After this week, many teams will be 50% of the way through their season, and man has it been a journey. The handicapping game is not easy, and no one said it was. The stress of watching multiple games is unbearable at times, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. This week there is a lot more data available to us than the prior week, and we simply have more numbers to go by. For some that will be confusing, for others who play the analytics game, the more numbers the better. I only bit of advice is that if you’re gut tells you something and it sticks with you all week, go with it… because you’ll regret it in the end. Even if it’s wrong there’s something great about going with your convictions. The problem is we have these great feeling and that immerse ourselves in research and expert opinion and we eventually get talked off our position… and then we feel dirty. Let’s clear the path to a perfect week!
Atlanta Falcons -4 at New York Jets
Clearly the field is not concerned about how Atlanta looks way worse than we thought they were going to look OR how the Jets look way better than we thought they were going to look. The Falcons who just got trounced by the Patriots are playing the same team that barely loss to them. Everything is lined up here for a Jets cover, so I’m staying a way, or putting my confidence low, but it should be noted that I have pumped up the Falcons in fantasy this week, deeming that they are due for an offensive breakout. It would be hypocritical for me to say an ATL cover is not possible, I’ll lean toward the Falcons who are 6th in the NFL in yards per play.
Pittsburgh -3 at Detroit
This is a brave choice considering the Lions are coming off a bye and have historically kept games close in the 4th quarter. They will be without Golden Tate, the Steelers defense is one of the top rated in the league, and the Pittsburgh offense has gotten into a rhythm by leading with Le’Veon Bell… duh!! I sure wish the line was -2.5 but I’m all on in on the Steelers moving forward.
Los Angeles Chargers +7.5 at New England
The Patriots have given very little evidence that they will be a team like the Chargers by more than eight points. The Chargers have given little evidence that they won’t play New England close. The Chargers defense is starting to fit the bill, and Brady gets sacked 2.5 times per game. The Chargers have been tough on the road and have won three straight games. New England wins, but the LA covers.
Tampa Bay -2 vs Carolina
Carolina wins this game outright. Tampa has no pass rush, and Carolina has the third highest rated defense in the NFL. Cam Newton is undefeated in games after bad press conferences, so I expect the Panthers to handle business on the road here. Again the Tampa Bay defense is overrated.
Houston plus 5.5 at Seattle
Houston could very well cover in this game coming in unified with all the off the field nonsense surrounding them. This team however is talking walkouts, and protests and I just don’t like where they are. 5.5 is a lot of points, but this game has become too risky to play.
OVER/UNDER Special Denver at Kansas City (43.5)
The Chiefs have lost two straight games and will be looking to bounce back against a malnourished Denver offense. The Broncos are a prideful bunch on defense and aren’t going to lie down. I expect a super conservative game by both teams with points being hard to come by. 20-17 Chiefs.