I think the NFL is starting to separate the good teams from the bad teams pretty clearly and it shows in the picks this week. I looked up and down the slate this week and there isn’t one team that I really like that is an underdog. We are getting a lot of matchups where one team is just better than the other.
Saints (-5.5) Vs. Bengals:
This game is probably seen as a trap for a lot of bettors. The Saints coming off of a emotional win vs. the Rams on Sunday afternoon while the Bengals are coming off of a bye week. Here’s the problem. The offenses in this game are just going 2 different directions. Without A.J. Green and Tyler Eifert, the Bengals don’t have real receiving threats outside of Tyler Boyd. The Saints defense is again getting better and one of their best players is still Marshon Lattimore, who will shadow Boyd most of the game. I think the Bengals will struggle to score in the game more than people think and the Saints offense is just way too easy. I think the Saints offense keeps rolling here and the Bengals can’t keep up.
Patriots (-6.5) Vs. Titans:
The Titans aren’t that good. There are still these teams that record kind of shows that they are better than they are and the Titans are one of those teams. They haven’t scored more than 28 in any game, they beat the Eagles, Cowboys, Jags, and Texans all while those teams were struggling. The Titans defense has been good enough to keep them in games but you aren’t going to do that to this Patriots team who is now rolling. The Patriots’ offense is LOADED more than most people know and they will score enough points to cover in Tennessee.
Falcons (-5.5) Vs. Browns:
This is the battle of backup defenses. Both these teams have been injury-riddled on the defensive side of the ball. The Falcons offense is more reliable and more talented than the Browns. The Falcons are getting a little healthier and they have had to play with these injuries for a few weeks, so they should improve week after week. The Browns, on the other hand, are getting decimated by injuries without a bye week and with a lot of snaps. Denzel Ward has been outstanding vs. WR1’s and the Browns secondary has gotten smoked by everyone besides WR1’s. Without Ward, Julio and company should SMASH. I am concerned that the Browns could score enough to keep this game close, but at the end of the day the Browns’ defense should be the reason the Falcons cover here.
Chargers (-9.5) Vs. Raiders:
The Raiders are terrible and the Chargers are a really good football team. Tyrell Williams is faster than the Oakland defense, Mike Williams is stronger, and Keenan Allen is sharper. The running game has been great in all facets all year. Philip Rivers is playing some of the best football of his career. This offense is going to score whatever they want and I don’t think they give up before they are up at least 20. The line is a big one, but it should be even bigger. The Chargers defense has struggled due to scheme this season, but they’re ultra talented. The Raiders offensive weapons are not. The Chargers should assert themselves early.
Seahawks Vs. Rams (-9.5):
The Seahawks have had better scores than I would expect them to have for most of this season, but they aren’t really playing better than I’d expect. The Rams are one of the most dominant teams in football coming off a loss where they were not really in the game very long, although they still played relatively well. The Rams were scared by the Seahawks a few weeks ago, so they will know that they have to show up to win this game. If they do show up as they have basically all year, the will win this one handily. The Seahawks haven’t had to be a volume passing team this season and I think this is one of the first games that forces Russ to throw more than they want him to with a pretty rough receiving group.