Thursday, November 12, 2015

2015 NFL Week 10 Picks

*I won my top 3 teasers by a combined 91.5 points.
**Home Dogs are better than Corn Dogs!
***More likely, DAL makes playoffs or NE undefeated, both 10 to 1.
****Friday Night Lights reference?

    Last week, I took a minor step back, going just 12-1 ATTS and 10-3 TOU for a 22-4 record, as Jim Carrey said, I've had better.

Two Cincy rushers did have more yards then Cleveland's leader.
OAK and PIT over 35 (won that by 38 points).
TEN and NOR over 35 (won that by 27.5 points).
MIA and BUF +10 (won that by 26 points).

Season ATTS Record: 35-3
Season TOU Record: 32-4
Season ATS Record: 9-11
Season OU Record: 5-3

My ATS and OU records are based on picks I LIKED (in some shade of green) not teased.

There are currently 3 home dogs this week and home dogs are 39-5 ATTS this year winning 18 of 44 game straight up. The five losses ATTS were two week 1's (when the lines aren't accurate IMO), Cutler got hurt, ARI scored 28 in a quarter against DET and NE playing against DAL backup.

1.) BUF @ NYJ (-3) - 43
The first game of the week features Rex's old team hosting Sexy Rex's new team. Both are fighting for a HOPEFUL wild card spot and this game is going to go a long way in determining who gets it. Had Big Ben not gotten hurt, I think the Steelers had that 1st wild card spot on lock down, but it looks like it's between NYJ, BUF, PIT and OAK for two spots. These two teams are very similar, both being 7-1 ATTS, 5 wins vs. 4 wins, their difference in points scored is only 9, they're both essentially functioning with backup quality QBs and their focus this year was going to be D and the rushing offense (the Bills have lived up to half that).

BUF is a 4th quarter team, 2nd highest 4th quarter scoring team, 2nd lowest in 4th quarter points allowed. They're averaging outscoring their opponents by almost 6 points in the 4th quarter this year, or a TD sans XP. Based on the fact they have the 2nd highest RuYPG, I am guessing that is because they just wear down the defense over time. They will be going against the best run defense in the league, only allowing 80 on the ground per game, 61.6 less than their season average. I think Buffalo wins that matchup (see below).

As mentioned, the NYJ have the best run defense in the league, but have only faced 2 of the top 18 rush offenses in the league this year. Their first matchup the backup (Ryan Mathews) had 108 yards against them, their second Latavius Murray ran for 113 (both averaged over 4.5 YPC). This tells me that MAYBE the NYJ rush defense isn't all that special. The good news for the Jets is that Fitzy didn't look all that bad and BUF is allowing 260/PYPG. The bad news is they got a new kicker and winds are supposed to get UP TO 18MPH before the game ends. This game is very evenly matched and I can see it coming down to a kick that just for predictor's sake, he will miss wide right.

Both teams are 7-1 TO while BUF is the same TU, NYJ are one worse at 6-2 TU. The Bills have actually increased their scoring output in the previous five games. They've score 10, 14, 21, 31, 33 but I think that stops here. I can't see them putting up 34+ against this Jets team at home, which hasn't allowed more than 24 there yet this year. The Jets have scored at least 17 in every game this year, the Bills have put up 21 or more in 6 of their 8 games this year. They only need 31 total points combined , to get over 30. Of the 15,463 NFL Games played, the top four final game scores are 20-17, 27, 24, 17-24 and 23-20 which all are winners and account for over 5% of all games in NFL history. That may not seem like a lot, but considering there's been 1,022 DIFFERENT scores in NFL history, including 5-3 and 66-0, I like my odds.

I like OVER 30 and if you're betting on a team, go with Sexy Rexy +16 since they haven't lost a game by 16 all year.

2.) DET @ GB (-12) - 48
This game won't be close as the line clearly indicates. All these teams are good in the NFL, so when you have a line of 10 or more, that tells me that the odds makers simply have no faith in you. If Green Bay hadn't lost their last two, this may be 14+ and I think I would still take Green Bay (spoiler alert).

DET is 6-2 ATTS. When you've lost two ATS, while adding 13 points, that's simply not good. In one game this year, they allowed 13 points. Every other game they have allowed at least 24. DET allowed 45 to a team that hadn't scored more than 21 in it's previous four and GB has scored at least 24 in every home game this year. Their P and R DEF are 18th and 30th. They've allowed the most PPG in the league. They're last in TO differential. Teams are getting almost 45% of 3rd down conversions. They only get 69.6 RuYPG (last). Their backup QB made one of the dumbest plays in NFL history (besides the Colts against the Pats this year), I simply don't see any good things coming from this game for DET.

GB is 7-1 ATTS only losing to DEN which frankly I don't think was the correct line to begin with. Aaron Rodgers tore up a CAR Def for 4 TDs and 369 yards (did NOT see that coming) with 3TDs in the second half. Speaking of the 2nd half (more bad news for DET to follow), DET has been outscored by an average of 7 points in the 2nd half this year, the worst in the league while GB is outscoring their opponents by an average of 3.38 points in the 2nd half so that's 10 points... Since 2008, Aaron Rodgers has last back to back games just twice winning the 3rd both times. In addition, he is 6-0 at home against DET in his career. This should be an easy game for him and they think they are going to show off their new shiny starter, James Starks against this terrible rush DEF.

Neither team is very good TU (5-3, 6-2) but both are 7-1 TO. GB needs to put up 35 points (hoping for DET to kick at least a FG in this game) to reach the over. They haven't scored 35 since they put up 38 in week 3. On the other hand, their defense has allowed increasing points the last five weeks.

Getting a team at +24 is a huge line, but this is a team that's lost by 35 and 25 already this year, so the smart money is on GB +1. Of the two, I am thinking over 35 is a better pick because GB's DEF hasn't looked particularly stout.

