NFL football is back.
Through five weeks, our picks are 39-40-1 against the spread.
Football is back for another week of action.
Last week, our picks against the spread went a tough 6-9-1 to bring our season-long record to 39-40-1.
This week, we're back with another full slate of games and looking to make a buck or two. Take a look below at our best bets against the spread for Week 6 of the NFL season (* indicates home team).
LAST WEEK: 6-9-1
Philadelphia Eagles* (+6.5) over Tampa Bay Buccaneers
According to DraftKings, 90% of the bets on this game are coming in on the Buccaneers. When the world zigs, we zag.
Jacksonville Jaguars (+3) over Miami Dolphins
How funny would it be for Urban Meyer's first NFL victory to happen in London? Wouldn't it be hilarious to have a bunch of commentators saying, "Urban Meyer has still never won an NFL game in the United States" after the Jaguars go winless the rest of the year? It's too entertaining a reality not to bet on.
Kansas City Chiefs (-6.5) over Washington Football Team*
The Kansas City Chiefs are a dismal 3-13 against the spread over their past 16 games. A smarter bettor than I would tell you to stay away from them at all costs. But I say all that means is that they're due to cover eventually.
New York Giants* (+10) over Los Angeles Rams
It's a tough week to pick underdogs, so backing a double-digit home dog is a must. Every week I try to get a pretty even number of favorites and dogs in this column, and in a week this difficult to find dogs you trust, it's important to take what the slate gives you.
Green Bay Packers (-5.5) over Chicago Bears*
The Packers have won nine of their last 10 games against the Bears and 13 of their last 15. In those 13 Packers wins, the Bears have finished the game within six points just three times.
Indianapolis Colts* (-10) over Houston Texans
The Colts are better than their record indicates and face a perfect spot for a get-right game against the Houston Texans. Rookie quarterback Davis Mills showed signs of like for Houston last week, but his poor track record is enough to trust the pendulum will swing back against him soon.
Baltimore Ravens* (-2.5) over Los Angeles Chargers
This is a great game to sit back and enjoy, or just bet the over. But if I have to pick a side, give me the Ravens coming off of a huge comeback win against the Colts and playing at home in what could be an AFC Championship preview.
Cincinnati Bengals (-3.5) over Detroit Lions*
The Lions keep finding ways to lose. Until they can finally put something in the win column, they're just a tough team to bet on.
Carolina Panthers* (+2) over Minnesota Vikings
This game feels like a coin flip, so give me the home team getting points. Christian McCaffrey should be back for the Panthers, which could provide Carolina a boost.
Cleveland Browns* (-3.5) over Arizona Cardinals
This spread feels suspicious enough that you have to take the Browns in this spot. The Cardinals are undefeated and somehow field goal dogs to the Browns. But Cleveland's two losses have come against other top-tier teams in the Chiefs and Chargers and is still looking for a marquee win to set their season straight. Now is their chance.
Dallas Cowboys (-3) over New England Patriots*
This line has come down a bit since opening at -4, indicating that the oddsmakers are giving a bit more credit to the Patriots than when the line was first posted. I don't get it. Even if the Patriots defense plays to their full potential, I'm not sure New England will be able to keep pace with the Cowboys offense.
Las Vegas Raiders (+3.5) over Denver Broncos*
This game can go one of two ways. 1) After the shocking resignation of their coach, the Raiders are left rudderless, playing empty and without direction. 2) The Raiders rally around each other without their coach and move forward into a new future together. After watching quarterback Derek Carr speak with reporters this week, I lean the latter.
Pittsburgh Steelers* (-5.5) over Seattle Seahawks
Geno Smith didn't look terrible against the Rams when he entered Thursday night's game in relief of an injured Russell Wilson. However, for a backup quarterback stepping into the starting role, few tests are as daunting as facing the Pittsburgh defense. Further, the Seahawks defense has enough holes in it at present that even Ben Roethlisberger should be able to find some success this week.
Buffalo Bills (-5.5) over Tennessee Titans*
The Bills are the best team in football until they give me a reason to believe otherwise.
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