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NFL picks against the point spread, Week 5

Where should you put your money this week? Jesse offers his thoughts.

Jacksonville Jaguars cheerleaders perform in London
Jacksonville Jaguars cheerleaders perform in London
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

This year has not been my best year in prognostication. After two years of doing very well picking against the spread, this year I haven't quite hit my stride with a 30-31-1 record thus far. Hopefully, this is the week.

Arizona Cardinals (-3.5) at San Francisco 49ers

Drew Stanton is terrible. The 49ers play tough, Cardinals on a short week, this seems like a game the 49ers could possibly pull off an upset. Full disclosure again I'm terrible on Thursday night games (as are most Thursday night games - terrible).

Pick: San Francisco 49ers

Houston Texans (+6.5) at Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings are a tough team, but they are not especially explosive on offense and the Texans defense is pretty good (first in passing yards, fifth in yards, eighth in points). That seems like too many points to give up in what could be a tough defensive battle. Also, we love Sterling Shepard, who might end up being the number one receiver in this class  when all is said and done, but it might also be Will Fuller, who has been dynamite for the Texans.

Pick: Texans cover

Tennessee Titans (+3.5) at Miami Dolphins

I think the Dolphins have more playmakers and I think the Titans are the league's least interesting team, but they are solid. Though Demarco Murray is playing very well. Take the  Dolphins, take the points, take a nap.

Pick: Titans cover

New England Patriots (-10.5) at Cleveland Browns

Everyone is expecting the Patriots to blow out the Browns with the return of Tom Brady and that seems likely to happen, and perhaps I'm over thinking this, but I've watched the Browns a few times and there's something there. They're very young and I think they're just stupid enough to not know they're supposed to get blown out.

Pick: Browns

New York Jets (+7) at Pittsburgh Steelers

The Jets defensive line is talented, but Ryan Fitzpatrick really needs to play better.

Pick: Jets cover

Washington Redskins (+4) at Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens have the number one team in the league in defensive yards while it seems the Washington Redskins have hit their stride offensively.

Pick: Ravens

Philadelphia Eagles (-3) at Detroit Lions

The Eagles are coming off a bye after a very impressive performance against the Lions. I think the Eagles defense could create some problems for the Lions.

Pick: Eagles

Chicago Bears (+4.5) at Indianapolis Colts

The Colts are doing Andrew Luck a disservice with the lack of talent they have surrounding him, but the Bears might be the worst team in the league.

Pick: Colts

Atlanta Falcons (+5.5) Denver Broncos

The strength of the Broncos is their defense and their cornerbacks. Julio Jones won't be running free all over the yard in Denver.

Pick: Broncos

Buffalo Bills (+2.5) at L.A. Rams

The Bills will get Marcel Dareus back this week, which should help them contain the Rams and Todd Gurley. The Bills have been playing well as of late, but they lack a lot of playmaker. I think this game will say a lot about these two teams and the difference to me in the game will be Taylor's legs.

Pick: Bills

San Diego Chargers (+3.5) at Oakland Raiders

The Raiders have done a lot of traveling early this year and must be looking forward to playing at home. Neither team plays a whole lot of defense.

Pick: Chargers

Cincinnati Bengals (-1) at Dallas Cowboys

I think the Bengals are the better team.

Pick: Bengals

New York Giants (+7.5) at Green Bay Packers

Last week was severely disappointing and now the Giants have to play a night game again against the Packers and Aaron Rodgers. The Giants have lost two straight games, the whole world is against Odell Beckham Jr. The team is coming off a very poor performance on Monday night and is watching the other teams in the division thrive.  They have to come out and play well this week if they have a pulse, don't they?

The Packers don't cover like the Vikings do and the team has to get a takeaway at some point this year just based on probability. I don't know if they can pull out a victory as nothing they have done over the last three years gives me confidence that they will play well in a  big moment, but here's to hoping.

Pick: Giants cover

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+7) at Carolina Panthers

The Panthers are 1-3 and could be without Cam Newton. The other factor I like here is that the Panthers lack great corner play and the Buccaneers have two wide receivers who can cause problems in Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson (though Jackson is rapidly declining).

Pick: Bucs

Week 1: 8-7-1

Week 2: 9-7

Week 3: 7-9

Week 4: 6-8

Overall: 30-31-1