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|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|01-19-20||Packers +7.5 v. 49ers||Top||20-37||Loss||-107||29 h 44 m||Show|
Aaron Rodgers had a downright bad game in his previous encounter against the San Francisco 49ers, and that effort resulted in the last time the Green Bay Packers fell short on the scoreboard. Rodgers and the second-seeded Packers look to avenge a lopsided loss in Week 12 when they visit the top-seeded 49ers in the NFC Championship Game on Sunday.
The two-time NFL MVP was far from loose in the previous meeting, as he was sacked five times and limited to just 104 yards despite completing 20 passes in Green Bay's 37-8 setback to San Francisco on Nov. 24. 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan wasn't interested in reliving that contest, telling reporters that the game had gotten away from the Packers and forced them to change their offensive approach.
I just don’t see that happening again in this matchup as the Packers have put that game well behind them.
Packers are 8-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 playoff games. 49ers are 2-7 ATS in their last 9 games following a straight up win of more than 14 points and are 3-12 ATS in their last 15 games after accumulating less than 150 yards passing in their previous game.
I see the Packers keeping this game closer than most people think. Take the points.
|01-19-20||Titans +7.5 v. Chiefs||Top||24-35||Loss||-115||25 h 10 m||Show|
The Kansas City Chiefs came up one win short of advancing to the Super Bowl a year ago, denied by the New England Patriots in a overtime defeat. The second-seeded Chiefs attempt to take that next step in front of their home fans when they square off with the sixth-seeded Tennessee Titans on Sunday afternoon in the AFC Championship Game.
Kansas City earned a return trip to the title game with a dominating performance last week, erasing a 24-point deficit in a 51-31 blowout of Houston -- its seventh straight victory since a loss at Tennessee back in Week 10.
Bruising back Derrick Henry and the Titans are trying to run the table and beat the top three teams in the AFC while bidding to become the third No. 6 seed to advance to the Super Bowl.
Tennessee is one win away from the Super Bowl thanks to the legs of Henry, the league's leading rusher who rumbled for 182 yards versus the Patriots before gashing Baltimore for 195.
Chiefs coach Andy Reid, in his seventh conference championship game, is 1-8 in his career against the Titans.
Titans are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 road games. Titans are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings in Kansas City. Chiefs are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 playoff games.
While KC may pull this game out there is just too much value here at over a touchdown to not back the Titans.
|12-15-19||Bills v. Steelers -1||Top||17-10||Loss||-103||33 h 34 m||Show|
The Buffalo Bills had a three-game winning streak come to an end in a 24-17 loss to the AFC-best Baltimore Ravens last week and are staring at a tough two-game road stretch as they try to lock up a playoff spot. The Bills will try to bounce back and get one step closer to clinching a playoff spot when they visit the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.
The Steelers are surging with wins in three straight and seven of the last eight games and face their own tough stretch to close out the season with trips to New York and Baltimore after taking on Buffalo.
Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen is making great strides in his second season but struggled against a tough defense last week, completing 43.6 percent of his passes in the loss. He’ll have similar problems vs. the Steelers defense.
Pittsburgh quarterback Devlin "Duck" Hodges became the first undrafted rookie to win his first three starts with last week's 23-17 triumph over Arizona and is completing 71.3 percent of his passes. Hodges could have more weapons available this week with running back James Conner (shoulder) and wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (knee) both returning to practice.
Steelers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 home games and are 5-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Bills are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 meetings.
While defense should rule the day here in Pittsburgh, I like the Steelers to Steel a home victory on Sunday night.
|12-15-19||Rams -1 v. Cowboys||Top||21-44||Loss||-105||29 h 38 m||Show|
The Los Angeles Rams are two games ahead of the Dallas Cowboys, but they face an uphill battle to make the playoffs with three games remaining. Dallas, meanwhile, is sitting below .500 and mired in a three-game losing streak but still controls its postseason destiny entering Sunday afternoon's matchup against the visiting Rams.
Los Angeles' postseason chances appeared bleak following a 45-6 drubbing by Baltimore in Week 12, but it rebounded with big victories over Arizona and Seattle to move within one game of Minnesota for the sixth seed in the NFC.
After managing only 35 points in a three-week stretch, Los Angeles erupted for 62 in the back-to-back victories behind Jared Goff, who threw for 717 yards and four touchdowns in that span. Wideouts Cooper Kupp (77 catches) and Robert Woods (71) both have a chance to go over 1,000 yards on the season this week.
Todd Gurley ran for a score in each of the past two games and had 16 carries for 115 yards and a touchdown in last season's 30-22 playoff win over Dallas as the Rams piled up a staggering 273 yards on the ground. The Rams rank eighth overall on defense, allowing 325.5 yards per game.
Rams are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game and are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 road games. Cowboys are 1-7 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
Two teams going in opposite directions and I’ll back the Rams to win a tough game in Dallas.
|12-15-19||Jaguars v. Raiders -6.5||Top||20-16||Loss||-109||28 h 19 m||Show|
The Raiders’ playoff hopes are hanging by a thread, but they have an excellent opportunity to keep them alive when they host the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday in what will be the final game played at Oakland Coliseum. The Raiders play their final two regular-season contests on the road and are moving to Las Vegas for the 2020 season.
Jacksonville has lost five straight after a 45-10 drubbing against the Los Angeles Chargers last week.
Oakland is not in a favorable position to make the postseason, sitting two games out of the second wild card with three to play, but I feel them will come out hungry on offense and put up points vs. the sad Jags defense. The Jaguars’ run defense has been struggling of late, allowing more than 200 yards three times during the five-game skid and narrowly avoiding that fate last week by allowing 195 yards on the ground.
The Jaguars have lost five straight by at least 17 points, the worst such stretch by any team since the 1986 Buccaneers.
Jaguars are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games overall and are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games as an underdog. Raiders are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games following a straight up loss.
I’ll look for a full effort by the Raiders to win going away.
|12-15-19||Vikings -1 v. Chargers||Top||39-10||Win||100||28 h 18 m||Show|
The Minnesota Vikings look to move closer to a playoff spot when they visit the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday. Minnesota is one game ahead of the Los Angeles Rams in the battle for the NFC's second wild-card spot and stands one game behind the first-place Green Bay Packers in the NFC North.
The Chargers have been eliminated from playoff contention but that hasn't prevented Vikings coach Mike Zimmer from worrying about veteran quarterback Philip Rivers, who passed for 314 yards and three touchdowns in last Sunday's 45-10 rout of the host Jacksonville Jaguars. He’ll have a much tougher test vs. the Vikings defense that has allowed 14 or fewer points on five occasions.
Minnesota QB Kirk Cousins has thrown 21 touchdown passes against two interceptions in the past nine games. The Vikings' running back/receiver combo of Dalvin Cook (1,108 rushing yards) and Stefon Diggs (997 receiving) are on the verge of becoming the first club duo to each gain 1,000 since 2009.
Minnesota star receiver Adam Thielen (hamstring) said Thursday he is hopeful of playing after missing four straight games and five of the past six.
Vikings are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games in Week 15 and are 11-5-1 ATS in their last 17 games as a favorite. Chargers are 5-16 ATS in their last 21 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
I’m backing the Vikings on the road.
|12-15-19||Texans v. Titans -3||Top||24-21||Loss||-108||25 h 16 m||Show|
The Tennessee Titans went from 2-4 to a tie at the top of the AFC South and are winners of four straight games. The Titans will try to keep the win streak alive when they host the Houston Texans on Sunday - the first of two meetings between the division rivals over the last three weeks of the regular season.
Tennessee, which sandwiches a game against NFC South-leading New Orleans in between the matchups with Houston, is averaging 37.5 points during the four-game winning streak and is 6-1 since turning to Ryan Tannehill as the starting quarterback.
Houston had first place in the South all to itself before a disappointing 38-24 home loss to the Denver Broncos last week and has a date at Tampa Bay in Week 16 before hosting the Titans in the finale. Houston was coming off a 28-22 victory over New England when it came out flat against the Broncos and fell into a 21-0 hole less than 19 minutes into the game.
Tannehill can become a free agent after this season and is putting up record-setting numbers since getting a chance to open up the offense in Tennessee. Tannehill is the second quarterback in NFL history (Aaron Rodgers, 2011) to produce a passer rating of 130 or higher while completing at least 75 percent of his passes in three straight games and joined Russell Wilson (2015) as the only QBs with at least two passing TDs and a passer rating of 125 in at least four consecutive contests.
Texans are 3-11 ATS in their last 14 road games vs. a team with a winning home record and are 3-10-1 ATS in their last 14 games in December.
The home team took each of the last six meetings and I like the Titans to keep their momentum going here at home.
|12-15-19||Seahawks -6 v. Panthers||Top||30-24||Push||0||25 h 16 m||Show|
The Carolina Panthers have nothing to play for but star running back Christian McCaffrey does as the squad hosts the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. McCaffrey has 1,220 rushing yards and 726 receiving yards as he attempts to join Roger Craig (1985) and Marshall Faulk (1999) as the only running backs to accumulate 1,000 in both rushing and receiving yardage in the same season.
The Seahawks had a five-game winning streak snapped with last week's 28-12 loss to the Los Angeles Rams and are one game behind the first-place San Francisco 49ers in the NFC West while holding the top wild-card spot.
Quarterback Russell Wilson has thrown 26 touchdown passes while being intercepted just five times leading his team to a winning season.
Carolina has dropped five straight games, leading to the firing of ninth-year coach Ron Rivera earlier this month with Perry Fewell being named interim coach for the remainder of the season. QB Kyle Allen has thrown 12 interceptions over the past seven games.
Seahawks are 10-3 ATS in their last 13 road games and are 25-12-1 ATS in their last 38 games in December. Panthers are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 vs. NFC. Home team is 6-0 ATS in their last 6 meetings while the favorite is 8-2 ATS in their last 10 meetings.
The Seahawks have won seven of the 10 regular-season meetings and I expect them to get the road win by a touchdown or more.
|12-15-19||Dolphins +3.5 v. Giants||Top||20-36||Loss||-120||25 h 15 m||Show|
The Miami Dolphins' season spiraled out of control from the onset with seven straight losses amid talk of possible tanking for a high pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. The Dolphins answered that demoralizing stretch with a respectable 3-3 mark heading into Sunday's road contest against the New York Giants, who are mired in a franchise high-tying nine-game losing streak.
Miami will hope for better results when it plays its second consecutive contest at MetLife Stadium, as its offense was limited to a franchise-record seven field goals by Jason Sanders in a 22-21 setback to the New York Jets in a game they should have won.
Eli Manning is expected to be under center for a Giants team that mustered 29 yards in the second half of a 23-17 overtime setback to Philadelphia on Monday. The start could serve as the final home game of Manning's career with rookie Daniel Jones working his way back from an ankle injury.
Dolphins are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following an ATS win and are 5-1 ATS vs. a team with a losing record. Giants are 1-5-1 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record and are 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games as a home favorite.
Miami is on a 7-2 spread run and I’ll take over a field goal with the Dolphins having a shot to win outright.
|12-08-19||Titans -3 v. Raiders||Top||42-21||Win||100||41 h 12 m||Show|
The Tennessee Titans are a different team with Ryan Tannehill at the controls as they visit the desperate Oakland Raiders on Sunday. Tennessee has won five of six games since Tannehill replaced an ineffective Marcus Mariota as the starter, including a 31-17 victory at Indianapolis last week that kept the Titans within striking distance of the AFC South title or a wild-card spot.
Tennessee running back Derrick Henry has picked up his game with Tannehill under center, rushing for 724 yards and seven touchdowns in the last six games.
Tennessee is one game behind first-place Houston in the AFC South with two meetings left against the Texans and in a virtual tie with Pittsburgh for the final wild-card berth. The Raiders have been outscored 74-12 in consecutive road losses to the New York Jets and Kansas City, and must win to have any shot at the post season.
Tannehill (12 touchdowns, four interceptions this season) has completed 74.6 percent of his 59 passes with six TDs in his last three games with the club averaging 36 points during that span. Henry, whose 496 yards and five rushing scores since Week 10 lead the NFL, can become the fifth player in league history to total 150 yards from scrimmage with a touchdown in four consecutive contests. He will do well vs. the weak Raiders secondary.
Running back Josh Jacobs, who became the first rookie in franchise history to rush for 1,000 yards with 104 against Kansas City last week, revealed that he has been playing with a fractured shoulder. That’s not good for an already banged up team.
Titans are 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games as a favorite. Raiders are 3-13 ATS in their last 16 games in Week 14. Favorite is 9-2 ATS in their last 11 meetings and the Road team is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
I like the Titans to continue their push to a playoff spot with a road win.
|12-08-19||Steelers -2.5 v. Cardinals||Top||23-17||Win||109||41 h 11 m||Show|
A makeshift crew has catapulted the Pittsburgh Steelers to six wins in seven games, and they'll try to stay hot Sunday with a visit to the Arizona Cardinals. Behind their third starting quarterback of the season, Devlin Hodges, and a stout defense that has allowed an average of 15.9 points during the 6-1 stretch, the Steelers enter Week 14 holding down the last wild-card spot in the AFC.
They'll try to take another step toward a ninth playoff berth under head coach Mike Tomlin when they give Hodges another start in Arizona.
Hodges will be matched up with another rookie in Kyler Murray, who is coming off the most difficult game of his young career in a 34-7 loss to the Los Angeles Rams. Murray threw for 163 yards with one interception and was sacked six times as Arizona lost its fifth straight game.
Hodges threw for 211 yards in last week's 20-13 win over Cleveland and the one score went to wideout James Washington, who has 209 receiving yards and a pair of TDs over the last two weeks.
Linebacker Bud Dupree led another solid defensive effort last week with six tackles, 1.5 sacks, a forced fumble and a pass deflection for a unit that ranks fifth in the NFL in total defense (317.2 yards allowed per game) and sixth in scoring defense (18.8).
Murray is going through his first heavy bout of losing football and the former Heisman Trophy winner is hoping to use last week's embarrassment as motivation to get better. I don’t see that happening vs. this very good Steelers defense.
The Steelers have won the last three meetings, beginning with their 27-23 triumph in Super Bowl XLIII.
Take the Steelers as the small road favorite.
|12-08-19||Chiefs +3 v. Patriots||Top||23-16||Win||102||41 h 10 m||Show|
The New England Patriots' bid for a perfect season slipped away in Week 9 and now they have lost their grip on the top overall seed for home-field advantage in the AFC playoffs. The Patriots will try to rebound from their second loss in four weeks and clinch their 11th consecutive postseason berth against the visiting Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday afternoon.
New England set an NFL record with its 17th consecutive 10-win season but it is only one game ahead of Buffalo in the AFC East after dropping a 28-22 decision at Houston on Sunday night that was not as close as the score indicated.
The Chiefs suffered a pair of narrow defeats to New England last season, including a 37-31 defeat that kept them from reaching the Super Bowl, but they have chance to win the AFC West title and end the Patriots' 18-game home winning streak.
Mahomes threw for a touchdown and ran for another in last week's 40-9 drubbing of Oakland -- the third time in four weeks he failed to eclipse 182 yards passing -- but he torched New England for 647 yards and seven scores versus two interceptions last season.
New England's offense continues to sputter and only two late touchdown passes from Brady last week enabled the team to surpass 20 points for the first time in the last four games. While Brady has 18 TD passes against six interceptions, he has barely completed more than 50 percent of his passes over the last three games and has not registered a quarterback rating of at least 100.0 since Week 5 at Washington.
Chiefs are 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 games as a road underdog and are 10-4-1 ATS in their last 15 road games. Patriots are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games in December and are 1-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
Behind a solid defensive effort, I like the Chiefs plus the points.
|12-08-19||Colts +3.5 v. Bucs||Top||35-38||Win||100||38 h 44 m||Show|
A year ago, the Indianapolis Colts made a late surge to earn a playoff spot, winning their final four regular-season games. The Colts hope to kick off another strong finishing stretch Sunday when they travel to face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, another team fighting for its playoff life.
Tampa Bay’s playoff hopes are hanging by a thread as the Buccaneers are three games out of the second wild card with four weeks left in the regular season. The Colts’ odds aren’t quite as long - they’re one game out of wild-card position and two back of Houston in the AFC South - but with losses in two straight and four of their last five, Indianapolis needs to turn things around quickly.
Indianapolis’ first five losses were by seven points or fewer, but last week’s 31-17 home loss to Tennessee was its most-lopsided of the season. The Colts outgained the Titans by 99 yards but were derailed by three turnovers, which has been a recurring theme during their rough patch. The Colts hope to have leading rusher Marlon Mack back Sunday after he missed the past two games with a broken hand.
Tampa Bay had seemingly found itself in a shootout every week before the defense turned in its best performance of the season in a 28-11 win at Jacksonville last week. The Buccaneers gave up a season-low 242 total yards and matched a season high with four takeaways. I don’t look for that to happen again this week.
Colts are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a double-digit loss at home. Buccaneers are 2-10-1 ATS in their last 13 games in Week 14 and are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 home games.
Colts are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings and I expect them to cover here with an outright win very possible.
|12-08-19||Dolphins +5.5 v. Jets||Top||21-22||Win||100||38 h 43 m||Show|
The New York Jets have been extremely generous to previously winless teams this season, notably handing the Miami Dolphins their first victory last month and putting Cincinnati in the win column last weekend. The Jets aim to snap a four-game skid in the series on Sunday when they host the Dolphins in East Rutherford, N.J.