3.) DAL @ TB (-1.5) - 43.5
Who would have thought at this point in the season that TB would have a better record than Dallas? Dallas went to the NFC divisional game, should have gone to the NFC Championship where they would have played AT Seattle whom they already beat in Seattle, but because it was a three way tie, they got the 3rd overall and Seattle got number one, despite beating them head to head (did I mention that already), I'm not bitter though. Despite having a worse record, DAL has a much better chance to make the playoffs in my opinion because neither team is making the Wild Card, but DAL (15th in the NFC by the way) is just 2.5 back of the division leader (who is playing NE this week), while TB is 5 back. Both teams are a respectable 7-1 ATTS, while TB is also 8-0 TO, with only a handful of teams matching that mark. That'll happen when you allow almost 29 PPG.

DAL simply hasn't won without Romo, they're 0-6. But at least since Dez returned, they've been competitive. They've lost on a last minute FG and in OT in a game that they should have gotten the ball first (again, I am not bitter). Matt Cassel (despite a terrible pick 6) played well last game and so did Darren McFadden (27 for 117). Cassel also found a new friend in Cole Beasley. The question is, can it continue. I believe it can. I just hope McFadden doesn't get worn out if we need him to shoulder the load later in the year for a hopeful playoff run. They're allowing the 4th most PPG in the 4th quarter though and that needs to stop, the good news is that TB is also terrible in the 4th. The problems we run into is that Sean Lee will be out, Rolando McClain is injured and even Dez is questionable now, sitting out practice. For me it's simple, DAL is a top 10 Pass D (tied with the Buccs actually) and this is a game to finalize their season. Win they still have a chance, lose they're out.

TB need this game to hopefully move up in the wild card hunt, although unlikely to make a difference in my opinion. Their start TE has been out pretty much every game this year and their star (not Evans) receiver is Questionable (Vincent Jackson). So they really just have the one option, throw to Mike Evans. Dallas has one thing to do, stop Mike Evans. But also focus on Doug Martin, not an easy task but keying in on two guys should prove to be successful if they can manage to do so. Evans has put up 100 three times this year and Martin has done the same on the ground. They're surprisingly well balanced and Winston is still looking for his first 3oo yard game. I hope he gets it in a losing effort in this one.

As mentioned, TB is 8-0 TO, while Dallas is only 5-3 TO. TB has a terrible scoring DEF so I expect a lot of points in this one. 

If Dez plays, take DAL +14.5 and Over 30.5 as I think he'll want to show up ODBJ's 9 for 105 in this one.
If Dez is out, don't take anything.

4.) CAR (-4.5) @ TEN - 43
These two teams despite having a record 6 games apart, have been trending in opposite directions than you might think the last two quarters. CAR was outscored 22-10 and TEN outscored NO 17-7 since halftime of their game.

CAR is 1 of 9 teams to go perfect ATTS so far this year. They also happen to be perfect TO, the only team to accomplish both of these. They're leading the league in rushing, but 27th in passing. They're tied for 4th in TO differential and they just came off a big win as an underdog (I think this was a miscalculated line) against GB putting up 37 points scoring 24 in the 2nd quarter. CAR is the 4th best 1st half team as far as point differential in the league. Then they just run the ball and melt the clock on you and cover ATTS. They're also 4th in the league in scoring, putting up at least 20 in every game this year and at least 27 in their last 6 but also allowing the 4th most PPG.

TEN is 1 of 6 teams to be at .750 or less ATTS this year which isn't very good. The only team they're better than is the 49ers who are 6-3 ATTS. They're also just 5-3 TO, 6-2 TU, 4-4 ATS, 2-6 SU, bottom in the league in 2nd and 4th quarter scoring, but despite all that, Super Mario-ta already has two 365+ yard pass games in his career and he likes Delanie Walker who has been the leading receiving the last four games (Mettenberger started two of those). With MM at QB they're averaging over 20 PPG. As it says above, Home Dogs ATTS are 39-5 this year, throwing out week 1 and ARI (because they just had a stretch where they were ridiculous) the only loser was NE against Weeden but they have already lost by 28 this year. That was Dan Campbell's first game so let's call that adrenaline.

As much as I want to take the over, the last time an NFC South team traveled to Nashville, they score 10 points after averaging 33 the previous four games. HOWEVER, CAR has consistently put up big points and TEN has fairly consistently given them up as well.

CAR is due for a trap game, not sure if this is it, but even if they lose (which I hope they do), they just need to lose by less than 8.5. This is going STRONGLY against my HOME DOG ATTS wisdom and research I did so I think both are okay picks, but going with CAR +8.5 (but I won't be betting). I will however be betting on over 30 between these two teams.

5.) CHI @ STL (-7) - 42.5
STL is surprisingly in 2nd place at 4-4. This is in a division where they have the last three NFC Champions, an Arizona team that was outscoring teams at a pace of 25 per game (despite losing one of those games) and the Rams who somehow beaten each team once so far in their division to sit at 2nd. The Bears can apparently only beat AFC West teams (3-0 against them, 0-6 against the others). Two quirky teams I tell you.

CHI is 7-1 ATTS, with ARI being their one loss. They're surprisingly good on pass DEF (for a 3-5 team), but STL doesn't really have a pass offense, so doesn't help much in this game. Their weakness is their rush defense, allowing 120+ YPG, STL strong suit. I don't expect much from their offense in this game at all and have nothing nice to say about it. Langford had his good game, now he's going to be shut down for a game.

STL is 7-1 ATTS, with their one loss being at WAS (who woulda thought). They run the ball very well, 4th in the league, but only score at a clip worth 3rd worst in the league. In fact, they've allowed or scored 12 or less in 6 of their possible 16 opportunities. Unless Todd Gurley goes crazy against this 9th ranked rush DEF, I don't see them putting up more than 17 and I don't seem them allowing more than 14 regardless.

It all hinges on Todd Gurley, but with only two teams having a better TU record than STL, this is an easy pick for me. I just hope STL Def doesn't cause a lot of commotion in the backfield or get some DEF or Special Teams TDs.

