There’s no way around it, last week was my first losing week all year. It hurt. It stung. I was sad. Heading into Monday night needing Matthew Stafford to cover in Lambeau for my lungs was not the best spot for me. But here we are.
Bottom line is this: road teams have absolutely crushed 2019 in a fashion that we have not seen for quite some time, covering at 61% clip. It took six week, but my record finally reflects something that generally doesn’t work in my favor. The only reason I’m still above water is a similarly absurd cover rate of underdogs thus far, covering at their highest rate since 2012 (62%) through seven weeks.
I’m going to double down and wait for the regression. Eventually, short home favorites (and of course my beloved home dogs) will come around. I’m hoping it’s this week.
Week 5 record: 4-7
Season Record: 36-27-1
Week 7 Picks
As always, my picks will be listed most to least confident. For reference, I will have the team I’m picking in bold font next to the point spread. My gun-to-my-head picks show the games I did not bet on (hence the poopy record above) but the pick I would make if there was a…..you get the picture. Some of these picks will not be locked in until Sunday, as lines do often change/hint at future change in the middle of the week.
- Philadelphia Eagles (+3) at Dallas Cowboys
Doug Pederson really put the pressure on his team last weekend after laying an egg in Minnesota (one of the few picks I got right) by telling anyone who would listen that his team was going to march into Dallas and win in Week 7.
Alright, let’s see it.
Eagles are catching three after both teams were caught with their pants down last week. Dallas clearly was looking ahead, but in a game that could go either way there is value in grabbing the field goal. Eagles on the money line (+130) is also a nice play here.
- Baltimore Ravens at Seattle Seahawks (-3)
The sharp guys and the public have been all over Baltimore (70% of the money with 57% of the bets). That typically means the other side is the wrong one, and it’s possible that this has more to do with the game opening at -4, but I don’t quite understand it.
I know road teams have crushed everyone (including me) this season, but there has to be some semblance of sanity when you make lines for Russell Wilson against inferior competition. Baltimore has spent most of their season beating up on small children and getting whooped by teams with any sort of vertical passing game while Seattle has more impressive wins on their resume. Give me the Seahawks by a touchdown in this one.
- Los Angeles Chargers at Tennessee Titans (pk)
If you’ve read this column in the past, you know I love Andy Dalton. If you’ve read it long enough (because he was out last year, obviously), you know that I love betting on Ryan Tannehill in this spot and that I’ve been calling for Marcus Mariota to be executed publicly for years (sorry, Marcus).
Love the Titans here. The money is on Tennessee (59% if the money with only 37% of the bets), and the public is on Los Angeles. The Chargers have been, well, terrible for several weeks now. I don’t like the match-up for Los Angeles in the trenches and I expect Tennessee to get out to a fast start in this game and hold off a Philip Rivers charge late to come out on top.
- Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts (-1)
This is a prime spot to bet on the Colts. The Texans are coming off two very impressive offensive showings and the Colts are coming off a bye and sitting at home. If the Colts and Texans played last week (Remember? When the Colts also beat the Chiefs in Arrowhead?), this line is probably closer to 3-3.5. There’s value here in the very short home favorite.
- New Orleans Saints at Chicago Bears (-3)
Betting on this game is difficult for me. I had Jacksonville last week and felt great about it until they started playing football.
But I look at this number and I can’t help myself but bet the Bears as the short home favorite again even with Mitch Trubisky trudging back into the huddle. The short home favorite has value and despite New Orleans winning four straight, Chicago is the short home favorite off a bye week after getting embarrassed overseas against the Raiders. I just don’t seem New Orleans coming out on top here. I think it’s time for a little regression for Teddy two-gloves.
- Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions (+1.5)
I don’t know how many times we need to watch Kirk “The Jerk” Cousins flop on the road to see a home team get some respect when they’re playing Minnesota at home. I’ll take the lines as the home dog expecting a nice bounce-back win in a crowded NFC North. However, I am not locking this game in yet, as I expect more public action on Minnesota and believe this line will jump to 2 before kick-off. If you’re on the side of the Lions, I would suggest you do the same.
- Oakland Raiders (+7) at Green Bay Packers
This was a look-ahead bet on my part. I took this game at seven after watching Oakland beat Chicago in London and anticipating a loss for the Packers at home to Detroit. Green Bay won this game, but it was close enough to have the public, who likely lost Packers -3.5 on that one, hammered the Raiders after the line opened at 7. The Raiders are now 5.5-point underdogs in Lambeau, a dead number for a team that has everyone looking at the standings and saying “Seriously?”
The Raiders in my opinion have some value catching a touchdown, but I don’t know if I have much advice for you here otherwise. If you believe in Oakland, maybe wait until Sunday to see if late public action jumps this number back up to six. As it stands, 61% of the money is Oakland and it doesn’t seem like it’s going to move at the moment, but I expect late public action to push this number back to six before kick-off.
- Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (+3.5)
This game opened at 4.5 and is now all the way down to 3. Everyone and their mother is on the Kansas City Chiefs (79% of the bets). Kansas City is coming off of back-to-back losses and is in a prime spot to bounce-back and beat a divisional opponent on the road. However, teams getting less than 25% of the bets as an underdog have covered at a 54% clip since 2003, per BetLabs. That number skyrockets even higher when you factor in home field advantage. Throw in my guy Joe Flacco and we have a nice recipe for a …….. three point loss at home. Take the ponies.
Gun-to-my-head picks: 16-11-1
Miami Dolphins (+17) at Buffalo Bills
Arizona Cardinals at New York Giants (-3)
Los Angeles Rams at Atlanta Falcons (+3)
San Francisco 49ers at Washington Redskins (+10)
Jacksonville Jaguars (-3) at Cincinnati Bengals
New England Patriots at New York Jets (+10)