NFL Week 6: Thursday Night Football Pick & Prediction

New York Giants @ New England Patriots, Gillette Stadium, 8:20 PM, FOX/NFLN (Patriots -17, O/U: 41.5)

The Giants have been hanging in this season despite their absolutely horrendous defense. Their defense ranks 34rd to last in yards allowed with 2,047 yards however their offense are tops in the league with the highest percentage of drives that end in a turnover (20.4%).  That puts tired defenses back on the field to get torched.  Their defense still has output (5 picks, 6 fumbles recovered and 13 sacks) but when you’re on the field all the time, you’re bound to make plays but give up a ton of yards.  The Giants are also down to their 3rd string running back (Jon Hillman) with Saquon Barkley being out with a severe ankle sprain and Wayne Gallman has a concussion and is ruled out.  Daniel Jones is completing 64% of his passes but only averaging 248 yards in his 3 starts.  Barkley surely has made defenses solely focus on Jones as his yards have steadily declined with each game he’s started, 336 yards against the Buccs with Barkley, 225 against the Redskins & 182 yards against the Vikings, both games without Barkley.  Expect more of the same as he’s thrown his 3 picks in games without Barkley.

The Patriots absolutely destroy teams with bad defenses and they don’t ever let up against division rivals or teams that they have a grudge against. If you think the Pats forgot about the 2 super bowls that Eli stole from them, you’re sadly mistaken.  Eli has always played them tough and this will be the first meeting since before 2007 where the Giants will face the Patriots without Eli.  The Pats against Eli were 2-3 with the average game being decided by a mere 3 points!  The Patriots are the leagues top defense, which is rare for them at this point of the season and have only allowed 34 points in 5 weeks which is nearly half of the 49ers who are 2nd.  They’ve allowed the 2nd least amount of yards but tops in average yards allowed per play and are tied with the Steelers for the most turnovers created with 11 picks, 1 fumble recovered and an amazing 24 sacks (leading the NFL).  Brady hasn’t needed to be relied upon as much as the Pats usually do early in the season.  He still has top 10 stats in most categories and protecting the ball as he does with 10 TD’s against 2 picks.  Now, granted, they’ve probably had the softest schedule of any NFL team, outside of playing the Steelers and Bills, they’ve played 3 of the leagues worst and you might as well add the Giants to that since they are bottom half of the league in most categories.  Lastly, Brady passed Brett Favre on the all-time yards list last week, it’s Favre’s 50th birthday today and tonight Brady only needs 18 more yards to pass Peyton Manning for 2nd all-time (how ironic).

Take the Patriots to cover in the under, Patriots 31-10.

NFL Week 5: Thursday Night Football Pick & Prediction

Los Angeles Rams @ Seattle Seahawks, CenturyLink Field, 8:20 PM, FOX/NFLN (Seahawks -1.5, O/U: 49.5)

The talk of the town has been how the Rams might have the super bowl hangover.  Goff is 6 TD’s to 6 picks and only just passed for 300+ yards just last week in a shootout with the Buccs of all teams.  Goff finished with 517 yards and threw 68 passes mainly because Todd Gurley has been in a massive decline.  Gurley has steadily declined in yards each of the first 4 games of the season and only carried the ball 5 times due to lack of effectiveness and because they were behind big early.  Goff has had trouble in his career against the Seahawks, averaging less than 200 yards and averaging 1 TD and 1 pick in 6 meetings.  but the defense has kept them in all of their games as they’ve recovered 3 fumbles, picked 4 passes and added 10 sacks.

What can I say about Russell Wilson?  Everyone wrote this team off before the season and after nearly losing to the Bengals in week one but Wilson has protected the ball and made this offense work with a bunch of no name guys and rookies.  Completing 73% of his passes with 8 TD’s and zero picks while still pushing the ball down the field averaging 9.8 yards per attempt/11.8 yards per completion. has lead the team to a 3-1 start.  Russell doesn’t usually throw for a ton of yards because they do like to use the power run game and he likes to scramble a bit so his averages in 14 games doesn’t really matter but the record does.  He’s 2-4 against Goff and 6-8 overall against the Rams.  The defense has also been a turnover machine with 2 picks (including Jadeveon Clowney’s pick 6) and 7, yes count them, 7 fumble recoveries.  They’ve been average everywhere else on pass and rush yards allowed.  Keep an eye on rookie standout D.K. Metcalf who has 10 catches for 223 yards and a TD.  He’s only averaging about 5 targets per game but only had 1 catch for 6 yards last week.  They may need to air it out more than usual and he’s a big time deep threat.