CHI hasn't won a game by more than 3 all year, take STL +6 and Under 55.5

6.) NO (-1.5) @ WAS - 50.5
Here we have out 2nd home dog of the week, a reminder, they're 39-5 this year ATTS. One team has won 3 of 4 (Saints) the other has lost 3 of 4 (Redskins). 

NO is a pathetic 7-2 ATTS this year, losing in OT against TEN last week by a TD. They're just way too inconsistent of a team to bet on. They're also allowing the 2nd most PPG, the 3rd most PaYPG and 8th most RuYPG. Their defense is frankly horrendous. On the other end, their pass offense is 2nd best in the league but their rush offense is rather subpar at 25th, those even out well with WAS good pass and poor rush defense. Despite, the good pass D, I expect Drew to have a good game (playing from behind at the end).

WAS is 8-0 ATTS this year, it helps they've been an under dog in every game except against TB to get those extra points. WAS is one of 6 teams averaging less than 20 PPG this year, while allowing just over 24 PPG. They frankly don't run or pass the ball well, but somehow they just keep covering spreads. They've only lost by more than 14 once this year, last week against NE and NO is not NE, despite just one vowel separating the two.

NO is one of only 5 teams to be perfect TO, they're also 8-1 TU. WAS on the other hand is 6-2 both TU and TO.

Take WAS 14.5 which is a strong home dog line and I don't like the O or U here, but take over 37.5 against this TERRIBLE NO DEF if you have to pick.

7.) MIA @ PHI (-6) - 47
Both of these teams are under performing based on pre-season expectations. The Dolphins were supposed to have this all-world DEF lead by one, Suh. The Eagles had all these offseason changes made by the accused "racist" Chip Kelly via LeSean McCoy and to a lesser extent DeSean Jackson to streamline their team - Moral of the story is if you have a syllable before Sean in you're name, you're likely to accuse someone of being a racist. Neither has come to fruition as MIA is allowing the 2nd most rush yards in the league this year and PHI is one THE lowest scoring 1st quarter team this year averaging just 1.25 points.

As a team, MIA is 6-2 ATTS, losing by a combined 45 points their previous two games immediately after they won their prior two games by a combined 46 points. They had the new coach high (he's new, we want to prove our old coach sucked, let's step it up) but unfortunately that was short lived for them. They were also playing subpar AFC South (which is kind of redundant at this point) in TEN and HOU. When they stepped back in their division they got trounced. Ole Tanne has gone from 6/2 TDs/INT in those wins to 0/2 in his last two. Against the Pats his QBR was 9.7. The overall season low is currently 33.2... By Tannehill himself... They're not in the top 10 in any key categories I can find and they're actually allowing the 2nd most RuYPG. Their best stat is that they are 13th in PaYPG but that's only because they've been down so much they pass a lot. I don't see this going well for MIA.

PHI is 7-1 ATTS this year, also 7-1 TU because their team has started off so poor offensively, but in the 2nd half they seem to rebound game after game after game. They actually have the highest 3rd quarter team in the league and have the 5th best 2nd half scoring differential in the league. I don't see that mattering here though as I think they'll be up most of the game. Their defense is missing a key member in Jordan Hicks (see pick 6 against Cassel last game - Again, I am not bitter) as he is out for the season. They have from what I can tell, three healthy running backs but their biggest problem still remains in Sam Bradford. They say he's getting into a rhythm, but as far as I can tell having a QBR only ahead of Tannehill (yes this game features the two worst QBs in the league) and under 31 in 3 of the last 4 doesn't tell me there's much of a rhythm. If anyone has a big game, it's a running back, probably DeMarco but Mathews is a better value for your money on a DFS site against this terrible rush DEF.

Neither team has shown great consistency either way, PHI and MIA are both 7-1 TU, but MIA is also 7-1 TO, while PHI is 6-2 TO. I'll cut them a break because they were both division games and the OU were 54 and 51. MIA on the other hand put up 44 one game, followed by 7 the next. They put up 14 one game, followed by 38 the next. That's too inconsistent for my liking.

If you are betting, take PHI +6 but don't waste time on the OU, in general the TO is a better pick (83% win vs. 79% TU), so I would say take over 36.

8.) CLE @ PIT  (-5) - 41.5
This is the first of two matchups for these teams, the 2nd to follow in week 17.

CLE, despite being 2-7 is 8-1 ATTS this year, pretty respectable. What's not so respectable is their 19.7 PPG, their league worst rush DEF or 2nd worst rush OFF or 3rd worst 2nd half point differential being outscored by an average 6.33 points in the 2nd half alone. Additionally, they've lost by 18, 14 and 21 in their last three starts. It also appears Interception Johnny is going to be starting as McCown is still having rib issues. Bad, bad bad.

PIT is one of a handful of teams that is perfect ATTS this year going 9-0 so far. The biggest problem is that Landry Jones is going to be starting. That is the only thing making this pick mildly questionable and also making the line 5 when it should be closer to 8.5 in my opinion. He hasn't put up stellar numbers, but CLE doesn't have a stellar D either, so I wouldn't be too concerned, especially since they are going to rush the hell out of the ball against this terrible Rush D. That takes a lot of value out of Brown and Bryant (who Landry loves more than Tyra). Even with Landry at QB, I still think they come up with the victory in this one, despite his appearance wins have been when someone else has started.

CLE is consistent, 8-1 ATTS, TO, TU, but PIT is not as much, going 7-2 TO and TU. In this game, the OU is only 41.5 which is the 2nd lowest of the year for each team. If I had to put 54.5 isn't a lot of points to score, but I don't think with these offenses, they can get it done.

Take PIT +8 and I hope Landry doesn't make me regret it like he did taking ARI +7 just a few weeks back. I don't like the OU here, but take Under 54.5. I can't see either team getting to 27 so that would make it hard to get to 54 total.
***Side note, I like +8 because OT can't affect it and I have a weird deep down feeling that this game make take OT to find it's winner (usually happens when I care more about the late game than the early one - NYG and NE).

9.) JAC @ BAL (-6) - 48
This is another game, where if you would have told me these two teams would have the same record, I would have thought - MAN JAC is playing awesome this year, but in reality, BAL is playing horrible and JAC is frankly still over achieving at 2 wins so far.

