Rams at Washington

Spread: LAR -7.5 (Bet Rams)

O/U: 46.5 (Over)

Overview: The Rams offense started out nicely last week but they lost rhythm and the Giants defense stepped up. LA got the win, but it was ugly. They head to Washington to play a football club that’s a bit in flux at the moment. Coach Ron Rivera hasn’t given up on QB Dwayne Haskins except that he’s benched him and has given up on him this week in favor of his QB from Carolina – Kyle Allen. If you recall, Sean McVay was an assistant with the Washington team from 2014-2016. Since he’s left, the Washington club has had 8 different QBs. McVay has been able to do well with Jared Goff this year and he credits a lot of the league’s offensive success to the lack of crowds. He has said that without the crowds, offenses can communicate better and not depend just on hand signals. I’m hoping the Rams can communicate well this week and win on the road. I am not in love with betting a big road favorite, but I do think LA bounces back with a big game this week. So I’ll bet my LA Rams.


Bengals at Ravens

Spread: BAL -13 (Bet Bengals)

O/U: 51 (Over)

Overview: Joe Burrow got his first taste of NFL success last week and sorry for him that it will be short lived. It has nothing to do with him but his opponent. The Ravens just have more overall talent on both sides of the ball. It’ll be tough for the Bengals to pull out a win. Burrow and Joe Mixon will give it their all but Lamar Jackson and crew should put the Bengals’ defense to their biggest test all season. That all said, this is way too many points. Cincinnati is trending upward and should not be steamrolled by Baltimore. They can eat away clock and keep this close and if needed, score some TDs to respond to a Baltimore score. I’ll bet the Bengals here.


Panthers at Falcons

Spread: ATL -1 (Lean Panthers)

O/U: 53.5  (Under)

Overview: The Panthers continue to be a surprise. They lost Christian McCaffrey and many people thought that was the season. But Mike Davis has filled in very well for him and Teddy Bridgewater has looked really great so far. The Falcons are 0-4 and after the first head coach was fired last week, the seal may have been broken. An 0-5 start will more than likely doom Dan Quinn. The defense has been bad – but injuries to the secondary have been a huge part of that. Offensively, Matt Ryan has been hot to start the year but with an injured Julio Jones, his security blanket will have some holes in it. I liked this better when it opened. I still think Carolina can straight out win this one but I am nervous that the Falcons, out of desperation, will come out with a big game. I’ll lean the Panthers.


Raiders at Chiefs

Spread: KC -11 (Bet Raiders)

O/U: 56 (Slight under)

Overview: If the Chiefs win I don’t think Mahomes will hug another player from the opposing team this week. Not because of COVID concerns but because no Chief player should ever hug a Raider. For KC, yes, we know their offense is good, but to paraphrase Chucky Gruden, the KC defense will blitz you, take the ball away and come from everywhere. The defense has been a solid reason this team is 4-0 and should be 5-0 after this week. However, this is a lot of points to give up and it’s a divisional game. If Carr doesn’t make mistakes and stays at QB and if Jacobs is healthy, the Raiders can have a balanced offensive attack. If they fall behind, I still don’t hate Carr trying to throw a lot for a comeback. I’ll bet Vegas here with all of those points.


Eagles at Steelers

Spread: PIT -7 (Lean Eagles)

O/U: 44 (Over)

Overview: Not sure if you heard this, but Big Ben says the Steelers have gotten the shit end of the stick in these COVID cancellations. I guess he was looking forward to getting a later bye week in the season to deal with a broken rib or something. Well sorry Ben, you’ve had your bye and now you can get ready to beat up on the Eagles. Philly did look better last week as their defense is starting to gel but I still worry about their offense. Both teams can sack the QB here but I trust the Steelers O-Line more than Philly’s – so it could be a rough day for Carson Wentz. Wentz has been throwing too many interceptions and you don’t want to turn the ball over to Pittsburgh. My numbers have this as a push so I guess I’ll lean the team with the points. We will call this a very slight lean on the Eagles.