The Jets rebounded from their 26-18 setback to Miami on Nov. 3 by scoring 34 points in three straight games before dropping a 22-6 decision to the Bengals, marking the fourth time they have been held to six or fewer this season. Miami, in turn, erupted for season-high totals in points and yards (408) in a 37-31 victory over Philadelphia last Sunday.
Journeyman quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for a season-high 365 yards and three scores last week to match the touchdown total he had in the previous encounter with New York, with which he played in 2015-16. Former first-round wideout DeVante Parker continued his torrid stretch with seven catches for career-high totals in yards (159) and touchdowns (two) against the Eagles. I think he has some success on Sunday.
Jets Safety Jamal Adams is expected to miss the first game of his career with an ankle injury while fellow former Pro Bowler C.J. Mosley became the 15th Jet to land on injured reserve with an ailing groin. Sam Darnold, who overcame a bout of mononucleosis earlier in the season, turned a season-high 48 passes against the Bengals into just a 58 percent completion rate and 71.4 passer rating -- totals that were his second-lowest of 2019.
Dolphins are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games overall. Jets are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 vs. AFC East. Dolphins are 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
I’ll call a close game with Miami getting the cover.
|12-08-19||49ers v. Saints -1.5||Top||48-46||Loss||-115||38 h 42 m||Show|
The New Orleans Saints have already clinched a postseason berth and wrapped up a division title, but they have loftier goals in mind with four games remaining in the regular season. The Saints have the inside track on the top seed for the NFC playoffs and can take another step closer toward the goal against the visiting San Francisco 49ers on Sunday afternoon.
The 49ers have lost two of four -- both on last-second field goals -- following an 8-0 start to fall into a tie with Seattle atop the NFC West, although the Seahawks own the tiebreaker.
San Francisco's top-ranked defense, allowing league lows of 250.9 yards overall and 134.3 yards passing, held up well against a Baltimore offense that had averaged 45 points in its previous three games. The NFC leader in rushing at 148 yards per game, the 49ers received 146 yards and a touchdown from Raheem Mostert last week. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has registered a passer rating of at least 110.2 in five of the last six games. He will have a much tougher time this week vs. the stout Saints defense.
Brees, who missed five games due to a thumb injury, had one of his lowest outputs of the season with 184 yards passing and a touchdown at Atlanta. Wide receiver Michael Thomas also had a relatively quiet performance with six receptions for 48 yards but he was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Month. Running back Alvin Kamara has not rushed for a touchdown in seven games but had 31 catches in his last four contests. Cameron Jordan was named the NFC Defensive Player of the Week after recording 4.0 sacks for a unit that ranks third against the run (88.6 yards).
Brees has a 100-plus passer rating in 10 of his last 11 at home.
49ers are 4-11 ATS in their last 15 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game and are 6-13-1 ATS in their last 20 vs. NFC. Saints are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games overall.
In what should be the game of the week I’ll back the Saints in a home win behind their defense.
|12-08-19||Ravens v. Bills +6.5||Top||24-17||Loss||-110||38 h 40 m||Show|
The Baltimore Ravens sit atop the AFC on the strength of an eight-game winning streak and became the Super Bowl favorites after knocking off the San Francisco 49ers 20-17 last week. The Ravens will try to push the winning streak to nine in a row when they face the playoff-hopeful Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
Buffalo was flying under the radar before earning a 26-15 win at Dallas on Thanksgiving Day and owns the third-best record in the league behind Baltimore and New England.
Quarterback Lamar Jackson maybe on his way to his first MVP award and owns 14 touchdown passes without an interception over the last five games after posting his fourth game with at least 100 yards passing and 100 yards rushing last week.
Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen was part of the 2018 draft class along with Jackson and is stamping his own mark on the league as a passing and rushing threat. Allen owns 16 passing TDs and eight rushing scores in 2019 and, like Jackson, recorded one of each without an interception in a key win last week.
Ravens are 5-12 ATS in their last 17 games as a favorite and are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS loss. Bills are 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 games as an underdog. Home team is 6-1 ATS in their last 7 meetings.
Feeling is here the Bills defense hangs tough and behind the home crowd they get the cover.
|12-01-19||Patriots -3 v. Texans||Top||22-28||Loss||-115||31 h 1 m||Show|
Despite a pair of close calls the past two weeks, the New England Patriots remain tied for the best overall record in football and set an NFL mark last week by posting their 17th consecutive season with 10 wins. Holding the No. 1 seed in the AFC, the Patriots have a chance to wrap up a playoff spot when they visit the Houston Texans on Sunday night.
Texans coach Bill O'Brien, who has his team sitting atop the AFC South, was a former assistant with the Patriots and knows what he is up against, losing all five matchups against mentor Bill Belichick.
ABOUT THE PATRIOTS (10-1): Defense continues to carry New England, which scored a combined 30 points in back-to-back victories over Philadelphia (17-10) and Dallas (13-9). Playing in miserable, rainy conditions, Tom Brady completed a season-worst 45.9 percent of his passes in last week's win over Dallas while going with two rookies at wide receiver, although Julian Edelman had eight catches for 93 yards -- the sixth time in seven games he had at least seven receptions. Sony Michel had 85 yards rushing on 20 carries but has yet to hit 100 this season. The Patriots lead the league in points allowed (10.6) and interceptions (20) while ranking second versus the pass (158.0 yards).
ABOUT THE TEXANS (7-4): Like New England, Houston was shredded at Baltimore before rebounding with a 20-17 win over Indianapolis in a showdown for division supremacy as Deshaun Watson threw for 298 yards with two scores and one interception. Speedster Will Fuller returned from missing more than a month with a hamstring injury and had seven receptions for 140 yards while DeAndre Hopkins hauled in a pair of touchdown passes and has 57 catches over his past seven games. Carlos Hyde has been solid if unspectacular, rushing for at least 60 yards in six of seven games to move within 164 of 1,000. The Texans are vulnerable through the air, ranking 25th at 259.3 yards per game.
Patriots are 13-5 ATS in their last 18 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Texans are 1-5 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 home games. Patriots are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
Back the Patriots with a great effort on the road.
|12-01-19||Raiders v. Chiefs -10||Top||9-40||Win||100||27 h 7 m||Show|
The stakes will be high when the Kansas City Chiefs host the Oakland Raiders in the latest installment of the storied rivalry Sunday. The Chiefs need a fifth straight win over the Raiders to preserve their one-game edge atop the AFC West standings.
Kansas City is coming off a bye week following a 24-17 road victory over the Los Angeles Chargers. The Chiefs’ high-powered offense sputtered a bit in that game, but the defense was able to force four turnovers and hang on. The Chiefs would effectively take a three-game lead in the division with a win, because they would sweep the season series - they won 28-10 at Oakland in Week 2. The Raiders had won three straight to get back in the thick of the division race before an embarrassing performance in a 34-3 loss at the New York Jets last week.
ABOUT THE RAIDERS (6-5): Oakland was beginning to look like a legitimate playoff contender until last week’s blowout loss to the Jets. The ground game has been solid behind Josh Jacobs, who needs 43 rushing yards to become the first rookie in franchise history to rush for 1,000, and quarterback Derek Carr has had a steady, if unspectacular, season. Oakland’s defense has struggled to stop the pass, which could be a problem against a pass-happy Chiefs' offense.
ABOUT THE CHIEFS (7-4): Kansas City’s offense was off its game against the Chargers, managing a meager 310 total yards, but facing the Raiders could help them get back on track. They torched Oakland for 467 total yards in Week 2 as Patrick Mahomes threw for 443 yards and a season-high four touchdowns. The Chiefs’ secondary had put together a good stretch before giving up 345 yards through the air against the Chargers, and Kansas City has struggled to stop the run.
Raiders are 4-12-1 ATS in their last 17 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Chiefs are 19-7 ATS in their last 26 vs. AFC West. Raiders are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 meetings in Kansas City.
Lay the big number with the Chiefs at home.
|12-01-19||Chargers -3 v. Broncos||Top||20-23||Loss||-115||27 h 6 m||Show|
Philip Rivers is going through a miserable stretch as the visiting Los Angeles Chargers attempt to avoid a season sweep at the hands of the AFC West-rival Denver Broncos on Sunday. Rivers has thrown seven interceptions over the past two games - both losses - and speculation is heating up on whether he will be back with the team in 2020.
Denver could unveil a new starting quarterback as second-round pick Drew Lock is practicing after returning from a preseason thumb injury.
ABOUT THE CHARGERS (4-7): Rivers has one more touchdown pass than interceptions (15 to 14) but has passed the 3,000-yard mark for the 14th consecutive season despite the recent evidence that his skills are on the decline. Safety Derwin James (foot) could be activated from injured reserve to make his season debut and the Chargers badly miss the player who had 105 tackles, 3.5 sacks and three interceptions, and made the Pro Bowl as a rookie last season. Defensive end Melvin Ingram (5.5 sacks this season) has moved into fourth place in franchise history with a career count of 47.5, passing legendary Junior Seau (47 from 1990-2002).
ABOUT THE BRONCOS (3-8): The possible move to Lock comes after Denver had 134 yards of total offense in last week's 20-3 loss to the Buffalo Bills, the club's lowest output since 1992. Second-year running back Phillip Lindsay (708 yards, five touchdowns) figures to get a lot of carries as he had a season-best 114 against the Chargers earlier this season.
Chargers are 6-0-1 ATS in their last 7 road games vs. a team with a losing home record. Broncos are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. Road team is 15-5-2 ATS in their last 22 meetings and are 9-2-5 ATS in their last 16 meetings in Denver.
Take the Chargers on the road.
|12-01-19||49ers +6 v. Ravens||Top||17-20||Win||100||24 h 44 m||Show|
The San Francisco 49ers are tied for the best record in the NFL but no team is hotter than the Baltimore Ravens, who have ripped off seven consecutive victories and outscored their last three opponents by a staggering 135-26 margin. The 49ers' top-ranked defense will try to slow Lamar Jackson and Co. when they visit the sizzling Ravens on Sunday.
San Francisco rebounded from its lone loss to Seattle with back-to-back wins, including a 37-8 mauling of Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay on Sunday night. "They're playing at the highest level right now," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said of the 49ers.
ABOUT THE 49ERS (10-1): San Francisco may not rival the defensive numbers of the New England Patriots, but it ranks No. 1 overall in overall yards (248.0), passing yards (136.9) and sacks (44.0), with ends Arik Armstead and rookie Nick Bosa registering 10.0 and 8.0, respectively. The passing game received a huge boost in Sunday's win when star tight end George Kittle returned from a two-game injury absence and snagged six catches for 129 yards and a touchdown. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has registered a passer rating of at least 111.2 in four of his last five games with 13 touchdowns and four picks during that span. Matt Breida returned to practice Wednesday to join a three-headed backfield with Tevin Coleman and Raheem Mostert.
ABOUT THE RAVENS (9-2): Jackson was named the AFC Offensive Player of the Week after throwing for five scores and rushing for 95 yards in the 45-6 wipeout of the Los Angeles Rams, becoming the third player overall and first since Tom Brady to win the weekly honor four times in a season. Jackson is tied for the league lead with 24 scoring passes and needs 124 yards rushing to reach 1,000 on the season. Mark Ingram surpassed 100 yards on the ground for the fourth time last week and has amassed 12 touchdowns (nine rushing) while tight end Mark Andrews and rookie Marquise Brown each have six scoring receptions.
I look for San Francisco to keep this close with a chance of winning outright.
|12-01-19||Titans +1.5 v. Colts||Top||31-17||Win||100||24 h 43 m||Show|
The winner of Sunday's AFC South showdown in Indianapolis between the Colts and Tennessee Titans keeps its division title hopes alive while the loser falls behind in a crowded wild-card race. Indianapolis and Tennessee sit one game behind South leader Houston, which hosts New England on Sunday, and are two of four 6-5 teams fighting for a wild-card spot in the AFC.
The Colts have won three straight meetings after a 19-17 victory at Tennessee in Week 2 behind three touchdown passes by Jacoby Brissett.
ABOUT THE TITANS (6-5): Ryan Tannehill is 4-2 since taking over at quarterback from Marcus Mariota with 10 touchdown passes against four interceptions. Wideout A.J. Brown had four catches for 135 yards and a touchdown in last week's 42-20 victory over Jacksonville and leads AFC rookies with 581 receiving yards. Linebacker Jaylen Brown had a career-high 15 tackles last week while Kenny Vaccaro is the only safety in the league with a sack in each of the last seven seasons after recording one versus Jacksonville.
Titans are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
Back Tennessee as the road dog.
|12-01-19||Jets -3 v. Bengals||Top||6-22||Loss||-100||24 h 42 m||Show|
When the New York Jets hinted at a playoff push earlier this month, it seemed to be an overly ambitious goal for a team that started 1-7. That goal is now somewhat attainable for a Jets squad that carries a three-game winning streak into a visit to the winless Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday.
ABOUT THE JETS (4-7): While Darnold has the offense clicking, the defense has been dominant during the winning streak by allowing an average of 238 total yards -- 48.3 on the ground -- while setting a rejuvenated tone in the locker room. Safety Jamal Adams remains the catalyst with 6.5 sacks, nine quarterback hits and two forced fumbles during the winning streak.
ABOUT THE BENGALS (0-11): Veteran Andy Dalton will resume starting quarterback duties this week after sitting out the last three games to give rookie Ryan Finley a chance. "It was not an easy decision any time we've had to make it, which has been twice this year," head coach Zac Taylor told reporters of the move. "But it's in the best interest of the football team to do this and get Andy back out there." Dalton threw for 2,252 yards in his eight starts with nine touchdowns and eight interceptions, while Finley had 474 yards and completed only 47.1 percent of his passes in his three-game audition.
Jets are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in Week 13. Bengals are 1-10 ATS in their last 11 home games.
The Jets are playing much better Football and I’ll back them on the road.
|11-24-19||Packers +3.5 v. 49ers||Top||8-37||Loss||-115||46 h 43 m||Show|
There is little margin for error for two division leaders when the Green Bay Packers visit the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday night. San Francisco has the best record in the NFC and holds a one-game lead over the NFC West rival Seattle Seahawks while the Packers are a half-game ahead of the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC North.
ABOUT THE PACKERS (8-2): Rodgers has a superb ratio of 17 touchdown passes against two interceptions and has thrown for 2,718 yards, twice topping 400 yards passing. Running back Aaron Jones has broken out and is tied for the NFL lead with 14 touchdowns (11 rushing, three receiving) and has 943 scrimmage yards (589 rushing, 354 receiving). Linebacker Preston Smith has dominated with a team-best 10 sacks for an opportunistic defense that has fueled the team's plus-9 turnover margin (16 takeaways, seven giveaways).
ABOUT THE 49ERS (9-1): San Francisco quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has heated up with 11 passing touchdowns over the past four games and he has thrown for 2,478 yards, 18 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. Star tight end George Kittle (46 receptions, 541 yards) returned to practice Thursday and the 49ers are hopeful he will available after missing the past two games with knee and ankle injuries.
Packers are 5-0 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games. Packers are 6-2-1 ATS in their last 9 meetings in San Francisco.
I’m all over the Packers as an underdog.
|11-24-19||Cowboys v. Patriots -6||Top||9-13||Loss||-100||42 h 47 m||Show|
Despite Tom Brady's admitted "frustration" with his team's offense, the New England Patriots own the best record in the AFC in their bid to make a fourth consecutive appearance in the Super Bowl. New England has won 17 in a row at home and will put that streak on the line when they host the NFC East-leading Dallas Cowboys on Sunday afternoon.
While the Patriots were held to a lowest point total since Week 4 in a 17-10 win at Philadelphia on Sunday, helping Dallas assume sole possession of first place in the division.
ABOUT THE COWBOYS (6-4): Dak Prescott became the third Dallas quarterback to earn multiple NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors in one season after throwing for 444 yards with three touchdowns and zero interceptions in last week's 35-27 win at Detroit. The Pats defense will be a different ball game.
ABOUT THE PATRIOTS (9-1): New England's defense leads the league in points (10.8) and total yards (249.9) allowed while ranking first in interceptions (18) and third in sacks (37.0).
A victory Sunday would give the Patriots 17 straight 10-win seasons, breaking an NFL record shared with San Francisco.
Cowboys are 0-6 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Patriots are 22-5 ATS in their last 27 games after allowing less than 90 yards rushing in their previous game.
The Patriots defense gets the job done with a win and cover!
|11-24-19||Jaguars v. Titans -3.5||Top||20-42||Win||100||41 h 26 m||Show|
I feel we have two teams heading in opposite directions here on Sunday with Jacksonville dropping two straight games and averaging just 8 points per game, while Tennessee has won 3 of their last 4 games (3-1 ATS) and has averaged just over 26 points per game.
The Jaguars have been terrible on defense give up over 260 yards rushing last week vs. the Colts. Look for Titans running back Derrick Henry to have a big day and quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who is hitting at a 71% clip with eight touchdowns since taking over the offense to play well again.
Tennessee knows how to take care of the ball at home averaging just 0.6 turnovers per game, while their opponents have averaged 1.8 turnovers per game.
Jacksonville is just 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games against Tennessee and has not won in Nashville since 2013.