JAC is only 6-2 ATTS this year, I don't like betting on teams that lose 25% of their games ATTS, it just shows inconsistency. That's what happens when you make the Jags a favorite in any game. That combined with their 51-17 loss to NE, gets them their two losses. As a home dog, they have 2 of the leagues 18 wins this year, but alas they travel from dirty JAC to dirty BAL to play this one and complete a 5 of 7 game road trip. Bortles is actually playing pretty well this year, in 7 of his 8 games he has thrown for either 298 yards or multiple TDs, including both in 3 of his last 4. Their DEF has been the atrocious part of their game, allowing 29.4 PPG, 264 PaYPG but only 94 RuYPG. Their offense doesn't rank in the top 10 in any of the three statistical categories anyone cares about. They do have two receivers in the top 20 in yards and go against the 4th worst pass DEF in the league.

BAL is one of those teams, that is 8-0 ATTS this year. They've just been finding ways to lose, so they are a sucker money line bet and even worse ATS (1-6-1). They can only seem to win ATTS this year. On the bright side, they're going against a poor scoring and pass DEF this week and either Kamar Aiken or Crockett Gilmore should be able to step up and get some catches - I'm hoping for Kamar. They have a solid rush D, not even allowing 100 RuYPG, but as mentioned their pass D is bad. That slightly worries me, but I think they can still pull it out.

Both teams are 7-1 TO, but JAC is only 5-3 TU this year. BAL just lost their top receiver, but Bortles has two good receiving options, finally gelling with Julius Thomas and BAL pass D is bad.

I would say pass on this because if the final score is 21-14 JAC, you lose both but if I had to pick, I would say BAL +7 and over 35.

10.) MIN @ OAK (-3.5) - 42.5
Here is a battle of the 2014 draft class QBs taken in spots 32 and 36 (respective to home and away).

OAK is 7-1 ATTS this year, which isn't bad and they are certainly over performing in my opinion. OAK has the worst pass DEF in the league, but if Shaun Hill is starting that won't make a difference. Even with Teddy, it won't matter I don't think as MIN is the 3rd worst PaYPG in the league.

MIN is 7-1 ATTS which is respectable, but more consistent is their 8-0 TU this year, only CIN can say the same. They also have the 2nd best record ATS this year behind the Bengals, at 7-1 (CIN is 7-0-1). The big question is whether or not Teddy is going to play. If he does, 16.5 is a STRONG line for a 6-2 team, if he doesn't this line moves more I think because Shaun Hill will be starting. He has a spectacular 1.7 QBR this year and I don't like it, I don't like it one bit. They do have the 6th best rushing offense in the league though, lead by AP of course. Going up against the 8th best rushing defense. It should be a good battle.

As mentioned, MIN is 8-0 TU this year, but OAK has a bottom 9 scoring DEF to combine with their poor pass DEF, not to mention they've gone over in their last 3.

If Teddy plays, take MIN +16.5 as that's a good line and Over 29.5 but I'm not picking either.

11.) KC @ DEN (-7) - 42
I would put my life savings on Peyton breaking a record in this game - Because he only needs three yards to do so. If you'd like to bet on who is going to catch the pass, Demaryius is a +250 favorite. The last time these two teams played, the Broncos put up their season high in points (31) and Peyton put his season high in TDs (3). This game also features the only matchup of two teams that are 8-0 ATTS this year, so expect it to be a close fought game.

DEN DEF is just spectacular this year, #1 in scoring and pass DEF, #5 in rushing DEF. Offensively, they are not in the top 10 in any key categories though. I think they'll get a DEF or ST TD in this one though. They're tied for 5th in the league in takeaways and even though KC is tied for 3rd in least amount of giveaways, every time they punt there's an opportunity.

KC is not top 10 in scoring, pass or rush OFF this year. I expect it to be a long day for Alex, Charcandrick (which is just a really strange name with a last name like West) and Kelce or whomever is catching balls for KC. 

KC is 7-1 TO, DEN is 7-1 TU. KC is 6-2 TU, DEN is 6-2 TO. Their last matchup featured 55 points, but I don't think there's any chance of that happening again. I like the under here.

I think both DEN +6 and Under 55 are strong picks and the fact that DEN had their slip up last week, I like DEN +6 better of the two.

12.) NE (-7.5) @ NYG - 55
If there is a team that Tom Brady does not like, I would have to think it is the NYG. Without the NYG, Brady may be 6-0 in Super Bowls, but instead the lesser Manning has beat him twice.

NE is 8-0 ATTS this year, but they are bound to slip up sometime, despite being the only 16-0 regular season team in NFL history, I feel they are just bound to slip up somewhere. They looked beatable against the Colts, the Bills and slightly the Jets, but not much else. It helps when you put up 27 or more in every game. Their only weakness seems to be their running game which is 26th in the league, but scoring and passing they are 1 and 3. They also lead the lead in least amount of turnovers, only 5 times all season, but their opponent leads the league in TO differential at +11. Combine that with their 3rd ranked rush DEF and this seems like an easy win on paper, but only paper football is played on paper! NE is averaging outscoring their opponents by 10.5 points in the 1st half this year and another 6 points in the 2nd half. They are in the top 5 in scoring in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th quarters as well as 1st quarter points allowed. Lastly, they've scored in EVERY QUARTER except the 1st one of the year, this year, my gosh that's amazing. I expect Brady to have a BIG game - 4/5 TDs, 325 Yards.

The NYG are 8-1 ATTS this year, only losing in their division vs. the Eagles when PHI was on a little hot streak for a bit. They're also 8-1 TO due to their 5th highest scoring offense and 31st ranked pass D. They've put up between 7 and 49 points this year, so they are all over the place. Eli Manning should be playing from behind the whole game and also put up big yards, but I don't know how often NE is going to let him in the end zone.  It doesn't help he still doesn't have Cruz and Donnell is questionable. I don't expect their rush game to do anything though against this third ranked rush DEF.