Expect the Seahawks to defend the 12th man better than their previous 2 home games.  Take the Seahawks to win in the over, Seahawks 27-24.

NFL Week 3: Thursday Night Football Prediction & Pick

Tennessee Titans @ Jacksonville Jaguars, TIAA Bank Field, 8:20 PM, NFLN (Jaguars +1.5, O/U: 38.5)

The Titans have been a bit unpredictable to start the season with clubbing the Browns and bursting their hype bubble in their own home to coming back home and falling to the Andrew Luck-less Colts. Mariota has been careful with the ball throwing zero picks but just barely cracked the 400 yard mark.  The workhorse has been Derrick Henry averaging just under 5 yards per carry and found the end zone 3 times (2 rushing TD’s, 1 receiving TD’s).  The defense has played well, holding opponents to being 8/24 on 3rd downs, have only allowed 365 passing yards through the first 2 games, caused 5 turnovers (4 INT’s, 1 fumble recovery)which leads the league in turnover differential (+5) and have only allowed 32 points which is good for 6th least allowed in the league.  Issues I see are that they’re only 3/20 on 3rd down, the o-line has also been sacked 8 times, and have allowed the 7th most yards per game on the ground.

There’s really not much I can say about the Jaguars other than that in most stat categories, they’re middle of the road or leaning towards the bottom 3rd in the league.  Gardner Minshew looked ok in his first NFL regular season action and has completed a fantastic 77.6% of his passes with 3 TD’s and a INT.  He’s also able to make up for the lack of rushing attack from once highly touted Fournette, with 7 carries for 62 yards and actually has a team long 21 yard carry.  DJ Chark (11-201-2TD’s) and Chris Conley (10-170-1TD) have been the teams leading receivers.  Big issues I see with the Jags are having a mediocre offense now being lead by a rookie, tied for the 3rd worst turnover differential (-3).

Take the Titans to cover in the win and in the under, Titans 21-13.

NFL Week 2: Thursday Night Football Prediction

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Carolina Panthers, Bank of America Stadium, 8:20 PM, NFLN (Panthers -7, O/U: 48.5)
Jameis Winston couldn’t seem to get out of his own way last week against the 49ers. He accounted for all 4 of the Buccs turnovers including 3 interceptions, which two were brought back for touchdowns. Bruce Arians seems to have a short memory with Winston so far, keeping him as a starter for tonight. Ronny Jones III had a solid opening game to his sophomore campaign as he tries to solidify the back who will get the biggest workload. Jones went 75 yards on 13 carries while also catching a pass for 18 yards. Cam Newton had a solid outing to start the season against the Rams. He had a hard time moving the ball through the air, averaging less than 10 yards per completion. Panthers fans however, got to enjoy watching another stellar performance from Christian McCaffrey who had over 200 yards from scrimmage, leading the team in rushing and receiving, and had 2 rushing scores. Tonight’s game will mark Gerald McCoy’s first game against his old team since he had spent his first 9 years in the league with Tampa Bay. The thing that hurt the Panthers last week was giving the Rams short field drives early in the game. They will not drop 2 home games in back to back weeks. Take the Panthers to cover in the win, in the under, Panthers 27-17.

Week 5: Thursday Night Football

Indianapolis vs New England, 8:20p, NFLN, (Patriots -10.5, O/U: 50)

It’s the battle of the twelves.  Andrew Luck back at it and revitalizing the Colts/Patriots rivalry that once included former Colts great Peyton Manning.

