Houston Texans (3-5) at Los Angeles Rams (6-2) Line: Rams by 12. Total: 45.5. Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Rams -3 (Watson).
Walt's Calculated Line: Rams -10.5.
Sunday, Nov 12, 4:05 PM
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The Game. Edge: Rams.
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LOS ANGELES OFFENSE: Jared Goff's performance this year compared to last season is night and day, though Goff really needs to thank his outstanding coaches and prolific offensive line. He deserves credit for putting in hard work this past offseason, but his supporting cast is so much better this year. Goff has been tremendous as a result, and I can't see that changing in this matchup.
The Texans are down so many players because of injuries that they have just a few viable starters remaining. One happens to be Jadeveon Clowney, and if Houston is to win any games for the rest of the year, it'll need Clowney to completely dominate. The problem is that Clowney has an extremely difficult battle this week against Andrew Whitworth, who is still one of the top left tackles in the NFL. Whitworth will keep Goff's pocket clean, as Houston doesn't have any other potent pass-rushers available. Goff will be able to torch Houston's secondary as a result. The Texans had issues containing Jacoby Brissett, so how could they possibly keep Goff from lighting up the scoreboard?
Todd Gurley will have a big game as well. The Texans have been stout versus the run all year, but that's about to change with Christian Covington landing on injured reserve. Plus, the Texans haven't battled a team with a stellar ground attack since taking on the Chiefs in a Sunday night loss back in Week 5.
HOUSTON OFFENSE: I semi-joked in the recaps that the difference between Deshaun Watson and Tom Savage is 19 points, but that might be close to the actual figure. Perhaps 19 isn't even enough! Savage stinks. He processes information way too slowly and takes numerous sacks as a result. This negative trait definitely does not mesh well with Houston's inability to pass protect.
The Texans couldn't even keep the Colts out of the backfield, so how in the world are they going to deal with Aaron Donald, Michael Brockers and Robert Quinn? The stud Ram defenders should abuse Houston's front, as all three have severe mismatch edges in their favor.
As a result of this, Houston won't maintain many (or any) drives, and there's a realistic chance that the Texans could be shut out, at least until garbage time.
RECAP: This should be a blowout. Should, being the key word, as there is a possibility that the Rams won't be focused for this game at all because they're taking on a pair of 6-2 teams following this "easy" matchup. Plus, my calculated line is the same as this actual point spread, so I don't see a good betting opportunity.
That said, I'm going to select the Rams. The Texans are fundamentally flawed right now because they can't block, and if the Rams show up, they can practically name the score of this game.
THURSDAY THOUGHTS: No sharp money here yet; just lots of public action on the Rams. The Rams will destroy Houston if they're fully focused, but that's not a guarantee.
SATURDAY NOTES: Robert Quinn is doubtful, but that doesn't change my take on this game. I'm still on a lean toward the Rams.
SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: This spread keeps rising because of lots of public money on the Rams. I'm wondering at what point the sharps bet the Texans. Will they do it at +13.5? Or +14? If you like Los Angeles, I would bet them now.
FINAL THOUGHTS: I was wondering when the sharps would jump on the Texans, and they haven't. Then again, the line didn't move to -13.5, as it's either -12 or -13, depending on the book. I still don't see a strong betting edge here.
The Psychology. Edge: Texans.
The Rams have to battle a pair of 6-2 teams after this non-conference affair. However, they're a young, enthusiastic team, so they could be up for the Texans.
The Vegas. Edge: Texans.
Houston is getting little support.
Percentage of money on Los Angeles: 75% (15,000 bets)
The Trends. Edge: Texans.
Texans are 43-25 ATS after two or more consecutive losses (8-6 ATS as favorites).
Dallas Cowboys (5-3) at Atlanta Falcons (4-4) Line: Falcons by 3. Total: 48.5. Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Falcons -3.5.
Walt's Calculated Line: Falcons -4.
Sunday, Nov 12, 4:25 PM
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The Game. Edge: Falcons.
Emmitt on the Brink is back for Season 10 (I can't believe this is the 10th year I've been doing this!) In Episode 9, Emmitt meets with Dragonlord Rosie O'Donnell, who tells him how to defeat evil Emmitt.