NE is only 6-2 both TO and TU. The NYG are 8-1 TO and 7-2 TU. NE has put up at least 27 every game this year, NYG allowed between 10 and 52. 

I like NE +5.5 and Under 68 if you have to pick, because 34-28 you still go under by 6 points.

13.) ARI @ SEA (-3) - 45
So far this year the NFC West has been very interesting. SF has lost to these two teams by a combined 67-10 score, but St. Louis has beat both of these teams by a combined 5. The schedule makers knew what they were doing though because these two match up in week 17 for potentially for all the marbles and a Seahawks victory would go a long way in making that matchup that much more important.

ARI is 7-1 ATTS and 5-3 ATS, this tells me they have done a good job in handing out some whoopins! Anyone covering at or above 60% will provide you with a 5% profit, which in betting is pretty solid. Since 2010, there have been a max of 8 teams to cover at 60% or higher to end the season, currently there are 10 so two are going to drop out and it appears the Cards may be one, losing 2 out of 3 ATS. Palmer is having a solid year, 20 TD, 6 INT, 84.8 QBR and on pace for over 4,000 yards but they were down 20-7 against the Browns and lost at Pittsburgh to a Vick/Landry combo in their last two road games. This will be a MUCH harder road game than those. The key will be ARI start to the game, although they were down 20-7 against CLE, they were also up 7-0 and average outscoring their opponents by the 2nd most in both the first (7.13 points) and second (6.63) halves.

SEA is 8-0 ATTS this year, but only 2-5-1 ATS so they've had a lot of close games, their biggest loss being AT GB where Rodgers just plays out of his mind by 10. Russell Wilson has NEVER lost by 10 or more at home in his career. He's also won 4 out of his last 5 against ARI including a 58-0 win back in 2012, a 19-3 and 35-6 win last year. In fact his worst loss at home was 7 against the Cowboys last year and he's only lost by 10 once in his career anywhere (again, back in GB). In fact, he has won 25 games by 10 or more and only lost 1 by 10 or more, including 3 against the Cardinals.

ARI is 8-0 TO, while SEA is only 4-4 TO. The teams are 6-2 and 7-1 respectively, TU. The logic based on that and the fact that at home, SEA is allowing 12.3 PPG tells me to take the under. But Russell Wilson is 26-6 TD to INT in his 14 night games so I expect him to get a TD or two. Both teams also feature two very good rush D's so I expect them to air it out when they run out of running options.

I really SEA +10 and would avoid it, but say take over 32 here.

14.) HOU @ CIN (-10.5) - 47.5
CIN is 7-0-1 ATS (no teaser) this year, HOU is 6-2 ATTs. So when one team has a better spread record than the other when it is teased that is a big red flag to take the winner. No further analysis needed.

CIN is averaging 28.6 PPG, HOU is allowing 25.6 PPG so Cincy is going to score in this one. I think HOU is going to allow a lot of rushing yards this week, but CIN is going to score with the passing game, so I would expect Dalton to have something like 254 with 3 TDs and no INTs. Hoyer should have a big game, Cincy is allowing 271 a game through the air and he's had multiple TD passes in 5 straight games but declining yards in each game.

Take CIN + 2.5 for sure, even though he beat them 24-3 last year and since it is Monday Night, scoring should be elevated so take the over 34.5. Based on CIN being TU 8-0, I actually like that better, but I am going against my wisdom to take 34.5 O.

GB +1
DAL +14.5
DAL/TB O 30.5 (both of Dez Plays)
STL +6
CHI/STL U 55.5
WAS +14.5
PIT +8 (but the Browns aren't naming a QB, so you can't bet it).
DEN +6
NE +5.5
SEA +10
CIN +2.5

PHI +6
BUF +16

Thursday, November 5, 2015

2015 Week 9 NFL Picks

***Jameis is humble.
***I won my top 3 teasers by a combined 134.5 points.
***Which Bengal RB will get the 100 yard game?

Sorry about the format at the end, finished from home and the mobile version for Blogger is not very good.

    Last week, was the first time that I decided to pick each and every game with a prediction whether I liked it or not. I finished with what I think is an amazing record of 27-1 but I am still trying to find my perfect week. My one loss was when Ryan Fitzpatrick got knocked out after 3 passes (going 3 for 3 by the way) and you can't control injury.

I am most proud of predicting that Jimmy Garoppolo would finish for Tom Brady.
Cincy and Pitt under (won that by 35 points).
Ten and Hou under (won that by 34.5 points).
NYG and NO over 36 (won by 65, won in the 2nd quarter).

Season ATTS Record: 23-2
Season TOU Record: 22-1
Season ATS Record: 6-8
Season OU Record: 2-0

My ATS and OU records are based on picks I LIKED (in some shade of green) not teased.

1.) CLE (+11) @ CIN (-11) O/U 45.5
This matchup has provided some interesting games of late. The home teams just last year lost a combined 54-3. The previous year they scored a combined 23 in one game and 61 in another. The previous year they scored 61 and 58 in the other. Of course, who can forget 9-16-07 when Derek Anderson threw for 5 TDs (never through for 4 in any other game) and Palmer threw for 6 in a 51-45 thriller in Cleveland. But again, as much as the past is fun to talk about, it's based on these present teams. Anderson and Palmer are both on teams leading their divisions, but only 1 has throw a pass this year so times have changed.

CLE is now 7-0 ATTS in their last seven games, only winning one of the last six though. They lead the Cards 20-7, then missed the XP, then got outscored 27-0. I can see a similar situation happening this week. Except without them having the 20-0 lead. 24 points is A LOT, but the last time the Browns lost by 24... Was against the Bengals. CLE is allowing 147 RuYPG, which is almost 10% more than 2nd place while only rushing FOR 84 yards/game (and they wanted two 1st round picks for one of their lineman). The leading rusher for each team in CLE's last four games has out rushed CLE's leading rusher 469 to 135. Three times this year CLE's opponent has had TWO guys rush for more yards than their leader. The moral of the story is their rush O is bad, their rush D is bad. So let's bring in Johnny (who by the way will be their leading rusher in the game almost guaranteed). His rating isn't actually terrible at 93.2, but this crowd is going to DESTROY him. I don't think he is going to WRECK THIS LEAGUE but I wouldn't be surprised if the Bengals WRECK HIM.

