I didn’t quite get the results I wanted picking games last week, but it was close.
I went 9-5 both straight up and against the spread, which is a good week in those two areas. But I flopped with my Best Bets on the Pick-Six Podcast, going 2-4 against the spread. The good news is that I still beat host Will Brinson, who went a sizzling 0-6.
For the season, I am 49-42-3 ATS, 57-37 straight up and 18-20 with my Best Bets. It’s time to pick it up with the Best Bets this week after two poor showings.
As for the others, give me another 9-5 ATS week and I will be more than happy about it.
The Browns are so banged up as they head into this game on a short week, which makes it tough to pick this one. They could be without quarterback Baker Mayfield, although it looks like he is leaning toward playing. They are also down a bunch of other players. The Broncos haven’t played as well as expected on defense, but I think in prime time they show up here. It’s close, with Denver pulling off a small upset.
Pick: Broncos 24, Browns 23
New York Giants
The Panthers have lost three straight, while the Giants have lost their last two and have looked awful in doing so. But this is a good spot for the Giants to get back winning again. The Panthers have offensive issues of late and the Giants should be able to limit them. The problem is the Giants are banged up on offense, but I think they can do enough to pull this one out.
Pick: Giants 19, Panthers 16
New England Patriots
The Jets are coming off their bye, while the Patriots are coming off a tough home loss to the Cowboys. Jets rookie quarterback Zach Wilson really struggled before the bye, and this isn’t a great way to try to get going facing a Bill Belichick-coached team. He dominates rookie passers and he will here as well. Mac Jones gets the best of his opposing rookie quarterback.
Pick: Patriots 27, Jets 10
The Titans impressed with their home victory over the Bills on Monday night, but now face another tough challenge in Patrick Mahomes. With all the injuries in the secondary for the Titans, Mahomes should have a big game. The Chiefs defense was better last week, but that’s not saying a lot. Look for a lot of points in this game. But the Chiefs will find a way.
Pick: Chiefs 37, Titans 30
Washington Football Team at Green Bay Packers (-9.5)
Green Bay Packers
Washington has major defensive issues, which is a surprise, but also not a good thing when facing Aaron Rodgers at Lambeau Field. Look for Rodgers and the Green Bay offense to again have a big day as Washington continues to be a major disappointment this season. Packers big.
Pick: Packers 34, Washington 17
The Dolphins are playing a week after being in London, while the Falcons are coming off a bye. That’s a big edge for the Falcons. The Dolphins have injury issues in a big way. Look for Matt Ryan and the Falcons to win two in a row after winning at London two weeks ago. The Falcons take it.
Pick: Falcons 28. Dolphins 21
This is the game of the week, a game for first place in the AFC North. It’s a huge proving game for the Bengals. I expect the Bengals offense to move the ball with Joe Burrow, so it will come down to whether they can slow Lamar Jackson. I don’t think they can. The Ravens win it, but it’s close.
Pick: Ravens 31, Bengals 28
Los Angeles Rams
The Lions are winless and coming off their worst loss of the year. The Rams blew out the Giants last week and clearly are the better team. This will match Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford against his former team and Lions quarterback Jared Goff against his former team. The problem is Goff doesn’t have enough firepower to keep up. But the Lions will hang around.
Pick: Rams 27, Lions 20
Las Vegas Raiders
The Eagles are rested after playing on a Thursday, while the Raiders are coming off a victory in their first game without Jon Gruden. They played well on both sides of the ball in that game. But I think the Eagles will be able to hang around in this one. It’s close, and both teams will score a bunch.
Pick: Raiders 31, Eagles 30
The Cardinals will have coach Kliff Kingsbury back for this one after beating the Browns on the road last week without him because of COVID-19. The Texans are playing consecutive road games, which is tough for a bad team. The Cardinals are a class above the Texans, which will show. Blowout.
Pick: Cardinals 38, Texans 13
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay will have two advantages here in being rested after playing on a Thursday and the Florida heat impacting the Bears. Tampa Bay’s offense has been outstanding, and that won’t change here. The Tampa Bay defense hasn’t been as good as expected, but that will change against Justin Fields. Bucs big.
Pick: Bucs 34, Bears 16
San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers are coming off their bye and will have Jimmy Garoppolo back at quarterback. That’s a good thing. But this is a big game for him to show he can be the guy the rest of the way. The Colts struggle against the pass, which is why I think he does. Carson Wentz has been playing well, but the 49ers will limit in the passing game. 49ers take it.
Pick: 49ers 28, Colts 17
The Saints are coming off the bye, which will help make this trip a tad easier to handle. The Seahawks will again start Geno Smith in this game at quarterback against a good Saints defense. Look for Jameis Winston to play well against a bad Seattle defense. Saints take it.
Pick: Saints 31, Seahawks 20