I’m more than willing to lay a field goal or more with the Titans at home.
|11-24-19||Bucs v. Falcons -3.5||Top||35-22||Loss||-105||38 h 21 m||Show|
The Atlanta Falcons are a different team since their bye week and look to put the clamps on a third straight opponent when they host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. Atlanta yielded an average of 31.3 points in losing seven of its first eight games before realizing its defensive potential with consecutive victories at New Orleans 26-9 and at Carolina 29-3.
Atlanta has won five straight in the series with an average of nearly 60 combined points scored in those games and since Tampa Bay is last in the NFL in points allowed at 31.3 per contest, Sunday's game could become a shootout if the Buccaneers' Jameis Winston takes care of the ball.
That is a big if, though, as the fifth-year quarterback has thrown an NFL-most 18 interceptions - including four in a 34-17 loss to New Orleans last week - and has eight fumbles over the last five games.
ABOUT THE BUCCANEERS (3-7): Winston, who is nursing an ankle injury, has thrown for more than 300 yards in five straight games - a franchise record and the longest active streak in the NFL. I feel the Saints defense will force him into mistakes all day.
ABOUT THE FALCONS (3-7): Matt Ryan (69.2 percent completion rate, 18 touchdown passes, nine interceptions) moved past Warren Moon and into 10th place all-time with 49,383 yards after throwing for 311 with a score last week. Wide receiver Julio Jones has 102 catches for 1,695 yards and 11 TDs in 14 games against Tampa Bay - all the most versus any opponent.
Roll with the Falcons at home!
|11-24-19||Panthers v. Saints -9.5||Top||31-34||Loss||-110||38 h 20 m||Show|
Carolina's Christian McCaffrey and New Orleans' Alvin Kamara - the league's top two all-purpose running backs - will be the featured attractions when the Saints host the Panthers on Sunday. First-place New Orleans holds a three-game lead over Carolina in the NFC South, and will try to ration Kamara's playing time down the stretch with running back Latavius Murray getting his fair share of touches.
The Panthers have dropped three of four after McCaffrey totaled 191 yards in a 29-3 loss to Atlanta last week.
ABOUT THE PANTHERS (5-5): Kyle Allen led Carolina to four straight victories with seven touchdown passes and zero interceptions in his first four starts of the season but has three TDs and nine picks - four versus Atlanta - in his last four games.
ABOUT THE SAINTS (8-2): Kamara returned from his two-game absence with 122 yards from scrimmage in a 34-17 victory at Tampa Bay last week and has rushed for a touchdown in his last three games against the Panthers. Drew Brees has completed 76.4 percent of his passes with six TDs and an interception in three contests since missing five-plus games with a thumb injury. Michael Thomas has a league-leading 94 catches - the most after 10 games in NFL history - and became the first player with 90 or more catches in his first four seasons after recording eight last week.
Brees has thrown 22 touchdown passes and five interceptions in his last seven home games versus Carolina.
Lay the big number with the Saints at home.
|11-21-19||Colts +3.5 v. Texans||Top||17-20||Win||100||9 h 31 m||Show|
First place in the AFC South will be on the line when the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans square off for the second time in six weeks. The Colts snapped a two-game skid with a lopsided 33-13 victory over Jacksonville on Sunday and will be seeking their sixth win in the last seven meetings when they visit the Texans on Thursday night.
Houston's defense was carved up by Lamar Jackson in last week's 41-7 shellacking at Baltimore, halting a two-game winning streak and now they'll have to deal with a Colts passing offense that shredded them for 321 back in Week 7.
With Brissett back under center, Indianapolis rebounded from a stunning home loss to lowly Miami by rolling up a lopsided 33-13 victory over Jacksonville on Sunday, while limiting an opponent to 16 points or fewer for the third time in four weeks.
The Texans have struggled to get a pass rush ever since J.J. Watt was lost to injury, meaning the Colts dominant offensive line should be able to give Brissett plenty of time to read the field and pick apart a banged up Texans secondary.
Colts are 10-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 vs. AFC South. Texans are 2-8 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games.
Take Colts plus the points in a game they can win outright.
|11-17-19||Patriots -3.5 v. Eagles||Top||17-10||Win||100||41 h 2 m||Show|
It's not too often that the New England Patriots fail to come out on top in a high-profile match, but one of the most noteworthy examples in recent memory came in a loss to Philadelphia in Super Bowl LII in February 2018. The Patriots will get a chance to avenge that defeat and bounce back from their first loss of the season when they visit the Eagles on Sunday afternoon.
While the Patriots' aura of defensive invincibility was punctured in a 37-20 loss at Baltimore prior to last week's bye, the Eagles have moved back into a tie for first place in the NFC East courtesy of back-to-back wins at Buffalo and against Chicago prior to their week off.
ABOUT THE PATRIOTS (8-1): New England entered its Week 9 matchup leading the league in points allowed (7.6), interceptions (19) and sacks (31), but it could not solve Baltimore's Lamar Jackson, who threw for one touchdown and ran for two more. Brady was held to one touchdown or less for the fourth time in six games, but he established a rapport with recent acquisition Mohamed Sanu, who hauled in 10 receptions for 81 yards and a score in his second game with the club.
ABOUT THE EAGLES (5-4): Philadelphia had absorbed lopsided road losses at Minnesota and Dallas before rebounding with an impressive 31-13 victory in Buffalo and a 22-14 win over Chicago. Carson Wentz, who missed the Super Bowl victory over New England due to a knee injury, has 11 touchdowns versus two interceptions over his last seven games but could be dealing with a patchwork wide receiver corps. Alshon Jeffery (ankle) did not practice for a second straight game and DeSean Jackson was placed on injured reserve, so the Eagles may lean on the running back tandem of Jordan Howard (525 yards, 6 TDs rushing) and rookie Miles Sanders.
Patriots are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a bye week and are 12-5 ATS in their last 17 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Eagles are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games after allowing less than 150 yards passing in their previous game. Road team is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
Lay the number with New England on the road off a bye.
|11-17-19||Bengals v. Raiders -11||Top||10-17||Loss||-116||41 h 2 m||Show|
The rested Oakland Raiders have a great opportunity to stretch their winning streak to three games in a row when they host the winless Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. After victories over Detroit and the Los Angeles Chargers, the Raiders enter Week 11 just a half-game behind the Kansas City Chiefs for first place in the AFC West.
The Bengals are one loss away from matching the worst start in franchise history and their longest losing streak at 10 games, which happened in 1993 and 2010. They don't seem to be getting any closer to breaking through after last week's 49-13 loss to Baltimore at home.
ABOUT THE BENGALS (0-9): Trying to maintain a positive outlook is a challenge amid an 0-9 start, but first-year coach Zac Taylor is confident he and his players will only be stronger because of it. Rookie Ryan Finley made his first start at quarterback last week and completed 16-of-30 passes for 167 yards with one touchdown and two turnovers, both of which were returned for scores.
ABOUT THE RAIDERS (5-4): Rookie running back Josh Jacobs sealed the dramatic 26-24 win over the Chargers on Nov. 7 with an 18-yard TD run, and he's averaging 100.8 yards on the ground over his last five games. That score gave Oakland a 5-1 record in games decided by single digits, and the team is taking pride in its identity as a tough unit.
Bengals are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up loss of more than 14 points. Raiders are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 home games.
Look for the Raiders to outplay the Bengals on both sides of the football. Lay the big number with Oakland.
|11-17-19||Cowboys -6.5 v. Lions||Top||35-27||Win||100||38 h 40 m||Show|
The Dallas Cowboys used a strong second-half surge en route to winning the NFC East title a year ago and they hope to follow a similar path with seven games remaining this season. Having lost four of six after opening the season with three straight wins, the Cowboys look to maintain their hold on the division lead when they visit the Detroit Lions on Sunday afternoon.
The Lions are on the verge of falling out of postseason contention after dropping five out of six and may be forced to start backup quarterback Jeff Driskel for a second straight week with Matthew Stafford hobbled by a back injury.
ABOUT THE COWBOYS (5-4): Dak Prescott, second in the league with 2,777 yards, registered his third straight 100.0-plus passer rating after throwing for 397 yards and three touchdowns versus Minnesota. Amari Cooper had 147 yards and a score on a season high-tying 11 receptions while Randall Cobb also eclipsed 100 yards and a score, but Elliott had his string of three consecutive 100-yard games snapped by rushing for only 47 on 20 carries. Elliott, however, shredded the Lions for 152 yards while adding four catches for 88 yards and a touchdown in last season's 26-24 win. Dallas ranks sixth in points allowed (18.9) and against the pass (219.8 yards).
ABOUT THE LIONS (3-5-1): Stafford did not practice again Thursday and Driskel appears in line for his seventh NFL start after throwing for a career-best 269 yards with one touchdown and an interception in last week's 20-13 loss at Chicago. Driskel has talent on the outside in wideouts Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones Jr., who have combined for 14 scoring passes. Ty Johnson (concussion) was knocked out of last week's game due but practiced on a limited basis Thursday for Detroit, which already lost starting running back Kerryon Johnson for the season. The Lions rank 28th against the pass (272.8 yards).
Prescott has at least two scoring passes in five straight games versus NFC North opponents.
Cowboys are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 road games vs. a team with a losing home record and are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games in November. Lions are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games overall and are 1-6-1 ATS in their last 8 games in November.
The Cowboys get the money here on the road.
|11-17-19||Saints -5 v. Bucs||Top||34-17||Win||100||38 h 39 m||Show|
The New Orleans Saints are still in control of the NFC South, but they don’t want a repeat performance of last week. The division-leading Saints will look to bounce back from a disappointing loss when they travel to face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a divisional matchup Sunday.
The Saints had their six-game winning streak snapped with a stunning 26-9 loss to visiting Atlanta last week, but they still have a two-game cushion in the division. New Orleans beat Tampa Bay 31-24 at home in Week 5, holding the Bucs to a season-low 252 total yards. That came in the midst of a remarkable five-game run in which the Saints did not allow more than 257 total yards, which came to an end when they gave up 317 yards to the Falcons. Tampa Bay ended a four-game skid with a 30-27 home win over Arizona last week after losing its first three home games of the season.
ABOUT THE SAINTS (7-2): New Orleans’ offense sputtered to just 310 total yards last week, and nearly half of them came from MVP candidate Michael Thomas, who had 13 catches for 152 yards. Thomas torched the Bucs for 11 catches for 182 yards and two touchdowns in Week 5 and has had at least 10 catches and 90 receiving yards in three straight games against Tampa Bay. The Saints rank fifth in the league in total defense.
ABOUT THE BUCCANEERS (3-6): Tampa Bay overcame three turnovers to beat the Cardinals last week, but the giveaways are a continued concern, as they’ve committed 21 turnovers, including three games with four or more. The Bucs didn’t cough it up in the first meeting with the Saints, but they’ve done so 15 times in four games since, and Jameis Winston has thrown a whopping 14 interceptions. The other red flag for the Bucs has been their pass defense, which ranks last in the league and has given up more than 300 net passing yards six times in nine games.
Saints are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up loss of more than 14 points and are 23-8 ATS in their last 31 road games. Buccaneers are 7-20-1 ATS in their last 28 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
Lay the points with the Saints to bounce back big!
|11-11-19||Seahawks +6 v. 49ers||Top||27-24||Win||100||8 h 53 m||Show|
The San Francisco 49ers find themselves as the NFL's lone remaining undefeated team, but that lofty standing will be put to the test on Monday night against potential league Most Valuable Player candidate Russell Wilson and the visiting Seattle Seahawks. The Seahawks are also undefeated in one respect, as they have won all four games away from the Emerald City.
Jimmy Garoppolo threw for a personal-best four touchdowns and eclipsed 300 yards for the third time in his career as San Francisco improved to 8-0 for the time since 1990 with a 28-25 victory over Arizona on Oct. 31 in a game they were lucky to win.
ABOUT THE SEAHAWKS (7-2): Tyler Lockett erupted for a career-high 13 receptions for 152 yards and two touchdowns and fellow wideout DK Metcalf had personal bests in catches (six) and receiving yards (123) and a score versus the Buccaneers. Seattle added to its passing game with the addition of Josh Gordon off waivers from New England.
ABOUT THE 49ERS (8-0): Tight end George Kittle's availability for Monday's game is in jeopardy after an MRI exam revealed damage to both his knee and ankle after he was hit awkwardly on the first play of the contest against Arizona. Kittle did not practice on Friday.
Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner, who had a team-high 11 tackles last week, has four interceptions and three sacks in his past six games versus the 49ers.
Seahawks are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record and are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 road games. 49ers are 5-12 ATS in their last 17 vs. NFC and are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 vs. NFC West. Seahawks are 11-3-1 ATS in their last 15 meetings and are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 meetings in San Francisco.
I’ll take the points with Seattle in a game they can win outright.
|11-10-19||Vikings v. Cowboys -3||Top||28-24||Loss||-114||34 h 57 m||Show|
The Dallas Cowboys are back atop the NFC East, rebounding from a three-game losing streak to post lopsided victories over a pair of division opponents, including a 37-18 victory at the New York Giants on Monday night. The Cowboys hope to keep the momentum going Sunday night when they host the Minnesota Vikings, who had a four-game winning streak snapped last week.
It's also a pivotal game for Minnesota, which is one game behind first-place Green Bay in the NFC North and holding down the final playoff slot with four of its last six at home, where the Vikings are 4-0.
ABOUT THE VIKINGS (6-3): Kirk Cousins threw for 220 yards and three touchdowns last week, but he still has not guided Minnesota to a victory when trailing entering the fourth quarter, falling to 0-10-1 in such games after Kansas City kicked two field goals in the final 2 1/2 minutes last week. Cousins could be without one of his top targets as Adam Thielen aggravated a hamstring injury in Sunday's loss and did not practice all week. His absence would mean a heavy workload for Dalvin Cook, who has rushed for nine touchdowns and an NFL-leading 894 yards.
ABOUT THE COWBOYS (5-3): Dak Prescott is averaging 297.5 yards and completing 69.6 percent of his passes -- both career highs -- as he presides over an offense that tops the NFL with 436.8 yards per contest. Amari Cooper, the team leader with 701 yards and six touchdown receptions, was diagnosed with a bruised knee that prevented him from practicing Thursday but he is expected to play Sunday. Dallas also is expected to lean on the ground game as Ezekiel Elliott has rushed for at least 100 yards in three straight games, including 139 on 23 carries last week against the Giants. The Cowboys rank fifth in the league, surrendering an average of 17.8 points.
Minnesota is winless in its last 10 road games (0-9-1) versus teams with a winning record.
The Vikes have lost three road games this year to Chicago, Green Bay and last week in Kansas City — all by at least three points. The offense will also be without Adam Thielen as Kirk Cousins and his 15-26-2 career road record and 1-6 record versus the Cowboys could struggle in primetime.
Let’s back the Cowboys at home.
|11-10-19||Dolphins +13 v. Colts||Top||16-12||Win||100||30 h 43 m||Show|
Indianapolis Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett has been a limited participant in practice this week as he attempts to limp his way back into the lineup for Sunday's game against the visiting Miami Dolphins. Brian Hoyer is waiting in the wings should Brissett be unable to play after sustaining a sprained MCL in his left knee during last Sunday's 26-24 loss to Pittsburgh.
Hoyer fared well in relief with three touchdown passes against one interception last Sunday for the Colts, who can move into a tie with idle Houston for first place in the AFC South with their seventh victory in the last eight meetings with the Dolphins. Miami tasted victory for the first time this season with a 26-18 win over the New York Jets on Sunday, but rookie head coach Brian Flores' club is now tasked with attempting to prevent a franchise high-tying 11th straight road loss (2006-08).
Dolphins quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick said after he threw for a season-high 288 yards and three touchdowns versus the Jets.
ABOUT THE DOLPHINS (1-7): Kalen Ballage, who has rushed for a touchdown in two of his last four contests, is expected to see an expanded role in Miami's 30th-ranked offense after Kenyan Drake was traded to Arizona and fellow running back Mark Walton was suspended four games for violating the NFL conduct and substance abuse policy. Wideout DeVante Parker has reeled in a touchdown reception in four of his past five games while tight end Mike Gesicki emerged for career-high totals in catches (six) and receiving yards (95) last week.
ABOUT THE COLTS (5-3): Although there is a question about the identity of the starting quarterback, running back Marlon Mack likely will see plenty of work as he faces Miami's second-worst run defense in the NFL. Mack has totaled at least 85 yards from scrimmage in three of his last four games and has rushed for a touchdown in three of his last five home contests. Zach Pascal stepped up with Miami native T.Y. Hilton sidelined with a calf injury, reeling in five catches for a team-best 76 yards against the Steelers while building a rapport with both Brissett and Hoyer.
Flores knows both Brissett and Hoyer very well dating back to their respective days in New England.
Dolphins are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games overall. Colts are 0-5-1 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.Dolphins are 8-1 ATS in their last 9 meetings in Indianapolis.
Go with the Dolphins to stay inside the number.
|11-10-19||Chiefs -6 v. Titans||Top||32-35||Loss||-105||27 h 42 m||Show|
The Kansas City Chiefs have weathered the storm without their MVP quarterback and expect to have Patrick Mahomes back Sunday when they visit the Tennessee Titans. The Titans have won the past two meetings with the Chiefs and are 6-1 all-time against Kansas City coach Andy Reid.
