
|Los Angeles Rams at Minnesota Vikings, 1p (Vikings -2.5, O/U: 45.5)
This is an interesting matchup, one to watch. Both teams are 7-2, 6-3 ATS, at the top of their divisions, and have exceeded their pre-season expectations from day one. The Vikings had doneit with Sam Bradford in the first game but with Case Keenum ever since, which is impressive. The Rams success started with the change at head coach which seemed to have sparked Jared Goff. Both defenses are solid but expect this to be more of a shootout. Again, we have to matchup the QB’s and start spelling out who’s better where. The Rams just have a stronger team and will cover in the over, 31-27.
|Washington Redskins at New Orleans Saints, 1p (Saints -7.5, O/U: 51.5)
Nothing to surprise you with here about the Saints. They have returned to their offensive prowess but also added some solid running to their game. Drew Brees isn’t throwing as many passes but still is effective while he has Ingram and Kamra behind him enjoying great seasons especially since Ap has left town. The Redskins followed up their huge win in Seattle by hanging along another of the leagues better teams, the Vikings but ultimately losing. The Redskins have a commitee backfield which is tough to get consistency running the ball. Take the Saints to cover in the under, 31-17.
|Kansas City Chiefs at New York Giants, 1p (Giants +10.5, O/U:+45.5)
So this is where the Giants are at, they lost to the (at the time) winless 49ers. Eli kept it together and didn’t throw a pick but his defense (which is supposed to be their bright spot), broke down badly. Run game, pass game, the 49ers just had their way with the Giants defense. The Chiefs had to deal with Zeke who whittled their defense down for 27 carries. Andy Reid off of bye weeks is one of if not the best at coming away with a win. Take the Chiefs to cover in the under, 27-14.
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Miami Dolphins, 1p (Dolphins +1, O/U: 42)
The matchup that was supposed to happen week one is finally on 11 weeks later. Given the way they both have played this year, I wouldn’t be mad if they just took another bye week. They both have disappointing offenses and to demonstrate how this game with go, grease your hand up with butter and try to turn a door nob. Take the Buccs to cover in the under, 17-14.
|Buffalo Bills at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05p (Chargers -6, O/U: 41)
The Bills are turning to their rookie quarterback (seems to be a growing trend lately), marking his first start and road game seeing action. McCoy hasn’t been his normal self. The Chargers have been pressing opponents lately, at home and on the road (mostly on the road). The Chargers nearly stole one in Jacsonville last week. This week the Chargers take over the rookie with their dangerous pass rush and to cover in the under, Chargers 24-10.
|Cincinnati Bengals at Denver Broncos, 4:25p (Broncos -2.5, O/U: 38)
The Bengals just haven’t looked right all year. The frustrations seems to boil a few weeks ago when Green was throwing haymakers in the first half. Dalton looked better this week but with no running game, they can’t setup defenses for the pass. The Broncos are another example of why quarterbacks are important to your team. Not just important, vital! Siemianhasn’t worked since last year and to be so desperate to bring back Osweiller, says a lot about how they feel about their QB situation. I feel like the Bronceos defense won’t allow another loss at home. Take the Broncos to win in the under, 16-10.
|New England Patriots at Oakland Raiders (MC), 4:25p (Raiders +7.5, O/U: 54.5)
Mexico City will see their first NFL game in live action and it’s two well respected and talented teams. I said this earlier and actually called it in my first game this year, I like the Patriots but 7 or more points are reserved for team like the Browns, Giants, Colts and maybe even the 49ers. Neutral field games for the Patriots (basically all of their super bowls), have mostly all been close but it is Tom Brady we’re talking about. The Raiders had a slip up in the beginning with Carr missing some games but are back on track with a couple of wins strunge together. Big bets are on the Pats and this being a neutral field, makes it that much tougher. Take the Raiders to cover but loss in the under, Pats 24-21.
|Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys, 8:30p (Cowboys +6, O/U: 48)
The Eagles come into this one as one of, if not the hottest team in the NFL. Carson Wentz and his new additions have been lights out and the defense has been quite impressive as well, but offense always gets the head lines. The Eagles have shown consistency week in and week out and will continue to do so this week. The Cowboys have been on the Zeke roller coaster every week with news he’d be either in or out of the headlines. Well, Zeke is finally going to serve those 6 weeks and the ‘Boys will be down Sean Lee as well, whose the go to guy or the quarterback of the defense. This all coming as the season takes a turn to the finish line. Take the Eagles to cover in the over, 34-20.
|Colin Cowherd’s Blazing 5:
Colin Cowherd’s Blazing 5 had an amazing start. Four weeks in, he was 15-5 (75% winners) but have calmed to a very respectable 30-20 (60%) but he is still picking gem weeks. He really likes Chiacago becasue he’s been burnt by the Lions before. Some advice, when I agree with betting on a team with Colin, my record is 21-10 (68% winners). This week, we’ll call them locks, Packers and Eagles. I actually would bet HEAVY on the Eagles if you get them anywhere near his line but even at 7 or less really. Here are his picks/lines from Friday: