Halfway through the NFL season, our best bets have been hovering around 50% – slightly less than profitable, but good enough that we’re not yet out of the running in the Westgate SuperContest.
Still, we have to get hot, and time is running out – after a 3-2 week last week, let’s keep the positive money rolling and get right to our picks.
Take a look below for our best five bets against the spread for this Sunday, plus a few other wagers to consider making this weekend.
Home teams get the asterisk.
Minnesota Vikings* (-4.5) over Detroit Lions
The Minnesota Vikings’ loss to the Saints last weekend wasn’t as bad as it looked on paper.
While the final score read 30-20 and the game was never really in doubt for the Saints in the second half, the big swing of the game came late in the second quarter when an Adam Thielen fumble resulted in a 10- or 14-point swing just before halftime. Erase that fumble, and it’s a completely different game.
The Lions have been a tough team to get a read on all year, but their offence really opens up only when they can get their rushing attack going, and the Vikings’ defence should be able to keep Kerryon Johnson in check.
The Vikings aren’t losing two straight home games, and if they play their game, they should be able to cover this number.
Washington Redskins* (-1.5) over Atlanta Falcons
How many wins do the Redskins have to rack up before the betting public starts to believe?
I don’t even like Washington all that much this year, and I still think that the Falcons are undervalued in a lot of people’s minds, but Alex Smith and the Washington offence has been rolling pretty steady in recent weeks, and Atlanta can’t get a stop to save their lives.
Denver Broncos* (-1) over Houston Texans
The Houston Texans are simply riding too hot.
They have won five straight to jump back into the lead of the AFC South, but none of their victories have been especially impressive, and they feel due to fall back to Earth soon.
A trip to Denver feels like just the spot to jump off their bandwagon and fade Houston.
Los Angeles Chargers (+2) over Seattle Seahawks*
Until they lose a game they shouldn’t, the Chargers are one of the top five teams in football for my money.
The Seahawks have been better than expected since the Legion of Boom dissolved, and they still sport an impressive homefield advantage, but the Chargers have looked like one of the most complete teams in the league so far this season, and are 12-3 in their past 15 games dating back to last year.
Tennessee Titans (+6.5) over Dallas Cowboys*
Simply put, this is way too many points – the Dallas Cowboys shouldn’t be touchdown favourites over any team in the NFL aside from the Buffalo Bills.
The Titans are coming off of a bye week, giving them plenty of time to reset from their three-game skid.
LAST WEEK: 3-2
Eliminator Lock: Chicago Bears
Teams used: Saints, Rams, Vikings, Chargers, Panthers, Texans, Colts, Patriots
We’re getting down to the nitty-gritty of Eliminator leagues. While some might prefer to take wilder teams with the hopes that a heavily picked favourite takes out the competition, I’m a firm believer in just doing your best to get a win one week at a time.
Backing the Bears this week, it’s clear we’re running out of trustworthy teams, but luckily they’re played Nathan Peterman and the Bills.
Money Dog: Green Bay Packers (+200)
In a crowded NFC North, the Packers need this primetime win a lot more than the Patriots do in the cakewalk that is the AFC East.
How often do you get to back Aaron Rodgers as a two-to-one underdog?
Weekly Tease: Vikings (+1), Chiefs (-2.5)
An easy tease for easy money this week.
Bring the Vikings all the way to 1-point underdogs at home against the Lions, and then bring the Chiefs down to 2.5-favourites over the Browns.
Lock it in. Easy money.
Monday Night Chaser: Titans @ Cowboys Under 40.5
According to the Action Network, 57% of the bets on this total are on the over, but a whopping 92% of the money is on the under – this indicates that some professional bettors have placed big money on the under.
When in doubt, follow the sharps.