Gambling is not for the faint of heart.
Last week, we lost two bets by half a point, and two more by less than a field goal. Our rough year just keeps getting rougher.
That said, the only way to turn things around is to keep on picking, so let’s get to the action on Sunday.
Take a look below for our predictions for who covers this weekend (* indicates home team).
LAST WEEK: 5-7-1
Buffalo Bills* (+3) over Jacksonville Jaguars
Despite their horrid offence, the Bills have the second-best defence in the league according to DVOA, and have played respectably at home in most games this year. After their bye week, Josh Allen is back as the team’s starting quarterback for better or for worse, but given the Jaguars recent woes, let’s have faith in the home dogs.
Cleveland Browns (+3) over Cincinnati Bengals*
Poetic justice would be Baker Mayfield throwing for 400 yards and four touchdowns while staring daggers at Hue Jackson on the Bengals sidelines. If Cleveland can pull off the upset, it will be the first time the Browns have won back-to-back games since 2014.
New York Jets* (+10) over New England Patriots
No matter how bad they are any given season, the New York Jets always seem to find a way to keep things close in at least one of their games against the Patriots. And even if that wasn’t the case, in the interest of ending our cold streak of bets, the best course of action is to follow the rules and take the double-digit home underdog. It’s like hitting on 16 in blackjack.
New York Giants (+6) over Philadelphia Eagles*
Odell Beckham Jr. said the Giants’ goal was to win out and make the playoffs, and after two straight wins, I’m going to be backing New York until they slip up. The got crushed by the Eagles in their first meeting this season, and Philadelphia is in must-win mode, but the Giants have looked like a brand new team since their bye week.
San Francisco 49ers (+3) over Tampa Bay Buccaneers*
Nick Mullens has looked entirely passable stepping in for the San Francisco 49ers, while the Buccaneers are now trading out Ryan Fitzpatrick for Jameis Winston for what feels like the seventh time this season. Winston has shown flashes of being decent, but he’s still a turnover machine, and the Niners defence has been pretty solid over the past few weeks.
Carolina Panthers* (-3.5) over Seattle Seahawks
The Carolina Panthers are undefeated at home so far this season, having won their past two home games by at least two scores. This is a crucial game for both teams as they battle for position in the NFC Wild Card race, but advantage to the Panthers as the home team this weekend.
Oakland Raiders (+10.5) over Baltimore Ravens*
The Oakland Raiders have been the worst team in football for the majority of the season, but the Lamar Jackson is just in the second start of his career. As exciting as he was in his debut, I don’t love the idea of backing a rookie quarterback who might not be able to throw as a double-digit favourite.
Arizona Cardinals (+12.5) over Los Angeles Chargers*
Despite their poor record, the Arizona Cardinals have shown an ability to keep games relatively close this season. The Chargers are a solid team and coming off of a loss, but this feels like too many points to spot a Cardinals team still hungry to show progress this year.
Denver Broncos* (+3) over Pittsburgh Steelers
The Denver Broncos might be the most under-the-radar team in football right now. Their defence is quietly among the best in the NFL, and Case Keenum has kept the Broncos offence moving well enough to keep pace with some of the league’s heavy-hitters.
The Steelers have won six games in a row but showed some cracks against the Jaguars last weekend, and they’re now heading into their second straight road game. Look for the Broncos to keep things close or even win outright.
Indianapolis Colts* (-7.5) over Miami Dolphins
The Colts have now won four straight games, three of them by two touchdowns or more. At home against a Dolphins team that is starting Ryan Tannehill despite his admission that he’s still not healthy, Indianapolis should be able to get the job done.
Green Bay Packers (+3.5) over Minnesota Vikings*
Aaron Rodgers as an underdog against a division rival? Yes, please.
Tennessee Titans (+6.5) over Houston Texans*
The Texans are running hot right now, but while they have won seven straight games, it’s difficult to find a signature win on their schedule. The Titans can keep this one close.
Now check out our best bets from this week’s college football action.
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