CIN is a solid 6-0-1 ATS this year. They are on pace (since they haven't lost) to set the record for best ATS all time held by the 2004 San Diego Chargers at 13-1-2. That is quite far off though and they have a lot of work to meet or beat that mark. Their previous biggest line was -3.5, so a jump to -11 is substantial. They have however already won three games this year by 11 or more. I like to start with the QB as he touches the ball more than anyone. Dalton in his career has thrown 11 TDs and INTs against the Browns. Let's throw out his 1 home loss where he played just terrible (10/33, 3 INTs, 0TDs) because it was 1 year and 1 day ago (as of gametime) and I think he's past it. He is 3-0 with 7TDs, 3 INTs, pretty solid. But I think the focus is going to be on the run game for the Bengals against this porous run defense. The Bengals will assuredly get two rushers past the Browns leading rusher, but I don't know which one will be the stud in this one. Bernard is averaging 5.6, no fumbles but only got one rush last week. Hill is averaging 3.3, but has 5 TDs, also 2 fumbles and got 15 rushes.

Before last week, Cincy was 6-0 Teased Over (TO), but as I predicted, it would go under. They only had 6 points through the first 57 points put up 10 in the end to stay undefeated. Including last week, the Browns are 7-1 SU Over. The Bengals good offense (28.3 PPG), the Browns poor defense (27 PPG) and the turnover battle this year has been CLE -4/CIN +4 in the turnover department means CIN should be getting some good field position off of Johnny getting a little CRAZY, leading to some scores. Clear skies as well, which I really like.

I like CIN +1.5 and over 32.5. 

2.) OAK (+4.5) @ PIT (-4.5) O/U 48
This is a potential battle for the wild card, currently 5th and 7th in the AFC. Both teams are unfortunately in divisions with 7-0 teams. Before this week, there were actually 5 divisions with undefeated teams, now just the 3 AFC non-South and NFC South.

OAK is 6-0 ATTS, their last 6 going 4-2 ATS and SU. OAK has looked VERY good after their opening loss to the Bengals. Since that game, losing the two games by a combined 8 points but their schedule hasn't been all that impressive though other than DEN. Their opponents record is a combined 12-52 and the best team they played (NYJ) had their QB knocked out 3 passes into the game. Even so, their rush defense is 2nd in the league (82.9 RuYPGA) but their pass defense is 2nd worst (302 PaYPGA). OAK is 10th in PaYPG and 20th in RuYPGA so nothing stands out there. I think Derek Carr could have a good game though because I see them being down late in this one.

PIT is 8-0 ATTS this year. Even with backups in, they still managed to make games close losing a division game late, but losing by 10 to the Chiefs somehow and beating the Cardinals. As mentioned in a previous post, I have been a little confused about this team with backups. Also previously mentioned was that Ben doesn't play well in games returning from injury. Well he now has that game behind him and he can be the Ben of old. He threw for 351 and 369 before the game he got hurt. I expect the running game to be slowed down and Ben to have a BIG game, along with Antonio Brown and you may or may not recall but the Raiders had been terrible earlier in the year against the TE so Heath Miller may make an appearance like he did last week. I like both him and Brown to have a TD.

OAK is 6-1 TO while PIT is 7-1 TU. However, OAK's one TO loss was against the spectacular DEN defense who only allows 16 PPG. PIT may only be allowed 18.4 PPG, but they DO NOT have the same defense as the Broncos AND I expect them to get up big which means prevent defense and some good opportunity for late scoring.

Again, typical teaser logic says take a team that's +17.5 and 6-0 ATTS in their last 6, but I'm liking PIT at +8.5 I actually really like them on the money line as well, I expect Ben to put up BIG numbers too, so really like over 35.

3.) JAC (+2.5) @ NYJ (-2.5) O/U 40
JAC won their last game, NYJ lost theirs. That's about the only positive I see for Jacksonville.

JAC is only 5-2 ATTS this year. Getting 13 points BEYOND the spread and losing almost 30% of those is just not very good. They're middle of the league in PaYPG, 25th in RuYPG, 22nd in PPG, 24th in TO differential and last in XP % (they've already missed 3 this year). I guess the best thing they got going for them is they're only 1/2 game out of first somehow at 2-5. I think you can see where this is headed.

The NYJ have Fitzy starting again. He may be hobbled which worries me a little, but in games he's finished they're 6-0 ATTS. They have the best rushing D in the league (sorry Yeldon) and 8th in passing D (sorry Bortles). It concerns me that I don't know how Fitzy will play in this game. Despite that, I still think Ivory can have a good game and TBD on Fitzy.

JAC is 6-1 TO, NYJ are 6-1 TO and TU. JAC has put up 34, 20 and 31 in two of their last three games against the HORRID HOU defense, TERRIBLE TB defense and BAD BUF defense (allowing 34 in back to back games). I expect that to change in this game against a good defense. 

I won't put money on Fitzy or the Jets, but take the NYJ at 10.5 but I do like under 53 in this one.

4.) STL (+3) @ MIN (-3) O/U 40
MIN has probably had the quietest .714 winning percentage I can remember in some time while the Rams have been the silent instigator (knocking off SEA and ARI) but also because they took out Reggie Bush and Josh McCown with field injuries the last two weeks. In the same way, if you would have told me both teams would be over .500, I would have been VERY surprised and probably said...

STL is 5-0 ATTS their last 5. They've also held their last two opponents to just 6 points in each game. Gurley has rushed for 128+ yards in 4 straight games. It'll be tough, but I think he may be able to do that again, because it certainly won't be Napoleon, I mean, Nick Foles doing it. He's only thrown for more than 200 yards in one game this year. 