The Chiefs survived two weeks without their star quarterback, bouncing back from a tough 31-24 loss to Green Bay two weeks ago to claim a thrilling 26-23 victory over Minnesota in Week 9. Before the Week 7 game at Denver in which he dislocated his kneecap, Mahomes was averaging 350.7 passing yards and appeared poised for another big game before the injury knocked him out in the first half against the Broncos.
ABOUT THE CHIEFS (6-3): If there’s a silver lining to Mahomes’ two-game absence, it’s that the Chiefs were able to get running back Damien Williams more involved in the offense. Williams rushed for a career-high 125 yards last week, including a 91-yard touchdown run, and Tyreek Hill had six catches for a season-high 140 yards and a touchdown. Kansas City’s defense was gashed on the ground early in the season, but the Chiefs held Minnesota’s powerful ground game to less than 100 yards last week.
ABOUT THE TITANS (4-5): After leading the Titans to wins in his first two starts, Tannehill passed for 331 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions in a 30-20 loss at Carolina last week. Tennessee’s 431 total yards last week were a season-high, but three turnovers derailed their bid for a third straight win. The Titans’ defense has been solid but is dependent on takeaways - they have forced 14 turnovers and have at least one takeaway in six straight games.
Chiefs K Harrison Butker leads the NFL with 84 points.
Chiefs are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in Week 10 and are 18-7-1 ATS in their last 26 road games. Titans are 6-15-1 ATS in their last 22 home games vs. a team with a winning road record and are 5-14-1 ATS in their last 20 games in November. Road team is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
Take the Chiefs on the road with QB Mahomes returning.
|11-10-19||Bills +3 v. Browns||Top||16-19||Push||0||27 h 41 m||Show|
It's not a stretch to say that Buffalo Bills have been among the biggest surprises among AFC teams -- nor is it to acknowledge that the Cleveland Browns have been among the biggest disappointments. The Bills have a chance to all but bury Cleveland's fading playoffs hopes when they visit the Browns on Sunday in a matchup featuring two quarterbacks drafted in the first round in 2018.
Cleveland, which has played a considerably tougher schedule than the Bills and is mired in a four-game slide after absorbing a 24-19 setback at Denver last weekend.
ABOUT THE BILLS (6-2): Josh Allen was drafted six spots behind Mayfield despite concerns that he was not pro-ready due to facing suspect competition at Wyoming, but last week he became the fourth quarterback in history with at least 20 passing touchdowns and 12 rushing scores in his first two seasons. Running back Devin Singletary has endured an injury-plagued rookie campaign but he ran for a season-high 95 yards and a touchdown last week on 20 carries -- matching his number of rushing attempts from his previous four games combined. Buffalo's defense ranks third overall (296.3 yards per game).
ABOUT THE BROWNS (2-6): Cleveland has a fairly soft second-half schedule but needs more production from Mayfield, who has not thrown for more than one scoring pass in a game while tossing a league high-tying 12 interceptions. Odell Beckham Jr. became the third-fastest wideout to 6,000 yards last Sunday but he has not found the end zone since Week 2. Running back Nick Chubb ranks fourth in the NFL with 803 yards rushing but could see his touches diminished with former Kansas City running back Kareem Hunt returning from an eight-game suspension. Myles Garrett ranks second in the league with 10.0 sacks for a defense that has limited teams to 216.3 yards passing, but the Browns have been gouged for 141.3 yards rushing per game.
Buffalo is 3-0 on the road while Cleveland has lost all three games at home.
Bills are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games. Browns are 1-8 ATS in their last 9 home games vs. a team with a winning road record and are 5-21-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Bills are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
Back the Bills as a road dog.
|11-10-19||Giants -2.5 v. Jets||Top||27-34||Loss||-135||27 h 41 m||Show|
The Big Apple has seen some pretty bad football this season and on Sunday both of the city's culprits will be on display on the same field when the Jets "host" the Giants at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. The New York-area teams are a combined 3-14 after both dropped games against division rivals last week, with the Jets seeming to bottom out with a 26-18 setback at previously winless Miami.
The Giants have lost five in a row -- their longest slide since a seven-game skid in 2014 -- after dropping a 37-18 decision to Dallas at home Monday night. Seeing that skid extend to six against a city rival while going into a bye week could make for a long, painful stretch for the Giants, and the sense of urgency is there.
ABOUT THE GIANTS (2-7): Struggling rookie quarterback Daniel Jones had three more turnovers in the loss to the Cowboys and he has eight interceptions and eight fumbles in his eight games (seven starts). Star running back Saquon Barkley has just 92 yards on 33 carries over his last two games, but he's made 14 catches for 146 yards and a touchdown in that span. I look for him to have a big game.
ABOUT THE JETS (1-7): Quarterback Sam Darnold has struggled to take the next step this season, but he's trying take some positives from a relatively solid 27-of-39 performance versus the Dolphins, against whom he threw one interception after getting picked off seven times over the previous two games.
The Jets enter Week 10 ranked last in the NFL in total offense (223.5 yards per game), passing offense (157.3) and scoring (12.0 points per contest).
Giants are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 road games vs. a team with a losing home record. Jets are 1-7-1 ATS in their last 9 home games.
Giants are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings and get the money on Sunday.
|11-10-19||Falcons v. Saints -13.5||Top||26-9||Loss||-109||27 h 40 m||Show|
The rough start to the season is about to get rougher for the Atlanta Falcons, who travel to face the red-hot New Orleans Saints on Sunday. The Saints have won six straight and have star quarterback Drew Brees back from injury and back to his excellent ways.
Prior to last week’s bye, New Orleans put up 510 total yards in a 31-9 victory over Arizona in Brees’ return after missing five games with a thumb injury. More important, their defense continued its dominant play, holding a fifth consecutive opponent to fewer than 260 total yards. That doesn’t bode well for the Falcons, who likely will need to put up a lot of points to win. Atlanta ranks 30th in points allowed, though the offense takes some of the blame because of 15 turnovers, including four games with three giveaways.
ABOUT THE FALCONS (1-7): Atlanta is also coming off a bye following a 27-20 loss to Seattle in Week 8. Matt Ryan is expected to be back in the lineup after missing the Seahawks game, but Matt Schaub guided the Falcons to season highs for total yards (510) and passing yards (441). Atlanta’s defense has played better the past two weeks, holding the Los Angeles Rams and Seattle Seahawks to fewer than 400 total yards, but have forced only one turnover in their past six games while committing nine turnovers during that stretch.
ABOUT THE SAINTS (7-1): Brees was sharp in his return, completing 34-of-43 passes for 373 yards with three touchdowns and an interception. Regardless of who has been at quarterback, Michael Thomas has been the focal point of the offense, leading the league in receptions (73) and receiving yards (875). The Saints have not allowed 100 rushing yards in their last five games and haven’t given up more than 235 passing yards during that stretch.
Falcons are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games following a ATS win and are 3-14 ATS in their last 17 games after accumulating more than 250 yards passing in their previous game. Saints are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 games following a bye week and are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
Take the Saints in a rout.
|11-03-19||Patriots -3 v. Ravens||Top||20-37||Loss||-105||44 h 22 m||Show|
The New England Patriots have torn through the first half of the schedule behind a suffocating defense that has stifled a bevy of inexperienced quarterbacks. The undefeated Patriots already have squared off against four quarterbacks drafted in the first round in 2018 and will face a fifth member from that class when they visit the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday night.
ABOUT THE PATRIOTS (8-0): New England leads the league with 19 interceptions and 31 sacks, including five last week, but its run defense showed some cracks by allowing the Cleveland Browns to rush for 159 yards in the 27-13 victory. Tom Brady ended his interception streak at four games last week, throwing for 259 yards and tossing a pair of scoring passes to Julian Edelman, who has 32 receptions over the past four games and has been the one constant in what has been a revolving door at wide receiver. Getting Mohamed Sanu Sr. will help.
The Patriots are 8-1 in the last nine regular-season meetings.
The Pats are 14-4 ATS in their last 18 after allowing 14 points or less in their previous game, while the Ravens are a poor 2-8 ATS in their last ten following a SU road victory (including 0-2 ATS this year.)
Patriots get my money as my best bet on Sunday Night.
|11-03-19||Packers -3 v. Chargers||Top||11-26||Loss||-125||40 h 28 m||Show|
Two of the top quarterbacks in the NFL square off Sunday when the Green Bay Packers visit the Los Angeles Chargers. Aaron Rodgers looks to lead Green Bay to its fifth straight victory while Philip Rivers will be adjusting to a new play-caller after the Chargers fired offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt earlier this week.
Green Bay typically travels a lot of fans and figures to have a huge homefield advantage in the diminutive soccer stadium that the Chargers have trouble filling. The Packers, who are 3-0 on the road, are also rolling up the points by averaging 32.5 during the four-game winning streak.
ABOUT THE PACKERS (7-1): Rodgers (2,324 yards, 16 touchdowns, two interceptions) will have receiver Davante Adams (25 receptions, 378 yards) back on the field after the two-time Pro Bowler was sidelined throughout Green Bay's winning streak with a foot injury.
ABOUT THE CHARGERS (3-5): Rivers, who has passed for 2,315 yards, 12 touchdowns and seven interceptions this season, enjoyed a big game in his last outing against Green Bay when he passed for a career-best 503 yards in a 27-20 loss in 2015. Los Angeles has been unable to get Melvin Gordon on track since he returned from a holdout as the running back has 112 yards on 44 carries in four games.
The Packers have won the past seven meetings and 10 of 11 overall, with the Chargers' lone win occurring in 1984.
Packers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games. Chargers are 5-16 ATS in their last 21 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Packers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings.
Packers get the west coast win and cover.
|11-03-19||Lions v. Raiders -2.5||Top||24-31||Win||100||40 h 9 m||Show|
The Detroit Lions will try to move back above .500 at the midpoint of the season when they visit the Oakland Raiders on Sunday. The Lions bounced back from a three-game losing streak against some of the league's top teams by getting past the New York Giants 31-26 last week.
Oakland lost its last two games -- both on the road -- and is beginning a stretch in which it plays three straight at home, including a Thursday night matchup with the Los Angeles Chargers four days after Detroit leaves town.
ABOUT THE LIONS (3-3-1): The trade deadline was a quiet one for Detroit, which is confident it can remain relevant in the NFC playoff picture over the next two months.
ABOUT THE RAIDERS (3-4): Derek Carr threw for 285 yards and three TDs at Houston last week, and the Fresno State product has seven scoring strikes with only one interception and one sack over his last four games. Oakland has allowed just eight sacks on the year, second fewest in the league, and none over the past three contests. Rookie running back Josh Jacobs leads the league's seventh-ranked rushing attack with 620 yards.
The Lions rank 26th in the league with 3.6 yards per carry and are tied for second-to-last with two rushing TDs.
Lions are 7-21-2 ATS in their last 30 games after scoring more than 30 points in their previous game and are 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games in November. Raiders are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 games following a straight up loss.
The Raiders get some home cooking with a win and cover.
|11-03-19||Bears v. Eagles -4||Top||14-22||Win||100||37 h 6 m||Show|
The Chicago Bears have struggled to regain their footing even since their last-second field goal attempt caromed off both the left upright and the crossbar in last season's wild-card game against the Philadelphia Eagles. The Bears aim to rebound from yet another costly missed field goal in their most recent contest when they visit the Eagles on Sunday afternoon.
While Chicago attempts to snap a three-game losing skid, Philadelphia answered being outscored 75-30 in losses at Dallas and Minnesota by rushing for three touchdowns in a 31-13 victory over Buffalo on Sunday. Former Bears running back Jordan Howard recorded seasons highs in carries (23) and yards (96) versus the Bills while finding the end zone for the sixth time (five rushing, one receiving) in the last six games.
ABOUT THE BEARS (3-4): Chicago's ever-present kicking woes briefly put Mitchell Trubisky's troubles on the back burner, although the much-maligned quarterback threw for 303 yards and a touchdown pass against Philadelphia on Jan. 6. Trubisky turned the keys over to rookie David Montgomery last week, as the third-round pick out of Iowa State posted season highs in carries (27) and rushing yards (135) while also rushing for a touchdown. The 22-year-old Montgomery picked up 10 first downs on the ground for the Bears, who are near the basement of the league in rushing yards per game (26th), yards per rush (27th) and rushing touchdowns (tied for 25th).
ABOUT THE EAGLES (4-4): Howard rushed for 3,370 yards and 24 touchdowns during his first three seasons with Chicago before being traded to Philadelphia for a conditional sixth-round pick. Carson Wentz kept pace with Seattle's Russell Wilson by tossing a touchdown pass in his 11th consecutive contest on Sunday when he connected with tight end Dallas Goedert late in the second quarter. Alshon Jeffery, who led the way in receptions (four) and receiving yards (64) against the Bills, found the end zone in the wild-card game versus his former team.
Bears are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up loss. Eagles are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following an ATS win. Bears are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
The Eagles get the win by at least 7 points.
|11-03-19||Texans v. Jaguars +2||Top||26-3||Loss||-115||34 h 37 m||Show|
The Houston Texans will head to London this week for a Sunday matchup with the Jacksonville Jaguars without their defensive leader and with a star quarterback nursing an eye issue. Defensive end J.J. Watt was lost for the season due to a torn pectoral muscle in last Sunday's 27-24 win over the Oakland Raiders, during which quarterback Deshaun Watson was kicked in the eye.
The Texans injury report is particularly ugly this week. Sure, the JJ Watt out of the season news made headlines last Sunday, but Watt is just the beginning. Both starting offensive tackles and their center are all questionable at best for Sunday’s game. Cornerbacks Bradley Roby and Lonnie Johnson are out, as is safety Tashaun Gipson and WR Will Fuller.
The Jags have three wins and a competitive loss in London over the last four seasons, playing well across the pond. Their defense has really stepped up of late and their pass rush (#3 in the NFL in sacks) is likely to be a big problem for Deshaun Watson playing behind a banged up offensive line. The Texans have scored only 54 points in their last four meetings against their divisional rival; 20 or less in every game. With Gardner Minshew behind center, the Jags have scored 24+ four times in their last five games. The Jaguars will be playing overseas for the seventh consecutive season.
Rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew threw for 279 yards and three TDs in the win over the Jets as he seemingly solidifies his role as the starter with veteran Nick Foles (collarbone) set to return in a few weeks. Minshew had 213 passing yards and a TD while running for a team-high 56 yards in the first meeting, a 13-12 win for Houston on Sept. 15.
Texans are 4-13 ATS in their last 17 games after accumulating more than 250 yards passing in their previous game. Jaguars are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 vs. AFC.
Back the Jags in this divisional matchup in London.
|10-27-19||Chargers +4 v. Bears||Top||17-16||Win||100||38 h 43 m||Show|
The Los Angeles Chargers are watching their season slide away and look to halt a three-game losing streak when they visit the Chicago Bears on Sunday. They won't find any sympathy from the Bears, who have dropped back-to-back contests and also feel they are in a must-win situation.
Chicago quarterback Mitchell Trubisky is receiving heat for offensive issues that have led to the club being ranked 30th in the NFL in total offense (263.7 yards per game) and 26th in scoring (18.7 points). The Bears also have a sagging running attack that ranks 28th (70 yards per game), with lead back David Montgomery (231 yards) averaging a meager 3.3 yards per carry.
The Bears have allowed an average of 30 points during their consecutive losses, so perhaps that helps Los Angeles' offense, which is averaging just 16.7 points during the skid. Philip Rivers has topped 300 yards in each of the last two games and five times overall this season as he already is more than halfway toward notching his 11th career 4,000-yard season.
Chargers are 8-2-1 ATS in their last 11 road games and are 6-2-1 ATS in their last 9 games following a ATS loss. Bears are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games following a double-digit loss at home and are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games in October.
In a close game I’ll take the points.
|10-27-19||Seahawks -6.5 v. Falcons||Top||27-20||Win||100||38 h 40 m||Show|
Matt Ryan's streak of 154 consecutive starts is in serious jeopardy as the downtrodden Atlanta Falcons host the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. Ryan departed last week's loss to the Los Angeles Rams with a sprained right ankle, which has prevented him from practicing this week.
Veteran backup Matt Schaub is being prepared to fill in for Ryan but hasn't started a game since 2015, when he twice received the call for Baltimore.
Atlanta has lost five straight games as it faces a Seattle team that lost to the Ravens last week, ending its three-game winning streak. Russell Wilson is tied for the NFL lead with 15 touchdown passes and likely is salivating at the prospect of facing a Falcons defense that has allowed an average of 41.3 points over its last three contests.
Wilson has been intercepted just once while throwing for 1,945 yards and running back Chris Carson is providing good production with 569 yards on the ground. But the defense - which is allowing 25.1 points and 357 yards per game - hasn't always been sturdy, so Seattle acquired safety Quandre Diggs from Detroit on Tuesday.
Seahawks are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 road games vs. a team with a losing home record and are 37-17-3 ATS in their last 57 games following a straight up loss. Falcons are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games after accumulating less than 90 yards rushing in their previous game and are 5-16 ATS in their last 21 games following a straight up loss of more than 14 points. Road team is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
I got the Seahawks in a rout.
|10-27-19||Jets v. Jaguars -6||Top||15-29||Win||100||38 h 32 m||Show|
The Jacksonville Jaguars figured out how to force turnovers last week, snapping a two-game slide and giving the defense some confidence heading home to face the New York Jets on Sunday. The Jets, who turned the ball over six times in a 33-0 home loss to the New England Patriots on Monday, need to tighten things up on offense against the Jaguars.
