Week 3 NFL Picks Against the Spread

I am back with my third week of NFL picks against the spread. I am struggling to get a handle on the league. I was just 6-10 last week. The highlight was calling the Falcons upset of the Raiders. I am now 13-19-1 for the year. As usual, the minus sign denotes the favorite, my pics are in bold, and outright upsets have an asterisk next to them. I was on the right side of a Patriots pick ‘em Thursday night. Hopefully, that is a sign that I am starting to turn things around.

Cardinals (-3.5) at Bills- This reeks of a trap game. Knowing that, I’m going to take the bait anyway. Buffalo is off to a disastrous start in every way imaginable. However, desperate teams are dangerous. Throw in the fact that they are at home in facing a west coast opponent coming east, and conditions for the upset become all the more ripe. In spite of me basically predicting my own demise here, Arizona is too superior of a team on paper for me not to swallow such a small amount of points. AZ 23 Buf 17

photo from nyupstate.com

photo from nyupstate.com

Redskins at Giants (-3) -The Giants as a home favorite always scares me. However, Eli Manning is still Eli Manning and he now has three dynamic pass catchers were healthy. Additionally, with all the reports of infighting within the Redskins this week, their season could turn ugly quickly. They are winless and desperate, but I am not sure they are capable. Nyg 30 Was 14

Ravens (-1.5) at Jaguars- This line shows that the rest of the world is still not on the Ravens bandwagon that I have been on since well before the season started. I will swallow 1.5 points to take an undefeated team over a winless team that did not bother to show up last week every single time. Much like Buffalo though, Jacksonville is desperate to live up to lofty preseason expectations for their young talent. Thus, I do not expect Blake Bortles and company to be an easy out. Bal 24 Jac 15

Browns at Dolphins (-10) – This is a pretty simple one for me. The Browns are terrible and on their third quarterback in his many weeks due to injuries. Additionally, I highly doubt Cody Kessler is anywhere close to ready to start an NFL game. Despite all that, I am not convinced Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins are ten points better than anyone in this league. Watch this game at your own risk. It will not be pretty on either side. Mia 17 Cle 12

Broncos* at Bengals (-3.5) – Take anything I say about this game with a grain of salt. I was born and raised in Cincinnati and come from a family of Bengals season-ticket holders. However, somehow I became a lifelong Denver fan. I will be in attendance for this one. Moreover, I will be the family black sheep all day Sunday. In reality, these two teams are very even matchup with each other well. Cincinnati will be tough first road test for young Denver quarterback Trevor Siemian who has handled himself very well to this point. The key to this game will be the Bengals ability (or lack thereof) to protect quarterback Andy Dalton. For me though, family bragging rights are on the line. So, of course I’m taking the Broncos. Den 27 Cin 21

Lions at Packers (-7) -I would not be shocked at all if we see a push here. However, since that is no fun, I will go with Green Bay for a couple reasons. First, the media has been throwing dirt on them all week, particularly quarterback Aaron Rodgers. When that is the case, they always seem to respond. Also, Detroit really struggles at Lambeau Field. They play there every year. Last year marked their first win there since 1991. GB 30 Det 22

Vikings at Panthers (-7) – The Vikings have also proven me wrong at every turn in this young season. Rejoice Vikings fans! I am doubting them again. Cam Newton and the Panthers really found their swagger last week against San Francisco. Everything went a little too well for Sam Bradford in his Minnesota debut last week. The injuries must catch up with this team at some point. Car 31 Min 17

Raiders* at Titans (-1.5) – This may be my favorite pick of the week. Tennessee showed some impressive grit in a comeback win on the road last week. However, there is a trend here that cannot be ignored. The Titans are an embarrassing 3-20 in their last 23 home games. It is a safe bet that the Raiders would probably be a favorite on a neutral field. They have more playmakers on both sides of the ball. Tennessee would die for a single player anywhere near Raiders linebacker Kahlil Mack’s level. Oak 31 Ten 20

Rams at Bucs (-5) – The Rams still have not found the end zone. Tampa Bay is much better than their 33 point loss to the Cardinals last week would indicate, and will be eager to show it. The Rams finally score a touchdown, but the Bucs cover. TB 20 LA 10

Steelers (-3.5) at Eagles- I am still far from sold on the Steelers, particularly on defense. However, I am selling all of my Eagles stock right now. I see no possible way it can go any higher in 2016. However, they have proven me wrong for two weeks. So, I suppose stranger things have happened. Carson Wentz falls back down to earth in a big way. Pit 28 Phi 10

Jets at Chiefs (-3) – Evenly matched teams that play a similar “smash mouth” style. This is my kind of game. Both run games and defenses will make a few plays. The Arrowhead Stadium home-field advantage is the difference here. KC 20 NYJ 14

Chargers at Colts (-2.5) – If I could stay away from this game, I would. I have no clue here. You have two teams with really high ceilings and really low floors. I hope everyone understands that metaphor. When that is the case go with the home team… I guess. Ind 34 SD 31

49ers at Seahawks (-10) – San Francisco continued to exceed expectations on offense last week, but they are still working progress in all phases of the game Seattle is just not the dominant team that they have been in years past, at least not yet. Hopefully, Russell Wilson is healthy, but I don’t think anyone really knows the answer there. I will be stunned if Seattle finds a way to lose to a second straight vastly inferior opponent, but they will have to sweat this one out. Sea 19 SF 14

Bears at Cowboys (-6.5) – Another tough one here. Credit to Vegas, this is right about where I would have set the line had anyone asked. The Bears are a beat up mess. They will go into this game with the NFL’s most recycled quarterback, Brian Hoyer as their starter. However, I am just not sure if Dak Prescott and Dallas are really capable of blowing any opponent out of the water. They will cover, but barely Dal 27 Chi 20

photo from sportingnews.com

photo from sportingnews.com

MNF: Falcons at Saints (-2.5) – Here is another pick I really like this week. Often times, I think emotions are overhyped when trying to determine the outcome of football game, but not here. Monday marks the 10 year anniversary of the Saints return to the Superdome after Hurricane Katrina. They are facing the same opponent as they were that night too. That night also produced the iconic image of reserve Saints defender Steve Gleason seen below. Gleason is now battling ALS. There is no way New Orleans is losing this football game in that building on that night. NO 28 Atl 20

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