According to DraftKings Sportsbook, the New York Jets are 3.5 point home underdogs against the Miami Dolphins in East Rutherford, New Jersey on Sunday. That’s a pretty big spread in favor of a 3-7 Dolphins team on the road. I’m thinking the Dolphins fall back down to earth after their upset over the Ravens last week. I’m thinking the Jets defensive line finds the tonic for what ails them, at least for one week, against an atrocious Dolphins offensive line. I’m thinking a Miami running game that has been terrible all year won’t find the same kind of success against the Jets that recent opponents have. I’m thinking upset special. Jets over the Dolphins.
Last week I had another bad week with my picks. I went 5-7-1, including 1-2-1 in my upset specials. That brings my record for the year to 30-21-1, and 7-4 -1 on my upset specials.
Here are my picks for the rest of the NFL matchups this week. These picks are just a simple who wins the game deal. Odds do not factor in. DISCLAIMER: This is just for fun. I make no claims to actually being any good at this. Anyone who chooses to bet according to my picks will likely prove the old maxim, a fool and his money are soon parted.
SUNDAY 1 PM GAMES
Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings. The Packers have one of the best defenses in the NFL. The Vikings have one of the worst run defenses in the NFL. The Packers have exciting bruiser A.J. Dillon making his first NFL start against the Vikings. Dillon runs roughshod over shoddy Vikings, Aaron Rodgers does his thing. Packers over the Vikings.
Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans. This is the kind of huge mismatch that has produced upsets this year. Not this time. Texans are winless on the road, have an offense that doesn’t score, and can’t stop the run. That’s a recipe for disaster against the Titans, even with Derrick Henry sidelined. Titans over the Texans.
San Francisco 49ers at Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars have scored 33 total points in their last three games. The 49ers seem to be getting things together a bit. 49ers may struggle a bit with the long trip east, but in the end they’ll prove too much for a bad Jaguars team. 49ers over the Jaguars.
Detroit Lions at Cleveland Browns. The Lions had perhaps their best shot at a win all year last week against a Steelers team missing Ben Roethlisberger, and they came up just short with an unsatisfying tie. This week they face a humiliated Browns team looking to rebound from an embarrassing blowout loss against the Patriots last week. Browns rebound, Lions don’t. Browns over the Lions.
Baltimore Ravens at Chicago Bears. The Ravens are smarting from a beatdown at the fins of the Dolphins last week. The Ravens have uncharacteristically struggled in pass defense this year. The Bears 32nd ranked passing game provides the perfect opponent for the Ravens troubled pass defense. Ravens over the Bears.
Washington Football Team at Carolina Panthers. The Football Team’s defense has been trash all year. Last week suddenly that changed, against the Buccaneers, one of the best offenses in the NFL. Was it a mirage, or will the sleeping Football Team’s defense final awaken from a season long slumber? I don’t know, but a Panthers team featuring a quarterback in Cam Newton who can’t pass seems like a good bet to make it two straight weeks of defensive domination for the Football Team. Football Team over the Panthers in an upset special.
New Orleans Saints at Philadelphia Eagles. The Saints have lost both starts Trevor Siemian has made. The Eagles will make it three straight losses for the Saints as their playoff hopes dissipate in some Trevor Siemian smoke. Eagles over the Saints.
SUNDAY LATE AFTERNOON GAMES
Cincinnati Bengals at Las Vegas Raiders. The Raiders have scored 16 points or less in four of their last six games. The Bengals have scored 16 points or more in every game this season. Bengals over the Raiders.
Dallas Cowboys at Kansas City Chiefs. After fading badly for several weeks the Chiefs came back with a vengeance last week. The Chiefs scored 41 points in an offensive explosion against the Raiders. The Cowboys are coming off a 43 point offensive explosion of their own. The Cowboys and their #1 ranked offense are one of the few teams capable of winning in a shootout even if the Chiefs bring their A game. Chiefs lousy defense is their downfall against Dak and the Boys. Cowboys over the Chiefs in an upset special.
Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks. This is a trap game to pick. Will Kyler Murray play? If not, the Cardinals could be in trouble. If Murray plays and is healthy, the Cardinals should cruise. I’m guessing he plays. Cardinals over the Seahawks in an upset special.
SUNDAY NIGHT GAME
Pittsburgh Steelers at Los Angeles Chargers. The Chargers defense has not been able to stop anybody lately, resulting in losses in three of their last four games. The Steelers offense, even with Ben Roethisberger back, should be just what the doctor ordered. Chargers over the Steelers.
MONDAY NIGHT GAME
New York Giants at Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Would you want to face Tom Brady and the Buccaneers coming off two straight losses? I wouldn’t. The Giants are in a tough spot here. Brady will relish beating the team that deprived him of two more Super Bowl wins. Buccaneers over the Giants.