Jacksonville forced one turnover in its first six games but got the Cincinnati Bengals to cough up the ball four times during a 27-17 triumph last week.
The Jets were feeling good about themselves after knocking off the Dallas Cowboys in Week 6 but crashed back down to earth hard against the Patriots, and consistency is an issue.
Jags rookie QBGardner Minshew II owns 10 TD passes and two interceptions in six starts and is completing 61.5 percent of his passes.
Jets are 2-8-1 ATS in their last 11 games after accumulating less than 90 yards rushing in their previous game and are 2-10 ATS in their last 12 games in Week 8. Jaguars are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 vs. AFC and are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game. Jets are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 meetings.
Jags get the victory by at least a touchdown.
|10-27-19||Eagles v. Bills -1.5||Top||31-13||Loss||-115||37 h 22 m||Show|
The road hasn't been kind for the Philadelphia Eagles, who have dropped the first two legs of a three-game trek and surrendered an average of 31.5 points in four contests away from the City of Brotherly Love. The Eagles have a tough road ahead on Sunday when they visit the Buffalo Bills, who are off their best start since the 2008 season.
Turnovers have led to slow starts in each of the last two games for the Eagles, who have been outscored 51-17 in the first two quarters in losses to Minnesota and Dallas. Mistakes need to be held to a minimum versus Buffalo, which features the third-ranked overall defense (292.7 yards per game) and fourth-ranked passing defense (201.3).
Buffalo boasts the NFL's seventh-ranked rushing attack (135.8 yards per game) with the ageless Frank Gore (4.5 yards per carry) leading the way, although bruising quarterback Josh Allen hasn't been shy about chipping in with his legs either. Allen, who has seven rushing touchdowns in his past eight home games, relied on his arm last Sunday while completing 10 of his 11 passes in the second half. John Brown reeled in one of Allen's two touchdown passes versus the Dolphins, and the speedy wideout has at least five receptions and 69 yards receiving in five of his team's six games this season. Brown has three touchdown catches in three career games against Philadelphia.
Eagles are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss and are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing more than 30 points in their previous game. Bills are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
Back the Bills at home.
|10-27-19||Broncos v. Colts -4.5||Top||13-15||Loss||-105||37 h 21 m||Show|
The Indianapolis Colts solidified their position atop the AFC South by knocking off the Houston Texans last week and are quietly establishing themselves as a solid candidate to steal the AFC from the New England Patriots. The Colts will try to push their winning streak to three in a row when they host the Denver Broncos on Sunday.
Indianapolis bullied its way to wins over Kansas City and Houston in the last two weeks and is realizing that life after Andrew Luck is possible with Jacoby Brissett emerging as an elite quarterback.
The Broncos are still looking for their own game changer under center and sit 29th in the NFL in scoring (average of 16 points) and 26th in average passing yards (207.9) behind veteran Joe Flacco. He has been sacked 23 times - tied for fourth in the league. Denver is going for addition by subtraction on offense after trading veteran wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders to the San Francisco 49ers and that’s not a good idea.
Brissett started 15 games in place of an injured Luck in 2017 and totaled 13 TD passes but is emerging as much more of a threat in the passing game after being firmly entrenched as the starter and is fourth in the NFL with 14 TD passes in 2019. Brissett enjoyed the best game of his career with 326 yards, four TDs and no interceptions in last week's 30-23 triumph over Houston.
Broncos are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games following a double-digit loss at home. Colts are 6-2-1 ATS in their last 9 vs. AFC and are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall. Broncos are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 meetings and are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 meetings in Indianapolis.
The Colts are my top play of the week and crush the Broncos on Sunday!
|10-21-19||Patriots -9.5 v. Jets||Top||33-0||Win||100||8 h 36 m||Show|
The New York Jets were among the teams victimized in the red-hot start by the New England Patriots, who breezed to a 30-14 victory during the first meeting between the AFC East rivals in Week 3. The Jets will get a chance to avenge that defeat and hand the Patriots their first loss when they host the reigning Super Bowl champions on Monday Night Football.
New York was forced to go with third-string quarterback Luke Falk and was totally outclassed in the first matchup, but it hopes to turn the tables with starter Sam Darnold back in the lineup. I don’t think they can vs. the Pats defense on a big stage on MNF.
The Patriots suffocated the Jets on Sept. 22, allowing only 105 total yards in posting their seventh straight win in the series, and have yet to permit more than 14 points.
Brady has eight TDs and zero interceptions in his last three games against New York.
Patriots are 37-15 ATS in their last 52 games after allowing less than 250 total yards in their previous game. Jets are 1-6-1 ATS in their last 8 home games.
Lay the points with New England on the road.
|10-20-19||Ravens v. Seahawks -3||Top||30-16||Loss||-100||30 h 2 m||Show|
Russell Wilson is the early favorite to be named NFL MVP, but Lamar Jackson might be the league's most exciting player. The two quarterbacks clash on Sunday, when Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks host Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens.
Wilson has been winning plenty of games for his team as well and owns 14 touchdowns without an interception while completing 72.5 percent of his passes.
Wilson's play has helped overcome some gaps on defense which the team hopes will be filled this week by the return of defensive tackle Jarran Reed, who sat out the first six games.
Ravens are 7-23-1 ATS in their last 31 games in October and are 0-6 ATS in their last 6 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game.
Seahawks are 8-1-1 ATS in their last 10 games in Week 7 and are 4-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
Ravens are 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
Simply put this is a very tough spot for the Ravens and their young QB. Take the Seahawks.
|10-20-19||Saints +4 v. Bears||Top||36-25||Win||100||30 h 1 m||Show|
The Chicago Bears have had two weeks to stew about an upset loss to the Oakland Raiders that snapped the team's three-game winning streak. Coming off their bye week, the Bears will hope to get their offensive struggles rectified with the expected return of quarterback Mitchell Trubisky to the lineup when they host the surging New Orleans Saints on Sunday afternoon. Trubisky was injured in a Week 4 win over Minnesota and sat out against the Raiders due to a dislocated left shoulder, but he practiced fully Thursday and is on track to start. I’m not sure that really helps the Bears offense.
The Saints have been without their starting quarterback since Drew Brees suffered a thumb injury in Week 2, but backup Teddy Bridgewater has guided the team to four consecutive victories. “There’s calmness about him -- I think it’s contagious, if you will -- and how he approaches things,” New Orleans coach Sean Payton said.
Although Bridgewater threw for 314 yards and matched a career high with four scoring passes in Week 5, he struggled against Jacksonville last week and is averaging only 217.8 yards passing. Bridgewater may have to do more this week against Chicago's rugged defense with the absence of star running back Alvin Kamara (ankle/knee).
Latavius Murray will get the start while wide receiver Michael Thomas (NFL-high 53 catches) is the top option in the passing game. New Orleans has been stout defensively, allowing 40 points over the past three games.
Saints are 7-0 ATS in their last 7 games in Week 7 and are a solid 22-8 ATS in their last 30 road games.
Bears are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games following a bye week and are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games in Week 7.
Saints are 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
Take the points with the Saints on the road.
|10-20-19||Texans v. Colts||Top||23-30||Win||100||27 h 39 m||Show|
With Andrew Luck's surprising retirement on the eve of the regular season, the debate over the best quarterback in the AFC South was settled and Houston's Deshaun Watson became the obvious choice. Watson will try to guide the Houston Texans to a third consecutive win when they visit the Colts on Sunday.
Watson guided the Texans offense to a combined 84 points in wins over the Atlanta Falcons and the Kansas City Chiefs (Two bad defenses) in the last two games.
Houston battled through some uneven performances offensively before hitting its stride over the last two games and I’m keeping that in mind.
The Colts may not have Luck any longer, but they remain right behind Houston in the AFC South standings and got an extra week to prepare after earning their own win over Kansas City, 19-13 in Week 5.
Jacoby Brissett is proving to be a capable replacement for Luck under center, but the Indianapolis offense is built around the offensive line and the running game, led by Marlon Mack. He bounced back from a sub-par effort in a loss to Oakland in Week 4 by rumbling for 132 yards on 29 carries in Week 5 behind an offensive line that dominated up front. Colts LB Darius Leonard (concussion) sat out the last three games but cleared the protocol and returned to practice this week and he will be a big addition to the defense.
Texans are 3-10 ATS in their last 13 road games vs. a team with a winning home record and are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win.
Colts are 16-5-1 ATS in their last 22 home games vs. a team with a winning road record and are 8-3-1 ATS in their last 12 games following a bye week.
Texans are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
Take the Colts at home.
|10-20-19||Vikings -1 v. Lions||Top||42-30||Win||100||27 h 38 m||Show|
The Lions maybe thankful they have a short week to prepare to play Minnesota in a possibly pivotal NFC North matchup. A quick turnaround gave the Lions less time to lament critical calls that didn't go their way on Monday night in a loss at Green Bay.
The Lions have dropped two straight after an unbeaten, three-game start because it failed to keep double-digit leads against the Packers and Kansas City Chiefs.
Minnesota has averaged 33 points the past two weeks with a grinding running game led by Dalvin Cook that helps Kirk Cousins make big plays through the air. After a slow start, Cousins had six touchdown passes and one interception in wins over Philadelphia and the New York Giants.
Minnesota’s resurgent passing game has grabbed headlines but Cook (583 rushing yards) is still the engine that powers the offense. Detroit is vulnerable, ranking 27th against the run.
The Lions lost to the Packers at least in part because they scored only one touchdown and had to settle for five field goals. That followed a trend. In goal-to-go situations, Detroit ranks 30th in the NFL with four touchdowns in nine chances.
Look for much of the same for the Lions because they were relegated to scoring only on field goals in two losses to Minnesota last year.
Vikings are 7-1-1 ATS in their last 9 games in October and are 38-14-1 ATS in their last 53 games on fieldturf.
Lions are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
Vikings are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings in Detroit.
Vikings take it on the road.
|10-20-19||Jaguars -4 v. Bengals||Top||27-17||Win||100||27 h 37 m||Show|
The Jags head to Cincinnati to take on one of the worst teams in the league. In Week 6, Gardner Minshew was humbled by New Orleans’ swarming defense. Minshew only managed 163 yards passing. Was Minshew’s bad game because of the Saints’ defensive excellence (I say yes). In Week 6, the Bengals were unable to sustain offense against a bad Ravens defense; Cincinnati could not run the ball at all. The Bengals' offense already ranked near the bottom of the league, and an anemic performance against Baltimore did nothing to change that.
RB Leonard Fournetteshould find the going easy against a Bengals rush defense that is last in every major category and QB Gardner Minshew gets back on track.
Jaguars are 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games on fieldturf. Bengals are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 home games.
Lay the points with the Jags on the road.
|10-13-19||Cowboys -7 v. Jets||Top||22-24||Loss||-108||5 h 34 m||Show|
The Dallas Cowboys were a trendy pick to emerge out of the NFC this season and such chatter only intensified after they opened the season with three lopsided victories, surpassing 30 points in each game. However, the Cowboys have come up short in back-to-back matchups against conference rivals and look to snap a two-game slide at the winless New York Jets on Sunday.
Dallas' offense ground to a halt in a 12-10 setback at New Orleans in Week 4 and the Cowboys were manhandled by visiting Green Bay a week ago, falling behind by 28 points in a 34-24 loss. I look for them to come out on fire today.
The Jets have scored the second-fewest points in the league in their 0-4 start but will be hoping for a boost with the return of quarterback Sam Darnold to the lineup. I’m not so sure that will help. The Cowboys rank No. 9 against the pass, allowing an average of 200.4 yards.
Take the Cowboys and lay the points on the road.
|10-13-19||Saints +3 v. Jaguars||Top||13-6||Win||100||1 h 10 m||Show|
The loss of Drew Brees to a thumb injury has not slowed the New Orleans Saints, who are sitting atop the NFC South with a 4-1 mark despite his absence. New Orleans has won three in a row behind backup Teddy Bridgewater and look to continue the momentum when they visit the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday afternoon.
The Saints have leaned on their defense in the first two games without Brees before Bridgewater had his best game in last week's 31-24 victory over Tampa Bay.
The Jaguars, who have played three of their last four away from home, had a two-game winning streak halted last week in a 34-27 loss at Carolina.
New Orleans' defense has not allowed a 100-yard rusher in an NFL-high 31 consecutive games and features a shutdown cornerback in Marshon Lattimore.
Jacksonville will try to end the Saints' rushing streak with a heavy dose of Leonard Fournette, who ranks third in the league with 512 yards and went over 100 in each of the past two games. I see the Saints slowing him down.
The Saints win it on the road!
|10-06-19||Colts +11.5 v. Chiefs||Top||19-13||Win||100||35 h 44 m||Show|
The Kansas City Chiefs have proven they can win even when they don’t play to their potential, but they hope to bring their “A” game for a primetime clash with the visiting Indianapolis Colts on Sunday night. The Chiefs were uncharacteristically sloppy last week, committing three turnovers and needing a late touchdown drive to escape Detroit with a 34-30 win.
The Colts were stunned in the preseason by quarterback Andrew Luck’s abrupt retirement but are sitting at 2-2, and their two losses have come by a total of 13 points - with one of the defeats occurring in overtime. Indianapolis has won two of the last three regular-season meetings.
Indianapolis hasn’t fallen off too far offensively with Jacoby Brissett taking over at quarterback, although it has leaned on the running game more often. Marlon Mack has been effective, rushing for 338 yards and averaging a healthy 4.7 per carry while Brissett has thrown 10 touchdown passes and only two interceptions. The Colts’ defense struggled to stop the run in its first two games but held its last two opponents under 100 yards rushing.
Kansas City possesses the highest-scoring offense and top passing attack in the NFL. The secondary is much improved from a year ago, but the Chiefs are getting gashed on the ground and rank 31st in the league against the run.
Brissett is the only quarterback in the league with at least two passing touchdowns in each of his team’s first four contests this season.
The Colts cover this inflated number!
|10-06-19||Packers +3.5 v. Cowboys||Top||34-24||Win||100||31 h 50 m||Show|
The Cowboys and Packers aim to get back on track at the other's expense on Sunday when they meet at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Ezekiel Elliott was averaging 5.25 yards per carry in his previous two weeks before being limited to just 35 yards on 18 carries in Dallas' 12-10 setback in New Orleans.
Aaron Rodgers exploited a banged-up Eagles secondary by throwing for 422 yards and a pair of touchdowns, but his most trusted target is going to be out in Davante Adams . But I look for the Packers to improve on offense again this week.
Dak Prescott put up gaudy numbers in victories over subpar competition over the first three weeks of the season before being limited to just 223 yards against the Saints last week. The most important thing for Prescott is the offensive line, which likely will have a different look as Cameron Fleming is expected to start at left tackle in place of Tyron Smith (ankle) while right tackle La'el Collins (back) has yet to practice this week.
Packers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss and are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 meetings. Cowboys are 0-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
Take the points with the Packers.
|10-06-19||Broncos v. Chargers -6||Top||20-13||Loss||-109||31 h 30 m||Show|
The Denver Broncos are 0-4 for the first time since 1999 but look to begin a turnaround when they visit the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday. Denver suffered its second two-point setback of the season in Week 4 against Jacksonville.
The Chargers have been inconsistent this season and are hoping last week's 20-point win over Miami will be the beginning of a long winning streak. Los Angeles is averaging just 22.5 points per game despite quarterback Philip Rivers being tied for third in the NFL with 1,254 passing yards and star wideout Keenan Allen leading the league with 452 receiving yards and tied for the most receptions with 34.
The Broncos suffered a huge blow when defensive end Bradley Chubb (13 sacks in 20 career games) suffered a torn ACL in his left knee that will cost him the rest of the season.
Two-time Pro Bowl running back Melvin Gordon will be active this week after a three-game holdout and will split the workload with Austin Ekeler, who has recorded 220 rushing yards, 270 receiving yards and a league-best six total touchdowns. It could be a nice one-two punch.
Broncos are 5-20-1 ATS in their last 26 games after allowing more than 350 total yards in their previous game and are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games overall. Chargers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 vs. AFC West.
I’ll back the Chargers as my best bet of the week!
|10-06-19||Jaguars +3.5 v. Panthers||Top||27-34||Loss||-115||27 h 27 m||Show|
The Carolina Panthers and Jacksonville Jaguars both are trying to stay afloat after losing their starting quarterbacks to injury. With the backups at the helm, they’ll both try to buoy their records when the Panthers host the Jaguars on Sunday.
Both teams have fared well despite losing their quarterbacks, as Jacksonville has won two straight with rookie Gardner Minshew at the helm while Carolina has won its last two with Kyle Allen under center. They’ve done it by playing strong defense and running the ball effectively, as this matchup will feature two of the NFL’s top young running backs in Carolina’s Christian McCaffrey and Jacksonville’s Leonard Fournette.
Jacksonville has done a good job of taking what the defense gives, and it came last week in the form of 269 rushing yards in a 26-24 win at Denver. Fournette rolled up a career-high 225 yards alone, and his ability to gash defenses on the ground has made things easier on Minshew, who has passed for 905 yards with seven touchdowns and one interception since taking over.
Carolina’s offense has held its own since Allen took over for Cam Newton two weeks ago, but the club was limited to a season-low 297 total yards and committed three turnovers in last week’s 16-10 win at Houston.