Cardinals at Jets

Spread: ARZ -8.5 (Lean Arizona)

O/U: 47.5 (Under)

Overview: The Jets had a COVID scare but much like their receivers, it seems like they can’t catch anything. The Cardinals are in town and after an impressive 2-0 start, they have dropped back-to-back games. They should get back into the win column this week as Joe Flacco – yes you heard me right – Joe Flacco and the Jets are just a train wreck right now. Kyler Murray should be able to move the ball against this lackluster Jets defense and hopefully he won’t need to run as much and risk that injury we all think is coming. I do have Arizona winning by enough to cover this but West team, out East, and the cracks we’ve seen in this Arizona team the last few weeks means I can only lean the Cardinals.


Jaguars at Texans

Spread: HOU -7 (Lean Jaguars)

O/U: 54 (Under)

Overview:  The Bill O’Brien era is over. Long live Romeo Crennel. Well, can’t say long live. The dude is 74 years old. But live Romeo Crennel for this season until the Texans can hire Bienemy from KC. The Texans have underperformed all year and have less wins than a Jacksonville team that was meant to lose em all for a chance at the number 1 pick. But stories continue to come out about O’Brien’s mismanagement and terrible decision making as both a coach and GM. So while my numbers say bet the Jaguars here, I am nervous about the post-coach bump. I’ll lean the Jaguars but it would not shock me if Houston came out very strong just to prove that O’Brien was the problem.


Dolphins at 49ers

Spread: SF -9 (Bet Dolphins)

O/U: 50.5 (Under)

Overview: Miami coach Brian Flores knows a thing or two about Jimmy Garoppolo. Flores was a defensive assistant in New England when Jimmy G was there so he got to know him fairly well. Flores’ Dolphins will be heading out West to take on a returning Jimmy G and the 49ers. And with a healthy George Kittle in the lineup, the Niners offense should be almost back to normal. For Miami, they will stick with Fitzpatrick at QB unless he throws too many interceptions today. Fitz knows he’s on borrowed time with Tua in waiting – which means he could come out with a 500 yard, 3 TD game today. I expect the Niners to win this one but the points are too much for me. I’m going to back Mr. Harvard to have a great game and bet the Dolphins.


Giants at Cowboys

Spread: DAL -9.5 (Lean Cowboys)

O/U: 54 (Under)

Overview: Jason Garrett will get his first chance to show the Cowboys what they are missing. You know, mediocrity. But seems like they have a good deal of that this season without him. I think we know the Cowboys need to get the ball more to Ezekiel Elliott and not have Dak Prescott throw so much. And against this Giants team, they should be able to do that. The Giants defense has started to play much better but their offense has no chance of keeping up with Dallas. So the Cowboys shouldn’t feel pressed to throw so much. Hopefully Mike McCarthy gets the memo. A lot of money is coming in on the Giants here – which gives me some pause about betting the Cowboys. But my numbers say this should be a blowout. Leaning Dallas.


Colts at Browns

Spread: IND -1 (Bet Browns)

O/U: 47 (Over)

Overview: Cleveland is 3-1 and definitely on an upward trend. Baker Mayfield has not been making stupid mistakes the last few weeks and the running game has been very solid. They get a huge test this week against a mighty Colts’ defense and will also need to see if the run game is as good without Nick Chubb. They were damn good when he was injured last week so perhaps Kareem Hunt and D’Ernest Johnson will thrive without him. For Indy, I think it really comes down to the turnover battle. This team can control a game and if Old Man Rivers doesn’t give the ball away, they should have success. I think this is a measuring stick game for both teams and I think Cleveland will come out with the home win. I’m betting the Browns.


Vikings at Seahawks

Spread: SEA -7 (Lean Seattle)

O/U: 57 (Over)

Overview: Seattle has a chance to start 5-0 for the first time in franchise history. Standing in their way is a Vikings team that finally looked like it was starting to click last week. The key to Minnesota’s success is to get the ball to Dalvin Cook, avoid defensive gaffs and limit Kirk Cousins’ turnovers. Easy, right? My numbers say to take Seattle here but I’m nervous that they have been playing a bit above their heads and the Vikings below their’s. Seattle should win, but this could be a close one. I’ll just lean the Seahawks.


About the Author

Mad Max is a gentle soul who enjoys drinking gin, grooming his beard and betting on sports.

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