A week ago, we vowed to you–the readers, that we would break the dreaded 8-8 streak that had plagued us for the previous three weeks. The week began on a sour note, but we rebounded with a 9-7 week. A wise man once told me, “celebrate the victories, even the small ones.” We give a brief fist-pump before turning our attention to week five. As a former mentor would tell me, “don’t tell me what you did for me yesterday, tell me what you’re going to do for me today!” and with that, here…we…go.
LOCK OF THE WEEK: Los Angeles Rams (-2.5) at Seattle Seahawks (O/U 54.5)
The Los Angeles Rams, coming off of their worst performance of the season, travel to Seattle to take on their division rival Seahawks. I believe the Seattle offense has regressed over the first month of the season. The Rams will be entering this game furious about how they performed on both sides of the ball against Arizona. I like the Rams to rebound here and win by two scores.
PREDICTION: Rams 30 Seahawks 20
New York Jets at Atlanta Falcons (-3) (O/U 46)
A battle of two 1-3 teams in Atlanta, as both the Jets, and the Falcons, attempt to right their season. I like the Atlanta offense to figure some things out here against the Jets. We have yet to see Atlanta get Calvin Ridley, Kyle Pitts, and Cordarelle Patterson going in the same game. I believe this to be that spot. I will take the Falcons at home to cover.
PREDICTION: Falcons 31 Jets 24
Green Bay Packers (-3) at Cincinnati Bengals (O/U 50.5)
A battle of two 3-1 team, as the Packers and Bengals both attempt to hold on to first place in the AFC and NFC North. The Bengals have benefited from one of the softest early-season schedules in the league. I believe the Bengals are counterfeit and that the Packers will expose them as a mediocre team.
PREDICTION: Packers 31 Bengals 20
Miami Dolphins at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-10) (O/U 48)
The Miami Dolphins feel like a team heading in the wrong direction at this point in the season. The offense that we thought would take a step forward has unfortunately regressed dramatically. Tampa Bay played an ugly game on Sunday night in New England. I expect the Buccaneers to use this game as target practice as they slice and dice a Dolphins secondary. Bucs win big.
PREDICTION: Buccaneers 34 Dolphins 17
Denver Broncos at Pittsburgh Steelers (-1) (O/U 39.5)
The decision here comes down to who the quarterback is for the Denver Broncos. Teddy Bridgewater suffered a concussion in week four and remains in the concussion protocol currently. Big Ben has not been good for Pittsburgh, but even his performance would be an upgrade from what we have seen from Drew Lock. The Denver Broncos are the better football team, but I cannot pick them with the shaky Lock under center. As of now, this is the projection, but if Teddy Bridgewater is cleared–take Denver.
PREDICTION: Steelers 20 Broncos 17
New Orleans Saints (-2) at Washington Football Team (O/U 44.5)
The Saints/WFT game is a battle of two of the more inconsistent teams in the league. How do we find a side where we are confident? I’m not sure what we will get from the Washington Franchise Team on either side of the ball. As for the Saints, I know that they have a strong run defense and that the Saints will feature Alvin Kamara one way or another. I will take the team with the better defense, and the team that is most likely to run the ball with any effectiveness. I will take the Saints to cover on the road.
PREDICTION: Saints 23 Franchise Team 20
Tennessee Titans (-4) at Jacksonville Jaguars (O/U 48.5)
Historically, this has been a smash spot for Derrick Henry and the Titans running game. I see nothing through the first four weeks to suggest that this game will be any different. The Jaguars’ defense remains horrific. I expect this to be a get-right game for Tennessee.
PREDICTION: Titans 31 Jaguars 20
Philadelphia Eagles at Carolina Panthers (-3.5) (O/U 44.5)
Even in a loss last week to the Dallas Cowboys, the Panthers proved themselves to be legit. The Panthers’ offense can hurt you in a number of ways and they remain without Christian McCaffrey. The Eagles’ defense has been beaten up the last two weeks by the Cowboys and Chiefs. I don’t see Carolina slowing down in this one.
PREDICTION: Panthers 31 Eagles 24
New England Patriots (-8.5) at Houston Texans (O/U 39.5)
The Patriots earned a lot of respect Sunday night in a loss to Tampa Bay. The Patriots’ defense came to play, and Mac Jones looks like a keeper. The Houston Texans look like a complete disaster. I will take the Patriots to win and cover on the road with relative ease.
PREDICTION: Patriots 27 Texans 10
Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings (-7.5) (O/U 49.5)
The Lions/Vikings game has sneaky shootout potential–I love the over. The Vikings have been inconsistent all season. The Lions remain winless but have played competitive football every week. I will take the Lions to cover the spread on the road.
PREDICTION: Vikings 30 Lions 24
Cleveland Browns at Los Angeles Chargers (-1.5) (O/U 46.5)
The Browns/Chargers game is a fascinating match-up of teams who could not be more different. The Chargers have all the bells and whistles. The Browns simply want to punch you in the mouth. I like the more physical team with the better running game. I will take the Browns to win outright on the road.
PREDICTION: Browns 27 Chargers 24
Chicago Bears at Las Vegas Raiders (-5.5) (O/U 44.5)
I would prefer if Justin Fields is under center for the Bears. Fields appeared to have unlocked the Bears’ explosiveness last weekend. Even if Andy Dalton is under center, I like the Bears’ defense to keep this game closer than the 5.5 point spread would imply.
PREDICTION: Raiders 24 Bears 20
San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals (-5.5) (O/U 49.5)
The Cardinals’ offense has been virtually unstoppable this season. The 49ers’ defense has been hurt by the passing game so this feels like a huge disadvantage for San Francisco. Whether it is Jimmy Garoppolo or Trey Lance under center for the 49ers doesn’t play a factor in the decision in this one–Cardinals win by two scores.
PREDICTION: Cardinals 34 49ers 24
New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys (-7) (O/U 52)
Daniel Jones has played surprisingly well this season for the Giants. I struggle to see, even with the better quarterback play, how the Giants can keep pace with the Cowboys–Dallas is on a roll.
PREDICTION: Cowboys 31 Giants 20
Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs (-2.5) (O/U 56.5)
Aside from picking this one, I simply cannot wait for this game. With a total of 56.5, we can expect a shootout in Kansas City on Sunday Night Football. The Buffalo Bills need to make a statement. They have the better defense and their offense is just as explosive. I will take the Bills not only to cover but to upset Kansas City in Arrowhead.
PREDICTION: Bills 31 Chiefs 30
Indianapolis Colts at Baltimore Ravens (-7) (O/U 46)
The Indianapolis Colts still feel as if they are on shaky ground to me. The Colts were able to get their first win last week, but it was against the hapless Dolphins. The city of Baltimore will be fired up for this one. I will take the Ravens and I believe that they cover the spread.