Minshew’s 106.9 passer rating is the highest by a rookie with at least 50 attempts in his first four games in the Super Bowl era.
Jags plus the points is the play!
|10-06-19||Vikings v. Giants +5.5||Top||28-10||Loss||-108||27 h 23 m||Show|
The New York Giants have won back-to-back games since installing Daniel Jones at quarterback and they are slowly returning some of the weapons for the rookie to use. Jones and the Giants aim for the team's first three-game winning streak in nearly three years when they host the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.
Veteran wide receiver Golden Tate will make his debut for New York after serving a four-game suspension.
While New York's attack is on the rise after scoring 56 points during the two-game run, the Vikings have managed a total of 22 in two road losses and there was some uncertainty surrounding quarterback Kirk Cousins' rapport with his receivers following last week's 16-6 defeat at Chicago.
NYG QB Jones has thrown for 561 yards and three touchdowns in his two starts while adding in 61 yards and a pair of scores on the ground. Wayne Gallman did his best Barkley imitation with 118 total yards and two TDs in last Sunday's 24-3 win over Washington’s very weak defense.
The Giants defense led by Janoris Jenkins' two interceptions and Jabrill Peppers' interception return for a TD -- limited the Redskins to 176 total yards.
The Giants get the cover at home and maybe the outright win!
|09-29-19||Cowboys v. Saints +3||Top||10-12||Win||100||22 h 22 m||Show|
The Dallas Cowboys entered the season with lofty aspirations and they have done nothing to diminish those expectations by taking advantage of a soft schedule to open with a 3-0 record for the first time since 2008. The Cowboys will be stepping up in class at one of the league's toughest venues when they visit the New Orleans Saints on Sunday night.
Dallas has eclipsed 30 points in each of its three victories, although it turned in a lethargic performance before pulling away in the second half for a 31-6 victory over woeful Miami last week.
The Saints easily survived their first test without future Hall of Famer Drew Brees with an impressive 33-27 victory in Seattle behind backup Teddy Bridgewater.
Cowboys are 6-14 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Saints are 25-8 ATS in their last 33 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Underdog is 10-2 ATS in their last 12 meetings. Cowboys are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 meetings in New Orleans.
Back the Saints at home.
|09-29-19||Bucs v. Rams -9||Top||55-40||Loss||-104||18 h 7 m||Show|
The Los Angeles Rams are one of a handful of unbeaten teams heading into Week 4, but their potent offense has yet to click as it did in last year's Super Bowl run. They'll try to get some more points on the board and improve to 4-0 for the second straight season when they host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday afternoon.
The Buccaneers are coming off a painful collapse at home to the New York Giants, who erased an 18-point halftime deficit to steal a 32-31 win at Tampa Bay.
ABOUT THE BUCCANEERS (1-2): The bright spot in last Sunday's loss was Jameis Winston rediscovering his connection with star wide receiver Mike Evans, who erupted for 190 receiving yards and three touchdowns after being held to just six catches for 89 yards through the first two games.
ABOUT THE RAMS (3-0): A notable aspect of Los Angeles' ho-hum offensive attack has been the relative lack of use for star running back Todd Gurley, who is on pace for 234.7 carries after averaging 271 over the past three years.
I see the Rams having a break out game on offensive. So lay the points with the Rams.
|09-29-19||Panthers +5.5 v. Texans||Top||16-10||Win||100||15 h 5 m||Show|
The Carolina Panthers’ outlook might not be so bleak with backup quarterback Kyle Allen at the helm after all. Allen will try to lead the Panthers to a second consecutive victory when they visit the Houston Texans on Sunday.
The second-year quarterback got the job done last week, going 19-of-26 for 261 yards and four touchdowns without an interception in a 38-20 win at Arizona - Carolina’s first victory of the season.
The Texans are one defensive stop away from being undefeated, but they’re also just a couple plays away from being winless as all three of their games have been decided by seven points or fewer. The Panthers have won the last two meetings, including a 24-17 home victory in the most recent clash in 2015.
ABOUT THE PANTHERS (1-2): Combined with his performance in Week 17 last year, Allen has thrown six touchdown passes without an interception in two career starts, and he has plenty of help on offense. Versatile back Christian McCaffrey recorded 188 yards from scrimmage and a rushing touchdown against the Cardinals and tight end Greg Olsen had two touchdown receptions while receivers Curtis Samuel and DJ Moore each caught a scoring pass. The Panthers have given up a lot on the ground, but that’s largely because they’re so stingy against the pass, ranking second in the NFL in pass defense.
ABOUT THE TEXANS (2-1): Houston’s offense has been inconsistent, but Deshaun Watson has been steady, passing for 778 yards with six touchdowns with only one interception. Watson has a solid receiving corps led by DeAndre Hopkins, but the Texans haven’t gotten much out of the backfield duo of Carlos Hyde and Duke Johnson.
I look for the Panthers to do enough to get the cover.
|09-29-19||Redskins v. Giants -3||Top||3-24||Win||100||15 h 4 m||Show|
The New York Giants embraced the emergence of rookie quarterback Daniel Jones on the same day that the franchise was nearly eviscerated by the devastating injury loss of Pro Bowl running back Saquon Barkley. Jones looks to follow up his successful NFL debut on Sunday when the Giants host the winless Washington Redskins in East Rutherford, N.J.
Jones was feted with fame and a trendy nickname (Danny Dimes) in a New York minute after throwing a pair of touchdowns and rushing for two more as the Giants overcame an 18-point deficit to post a 32-31 victory over Tampa Bay last Sunday. The sixth overall pick of the draft also earned NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors after completing 23 of 36 passes for 336 yards in his first start.
The reeling Redskins are in danger of recording their first 0-4 start since 2001 if they don't find a way past their NFC East rival. Case Keenum did little to quiet his detractors and the steady calls for first-round pick Dwayne Haskins after the first of his three interceptions was returned for a touchdown in a 31-15 loss to Chicago on Monday.
Redskins are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games when playing on Sunday following a Monday night game and are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 vs. NFC. Giants are 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 games after accumulating more than 350 total yards in their previous game.
Giants get the win and cover at home!
|09-29-19||Raiders v. Colts -6.5||Top||31-24||Loss||-100||15 h 3 m||Show|
The Indianapolis Colts attempt to extend their home winning streak to eight games when they host the Oakland Raiders on Sunday. Indianapolis lost its first two contests at Lucas Oil Stadium in 2018 but has won seven straight since, including a 27-24 triumph over Atlanta last week in its first home game of the year.
The contest also marked the ninth in a row at home in which the Colts have scored at least 23 points as Marlon Mack ran for a 4-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter to extend the streak. Jacoby Brissett was superb against the Falcons, completing his first 16 attempts while finishing 28-of-37 for 310 yards and two TDs, and seeks his fourth straight game with at least a pair of scoring passes.
The Raiders opened the season with a dominant victory over Denver but have suffered back-to-back brutal losses, including a 34-14 setback at Minnesota last week. Oakland, which has lost five of its last six meetings with Indianapolis, surrendered 211 rushing yards against the Vikings.
The Colts' defense has not allowed a 100-yard rusher in any of the team's last 21 contests.
My take here is the Colts will just out class the Raiders in the long run and get the home win and cover.
|09-29-19||Chiefs -7 v. Lions||Top||34-30||Loss||-105||15 h 3 m||Show|
The Kansas City Chiefs were expected to be undefeated through three games, but the Detroit Lions were not. The surprising Lions host the Chiefs on Sunday in an unlikely matchup of unbeaten teams.
The Chiefs have picked up where they left off last season, with reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes leading a prolific offense. Mahomes is the first player in NFL history to pass for at least 350 yards and three touchdowns without an interception in three consecutive games, and Kansas City has scored at least 28 points in each contest.
The Lions have found themselves in three close games - a season-opening tie at Arizona and three-point victories over the Los Angeles Chargers and Philadelphia - but have prevailed with the help of a ball-hawking defense that will try to disrupt the Chiefs’ offensive momentum.
ABOUT THE CHIEFS (3-0): Mahomes leads the league in virtually every passing category, including a sterling 134.9 passer rating fueled by 10 touchdowns without an interception, and he’s surrounded with weapons.
ABOUT THE LIONS (2-0-1): Detroit hasn’t gotten much from the running game, but Kerryon Johnson has been involved in a solid passing attack. The secondary has been decent but will be tested this week, especially if cornerback Darius Slay is unable to play after injuring his hamstring in the second half last week.
The Chiefs have scored at least 25 points in an NFL-record 25 consecutive games.
Lay it on the road with Kansas City.
|09-22-19||Giants +5.5 v. Bucs||Top||32-31||Win||100||5 h 51 m||Show|
There will be a changing of the guard for the New York Giants on Sunday after they benched longtime quarterback Eli Manning ahead of a visit to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Rookie Daniel Jones will take the place of Manning.
ABOUT THE GIANTS (0-2): Jones, drafted sixth overall out of Duke this spring, completed 29-of-34 passes for 416 yards and two touchdowns during some impressive preseason play.
Jones will likely lean on Barkley, who enters Week 3 ranked second in the NFL with 227 rushing yards at an eye-popping 7.8 yards per attempt.
ABOUT THE BUCCANEERS (1-1): Tampa Bay can't afford a letdown Sunday, which constitutes the team's last true home game until Nov. 10, with four challenging road games, one bye and one "home" game in London over the following six weeks.
The Giants enter Week 3 sixth in the NFL in total offense (420 yards per game) while the Buccaneers are 26th (292).
Take the Giants plus the points.
|09-22-19||Broncos v. Packers -7||Top||16-27||Win||100||2 h 50 m||Show|
Packers – 7
Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers hope to continue their dominance at home when they host the winless Denver Broncos on Sunday. The Packers have posted a 62-16-1 record in Rodgers' last 79 regular-season starts at Lambeau Field and 12-2-1 in his last 15, while the quarterback ranks first in the NFL since 1970 with a 107.8 passer rating at home.
ABOUT THE PACKERS (2-0): Rodgers enters the contest with 341 career touchdown passes, one behind Hall-of-Famer Fran Tarkenton for ninth place on the all-time list. Aaron Jones has averaged 120 yards from scrimmage over his last four home contests after gaining 150 in the Week 2 win over Minnesota. Davante Adams has made 35 touchdown catches since 2016, which is the second-most in the league in that stretch.
Broncos are 5-14 ATS in their last 19 road games. Packers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in September.
Take the Packers at home.
|09-22-19||Bengals v. Bills -6||Top||17-21||Loss||-112||2 h 48 m||Show|
The Buffalo Bills are undefeated two games into the season after winning a pair of road games in the same stadium - taking out the New York Jets and New York Giants in back-to-back weeks. The Bills finally get a chance to play at home when they attempt to take advantage of a team still learning under a new coach in the visiting Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday.
Buffalo successfully flustered Jets quarterback Sam Darnold in the season opener and were so solid last week against Eli Manning that the Giants decided to make a switch at quarterback.
ABOUT THE BENGALS (0-2): While Dalton is among the league leaders in passing yardage, Cincinnati ranks last in the NFL in rushing at an average of 29.5 yards. Starting running back Joe Mixon totaled 27 yards on 17 carries in the first two games and the team has yet to score a touchdown on the ground. The Bengals will have a hard time running the ball.
ABOUT THE BILLS (2-0): Buffalo is not having any trouble in the red zone or with the rushing attack and quarterback Josh Allen is crediting the work of the offensive line. Allen actually leads the team with two rushing touchdowns to go with 507 passing yards and a pair of TDs through the air.
I will lay the points in the home opener for the Bills.
|09-22-19||Falcons v. Colts||Top||24-27||Win||100||2 h 48 m||Show|
The Atlanta Falcons have been presented an opportunity to get a leg up in the NFC South but first must focus on accomplishing a rare feat - defeating an AFC team - when they visit the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday for their first of three straight against the AFC South. Atlanta, which lost seven of eight games versus the AFC over the last two seasons
ABOUT THE FALCONS (1-1): Ryan has 300 touchdown passes - tied for 11th all-time with John Elway - after tossing three in last week's 24-20 victory over Philadelphia last week, but has thrown as many interceptions (five) as TDs this season.
ABOUT THE COLTS (1-1): Brissett is off to a fast start by completing 69.1 percent of his passes with five touchdowns and one interception. Running back Marlon Mack is third in the league with 225 rushing yards while RB Jordan Wilkins contributed a 55-yard run in last week's 19-17 victory at Tennessee.
The Colts are the top play of the week!
|09-22-19||Raiders v. Vikings -8||Top||14-34||Win||100||2 h 47 m||Show|
The Minnesota Vikings hope for another strong rushing performance as they aim for their second win in as many home games when they host the Oakland Raiders on Sunday. Minnesota is tied for second in the NFL with an average of 185 yards on the ground through two games while Dalvin Cook tops the league with 265 yards and three rushing touchdowns.
Cook gained a career-high 154 yards on 20 carries and finished with 191 scrimmage yards in last week's 21-16 loss at Green Bay. Included in those totals is a 75-yard touchdown run
The Raiders posted a surprising 24-16 triumph over Denver in their season opener and came out strong against Kansas City last week, scoring the game's first 10 points before suffering a 28-10 loss. Oakland, which plays four of its next five games on the road, has not visited Minnesota since posting a 27-21 victory on Nov. 20, 2011.
I am willing to the lay the points with the Vikings.
|09-16-19||Browns -6.5 v. Jets||Top||23-3||Win||100||51 h 26 m||Show|
The Cleveland Browns and New York Jets will celebrate the anniversary of the debut of Monday Night Football when they square off again this Monday, but both teams more likely are focused on forgetting what happened one week ago. The Browns flopped badly amid soaring expectations in their season opener and will look to get back on track when they visit the Jets in a prime-time matchup.
The Jets also have to find a way to pick up the pieces after blowing a 16-point lead in a 17-16 home loss to Buffalo and learning this week that quarterback Sam Darnold has mononucleosis and will be sidelined indefinitely.
ABOUT THE BROWNS (0-1): Cleveland actually trailed by only two in the waning minutes of the third quarter before surrendering 28 unanswered points to the Titans, capping a disastrous performance in which they committed a staggering 18 penalties for 182 yards.
ABOUT THE JETS (0-1): Much of the team's optimism was based on the expected progress of Darnold, but his illness paves the way for Trevor Siemian to make his first start since 2017 with Denver. It continued a dismal week for the Jets, who saw linebacker C.J. Mosley exit the season opener with a groin injury and wide receiver Quincy Enunwa (neck) placed on season-ending injured reserve.
Mayfield made his first start in Week 3 last season as the Browns beat the Jets 21-17 to end a 19-game winless streak.
I will still play the Browns at this very inflated number.
|09-15-19||Eagles -1.5 v. Falcons||Top||20-24||Loss||-110||28 h 31 m||Show|
The Philadelphia Eagles aim to begin a season with a 2-0 mark for the second time in four years on Sunday night when they visit the Atlanta Falcons, who are looking to avert an 0-2 start for the first time since 2007. The Eagles were able to overcome a 17-point deficit in their 32-27 win over Washington while Atlanta was unable to climb out of a four-touchdown deficit in its 28-12 setback to Minnesota.
Philadelphia's Carson Wentz established quick chemistry with the returning DeSean Jackson on a pair of long scoring strikes to highlight his three-touchdown performance versus the Redskins.
Pennsylvania-born Matt Ryan was intercepted twice and sacked four times to put the Falcons in a sizable hole versus the Vikings while a banged up offensive line did little for Devonta Freeman, who had eight carries for 19 yards and a fumble.
ABOUT THE EAGLES (1-0): While it's transparent that wideout Alshon Jeffrey (receiving and rushing touchdown) and tight end Zach Ertz will have significant impacts on the passing game, it's not exactly clear how Philadelphia's congested backfield will play out this season. Speedy rookie Miles Sanders and veteran Darren Sproles each had 12 touches in the opener while Jordan Howard amassed 55 scrimmage yards on just 17 plays. My point is the Eagles have a lot of options.
ABOUT THE FALCONS (0-1): Julio Jones, who found the end zone in the fourth quarter to salvage his season-opening performance is not in yet on the same page as Ryan.
Atlanta's Jamon Brown will play RG in place of first-round pick Chris Lindstrom, who was placed on injured reserve with a broken foot.
Eagles are the better team on both sides of the ball and I’ll back them on the road.
|09-15-19||Jaguars v. Texans -8.5||Top||12-13||Loss||-105||20 h 13 m||Show|
The line between moral victory and demoralizing loss can be fine in the NFL, but the Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars firmly were on opposite sides of it in Week 1. The AFC South rivals aim to rebound from season-opening losses when they square off Sunday in Houston.
The Texans squandered a thrilling fourth-quarter comeback on Monday as they lost 30-28 at New Orleans on a last-second field goal.
The Jaguars, on the other hand, were encouraged by their second-half surge in a 40-26 loss to Kansas City, especially considering rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew replaced injured starter Nick Foles and impressed in his NFL debut.
ABOUT THE JAGUARS (0-1): Foles is out until at least Week 11 with a broken collarbone, but Jacksonville has confidence in Minshew, but I’m not so sure.
ABOUT THE TEXANS (0-1): Houston has a dynamic duo in the passing game with quarterback Deshaun Watson and wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, but the newly constructed backfield tandem also got the job done last week. Carlos Hyde rushed for 83 yards just nine days after being acquired from Kansas City and Duke Johnson recorded 90 yards from scrimmage in his debut for the Texans.