Both leaders will more than likely be without their top receivers (Hilton, Gronkowski) but Brady still would have Chris Hogan, Eric Ebron and newcomer Josh Gordon.  The running games for both have been coming along with both introducing rookies into thei backfields, leading their rushing attacks with Hines/Wilkins for the Colts and Michel for the Pats.

The Colts defense has looked improved compared to their most recent seasons and actually are near the pace the Patriots have set themselves this season.  The difference maker will be if the Patriots line can stop the defensive front of the Colts since Brady has an obvious lack of mobility.  This will be close early but once Brady gets dialed in, expect him to slowly pull away from the not quite 100% Andrew Luck.

There has been a huge uprising in the league this year where games you thought were a lock were turned upside down in the first few minutes.  Just when you thought, “ok, maybe this one isn’t such a slam dunk given how hard it’s been to nail bets this year”, not so fast my friend, just a friendly reminder, it’s HARD to win in Gillette Stadium.  Take the Patriots to cover in the win and in the under, Patriots 28-17.

#beatyourbookie

Week 4: Thursday Night Football

Minnesota at L.A. Rams, 8:20p, NFLN (Rams -7, O/U: 49.5)

This past Sunday, The Vikes got absolutely embarrassed at home by rookie Josh Allen. I mean, he literally leapt over their best linebacker with ease. The Bills took the opening kickoff and then drove the field 75 yards to a touchdown. Kirk Cousins didn’t help his teams cause or confidence by having 2 sacks fumbles that lead to 10 more points and a Bills 17-0 lead after the first. A good team being embarrassed one week basically means that they get revenge the next however it will be very tough to do so when going on the road against one of the best defenses and one of the best offenses in the league.

The Rams are on fire this year, picking up right where they left off from last year. Granted, they started off with a few softballs with the Raiders and Cardinals but had a bit of a test against a team that’s been a better road team than a home team, in the Chargers. The Rams ultimately beat them and covered the spread. Goff and his numerous weapons have gelled well with McVay’s playbook and they don’t seem to show any signs of slowing down, averaging 34 points/game on offense and only 12/game on defense.

Short week, big spread to cover but the Bills defense isn’t nearly as good as the Vikings and you see how they played in Minnesota last week. Expect the Rams to learn from what they saw Sunday and pressure Cousins all night. Take the Rams to cover in the win, in the over, Rams 31-21.

Week 10: Thursday Night Football

Week 9 wasn’t quite as “coachable” as I thought but we technically still didn’t have a losing week, going 6-6-1.  Shocks of last week were the Bills (embarrassing actually), the Ravens, the Bengals coming out flatter than flat, the Chiefs and Dolphins actually keeping up with an NFL team.  Basically all of my losses and the push were shocks.  Some road favorites were some of those losses which are tougher covers.  Hard week but we have another good one brewing starting with tonight’s game.

Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals, 8:25p (Cardinals +6, O/U: 40)

New addition to the offensive line for the Seahawks, Duane Brown, was adventurous but he improved the line from weeks ago.  It was adventurous due to the fact that he had a few penalties along with the rest of the team, a season high 16.  Those penalties, a ridiculous number mind you, helped keep the Redskins close and in the end, Cousins capitalized and won the game for them being as accurate as ever.  Wilson nearly pulled off a comeback on his own, striking hard and fast down the field but ultimately leaving too much time on the clock.  The Seahawks still have a staunch defense and can eat up the Cardinals given their lack of an arm under center which will be a difference maker.

The Cardinals made a smart move a few weeks back in picking AP up.  In 3 starts, 2 of them have seen him carry the ball 25+ times for 130+ yards in each game.  It looks like the AP of old and he has to be given Stanton, his hapless quarterback.  Stanton showed some accuracy late in the game last week but ultimately was just mediocre.  Fitzgerald was se I effective but with 5 catches for just 70 yards, expect him to continue being the lead receiver but in a dink and dunk offense.

Look for the Seahawks to take out some aggression this week, rectifying last weeks bad loss at home (which is usually a guarantee in Seattle).  The Cardinals can run all they want but if the Hawks stack the box, I don’t see AP getting much going (even though I would like him too since he’s starting on my fantasy team).  Take the Seahawks to win in the under, Seahawks 24-14.