MIN is 6-0 ATS (notice the missing T) in their last six. They've done it by putting up more than 28 only once. They do it by stopping teams on 3rd down, only allowing a 1st down 1/3 of the time on 3rd down (STL has the worst 3rd down conversion % in the league). They also do it by committing the least amount of offensive and 5th least defensive penalties in the league. That tells me they are very disciplined. They're also top 10 in PYPGA but nothing else really stands out, they just seem to be a well put together team.

These teams are a combined 3-11 OVER this year, that means 11-3 UNDER. Every game played after September 13th by these teams would be teased under, vague, I know, but it's the truth.

I don't know why but I am still hesitant about MIN and don't like picking against a team that has beat SEA, ARI and blew out two other NFL teams by 18 and 21. Still, I would be picking MIN +10 if I had to make a pick, but I DO LIKE under 53 in this one.

5.) MIA (+3) @ BUF (-3) O/U 44
It's a battle for last in the AFC East. Both teams started off 1-0 by playing great defense. The teams have allowed 62 and 68 respectively in the last two games so that's out the window. BUF also won their first matchup 41-14.

MIA is 5-2 ATTS (same as that other Florida team mentioned above), I don't like that. It means they have the potential to be blown out once out of every three games. They've scored 44 and 7 in back to back games. They've allowed 10, 26 and 36 in consecutive games and as I mentioned, allowed 41 in their previous bout with BUF. They're middle of the road in passing, rushing and PPG, pretty average honestly but 2nd to last on 3rd down success. Other than being terrible on 3rd down offense, they also allow the 7th most RuYPG.

BUF is 6-1 ATTS this year, only losing against the NYG when they were 6.5 point favorites and LeSean McCoy was out. Well McCoy is in and I could see him having a big game against this bad rush defense, but word is they are going to split carries. Tyrod Taylor threw for just 109 yards last week, running the ball 28 times instead which will be the formula this week as well. That equates to a shortened game because the clock will be running frequently.

These two teams are 20th and 28th in number of plays run per game. I don't see anything changing here especially on the BUF side against this rush defense. The defenses have been terrible the last two games, but the Bengals and Pats were mixed in their though so I wouldn't be too concerned.

I wouldn't bet either, but take BUF +10 and under 57 if you feel the urge to bet on an AFC east team other than the Pats.

6.) TEN (+8) @ NO (-8) O/U 47.5
These two teams have been heading in opposite directions. TEN won their first game 42-14 and looked great. Since then they have been outscored 145 to 83. NO lost their first three, but in their last three have won them all and put up 110 points.

It appears a new head coach would not make a difference for the poor Titans. This year they're another 5-2 ATTS team. Both games they were favored in they lost by 14+. So as dogs, they're 5-0 ATTS, but they still look very bad. They've amazingly (I am not sure if this has ever happened before), scored a decreasing amount of points in 5 straight games going from. I can almost guarantee no team has scored 13 and decreased their total in the next 3, but they've done it. It's amazing HOW BAD their offense is. Yet they are still averaging more than 4 points MORE than the last place SF 49ers in PPG. It looks like Mariota will return this week, but I don't know if it will make much of a difference. They've scored 14 or less in three of his starts this year. They're -7 in TO differential and the only good stat I could find is that they are the 3rd best PaYPGA defense, but I am guessing being down late doesn't help that number any.

On the opposite side, the Saints are 6-2 ATTS but won their last three straight up and 2-0-1 ATS. Brees has averaged 357 YPG and over 2.5 TDPG in his last 5 (7TDs and 505 Yards helps). I don't expect him to put up 505, but maybe a nice number like 310 in this one. If they get up early enough, maybe something like 275. When they got up 27-0 against the Colts, they punted on their next 5 possessions, I am sure Sean Payton is VERY aware of that and I can see them keeping the foot on the throttle. Their defense is not very good, allowing 282/124/29.3 (PaYPG, RuYPG, PPG) all in the bottom 10 in the league. I expect them to both put up and allow points in this one. 

TEN is the first in the league (as far as I can tell) to have 3 losses when TO. That's a big red flag for me. NO on the other hand is 8-0 TO. I think NO big offense trumps TEN bad defense.

If you are ONLY picking one in this game, take NO +5 (if it was +8.5, it would be a much harder decision because +21.5 is a SOLID line). If you want to take the O/U take over 34.5 because Brees and the Saints may have 5 first half TDs, but I would pass on it.

7.) WAS (+14) @ NE (-14) O/U 52
I'm not going to put much time into which team is better, a -14 line says it all, but is also akin to putting a money line bet n the Patriots at home. Teams with a -14 closing lines or better are 89-4 since 2003 in winning the game straight up. I'm going to go out on a limb though and say both NE (-1) and WAS (+27) might not be bad picks, but I like NE (-1) much more. Just an FYI both teams are 7-0 ATTS this year which is why I say either +27 or -1 might not be bad picks.

The only time that a NE game hasn't put up 39 combined points was against the other NFC East team they played with Weeden at QB. I don't think that matters though because WAS has put up at least 10 in every game this year and NE has put up at least 28 in every game this year. So that gets you to 38. They put up the 28 against the 5th best PPG defense in the league, so I am confident against the 17th best, they can put up more especially since the pass game typically can't be disturbed (especially not this year) and WAS run defense is 30th in the league.

No more time wasted - I really like NE (-1) and kind of like NE over 39, I think it should be a lock too but get nervous with the O/U sometimes, take O 39 though if you think WAS can put up a TD, hopefully late.

8.) GB (-3) @ CAR (+3) O/U 46.5
My coworker was telling me that IND (his team) and GB are the only two teams in NFL history to face undefeated teams in back to back games this late in the season. GB had really no chance to win in Denver, down 17-0, got it to 17-10 but just looked very bad against that Denver D. CAR almost blew a lead last week  up 17 in the 4th. I was confident GB wouldn't do well against the Den D, but I thought CAR had their game locked down. Vegas isn't dumb and that's why instead of the undefeated being 3 point favorites at home the one loss team is a 3 point favorite.