Jaguars are 2-10 ATS in their last 12 games in Week 2 and are 2-9-2 ATS in their last 13 games overall. Texans are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games in Week 2.
The Texans held down the Jags last season in both matchups and I see the same here so I’m willing to lay the big number.
|09-15-19||Seahawks +4 v. Steelers||Top||28-26||Win||100||20 h 12 m||Show|
Russell Wilson and Ben Roethlisberger engaged in a high-octane shootout the last time they shared the field, so there is no telling what may happen when the Seattle Seahawks visit the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday. Wilson passed for 345 yards and five touchdowns in the 39-30 home win during the 2015 season while Roethlisberger passed for 456 yards but just one score.
Roethlisberger and his teammates got off to a poor start in Week 1 as they were shellacked 33-3 by New England in their first game.
Seattle posted a 21-20 victory over Cincinnati, but it wasn't pretty as the club was outgained 429-233.
ABOUT THE SEAHAWKS (1-0): Wilson was 14-of-20 for 196 yards and two scores in the opener while defensive end Quinton Jefferson fueled the defense with a career-best two sacks. Star pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney recorded two tackles and a sack during his team debut and is working on assimilating himself into the unit after recently being acquired from Houston.
ABOUT THE STEELERS (0-1): Pittsburgh never got untracked against the Patriots and running back James Conner was a non-factor with 21 yards on 10 carries. Wideout JuJu Smith-Schuster is the new primary target with Brown gone, and he had six receptions for 78 yards while newcomer Donte Moncrief was a big disappointment with three catches for seven yards while being targeted a team-high 10 times.
I have this game being close so I’ll back the Seahawks plus the points.
|09-09-19||Broncos -2.5 v. Raiders||Top||16-24||Loss||-110||10 h 3 m||Show|
The Oakland Raiders have finally stopped waffling when it comes to deciding what to do with disgruntled wide receiver Antonio Brown. The Raiders released Brown and his 686 receptions and 9,145 yards since 2013.
The Raiders, who will move to Las Vegas after this season, and the Broncos are projected to battle for last place in the AFC West as the Joe Flacco era begins in Denver.
ABOUT THE BRONCOS (2018: 6-10, THIRD IN AFC WEST): Flacco, who lost his job in Baltimore last season to Lamar Jackson, needs 1,755 passing yards to reach 40,000 in his career. Running back Phillip Lindsay, who rushed for 1,037 yards as an undrafted rookie last season, is completely healed from a broken wrist that forced him to miss the final game of 2018. Denver's defense boasts a pair of powerful pass rushers in Von Miller (14.5 sacks last season, 98 career) and Bradley Chubb (12 as a rookie in 2018), and top cornerback Chris Harris - the only player in the league with multiple interceptions over the last seven seasons.
ABOUT THE RAIDERS (2018: 4-12, LAST IN AFC WEST): Without Brown and his NFL-most 74 touchdowns since entering the league in 2010, Tyrell Williams will likely emerge as the marquee wideout as he makes his club debut after catching 153 passes and scoring 16 touchdowns over the last three seasons with the San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers. Oakland selected running back Josh Jacobs with the 24th overall pick and hope the former Alabama star can improve a ground game that was 25th in the league in each of the last two seasons while taking pressure off quarterback Derek Carr.
I see the Raiders having a hard time putting up points here vs. the stout Denver defense.
Take the Broncos and lay the small number.
|09-09-19||Texans v. Saints -6.5||Top||28-30||Loss||-106||7 h 52 m||Show|
The New Orleans Saints have seen each of their last two seasons come to an end with heartbreaking losses, including a galling setback in January with the team knocking on the door of the Super Bowl. With Drew Brees returning for his 19th season, the Saints open their bid for a third straight NFC South title when they host the Houston Texans on Monday night.
New Orleans finished with 13 wins and the top overall seed in the conference last season before falling in overtime to the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC title game.
ABOUT THE TEXANS (2018: 11-5, FIRST IN AFC SOUTH): Houston will rely heavily on third-year quarterback Deshaun Watson, the first player to throw for at least 4,000 yards and 25 touchdowns while rushing for 500 yards and five scores in a season. Watson has perhaps the league's top wideout in DeAndre Hopkins, who amassed 115 receptions and 11 TDs last season, but questions abound about the ground game after Lamar Miller tore his ACL in the preseason so the Texans brought in running backs Duke Johnson and Carlos Hyde in separate trades and bolstered the offensive line with the acquisition of tackle Laremy Tunsil.
ABOUT THE SAINTS (2018: 13-3, FIRST IN NFC SOUTH): Brees, 40, who earned his 12th Pro Bowl berth after throwing for 32 touchdowns versus five interceptions last season, needs 20 scoring passes to surpass Peyton Manning (539) for No. 1 on the all-time list. Michael Thomas led the NFL with 125 catches and set a franchise record with 1,405 yards while becoming the third player in history to start his career with three straight seasons of at least 1,100 yards. Tight end Jared Cook, coming off a career year in Oakland, will augment the passing game while do-everything back Alvin Kamara heads the ground game after piling up 18 touchdowns and nearly 1,600 yards from scrimmage. The defense ranked No. 2 against the run (80.2 yards) last season.
Brees has thrown 37 scoring passes in 17 career Kickoff Weekend games, the most of any quarterback.
Texans are 3-10 ATS in their last 13 Monday games. Home team is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
I’ll lay just under a touchdown with the Saints.
|09-08-19||49ers +1.5 v. Bucs||Top||31-17||Win||100||6 h 13 m||Show|
Back from a knee injury that derailed most of his 2018 season, Jimmy Garoppolo enters a crucial year under center for the San Francisco 49ers, who open play at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. After going 5-0 as a starter with the Niners in 2017 and then signing a $137.5 million deal prior to last season, Garoppolo played in just three games before tearing the ACL on his left knee, crushing San Francisco's hopes for a rise up the NFC West standings.
The Niners went 3-10 without Garoppolo to finish out of the playoffs for the fifth consecutive year but hope that a full season of health for the 27-year-old signal-caller can turn things around. Tampa Bay's playoff drought is much longer at 12 years and it has turned to new head coach Bruce Arians to help end it. Jameis Winston enters his fifth season as the team's starting quarterback.
ABOUT THE 49ERS (2018: 4-12, 3RD IN NFC WEST): While Garoppolo's comeback is drawing plenty of attention, San Francisco also hopes to put opposing quarterbacks under severe pressure with a revamped defensive unit featuring newly signed edge rusher Dee Ford and No. 2 overall pick Nick Bosa. Ford had 13 sacks with Kansas City a year ago before signing with the Niners while Bosa, who is battling an ankle injury, was a standout at Ohio State. Fourth-year defensive end DeForest Buckner had a team-high 12 sacks a year ago.
ABOUT THE BUCCANEERS (2018: 5-11, 4TH IN NFC SOUTH): Tampa Bay may need a good start to stay relevant later in the year, as the schedule-makers handed the team a brutal stretch from late September through early November in which it goes without a home game for nearly 50 days. It starts with back-to-back road games at the Los Angeles Rams and New Orleans Saints, followed by a "home" game with the Carolina Panthers in London, a bye week and then road games at Tennessee and Seattle. The Buccaneers were 1-7 on the road each of the last two years.
Back the 49ers on the road in a late start.
|09-08-19||Colts +7 v. Chargers||Top||24-30||Win||100||6 h 51 m||Show|
Andrew Luck's stunning retirement left the Indianapolis Colts in a scramble while the host Los Angeles Chargers will be without holdout running back Melvin Gordon when the teams open the season Sunday. Jacoby Brissett has replaced Luck as Indianapolis' starting quarterback while Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson will fill Gordon's shoes as the main ball carriers.
The Chargers are still under the control of Philip Rivers and the quarterback entering his 16th season is bullish that Ekeler and Jackson will make up for the absence of Gordon, who is seeking a contract extension.
ABOUT THE COLTS (2018: 10-6, SECOND IN AFC SOUTH): Brissett started 15 games for Indianapolis in 2017 when Luck was sidelined and passed for 3,098 yards and 13 touchdowns against seven interceptions. The defense is expected to receive a big boost from the addition of pass rusher Justin Houston, who had 22 sacks in 2014 and 78.5 overall in eight seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs. Houston has 7.5 career sacks against the Chargers.
ABOUT THE CHARGERS (2018: 12-4, TIED FOR FIRST IN AFC WEST): Rivers has put together six straight 4,000-yard seasons and 10 overall and he is 26 touchdown passes away from becoming the sixth player in NFL history to reach 400. Ekeler (554 rushing, 404 receiving) will get first call in place of Gordon but Jackson (206 rushing) will get plenty of work as Los Angeles looks to develop a competent one-two punch. Defensively, the Chargers will be without standout safety Derwin James (foot) for at least a large part of the campaign while relying on star defensive end Joey Bosa (28.5 sacks in 35 career contests) to lead the unit.
The Colts beat the Chargers 26-22 in 2016 to end a three-game skid in the series.
I like the Colts plus the points.
|09-08-19||Ravens -7 v. Dolphins||Top||59-10||Win||100||3 h 52 m||Show|
The Baltimore Ravens are committed to moving forward behind quarterback Lamar Jackson and plan on competing for an AFC North title and another run deep into the playoffs. The Miami Dolphins, who host the Ravens in the season opener on Sunday, look like a team fully in rebuilding mode after bringing in a new coach and getting very active on the trade market.
Baltimore spent its offseason rebuilding its offense to suit the talents of Jackson and imported Mark Ingram from New Orleans to take on some of the rushing duties, but Jackson is still expected to pull the ball down and run often.
The Dolphins traded away star left tackle Laremy Tunsil, wide receiver Kenny Stills and leading tackler Kiko Alonso in the latest round of trades toward the end of camp, leading to question about the team's intentions for the season.
ABOUT THE RAVENS (2018: 10-6, FIRST IN AFC NORTH): Baltimore is convinced that Ingram, 29, has plenty left in the tank after splitting carries for years with the Saints. "He's a proven back in the National Football League," Ravens coach John Harbaugh told reporters. "He seems very healthy. (There is) not a lot of wear and tear on Mark. He’s a downhill, physical runner. He fits our style." Ingram will run between the tackles while Jackson takes off around the outside and goes after Michael Vick's record for rushing yards by a quarterback (1,039).
ABOUT THE DOLPHINS (2018: 7-9, SECOND IN AFC EAST): Miami traded for former first-round pick Josh Rosen in the offseason, but veteran quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick won the battle in camp and will get the start on Sunday, becoming the first quarterback to start for eight different teams. Running back Kenyan Drake survived the team's offseason purge and is expected to take on a bigger role in the offense after averaging 4.5 yards per rush in 2018.
Ravens are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games in Week 1. Ravens are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 meetings in Miami.
Miami will have big problems all season. Back the Ravens.
|09-08-19||Chiefs -3 v. Jaguars||Top||40-26||Win||100||3 h 50 m||Show|
Reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes says the Kansas City Chiefs spent the offseason finding ways to make their offense run even more smoothly, and that’s a scary proposition for opposing defenses. Mahomes and the Chiefs will try to pick up where they left off last season when they open the 2019 campaign at the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday.
The Chiefs led the league in scoring (35.3 points per game) and total offense (425.6 yards) a year ago, and with most of their biggest weapons still in the arsenal, they’ve been able to add some new wrinkles to the playbook.
They’ll start with a strong challenge against a Jacksonville defense that ranked in the top five in the league in scoring defense (19.8 points per game) and total defense (311.4 yards).
ABOUT THE CHIEFS (2018: 12-4, TIED FOR FIRST IN AFC WEST): There’s plenty of hype for Kansas City’s offense with Mahomes back for his second full season as a starter after passing for 5,097 yards and 50 touchdowns a year ago. The Chiefs added running back LeSean McCoy to complement Damien Williams, who broke out last season after Kareem Hunt’s release, and Mahomes’ two favorite targets are back in dynamic receiver Tyreek Hill and tight end Travis Kelce. The defense got a bit of a facelift with the addition of pass rusher Frank Clark and safety Tyrann Mathieu.
ABOUT THE JAGUARS (2018: 5-11, LAST IN AFC SOUTH): Jacksonville moved on from quarterback Blake Bortles and brought in Nick Foles to try to mitigate the turnovers that derailed them last season, when they coughed it up 29 times. They also added former Chiefs receiver Chris Conley, who along with Marqise Lee and Dede Westbrook could stabilize the passing game needed to complement running back Leonard Fournette. Cornerback Jalen Ramsey, defensive ends Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue, and linebacker Myles Jack anchor a defense that again figures to be one of the league’s best.
The Chiefs have scored 25 or more points in an NFL-record 21 consecutive regular-season games. The Chiefs have won four straight meetings, including a 30-14 home victory last October.
Take Kansas City on the highway as today’s best bet.
|09-08-19||Rams v. Panthers||Top||30-27||Win||100||3 h 49 m||Show|
The Los Angeles Rams begin their quest for a third consecutive NFC West title - and a second straight trip to the Super Bowl - when they open on the road against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The Panthers hope to get back to the playoffs for the fifth time in seven seasons after missing out last year.
It’s a matchup of two of the NFL’s top rushing attacks as star running back Todd Gurley helped the Rams rank third in the league in rushing a year ago, while quarterback Cam Newton and versatile back Christian McCaffrey gave the Panthers the No. 4 ground game. Gurley should be fresh - like most of the Rams’ starters - as he didn’t play a snap in the preseason and will be seeing his first live game action Sunday. Carolina might consider that strategy next season after Newton suffered a sprained foot during the preseason that threatened to keep him out of the opener.
ABOUT THE RAMS (2018: 13-3, FIRST IN NFC WEST): Los Angeles boasts one of the NFL’s most dynamic offenses as Jared Goff emerged as an elite quarterback in 2018, passing for 4,688 yards and 32 touchdowns to complement Gurley. Goff is surrounded by a talented receiving corps led by Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks, a pair of 1,000-yard receivers in 2018. Veterans Clay Matthews and Eric Weddle were added to a defense anchored by back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald, who led the league in sacks (20.5) and tackles for loss (25) last season.
ABOUT THE PANTHERS (2018: 7-9, THIRD IN AFC SOUTH): The fate of Carolina’s season likely rests on the health of Newton, who had shoulder surgery in the offseason. If he is able to play to his full potential, the Panthers have plenty of talent around him to put up big offensive numbers, including McCaffrey and young receivers D.J. Moore and Curtis Samuel. The defense will have a new look, featuring more 3-4 lineups, but veteran linebacker Luke Kuechly is still the centerpiece after collecting at least 100 tackles in seven straight seasons.
Take the Rams on the road.
|02-03-19||Patriots -2 v. Rams||Top||13-3||Win||100||30 h 14 m||Show|
Patriots 30 Rams 24
The Patriots rush defense has been phenomenal in both playoff games giving up just 30 yards on average and that will stymie the Rams attack. Look for the Patriots to open the game up after having success running the ball. Belichick and Brady prove too much for the young Rams.
Total Rushing Yards by Patriots: (at Station Casinos)
Over 123.5 (-120)
The Patriots have their running games going as of late and Sony Michel has been the primary beneficiary, rushing for 242 yards and five touchdowns on 53 carries in two postseason games. I look for Coach Belichick to move the chains on the ground enough to get this prop over with two other capably running backs in White and Burkhead.
Total Receiving Yards by: Julian Edelman (NE) (at Westgate SB)
Over 79.5 (-110)
Edelman had 13 targets and nine receptions for 151 yards in the divisional round and had 10 targets with seven receptions for 96 yards in the AFC Championship. Look for Brady to go to him early and often with him being a big part of the game plan.
Total points by: Stephen Gostkowski (NE) (at Westgate SB)
Over 8.5 (-110)
I expect the Patriots to score at least three touchdowns (3 extra points) and two or three field goals (6 to 9 points) to get the Patriots kicker over his point’s total.
|01-13-19||Eagles v. Saints -8||Top||14-20||Loss||-105||29 h 18 m||Show|
Saints – 8
The lowest point in the Philadelphia Eagles' season also provided the inspiration to turn it around. After their postseason plans were put in peril following a lopsided loss in New Orleans, the defending Super Bowl champion Eagles look to exact revenge against the host Saints on Sunday and become the first No. 6 seed to reach the conference championship since 2010.
"That game has helped us become the team we are today," Philadelphia quarterback Nick Foles said of the 48-7 shellacking in Week 11. "Going through that, that's not easy as a team to lose like that.
The Eagles won five of their last six games to squeeze into the playoffs, and Foles helped lead the team to its fourth straight victory overall by throwing for 266 yards and two touchdowns in a 16-15 decision at Chicago on Sunday.
New Orleans' starters have been well-rested for quite some time. Pro Bowl quarterback Drew Brees, who shattered his own NFL record for completion percentage in a season (74.4), finished close to that number on Nov. 18 after completing 22 of 30 passes for 363 yards with four touchdowns against the Eagles.
New Orleans enjoyed a plus-8 turnover ratio this season while Philadelphia finished minus-6 in that department. That can come into play in this game with the Saints having the edge.
New Orleans has won six consecutive postseason games at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
Eagles are 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games on fieldturf and Eagles are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 meetings vs. the Saints.
