Packers @ Bengals (GB money line)
Patriots @ Texans (NE money line)
Lions @ Vikings (MN money line)
Titans @ Jaguars (TN money line)
Giants @ Cowboys (DAL money line)
49ers +5.5 @ Cardinals
Dolphins +10.5 @ Buccaneers
Bears @ Raiders (Over 45.5)
This week looks a tad different with 9 selections, but it’s driven by 5 money line picks that are all locks. Spreads were tight across the board this week, and I took a safe run through this week’s slate without having much confidence in points.
Let’s start with the Packers visiting Cincinnati. The Bengals are no doubt an exciting and hopeful team sitting right in the mix at 3-1 in a tight AFC North division. They are listed as home dogs (+2.5) today and there is certainly some value in taking them ATS today or even outright given what they’ve shown thus far and the growth that Joe Burrow has demonstrated coming off of injury. However, Aaron Rodgers and company already suffered their “how’d that happen” loss in week 1 against the Saints. With that monkey off their back early, the Packers have looked mighty in the past three weeks and will continue that trend on the road today.
Pats at Texans. If I wanted to take the easy way out, this would be the money in the bank game of the week. Gone are the days of the Texans covering crazy spreads… Dead are the hopes of excitement when Houston is on your TV… Forgotten already is this entire season in the minds of the fan base… 40-0 last week locked it up. The Texans are in a race with the Jags for the number one overall pick and I will be taking everyone over them from here on out.
More of the same in Minnesota today. The Lions are an absolute dumpster fire, and Kirk Cousins appears to have chosen 2021 as the year to justify his bankroll. I took Vikings money line when they are -10 favorites because I’m a chicken and let Jared Goff’s week one debut performance in Detroit to seep into my mind. Don’t let my scared money deter you from a blowout victory for the Vikes here. SKOL!
Titans visiting the Jaguars. Another one that’s easy on the eyes and another cake walk for the money in the bank game of the week. Only reason they are a money line pick this week is that I lost all faith in this Tennessee team with their loss to the Jets last week. There are plenty of teams that the Jets can beat this year, but I never imagined the Titans to be one. All things considered, Derek Henry will probably run for 200 today and Urban Meyer will be seen running for greener pastures post-game.
The final boring pick of the day comes with the New York football Giants traveling to Dallas for a divisional showdown with the first place Cowboys. Frankly, I love the Giants +7 today, but chose to play it safe as it is totally possible that America’s Team continues to improve this week and drops an insurmountable score on the Giants. I do expect this to be a good football game, and scared money don’t make money, but this week I’m playing with SAFE money.
49ers +5.5 in Arizona. No Jimmy, no Kittle, a rookie, oh my! Save it, Dorothy. The San Francisco 49ers are a tough football team, and will prove a massive test for the Cardinals who, on the heels of MVP front runner Kyler Murray, seem to be walking on air. It’s time for the Cards to come back to earth. Watch out for a sneaky outright W for the niners today.
Dolphins +10.5 against the Bucs. There is only one explanation for this cover and it’s how beat up Tampa Bay is. Miami has not lived up to the hype that I built around them following their showdown with the Raiders, but they have remained somewhat competitive. I’ve gotta be sounding like a broken record at this point, but this is just too many points for the Phins. Expect a Buccaneers win when the dust settles, but by a margin of 7.
Finally, Bears and Raiders OVER 45.5 is the money in the bank game of the week. Chicago rejoice! The Justin Fields era is upon you, and Matt Nagy has finally swallowed his pride and forfeited play calling responsibilities. The Bears are going to roll out a plan that will get Fields out of the pocket and highlight his skill set as well as the potential of this offense. On the other hand, the Raiders have the world to prove this week. I made a claim following their loss to LAC last week that the AFC West had normalized. Originally, it was thought to be a battle between the Chiefs and Chargers for the throne, and after a Chargers victory over LV that seems to be back on track. The Raiders, however, have thrown a real wrench into that clear picture. It’s a good football team this year that has taken huge strides from last season. It feels, though, like this game will define the rest of the season for Vegas. A dominant victory here puts them right back on track, but a tight game with a team that they should roll right over will say more about their future than the fans will like to admit. I expect a high scorer regardless of the outcome 24-31 RRRRRRRRRRRRAIDERS win.