DALLAS OFFENSE: Like the Saints, the Cowboys have an explosive offense that could be limited this week because of a crucial injury up front. That would be to their left tackle as well, as Tyron Smith has a groin problem. Smith was already playing at about 80-percent capacity because of a back issue, but now he has a groin malady on top of that. It's sounding like there's a very good chance that he misses this game, which is horrible news because replacement Chaz Green sucks.
Smith may still suit up, but even if he does, he won't be anywhere near 100 percent, or 80 percent, for that matter. This should create a great mismatch for both Atlanta edge rushers, as right tackle La'el Collins has continued to struggle at an unnatural position. Much of Dallas' success has come because of some prolific offensive line play, but the team won't have that if Smith is out. In fact, the Cowboys will have three major liabilities up front.
If Smith is out or hurt, Dallas won't run the ball nearly as well, which will help the Falcons, who are in the middle of the pack as far as stopping ground attacks is concerned. Where Atlanta struggles defensively is trying to defend tight ends and running backs catching passes out of the backfield. The Cowboys may exploit that, but with most of their other offensive weapons banged up, it'll be difficult to do so.
ATLANTA OFFENSE: The Falcons were inches away from winning last week. Quite literally. I had the Panthers for a five-unit wager, and I've even admitted that I was fortunate to win that contest because Matt Ryan and Julio Jones nearly connected on two deep bombs. Ryan overthrew Jones a bit on the first try, but hit him in perfect stride on the second attempt, only to watch Jones drop the ball.
The Falcons should have better success this time. They're once again playing a struggling secondary, but the difference is that they're at home, where they've been so much better over the years. Ryan is protected well by his offensive line, so he'll have time to connect with Jones. I have a feeling that Jones, as long as he's healthy, could find the end zone on a couple of occasions in this contest.
One thing that will continue to elude Atlanta, however, is the ability to run the ball. The overpaid Devonta Freeman has eclipsed the century mark just once all year, and Dallas has been better versus the run since Sean Lee returned to the lineup.
RECAP: Everyone and their hot evil step sister is betting the Cowboys. I imagine that during the Sunday pre-game shows, the anchor will ask his former NFL player co-workers, "Does anyone give the Falcons a shot to win this game?" And I'll be screaming at the TV, "The Falcons are favored by three points, you idiots!"
There's a reason Atlanta is favored by three, and if there was ever a signal to take a team, this is it. The books could've set this line at Cowboys -1 and still gotten tons of public money on Dallas. Instead, Vegas wants even more money on Dallas.
Why is this, you ask? Well, there are a number of reasons. First and foremost, the Smith injury is huge. The difference between Smith and Green is massive, and Dallas won't be the same without its prolific left tackle. Second, the Cowboys are expected to be lackadaisical in this game. They just had a big statement win over the Chiefs. They have the Eagles after this contest. They just watched the Falcons lose to the Panthers, so it'll be surprising if they play this contest with full intensity.
Third, the Cowboys are overrated. They came out of the bye 2-3 and won three games. One was against the 49ers, which hardly counts. The second was a victory over the skeleton-crew Redskins, who would've been up 16-7 at halftime if it weren't for a blocked field goal. The third was an impressive win over the Chiefs, except Kansas City is not as good as everyone initially thought it was.
Meanwhile, the Falcons will be desperate to win this game in order to avoid a losing record. They'll also be at home for the first time since Week 6. As noted earlier, they play much better as hosts, and I expect them to have a similar-type performance like they did versus the Packers in Week 2.
My only hangup is this line. I made the Falcons -3.5 after considering everything, but that was before learning of Smith's injury. Now, I think -4 might be the better number. Still, I was hoping for much more line value. As I said, the public would still be on the Cowboys at Dallas -1. I would love Atlanta +1, though I'm sure the sharps would pound that spread into oblivion.
With all that in mind, I'm on the Falcons for either three or four units, depending on Smith's status. I'll keep it at four for now, and I'm going to wait for a better number. I'm holding out hope that this spread falls to -2.5, though that would set the books up for a huge middle.
THURSDAY THOUGHTS: I think this line may move to -3.5 in the wake of the Ezekiel Elliott (suspended for sure) and Tyron Smith (likely out) news. The juice at Pinnacle has moved to -113, which is an indication of potential line movement. Thus, I'm going to lock four units in on -3.
SATURDAY NOTES: It's looking like Dez Bryant is going to play, but he may not be at 100 percent. Tyron Smith is out. I still like the Falcons, and the sharps do as well, as the line has moved to -3.5. While I suffered for locking in the Chargers early, I was at least correct in betting Atlanta prematurely.
SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: The Falcons have moved to -3.5 across the board, which I don't like nearly as much as -3. If you're stuck at -3.5, I'd only make it a very small wager on Atlanta. Three is just such a key number that you're losing value if you didn't get -3.
FINAL THOUGHTS: I was thinking about betting a unit on Cowboys +4 if that line were made available to try to get a middle. It's only +4 at the Westgate, and unfortunately, I'm in Feasterville, Pa. instead of Las Vegas. Still, if you can do it, it's worth trying to middle.
The Psychology. Edge: Falcons.
The Cowboys just had a big statement win over the Chiefs, and they have the Eagles next week. The Falcons, meanwhile, are in a must-win situation to avoid 4-5.
The Vegas. Edge: Falcons.
Lots of money on the Cowboys.
Percentage of money on Dallas: 63% (29,000 bets)
The Trends. Edge: Cowboys.
The underdog is 74-46 ATS in Cowboys games since 2010.
New York Giants (1-7) at San Francisco 49ers (0-9) Line: Giants by 3. Total: 41.5. Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Pick.
Walt's Calculated Line: Giants -1.5.
Sunday, Nov 12, 4:25 PM
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The Game. Edge: TBA.
A reminder that Jerks of the Week for this week is up, so just click the link. This week's jerks entry is I Have a Beautiful Figure Again
NEW YORK OFFENSE: Ben McAdoo, who might be the least-inspiring leader of all time, has mentioned that Davis Webb could be given a look at some point. Eli Manning is far from the problem, though he's not exactly the solution either. I think a fair compromise would be actually dressing Webb and playing him in the fourth quarter of blowouts. It was inexcusable not to do this against the Rams, but Webb wasn't active for some reason.
That said, the Giants certainly won't be far enough behind to give Webb a chance in this game. The 49ers have a terrible secondary that Drew Stanton just had success against. Manning should be able to hit Sterling Shepard and his terrible receivers, though the only question is if he'll have zero protection or just a little bit. That will depend on whether or not Justin Pugh plays. Pugh was out last week, and Manning had no chance. Pugh's return would help a lot.
Evan Engram and Orleans Darkwa are two Giants players who could thrive in this matchup. The 49ers have struggled against tight ends, and they happen to be even worse versus the run, as evidenced by what we saw Adrian Peterson accomplish.
SAN FRANCISCO OFFENSE: The Giants' scoring unit was the main source of the team's struggles early in the season, but that flipped in the Rams game. Janoris Jenkins was suspended, B.J. Goodson was out, the vastly overpaid Olivier Vernon continued to milk an injury, and Eli Apple showed absolutely no effort while trying to tackle. He didn't try whatsoever during Robert Woods' long touchdown on a third-and-33. It was absolutely pathetic.
Jenkins will be back from suspension, but there's no word if Vernon and Goodson plan on making a return soon. Meanwhile, the 49ers have an injury question as well, as Joe Staley's status is unknown for this contest. Having Staley back would be huge, as it'll allow the 49ers to block Jason Pierre-Paul on the right side with Trent Brown. Otherwise, Pierre-Paul will have a massive edge in this game, and C.J. Beathard will have no time to throw as a consequence.
Beathard will need to throw because the Giants are still stout versus the run, thanks to Snacks Harrison. This will present a problem because Beathard has no weapons at his disposal. Both Pierre Garcon and George Kittle are out, so Beathard is throwing to practice squad-caliber bums.
RECAP: It's difficult to make a concrete pick right now because it's unclear which injured players will play in this game. The Giants having Vernon and Pugh back could warrant a small wager on them; otherwise, this could be a non-bet. Either way, I'm picking New York unless every key player is out for New York and Joe Staley plays.
As you can see, this game is confusing right now. I'm going to take the Giants for no units, but that may change later in the week. Check back or follow me @walterfootball for updates.
THURSDAY THOUGHTS: Depending who plays (or rather, doesn't) for the Giants, I may switch my pick to the 49ers by Saturday. This spread has moved to Giants -3 +100, so there's some value with the 49ers +3, but I don't really want to bet that.
SATURDAY NOTES: The 49ers are available at +3 -115 at Bovada. I think they're worth a unit bet. They're getting Joe Staley back, while the Giants will be missing three of their top four linebackers, including their best player at the position, B.J. Goodson.
SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: There's some talk that the players defending Ben McAdoo in the locker room. The media is saying that McAdoo lost the team, but I'm hearing different. I'm not going to wager on this game.
FINAL THOUGHTS: This line has remained at -3, and it's pretty telling that it hasn't moved back. The sharps have shown no interest in betting San Francisco. In fact, they're the ones who moved this line to -3 in the first place.
The Psychology. Edge: None.
No edge found.
The Vegas. Edge: 49ers.
A decent amount on the Giants.
Percentage of money on New York: 65% (16,000 bets)
The Trends. Edge: 49ers.
Giants are 48-33 ATS on the road since 2006 as long as they're not favored by 3.5 or more.
Eli Manning is 42-33 ATS as an underdog since 2007.
New England Patriots (6-2) at Denver Broncos (3-5) Line: Patriots by 7. Total: 45. Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Patriots -5.5.
Walt's Calculated Line: Patriots -6.
Sunday, Nov 12, 8:30 PM
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The Game. Edge: Patriots.
It's time for a Ross Avila update! Ross, some idiot kid on Facebook who challenged me to a picking contest this year, is now 12-32-1 with his selections. Yes, 12-32-1! Ross continued to steal picks, making all but one of his selections invalid. This is supposed to be a handicapping competition, yet Ross, despite my warnings, has continued to steal picks. I should have known Ross would cheat, as he lied about working for Google.
There's some good news for Ross. He always talks about a fake Google job, but he might have some actual work lined up:
The problem here is that Ross steals picks, so he'll have to find someone else's NHL betting analysis if he's to keep this new line of employment.
DENVER OFFENSE: The Broncos have been putrid offensively, but there's a good chance they'll be able to score somewhat consistently in this game. And it has nothing to do with improved personnel at all, though Emmanuel Sanders being closer to 100 percent obviously helps.
The big factor is New England's defense and how bad it's been all year. The Patriots can't put pressure on opposing quarterbacks, and they haven't been able to stop the pass at all. Denver's big problem hasn't been the quarterback; the offensive line has been the primary culprit, as left guard Max Garcia and right tackle Menelik Watson are among the worst starters at their positions in the entire league. The Patriots, however, don't have the personnel to take advantage of this, so Brock Osweiler will have way more time in the pocket than he did at Philadelphia. He'll use this time to find Demaryius Thomas and Sanders, who won't have issues getting open against a poor secondary.
The Broncos, however, won't have much success pounding the ball. The Patriots have done a good job on running backs for the most part all year, and C.J. Anderson's blocking is poor and won't be able to compensate.
NEW ENGLAND OFFENSE: The Broncos have one of the top defenses in the NFL, but they have one major flaw: the linebacking corps. Denver's linebackers have major problems stopping tight ends and pass-catching running backs.
As it so happens, the Patriots attack defenses with Rob Gronkowski, as well as a slew of receiving running backs, namely James White and Rex Burkhead. All three should have big games.
The Broncos can at least keep Tom Brady from torching them downfield. They'll be able to cover Brandin Cooks pretty well, and they'll also apply heavy heat on Brady. Von Miller and Shane Ray have nice matchups this week versus a pair of struggling New England tackles, though it's possible that Nate Solder, who has been banged up all year, may have gotten healthier during the bye. Regardless, Brady will know this, so he'll release the ball quickly to his weapons.
RECAP: I think this is one of the tougher games of the week to handicap. On one hand, the Broncos will be better than they've looked in recent weeks. They're home for the first time in about a month, where they're much better. They also match up very well versus New England's defense.
On the other hand, the Patriots have had two weeks to prepare for this game, and Bill Belichick is absolutely lethal with multiple weeks of preparation time. Plus, the Patriots have a similar edge versus the opposing defense.
I'm going to take New England despite all the money on the visitor. I actually thought about selecting Denver, and perhaps I would have gone that way if the Patriots were on standard rest, but I don't feel like picking against Brady in a nationally televised game with Osweiler on the other side of the field.
THURSDAY THOUGHTS: The public continues to pound the Patriots, while the sharps have wanted nothing to do with the Broncos. At least not yet.
SATURDAY NOTES: An injury no one is talking about is Marcus Cannon's ankle, which will force him to miss this game. As a result, a backup right tackle will have to block Ambassador Von Miller, which doesn't sound appealing at all if you're backing the Patriots. That said, you know what else sounds unappealing? Going against Bill Belichick and Tom Brady with extra rest going up against Brock Osweiler. I'm not going to bet this game, but if you do, the best Patriots line is -7.5 -105 at BetUS and the best Denver number is +8 -115 at Bovada.
SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: The sharps have finally bet this game, taking the Broncos +7.5. This line is now -7 +100 on the Patriots, which I still don't think is worth a bet, given that Marcus Cannon is out.
FINAL THOUGHTS: The sportsbooks absolutely need the Broncos to cover. The sharps are on the Broncos as well. Denver will play better this week because it happens to be at home, and the New England defense provides an easy matchup. That said, I can't take the Broncos. The Patriots are coming off a bye, and they typically perform better in prime-time affairs. However, I don't want to bet a bad number either. I'm zero units on the Patriots, but if you like the Broncos, they are +8 at Bovada.
The Psychology. Edge: None.
No edge found.
The Vegas. Edge: Broncos.
Tons of action on the Patriots.
Percentage of money on New England: 79% (65,000 bets)
The Trends. Edge: None.
Tom Brady is 213-67 as a starter (156-111 ATS).
Tom Brady is 17-11 ATS on Sunday Night Football.
Patriots are 9-14 ATS as road favorites since 2013.
Broncos are 20-9 ATS as home underdogs since 1991.
Miami Dolphins (4-4) at Carolina Panthers (6-3) Line: Panthers by 9. Total: 38.5. Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Panthers -9.
Walt's Calculated Line: Panthers -7.5.
Monday, Nov 13, 8:30 PM
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The Game. Edge: Panthers.
This week on ESPN, we're going to have some bald dude and Jon Gruden calling the shots instead the great preseason homers like Kevin Reilly, Ron Wolfley and Don Tollefson, inept ESPN guys Emmitt, Herman Edwards and Matt Millen, and aloof people like Dan Fouts. Here's what it would sound like if these seven dudes (and some special guests) were calling this game:
Reilly: Welcome to the city of Carolina, where the Carolina Hurricanes host the... umm... honestly, guys, I don't care. My Philadelphia Eagles are on bye this week, so I haven't been paying attention to football. In fact, I drove mother and Jay Cutler to the Philadelphia Flower Show yesterday.
Emmitt: Flower, are it not your job to pay tension to the football? How do you not even knowed the Dolphin playing the Hurricane today? Dolphin I knowed because you look at the orange-color team helmet. He wearing a Dolphin helmet, and we knowed that Dolphin are a fish who are cousin of the shark.
Herm: A DOLPHIN NOT A SHARK! SHARK NOT A DOLPHIN! DOLPHIN NOT A FISH! FISH NOT A DOLPHIN! FISH LIVE IN THE WATER! DOLPHIN LIVE IN THE WATER, TOO! BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN DOLPHINS ARE FISH! OR FISH ARE DOLPHIN! OR SHARK ARE DOLPHIN! OR DOLPHIN ARE SHARK! OR SHARK ARE FISH! OR FISH ARE SHARK! BUT FISH ARE NOT SHARK! SO WHY DID HERM SAY FISH ARE SHARK!? THAT WAS STUPID! WHY DOES HERM SAY STUPID THINGS!? WHY DOES HE DO IT!? WHY DOES IT DO IT, NOW!? WHY DOES HE DO IT!? WHY DOES HE... WHY DOES HE... why... uhh... umm...
Reilly: Shut up, idiot, everyone knows that Dolphins are fish because they swim around in the water. Our guest this week in the booth is Cam Newton. Wait, didn't we talk to him a few weeks ago? Oh well. Cam, how does it feel to be a quarterback in the NFL? What team are you on again?
Cam Newton: Uhh... the Carolina Panthers?
Reilly: Wait a second, doesn't that mean you're playing tonight? Aren't you supposed to be warming up?
Cam Newton: I think it's funny when females talk about warming up. It's funny.
Reilly: What!? I'm not a female!
Tollefson: Haha, Kevin is a woman. Cam said so. Kevin, why don't you cook and clean naked for me? No, wait, you're too ugly to do that. Why don't you cook and clean with clothes on for me?
Millen: This shouldn't be a surprise to anyone of us. I always wondered why I didn't make any sexual advances toward Kevin Reilly, and now I know why. It's because he was a woman this whole time! I was concerned about why I didn't want to insert kielbasas into his backside and ride him all night long, but now I know. What a relief!
