September 21, 2017
For the gambling degenerates, here are my Week 3 NFL picks. To note, the helmets indicate who I think will win the game, not cover the spread. At the end of the picks, I'll note a few teams that I like based on the spread.
Rams (-2.5) at 49ers: Last week, we were treated to the Texans and Bengals on Thursday Night Football. This week, surely there will be a better game, right? Oh.
Ravens (-3.5) at Jaguars: After an impressive Week 1 win, the Jags returned to their typical Jag-like state Week 2 at home against the Titans. The Ravens are playing good defense, though it's been against a pair of really bad teams in the Bengals and Browns. This is their last soft game before their schedule picks up.
Broncos (-3) at Bills: Very clearly, the Broncos are a much more talented team than the Bills, and I can't figure out for the life of me why this line is only three points. What do you know, Vegas, and why am I laying three when I know there's something weird here?
Saints at Panthers (-6): The Saints have a trash defense, as always. I have a feeling I'll be picking against them on the spread all year. I'll lay the six against a team that can't stop anyone.
Steelers (-7.5) at Bears: I picked the Bears last week, +7. That was stupid.
Falcons (-3) at Lions: Matthew Stafford is somehow one of the more underrated players in the NFL. I see him as a top 10 quarterback. I'm not sure others agree. Still, the Falcons have seemingly put that awful Super Bowl loss behind them and have played really good football the first two weeks of the season.
Browns (-1) at Colts: I can't remember the last time the Browns were favored in a game. Hang on, let me google that. Oh, so it's been three years, apparently. That's how awful this Colts team is. Still, I just can't take a team that has lost 14 straight road games, and still doesn't look good.
Buccaneers at Vikings: There is no line on this game, as the status of Sleevie Wonder is unknown. He'll be a game-time decision. I generally think it's good practice to bet against the Sleeved One, even after perhaps the best game of his career Week 1.
Texans at Patriots (-13.5): The last time the Patriots lost two straight home games was in 2008 when Matt Cassel was the quarterback. That's not happening on Sunday.
Survivor pick alert (we'll keep this going until I fail you):
Dolphins (-6) at Jets: The Jets are probably the most likely team to not win a game this season.
Giants at Eagles (-6): It's perhaps a little too easy to simply point to the matchup of the Giants' crappy offensive line vs. the Eagles' (so far) dominant defensive line, but, well, it's kind of hard to get past that, even with the Eagles' paper-thin secondary.
Seahawks at Titans (-2.5): The Seahawks' offense is lost right now, and the team, in general, doesn't typically find their sea legs until October every year, but I still just really trust their defense. I don't quite trust the Titans as anything more than a contender to win the garbage AFC South just yet, though certainly, they're a team on the rise.
Bengals at Packers (-9): It's been very surprising how bad the Bengals have been so far this season. Before a down year in 2016, they made the playoffs five straight seasons in a very tough division. Whatever happened there, they are an ugly football team right now.
Chiefs (-3) at Chargers: I'm not picking against Andy anytime soon. It's early, but the Chiefs look like Super Bowl contenders.
Raiders (-3) at Redskins: After the Eagles bottled up the Redskins' run game Week 1, the Skins went off for 229 yards against the Rams. The Redskins have a very talented run-blocking offensive line that maybe just wasn't in sync Week 1 against the Eagles. I like the Skins in a home upset over a Raiders team that has had to travel East twice already this season.
Cowboys (-3) at Cardinals: The Cowboys have not looked impressive at all the first two weeks of the season, but I think they bounce back against the Cardinals, who needed overtime to beat a terrible Colts team Week 2.
• Picks against the spread: Broncos (-3), Panthers (-6), Redskins (+3), Cowboys (-3)
• 2017 season, straight up: 20-11 (.667)
• 2017 season, ATS: 3-4 (.429)
• 2016 season, straight up: 171-94-2 (.644)
• 2016 season, ATS: 41-34 (0.547)
• 2015 season, straight up: 163-93 (0.637)
• 2015 season, ATS: 46-30-2 (0.605)
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