Last week I didn’t do so hot, I was expecting more close games, but there were a lot of blow outs. Week 3 is a funky week. It’s the week of the home underdog. There are nine games where the home team is an underdog, and really a sizable underdog. The general rule is that home teams get 3 points on the spread, considering that eight of the nine road favorites are 3 or more point underdogs.
LA Rams (-2.5) at San Francisco 49ers
The No. 3 scoring offense in the league this early in the season is ... the Rams! Didn’t see that coming. They are averaging 33 points per game at the moment. I’m not sure the Giants will have 33 points combined before the end of Week 3. I haven’t been great at picking Thursday night games because it seems to be completely unrelated to what the teams are generally on the field and more to who better handles the recovery from Sunday to Thursday. I think the Rams are the much more complete team and should win by at least three.
Final score: Rams 41, 49ers 39
Baltimore Ravens (-3.5) at Jacksonville Jaguars
Another game involving some conjecture because the game is played in London. On the field the Ravens are the superior team and are 2-0 in large part because of the +7 turnover ratio they have. Jaguars like to turn the ball over a lot and I think all thinks being equal I’d take the Ravens. But London is like a home game for the Jaguars now as they make this trip annually and could play more crisp. Maybe I’m overthinking it, but I like the points.
Cleveland Browns (-1) at Indianapolis Colts
Anyone think before the season the Browns would be a road favorite over anybody? This is a battle of two teams with some major injuries. The Browns will likely be without Myles Garrett, Jamie Collins, and Corey Coleman. Andrew Luck is out for the Colts. This game is not going to be pretty to watch. I will take the home team looking for their first win.
Pittsburgh Steelers (-7.5) at Chicago Bears
The Steelers are clearly the superior team, but the 7.5 points is a big road favorite. I think the Bears will keep it semi-competitive or might get a back door cover.
Miami Dolphins (-6) at New York Jets
Until proven otherwise the Jets are terrible.
Denver Broncos (-3) at Buffalo Bills
The Broncos looked overwhelmingly good against the Dallas Cowboys. If Trevor Siemian plays competent football the Broncos are in a good position. They have a tremendous pass rush, their run game seems to have found its stride with C.J. Anderson and Jamaal Charles, and they have good receiving options. The Bills are in another culture change cycle, there’s optimism, maybe next year.
Houston Texans (+13.5) at New England Patriots
The 13.5 number is a lot of points and the Patriots have a lot of injuries at the skill positions. Chris Hogan, Philip Dorsett, Danny Amendola, and Gronkowski were all either limited at practice or missed it completely. The Texans defense is too good to be giving up that many points with that depleted receiving corps.
New Orleans Saints (+6) at Carolina Panthers
The Saints have been one of the most disappointing teams in the league, but the Panthers are pretty beat up and haven’t been able to muster much offense this year. Their injury report includes Cam Newton, Greg Olson (IR), Ryan Kalil, and Kelvin Benjamin. Not enough offense to give up 6 points in a divisional game.
I like the Vikings here if Sam Bradford plays as a home underdog.
Atlanta Falcons (-3) at Detroit Lions
The Falcons pass rush will give the Lions some problems. The Lions don’t have a very good offensive line and the Falcons have too much balance.
New York Giants (+6) at Philadelphia Eagles
What a sad state of things for the Giants. Six-point underdogs. They have no offense. We keep waiting for the offense to click, but I don’t think it’s coming. They haven’t scored 30 points in a game since McAdoo became head coach. The defense won the Giants a lot of games last year, but they don’t seem to be quite as crisp yet. Hopefully both units step up. If I’m analyzing this without Blue colored glasses I’d say the Eagles pass rush will overwhelm the Giants and it’ll be much of what we have already seen. But, go Giants!
Pick: Giants stay within 6 (please)
Seattle Seahawks (+2.5) at Tennessee Titans
Seahawks are the underdog? I’m a believer in the Titans, but the Titans strengths don’t align well with the Seahawks strengths. I think this is a tough matchup for the Titans. They don’t have the wide receivers to challenge the Seahawks secondary. They don’t have the defensive line to challenge the inept Seahawks offensive line. They might squeak out a win, but I’ll take the Seahawks with the points.
Kansas City (-3) at LA Chargers
I think the Chiefs might have the best overall roster talent in the league. Alex Smith have been playing great averaging 9.8 yards per attempt (which can’t continue) and Kareem Hunt looks like the next great back in the league. I think the Chiefs pass rush will cause some serious problems for the Chargers.
Cincinnati Bengals (+10) at Green Bay Packers
The Bengals have averaged 4.5 points per game. Yeesh. I think they’ll figure something out and play much better offense this week. Their defense is solid. Ten points is too many.
Oakland Raiders (-3) at Washington
This might be the most exciting game of the week. Two high-powered offenses who like to try and make big plays.
Week 1: 10-5
Week 2: 7-9
Season Overall: 17-14