Reilly: Shut up, guys, I'm not a woman, I swear! Cam, let's get to my next question. The producers asked me to ask you about chunk plays. What is a chunk play, and how do you do it?
Cam Newton: Chunk plays? Are you seriously asking me about chunk plays? That's it, guys. I'm going home. The Titanic must go home, and so must I. Good night.
Reilly: Wait, don't you have a game to play tonight?
Fouts: And here's what Flower means by game. There's a meeting between two teams. One team travels to the other team's home. And here's what I mean by home. A home is where you live. So, one team goes to where another team lives. And here's what I mean by team. A team is group of players who work together as a team. So these teams meet in one team's home, and then they play each other, and this is called a game.
Wolfley: YOU DON'T HAVE TO EXPLAIN EVERYTHING, DAN. YOU REMIND ME OF A FIRE HYDRANT WITH LIPS BECAUSE THE ONE FIRE HYDRANT WITH LIPS I SAW EXPLAINED EVERYTHING TO ME, AND I SAID "NO, FIRE HYDRANT WITH LIPS, NO NEED TO EXPLAIN EVERYTHING TO ME."
Reilly: What the hell are you talking about? How did a fire hydrant talk to you? And whoa, who is this now in the booth?
Reilly: Ooooh, you're drunk! That's it, I'm telling the authorities! Mother says anyone who drinks is bad news!
Charles Davis: Kevin, you've been accused of being a woman, Kevin. This does not surprise me at all, Kevin, and you telling the authorities about soomeone drinking makes me think you're a giant p***y, Kevin. Let's talk about some other women, Kevin. Let's begin with Oprah Winfrey, Kevin. She's a woman, Kevin. How about Michelle Obama, Kevin? She happens to be a woman, Kevin. Let's talk about Barbara Bush, Kevin. She's a woman as well, Kevin. Why not mention Kay Adams, Kevin? She's a woman, too, Kevin. How about Sandra Bullock, Kevin. She's a woman, Kevin. Why don't you name a woman, Kevin? Except not your mother, Kevin. This might be difficult for you because you've never slept with a woman, Kevin, but you can at least name one, Kevin. Who is it, Kevin?
Reilly: Look, Charles, Davis, you motherf-
Charles Davis: Pepperoni pizza is wrong, Kevin. The answer I was looking for is Kevin Reilly, Kevin. Get it, Kevin? Because you're a woman, Kevin.
Reilly: WHAT THE F*** I'M NOT A F***ING WOMAN!!! WOMEN WON'T KISS ME OR TALK TO ME BUT I'M NOT A F***ING WOMAN YOU F***ING A**HOLES, I'LL KILL ALL OF YOU MOTHERF***ERS IN YOUR SLEEP!!! We'll be back after this!
CAROLINA OFFENSE: No Kelvin Benjamin? No problem! The Panthers beat the Falcons without their No. 1 receiver. Of course, Carolina advanced to the Super Bowl during the 2015 season without Benjamin, so this shouldn't have been too much of a surprise.
The Panthers relied on Cam Newton and Christian McCaffrey advancing the chains on the ground versus the Falcons. They'll have success doing this against many teams, but the Dolphins happen to stop the run pretty well. In fact, only two teams have gained more than 100 rushing yards against them all year, one of which was Baltimore in a game in which the Dolphins didn't bother trying. Miami will obviously put forth more effort in this contest as massive underdogs, and it should be able to limit Carolina a bit on the ground.
Newton will certainly have to attack downfield in this game, and he'll be going up against a poor Miami secondary. However, the Dolphins have a great defensive front that surely will win matchups versus Carolina's mediocre blockers. Matt Kalil, in particular, is a poor protector, and it's hard not to like the Dolphins' edge rushers against him.
MIAMI OFFENSE: It took the Dolphins a while, but Jay Cutler seems to have finally gotten into a groove. Of course, Cutler was playing the Raiders, a team that can't stop the pass whatsoever, so perhaps we should temper our expectations on the Dolphins. Then again, Cutler will be going up against Carolina's secondary, which is pretty awful. The Falcons were so close to torching the Panthers, so Cutler will have opportunities to advance the chains if he's protected.