Saints are 25-6 ATS in their last 31 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
Bottom line here is I’m willing to lay the points with quarterback Drew Brees and the Saints at home.
|01-13-19||Chargers +4 v. Patriots||Top||28-41||Loss||-101||26 h 44 m||Show|
Chargers + 4
Having set the bar so high since the arrival of Bill Belichick and Tom Brady, even an average season by the New England Patriots was enough to earn a 10th consecutive AFC East title and a first-round bye in the playoffs. Seeking a ninth Super Bowl appearance in 18 years, the Patriots kick off their postseason by hosting the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday.
Los Angeles is the No. 5 seed, it had a better record than the Patriots and turned in an impressive performance by holding off a late rally in a 23-17 road win at Baltimore last week.
Philip Rivers has had one of his best seasons, tossing 32 TD passes and matching his career high with a 105.5 quarterback rating.
Keenan Allen had 97 receptions to lead a deep, talented receiving corps that could see the return of tight end Hunter Henry, who tore an ACL in May but practiced fully Wednesday and Thursday. Defensive ends Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa lead a unit that registered seven sacks last week and ranked ninth against the pass this season (227.9 yards).
The Patriots’ defense yields lots of yardage, ranking 21st (359.1) per game.
It’s very tough to bet against the Patriots at home any week let alone in the playoffs but the Chargers have the recipe to make it happen. Take the points and a little on the money line!
|01-12-19||Cowboys +7.5 v. Rams||Top||22-30||Loss||-119||9 h 54 m||Show|
Cowboys + 7.5
Star running backs will be entrenched in the spotlight on Saturday as two-time league rushing champion Ezekiel Elliott and the Dallas Cowboys visit the defending NFL Offensive Player of the Year Todd Gurley and the Rams in an NFC divisional round playoff game at the Los Angeles.
Elliott, who had a league-best 1,434 rushing yards this season, added 137 more and scored a touchdown in Dallas' 24-22 win over Seattle last weekend.
The 23-year-old Elliott will bid to become the fourth player in NFL history to record three consecutive postseason games with at least 125 rushing yards when he squares off against Los Angeles, which has been gashed for a league-worst 5.1 yards per rush.
Gurley finished with 1,251 rushing yards and NFL-best 21 total touchdowns despite sitting out the Rams' final two games because of knee inflammation and soreness. The 24-year-old will need to overcome the injury as well as a Cowboys' rush defense that permitted an NFL fifth-best 3.8 yards per carry and limited the Seahawks' run-heavy offense to just 3.0 yards per rush.
Cowboys are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 vs. NFC. Rams are 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 home games and are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 playoff games.
Feeling here is the Cowboys hang tough all game and get the cover.
|01-12-19||Colts +5 v. Chiefs||Top||13-31||Loss||-103||5 h 15 m||Show|
Colts + 5
History does not favor the Kansas City Chiefs entering Saturday's AFC divisional round matchup versus the sixth-seeded Indianapolis Colts, but that does not concern the overwhelming favorite for league MVP honors. Second-year quarterback Patrick Mahomes leads the NFL's most prolific offense as the top-seeded Chiefs look to secure only their second win in 12 playoff appearances since 1994.
Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck finished second to Mahomes with 39 scoring passes after missing the entire 2017 season.
Indianapolis overcame a 1-5 start by winning nine of its last 10 regular-season games and carried the momentum into the playoffs by knocking off No. 3 seed Houston 21-7 as Luck threw a pair of first-half touchdown passes to stake his team to a 21-point lead.
Running back Marlon Mack did the bulk of the heavy lifting by rushing for 148 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries, his fifth 100-yard effort in 11 games. Dontrelle Inman has caught a scoring pass in each of the last three games, giving Luck another target opposite top wide receiver T.Y. Hilton, who had five catches for 85 yards last week after amassing 1,270 yards during the regular season.
The Colts' defense allowed a league-low 16.4 points over the final 10 weeks of the regular season.
Indianapolis allowed the fewest sacks in the league with 18.
I’m going with the more complete team in the Colts.
|01-06-19||Eagles +7 v. Bears||Top||16-15||Win||100||51 h 58 m||Show|
The Chicago Bears opened the door for the Philadelphia Eagles to defend their Super Bowl crown with a suffocating performance against Minnesota in the regular-season finale. The third-seeded Bears bid to shut that door just as swiftly on Sunday when they host the sixth-seeded Eagles at Soldier Field in Chicago in an NFC wild-card game.
Quarterback Nick Foles thrived under that glaring spotlight last season, guiding the "underdog" -- albeit top-ranked -- Eagles to three straight wins while securing Super Bowl MVP honors for himself in the process. The 29-year-old Foles (ribs) participated fully in Thursday's practice for Philadelphia, which returns to the postseason in consecutive years for the first time since the 2009-10 seasons and bids to become the first repeat Super Bowl champion since the 2003-04 New England Patriots.
Pro Bowler Zach Ertz set an NFL record this season for catches (116) by a tight end to go along with a career-best 1,163 receiving yards.
Philadelphia Pro Bowl DT Fletcher Cox notched three of his team-leading 10.5 sacks in Sunday's 24-0 win over Washington.
Eagles are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games in January and are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 playoff road games. Bears are 15-40-1 ATS in their last 56 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game. Underdog is 9-4 ATS in their last 13 meetings.
I see this being a very close game so take the points with Philly.
|01-06-19||Chargers +3 v. Ravens||Top||23-17||Win||100||47 h 23 m||Show|
The Los Angeles Chargers finished tied with the best record in the AFC but one loss over the final six games cost them a chance at the No. 1 overall seed and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Instead, the Chargers have to open the postseason on the road and will get a chance to avenge a Week 16 defeat when they visit the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.
The Ravens went 6-1 down the stretch after turning the offense over to rookie Lamar Jackson, who will become the youngest quarterback to start a playoff game.
Philip Rivers had one of the finest seasons of his 15-year career, posting a passer rating of 105.5 while throwing for 4,308 with 32 touchdowns versus 12 interceptions, but Baltimore picked him off twice and held him to a season-low 181 yards. Running back Melvin Gordon rushed for 41 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries in Week 16 in his first game back after missing the previous three with an ankle injury, but he said this week that he feels much healthier entering the rematch. Keenan Allen is the favorite target of Rivers with 97 receptions for 1,196 yards and leads a talented receiving corps that could see the return of tight end Hunter Henry, sidelined since May with a torn ACL. Melvin Ingram, one of seven Chargers named to the Pro Bowl, and fellow defensive end Joey Bosa combined for 12.5 sacks for the NFL's No. 9 defense.
Jackson relied just as much on his legs as his arm since taking over for an injured Joe Flacco, but he threw for a season-high 204 yards and a touchdown against the Chargers, who held him to a rushing low of 39 yards in his seven starts.
Rivers can become the fourth QB to post a passer rating of at least 115.0 in three straight playoff games and I’m backing him over rookie Lamar Jackson.
|01-05-19||Seahawks +2.5 v. Cowboys||Top||22-24||Win||100||31 h 34 m||Show|
Ezekiel Elliott was a busy man this season, as the Pro Bowl running back recorded a league-high 1,434 rushing yards and team-best 77 receptions to help the Dallas Cowboys punch their ticket to the playoffs for the third time in five years. After sitting out the regular-season finale, a well-rested Elliott is expected to carry the mail on Saturday as the fourth-seeded Cowboys host the fifth-seeded Seattle Seahawks in an NFC wild-card game.
While the Cowboys boast a 7-1 mark at AT&T Stadium and won seven of their last eight games overall, the Seahawks emerged victorious in six of their last seven contests to reach 10 wins and a playoff berth for the sixth time in Russell Wilson's seven seasons with the club. Wilson, who threw two of his NFL third-best 35 touchdown passes in Seattle's win over Dallas in Week 3.
Chris Carson (team-best 1,151 rushing yards) had a season-high 32 carries for 102 yards and a touchdown against Dallas, a performance that set the tone for what would become Seattle's top-ranked rushing offense (160.0 yards per game).
Seattle Pro Bowl LB Bobby Wagner had eight of his club-high 138 tackles against Dallas in Week 3.
Seattle recorded a league-best plus-15 turnover differential this season.
Seahawks are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games. Cowboys are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games in January. Underdog is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings.
I like QB Russell Wilson over Dak Prescott.
|01-05-19||Colts +1 v. Texans||Top||21-7||Win||100||27 h 54 m||Show|
The Houston Texans may have saved their season with an overtime win at Indianapolis in Week 4, but the Colts may have done the same by beating their AFC South rivals 10 weeks later to keep their playoff chances alive. The stakes will be considerably higher Saturday when the teams square off for the third time this season in the AFC wild card round in Houston.
The Texans prevented an 0-4 start to the season by outlasting the Colts 37-34 on Sept. 30, a victory that spurred a nine-game winning streak and a worst-to-first finish in the division. Indianapolis avenged that defeat and ended Houston's nine-game run with a 24-21 road victory on Dec. 9 to ignite a season-closing four-game winning streak that locked up the No. 6 seed and a third meeting with the Texans.
Andrew Luck finished with 4,593 yards and 39 touchdown passes while guiding Indianapolis to nine wins over its final 10 games. His favorite target is wide receiver T.Y. Hilton, who has been battling an ankle injury but still has his fifth 1,000-yard season (1,270) and burned the Texans for nine catches and 199 yards in Week 14. Tight end Eric Ebron had a career-best 13 touchdown catches, including one in each matchup versus Houston, while Marlon Mack rushed for nine touchdowns and had four 100-yard outings in his last 10 games. Rookie Darius Leonard, the league leader with 163 tackles, heads a defense that did not allow 30 points over the final 10 games after surrendering at least 34 points in four of the first six contests.
Luck has passed for 2,776 yards and 23 touchdowns in 10 career games versus Houston. Hilton has 41 catches for 933 yards and seven touchdowns in seven games at NRG Stadium.
Colts are 6-0 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Texans are 1-5 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Colts are 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings in Houston.
I’m backing the Colts with the better coach and QB as my top play of the weekend.
|12-23-18||Chiefs v. Seahawks +2.5||Top||31-38||Win||100||8 h 29 m||Show|
The stakes will be high when the Seattle Seahawks host the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday night with major playoff seeding implications on the line. The Chiefs are trying to lock up the AFC West title and a first-round bye, while the Seahawks can clinch a postseason berth with a win and a loss by either Washington or Minnesota.
Both teams are looking to bounce back from disappointing losses that raised the stakes this week. The Chiefs appeared poised to clinch the division crown last week before the Los Angeles Chargers rallied from a 28-14 deficit in the final four minutes to post a 29-28 victory. The Seahawks suffered a stunning 26-23 overtime loss at San Francisco to snap their four-game winning streak and create pressure to win at least one of their final two games.
All six of Seattle’s losses have come by eight points or fewer, which is why a team that ranks ninth in the NFL in scoring offense and seventh in scoring defense is fighting to make the playoffs. Chris Carson, who rushed for a career-high 119 yards and a touchdown last week, leads the league’s top ground game, but Russell Wilson quietly has put together a great season with 3,025 passing yards, 31 touchdowns and six interceptions. Seattle’s once-dominant defense has been decimated by injuries but has forced 22 turnovers. Wilson has thrown 13 touchdown passes and two interceptions in six home contests.
Chiefs are 0-4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall. Seahawks are 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss.
I’ll take the home Seahawks in what should be the most entertaining game of the week!
|12-23-18||Bucs v. Cowboys -7||Top||20-27||Push||0||1 h 13 m||Show|
After laying an egg on the road, the Dallas Cowboys will try to clinch the NFC East at home when they host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. The Cowboys' five-game winning streak came to a crashing halt with a 23-0 loss at Indianapolis last Sunday, but the team remains in the driver's seat in the division and can sew it up in front of the home fans.
The Buccaneers' remote playoff hopes were dashed with back-to-back losses to New Orleans and Baltimore and they'll finish with a losing record for the seventh time in eight years. Tampa Bay had a season-low 241 total yards in last Sunday's 20-12 loss at Baltimore. I look for a lot of the same here vs. the Dallas defense.
The Cowboys are fourth in the NFL in scoring defense (19.2) and the Buccaneers are 30th (28.8).
The Cowboys are 11-1 at home against Tampa Bay. Cowboys get the win and cover.
|12-23-18||Giants v. Colts -9.5||Top||27-28||Loss||-109||1 h 12 m||Show|
The Indianapolis Colts are one of the hottest teams in the NFL but still have work to do to make the playoffs for the first time in four years, a quest that continues Sunday against the visiting New York Giants. Last week's 23-0 win over the Dallas Cowboys was the seventh win in the last eight contests for the Colts, who enter Week 16 two games out in the AFC South and right in the thick of the wild-card race.
The Colts rolled up 178 yards on the ground and limiting a red-hot Dallas offense to just 292 total yards. The Giants had won four of five and entertained thoughts of sneaking in the back end of the NFC playoffs before falling 17-0 to Tennessee last week. Star receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (quadriceps) has missed two straight games and is out again.
Colts RB Marlon Mack ran for a career-high 139 yards and two TDs in the win over the Cowboys.
Giants are 4-10-2 ATS in their last 16 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Colts are 32-14-1 ATS vs. a team with a losing record. Giants are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
I got the Colts in a blow-out.
|12-23-18||Texans v. Eagles -1||Top||30-32||Win||100||1 h 11 m||Show|
The Houston Texans could be sitting pretty at the conclusion of the weekend, provided they handle their business against the host Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday and receive a bit of help along the way. Defeating the Eagles is not something the Texans have done in their existence, however, as the club has dropped all four encounters by double-digit margins.
The 23-year-old Watson, sacked on six occasions by the Jets and an NFL-high 52 times, faces an Eagles' contingent that has 35 sacks on the season. Nick Foles stepped in for an injured Carson Wentz and completed 24 of 31 attempts for 270 yards as Philadelphia moved within a game of NFC East-leading Dallas by posting a 30-23 win versus the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday.
Zach Ertz, who ranks third in the NFL with 101 catches, is 10 receptions shy of breaking Jason Witten's single-season record for tight ends. Wideout Alshon Jeffery reeled in team highs in catches (eight) and receiving yards (160) against the Rams.
Texans are 1-8-1 ATS in their last 10 games in December. Eagles are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
I’ll back Philly to grab the home victory with a outside shot at the playoffs.
|12-23-18||Vikings -6.5 v. Lions||Top||27-9||Win||100||1 h 10 m||Show|
The Minnesota Vikings look to move closer to obtaining an NFC wild-card berth when they visit the Detroit Lions on Sunday. Minnesota currently occupies the second wild-card spot, sitting one-half game ahead of Philadelphia and Washington.
The Lions dropped a 14-13 decision to Buffalo last week, their sixth setback in eight games.
Minnesota recorded a franchise-record 10 sacks in a 24-9 win over the Lions on Nov. 4 as defensive end Danielle Hunter registered 3.5 of them and also returned a fumble 32 yards for a touchdown. Hunter is tied for second in the NFL with 14.5 sacks and notched two in the victory over the Dolphins as the Vikings posted nine overall. Cousins is 87 yards shy of his fourth straight 4,000-yard campaign while wide receiver Adam Thielen ranks second in the league in receptions (105) and eighth in receiving yards (1,255) despite recording season lows of two and 19 against Miami.
Vikings RB Dalvin Cook rushed for a career-high 136 yards and scored two touchdowns in the win over the Dolphins. Detroit RB Kerryon Johnson (knee), who is the team's leading rusher with 641 yards despite playing in just 10 games, was placed on injured reserve.
Vikings are 13-5-1 ATS vs. a team with a losing record. Lions are 4-11 ATS in their last 15 games after allowing less than 15 points in their previous game.
Vikings are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 meetings in Detroit and will get the win and cover to keep their playoff hopes very alive.
|12-16-18||Patriots -2.5 v. Steelers||Top||10-17||Loss||-112||29 h 23 m||Show|
Patriots – 2.5
The New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers appeared to be en route to another high-stakes collision course in the season's final month, but recent stumbles by both teams have changed the dynamics. While the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC may be out of reach, the Patriots and Steelers try to move closer to wrapping up division titles when they meet in Pittsburgh on Sunday.
The Patriots, who are coming off a stunning last-second loss at Miami, have won five in a row against the Steelers.
Tom Brady threw for 358 yards and three touchdowns at Miami, but New England failed to take advantage of three prime red-zone opportunities in which they came away with a total of six points. That will not be the case here vs. the weak Steelers defense.
Pittsburgh's defense has been burned for 39 fourth-quarter points during the three-game skid.
Brady has thrown 25 touchdown passes and four interceptions in career 10 games against Pittsburgh. Gronkowski has scored eight touchdowns in six games versus the Steelers and made nine catches for 168 yards in last season's matchup.
Patriots are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games in December. Steelers are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games in December. Patriots are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings in Pittsburgh.
Take the Patriots to get the hard fought win on the highway.
|12-16-18||Seahawks -3.5 v. 49ers||Top||23-26||Loss||-103||29 h 4 m||Show|
Seahawks – 3.5
The Seattle Seahawks attempt to record their fifth consecutive victory when they host the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. Seattle's recent hot stretch has placed it in a strong position in the NFC wild-card chase, and the team can clinch a playoff berth this weekend if it defeats the 49ers.
The defense carried the load in Seattle's latest win as Wilson (29 touchdowns this season) completed just 10-of-20 passes - with the longest being a 14-yarder - in a stale effort.
The Seahawks have won each of the last nine regular-season meetings and they get the win and cover the number in this spot.
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