Wow, Week 9 is a tough one. There are so few standout games, which is the reason for only three picks this week. But if I bet with my heart, I would take the New England Patriots and their -14 points against the Washington Redskins. Those two teams are on divergent paths, it’s in Foxboro, and the Patriots are still playing to prove they can play with beach balls. Aside from that, there are some really nice money lines to be had this week, and I’ll explain the best three on the boards.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+110) over New York Giants for $100
Tampa Bay is starting to figure themselves out this season. Jameis Winston is doing just enough to be a big time NFL quarterback – minimizing the mistakes is a huge step. They even beat the Atlanta Falcons on their own Astroturf in Week 8. That doesn’t happen. Meanwhile, if you have read my picks before, you know that I firm believer that the New York Giants are a complete disaster and their wins are due to no more than an alignment of planets in some galaxy we haven’t discovered yet. Even though the Giants manage to put together wins the second half of the season, they are still a loose cannon who is going to win by a lot or lose by a lot. If they are favored, I’m going to bet on the “lose by a lot” side. The Bucs are going to the roll the Giants.
Indianapolis Colts (+200) over Denver Broncos for $100
The Denver Broncos defense is one of the most powerful offensive weapons in the NFL. Doesn’t Aqib Talib has more pick-6’s than Peyton Manning has touchdowns through the air? The Legion of Boom had been the most unstoppable defense in recent years. But the Denver defense not only stops, but they score too. Peyton Manning’s offense will put together double digit points every once in a while, and that drives up their price in the sports books. Should the Indianapolis Colts be worried that this is a Peyton Manning homecoming? Maybe, because the Colts haven’t looked like a complete team. Despite that, their recent losses have been to great teams: the Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, and New England Patriots. And they have been in some of those games. This is the week that the Denver Broncos get their first loss of the season. This is the week that the Broncos can’t pull out a miraculous win. This is the week that the Peyton Manning homecoming gets spoiled.
Dallas Cowboys (+135) over Philadelphia Eagles for $100
If you recall my predictions from the first time these teams played, I made the claim that it would be a bloodbath and that Tony Romo would end up injured. These two teams still hate each other, but since both of their seasons are over even before the halfway point of the season, it doesn’t have the same meaning. But the Eagles are still terrible. Despite not having Tony Romo for a few more weeks, the Cowboys can still win games. The Cowboys waived Joseph Randle, so watch for Darren McFadden to go off once again. He’ll find the gaping holes in the Eagles defense and walk into the end zone at least 2 times with is 140+ yards. Put him on your fantasy team! Sure, Brandon Weeden is starting, but he has a brand new toy to play with Dez Bryant coming back. This will be a fun game to watch Prime Time Sunday, only because it is the Cowboys and Eagles, but they are going to be tied at the bottom in the NFC East, but with the Cowboys having the tie-breaker, obviously.
Joel’s bankroll $3,085
This week is the rapid fire edition. Sorry for the lack of elaboration, but I’ll be back next week with more input into how I came up with my mediocre picks.
Pittsburgh Steelers (-4.5) over Oakland Raiders for $1110
Steelers are really good. LeVeon Bell will be missed, but DeAngelo Williams will do just fine. Pittsburgh needs to start winning games if they want to catch up to the Bengals in the AFC North
New England Patriots (-14) over Washington R******s for $220
I don’t even care what the line is, where it is played or if Tom Brady can only throw with his left arm. Patriots, Patriots, Patriots. And, while I’m at it, I’m going to load up my DraftKings team with the likes of Brady, Gronk and Edelman. Probably can’t afford all three, but look for video game numbers in Foxboro
Green Bay (-2.5) over Carolina Panthers for $110
Green Bay is about to get on track after their wake up call last week in Denver and Carolina is about to have their own wake up call in the other direction. A fun exercise for you, awesome reader. Pick which quarterback is better:
QB A) Comp Rate: 59%, Pass Yards: 1,615, TDs: 6, INTs:5, QBR: 78.8
QB B) Comp Rate: 54%, Pass Yards: 1,523, TDs: 11, INTs: 8, QBR: 78.1
Tough choice, right? Not too dissimilar. Perhaps you like the higher completion rate from QB A or perhaps you like the amount of TDs from QB B, but either way, you can’t feel real confident about one over the other. Well, QB B is MVP candidate Cam Newton, while QB A is benched QB Colin Kaepernick. The Panthers’ recipe for success of squeaking out win against decent teams will be in focus as they play perhaps the best team in the NFC.
Dallas Cowboys (+3) over Philadelphia Eagles for $110
Dez Bryant will give the Boys a shot in the arm and Dallas will use last weeks close loss to Seattle as motivation for a big divisional victory this week.