That, however, seems like it could be a problem. Miami's offensive line is a mess. Laremy Tunsil is struggling at left tackle, and Mike Pouncey needs hip surgery. On the bright side, however, right tackle Ja'Wuan James is playing well and should be able to keep Mario Addison out of the backfield. Meanwhile, left guard Ted Larsen is coming back from injury. Larsen is a solid blocker, so he'll definitely help by displacing the awful Jesse Davis. However, I still have concerns about Miami's ability to block Kawann Short and Julius Peppers.
The Dolphins will look to establish their two runners to keep the Carolina pass rush honest. Kenyan Drake and Damien Williams both looked good versus the Raiders, but the Panthers have been very strong against the run since Luke Kuechly returned from his concussion.
RECAP: These teams have similar styles, with the Panthers being a better version of the Dolphins. I made Carolina a seven-point favorite, so I was surprised to see a line of -9. I think that's a bit too high for an offensively challenged team like the Panthers that tends to go on long spurts without scoring.
I like the Dolphins to cover for a couple of units. Cutler, for whatever reason, plays his best football on Monday night, while the Panthers are coming off a statement win versus the Falcons and may not be entirely focused for the Dolphins, who are more desperate for a win.
THURSDAY THOUGHTS: The Dolphins have gotten some bad news, as Ja'Wuan James may not play. He's been their best offensive lineman, so that's a huge deal. I'm going to drop this to one unit as a result.
SATURDAY NOTES: Ja'Wuan James is definitely out, which is a bummer. He was Miami's top blocker, so I may cancel this wager all together. We'll see.
SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: I'll make a decision on whether I'm betting this game or not on Monday, but I don't know. The James injury is just huge, and I think I'd need the line to move up.
FINAL THOUGHTS: There's a bit of sharp money on the Dolphins, which has caused this spread to fall from +9 to +8 (though Bovada still has +9). I really wish Ja'Wuan James were playing because this would still be a two-unit selection. However, with James out, there's not much line value on this game. The difference between +9 and +8 is 1.3 percent, and my spread is +7.5. However, the Dolphins need this game more, so I think they'll be more up for it than Carolina. And if not, Jay Cutler could always throw a back-door touchdown like he did last week. I'm on Miami for one unit.
The Psychology. Edge: Dolphins.
The Panthers are off two divisional victories, including a statement win over the Falcons. Getting up for the Dolphins, who are looking to avoid a sub-.500 record, could be difficult.
The Vegas. Edge: None.
Percentage of money on Miami: 53% (27,000 bets)
The Trends. Edge: Dolphins.
Underdog is 78-47 ATS in the Dolphins' last 125 games.
Week 10 NFL Picks - Early Games
Seattle at Arizona,
Green Bay at Chicago,
New Orleans at Buffalo,
NY Jets at Tampa Bay,
Pittsburgh at Indianapolis,
LA Chargers at Jacksonville,
Cleveland at Detroit,
Minnesota at Washington,
Cincinnati at Tennessee
Prop/Teaser/Parlay Picks A list of some of my favorite team/player prop picks this week (Offense & defensive ROY picks to be counted
whenever winners are announced.) Picks carried over on a week-to-week basis will be in black.
Note: For legality purposes, this Web site does not promote or advocate gambling. This is solely for entertainment purposes only.
Last Week's NFL Picks Against The Spread (Week 21, 2017): 0-1 (-$330)
Last Week's 2-3 Unit NFL Picks (Week 21, 2017): 0-1 (-$330)
Last Week's 4-5 Unit NFL Picks (Week 21, 2017): 0-0 ($0)
Last Week Over-Under (Week 21, 2017): 1-0 ($0)
Last Week's Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks (Week 21 and seasonal, 2017): -$720
2017 NFL Picks of the Month: 4-2, 66.7% (+$1,040)
2017 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 137-140-8, 49.5% (-$3,790) 2017 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 32-40-3, 43.8% (-$2,395) 2017 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 20-22-1, 47.6% (-$1,595) 2017 Season Over-Under: 136-139-2, 49.5% (+$640) 2017 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$510
1999 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 27-41-3 (39.7%) 2000 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 128-123-8 (51.0%) 2001 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 127-122-7 (51.0%) 2002 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 123-136-7 (47.5%) 2003 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 146-126-8 (53.7%) 2004 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 157-123-8 (56.1%) 2005 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 156-126-11 (55.3%) 2006 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 151-135-9 (52.8%) 2007 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 162-135-10, 54.5% (+$2,550) 2008 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 148-140-7, 51.4% (+$2,620) 2009 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 151-124-9, 54.9% (+$3,370) 2010 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 144-131-8, 52.4% (+$6,080) 2011 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 137-133-12, 50.7% (-$1,925) 2012 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 130-145-8, 47.3% (-$5,760) 2013 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 144-131-8, 52.4% (+$5,580) 2014 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 143-133-7, 51.8% (-$1,885) 2015 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 134-138-12, 49.3% (-$2,360) 2016 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 148-127-10, 53.8% (+$1,055)
2002 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 41-49-2 (45.6%) 2003 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 52-51-2 (50.5%) 2004 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 65-44-3 (59.6%) 2005 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 77-61-1 (55.8%) 2006 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 65-61-4 (51.6%) 2007 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 83-59-5, 58.5% (+$4,110) 2008 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 44-57-3, 43.6% (-$3,510) 2009 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 49-35-3, 58.3% (+$2,260) 2010 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 51-38-4, 57.3% (+$3,180) 2011 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 44-51-3, 46.3% (-$2,715) 2012 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 45-50-2, 47.4% (-$2,130) 2013 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 38-42, 47.5% (-$2,890) 2015 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 47-44-1, 51.6% (-$820) 2016 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 42-35-3, 54.5% (+$475)
2002 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 11-12 (47.8%) 2003 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 16-13-1 (55.2%) 2004 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 18-11 (62.1%) 2005 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 25-22-1 (53.2%) 2006 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 21-29-1 (42.0%) 2007 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 35-30-2, 53.8% (+$420) 2008 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 39-26-2, 60.0% (+$4,055) 2009 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 29-26, 52.7% (+$330) 2010 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 32-22, 59.3% (+$4,790) 2011 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 14-14, 50.0% (-$1,260) 2012 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 14-21, 40.0% (-$3,650) 2013 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 17-9-3, 65.4% (+$2,970) 2015 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 17-16-2, 51.5% (-$1,120) 2016 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 21-22-5, 48.8% (-$1,465)
2001 Season Over-Under: 3-2 (60.0%) 2002 Season Over-Under: 121-91-3 (57.1%) 2003 Season Over-Under: 126-132-2 (48.8%) 2004 Season Over-Under: 139-124-4 (52.9%) 2005 Season Over-Under: 117-145-4 (44.7%) 2006 Season Over-Under: 129-132-5 (49.4%) 2007 Season Over-Under: 136-145-3, 48.4% (-$1,900) 2008 Season Over-Under: 137-125-6, 52.3% (+$860) 2009 Season Over-Under: 128-135-4, 48.7% (-$3,195) 2010 Season Over-Under: 128-135-5, 48.7% (-$5) 2011 Season Over-Under: 131-131-5, 50.0% (+$135) 2012 Season Over-Under: 125-121-5, 50.8% (+$30) 2013 Season Over-Under: 132-130-5, 50.4% (-$340) 2015 Season Over-Under: 143-119-5, 54.6% ($0) 2016 Season Over-Under: 123-141-1, 46.6% (+$95)
2007 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$1,035 2008 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$1,775 2009 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$865 2010 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$200 2011 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$590 2012 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$1,685 2013 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$2,245 2015 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$855 2016 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$275
2006 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-3 (50%) 2007 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-3, 50.0% (-$400) 2008 NFL Picks of the Month: 6-1, 85.7% (+$3,720) 2009 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-2, 60.0% (+$640) 2010 NFL Picks of the Month: 2-4, 33.3% (-$1,810) 2011 NFL Picks of the Month: 5-2, 71.4% (+$1,870) 2012 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-2, 60.0% (+$560) 2013 NFL Picks of the Month: 6-0, 100% (+$3,900) 2014 NFL Picks of the Month: 2-4, 33.3% (-$1,350) 2015 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-3, 50.0% (-$100) 2016 NFL Picks of the Month: 5-1, 83.3% (+$2,780)
Career NFL Picks Against The Spread: 2,574-2,383-151, 51.9% (+$5,125) Career 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 817-743-41 (52.3%) Career 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 349-314-19 (52.6%) Career Over-Under: 2,080-2,031-56 (50.5%) Career Second-Half NFL Picks: 22-15-1 (61.1%) Career NFL Picks of the Month: 39-24 (61.9%)
My Team-by-Team ATS Record This section shows how well I do when picking each team this year. The purpose is to see how well I read each team. Pushes are not
displayed. Winning/losing streak in parentheses.