GB is only lost their last game ATTS this year, going 6-1 on the year. The games Rodgers has had the most trouble with has been against DEN (1st in PaYPG and Sacks), STL (2nd in sacks and 10th in PaYPG) and SEA (2nd in PaYPG and 8th in sacks). The Panthers are 7th in PaYPG and 8th in sacks. I think that's enough to slow him down again this week. However, Rodgers after his last 4 losses, is averaging 3.5 TDs, 320 yards and hasn't thrown a pick (all last year but against 30th 2X, 28th and 14th PaYPG ranked DEF). I expect him to have a slower game here as well which means GB should also struggle.

CAR is 7-0 ATTS this year. Even if they lost by a TD in OT they would have still covered against the Colts. I think that was a nice little wakeup for them. Typically when teams are down in OT it's a nice kick in the pants (most of the time it means you lost). CAR found a way to win the game and in the end that's all that matters. The best way to beat a good QB is to keep him off the field. The Broncos had the ball for 33:27 last game (which based on the league average would be 3rd highest) and beat Rodgers. It also allows for your defense to rest which is key. The best way to keep him off the field is to run the ball which CAR excels at, 1st in the league. GB is 25th in Rushing defense so I see a good match up for Jonathan Stewart in this one as well. They are going to want to run often and well. If CAR can convert on 3rd downs, ideally with runs, they can keep this low scoring and win the game.

In most cases I would always go with GB and over (they're actually 6-1 TU this year) especially teased, but Rodgers last two road games he's put up 17 and 10. CAR is 6-1 TU this year as well which leads me to believe that is a better pick. GB has put up more than 30 twice this year, while CAR has put up more than 30 once. For this game to go over it would have to be 30-30 or higher.

I like CAR +16 (at home I think that's solid) and would pick the under if I had to make a pick but if Rodgers bounces back like he normally does and puts up 3 TDs, 320 yards this game could definitely go over. I would pick Under 59.5 but if CAR can't run the ball and has to go to passing which could lead to picks that could change.

9.) ATL (-7) @ SF (+7) O/U 44.5
The Braves and Giants played a game on August 3rd in which the Braves won 9-8 in 12 innings. Well I don't think it will take 12 quarters, but this game could end up similar.

ATL is 7-1 ATTS this year (that 1 being a tie actually), ATL has lost two divisional games to a 1-5 team and a Jameis lead team. In between they put up a solid 10 spot against the Titans. I don't know where this team is heading. They had a 5 game stretch averaging 32.4 PPG (it was called the start of their season), since they are just putting up 17. That doesn't mix well with a team that put has given up just 15 points at home (one of those games was GB). It seems simple, they struggle in the division, but are fine outside (like Luck, but opposite). I would say Freeman and Jones have a good day because this team gives up a lot of yards and maybe Bryant does also.

SF is 4-3 ATTS this year (THAT IS HORRIBLE). I would say it's a safe bet to bet against them in every game the rest of the year. That'll happen when you put up less than 8 points in half your games. Luckily they've already passed the 1934 Gunners who put up 27 (but they only played 3 games). Now with Gabbert at QB they are starting over and somehow their team got worse according to ESPN. Add to that that Antoine Bethea is out for the year. They're DEF is surprisingly good at home but on the year they are giving up the 5th most pass yards and 8th mos rushing yards. 

ATL offense has been bad, SF offense has been bad, SF DEF at home has been good, so 3 out of 4 say there won't be a lot of scoring.

I like two things in this one, ATL +6 and Under 57.5 against normal wisdom, I actually like the under better.

10.) NYG (-3) @ TB (+3) O/U 48
I don't know what kind of games Jameis is trying to play, but I don't like it, I don't like it one bit. He's playing a humble card and I don't think for one bit he is humble. A few weeks back he said "I'm really nobody in this league yet" now he came out and said something else.

NYG are 7-1 ATTS this year. Their one loss was against the Eagles (divisional) in Philly. In those division games, crazy things can happen so I always discount those a little bit even though they're 38% of everyone's season. 49 points helps, but even scoring 7 one game they're 5th in the league in PPG.  The Buccs are 6th in allowed PPG. I think this could be a BIG game for ODBJ (maybe not as good as last week, but still good). They have a middle of the road rush DEF but their pass DEF is right around the bottom 3rd in the league. They may get help when Prince returns. It may seem minor, but if he returns it could make a big difference, but I don't see JPP playing this week.

TB is 6-0 ATTS in their last 6. Jameis hasn't thrown a pick in 3 games and has had a passer rating of over 122 in two of those three games. His team has put up 38, 30 and 23 in the last three games as well. Going against a terrible pass defense, I wouldn't be shocked to see him have a decent game. He may even have his first 3oo yard game, but ONLY if Prince is out so something to watch. They're 4th in RuYPG, but going against the 5th best

NYG is 7-1 TO (that darn Philly game again) and TB is 6-1 TO (one being a tie). These two offenses have averaged 29 PPG in their last three. They don't have great defenses, so as long as it's not raining in Tampa (39% chance for Thunderstorms) I expect a high scoring game.

If it's over a 50% chance to rain at any point, don't touch this. If it is under and Prince is back, take NYG +10, if he is out, take TB +16. If under 50% chance to rain, take over 35.

11.) DEN (-5) @ IND (+5) O/U 45
Peyton returns yet again to Indy. Last year he won 31-24, the year before he lost 39-33. 

DEN is 7-0 ATTS only losing ATS once this year. Manning has more INTs then TDs. They have the number one scoring and pass combined with the number three rush defense in the league. They also just shut Aaron Rodgers down only allowing him 7 points. They leave me no reason to think they can't shut down Luck also and whatever running game the Colts have. They've only score more than 29 once, but they've allowed 13 or less 4 or more times.

IND is 6-0 ATTS following their first two losses, but the handicappers have adjusted. This is due mostly to their 2nd half adjustments (scoring 38 of their last 44 points in the 2nd half). I'm going to go out on a limb and say CAR laid back a bit after they were up 17 in the 4th but even with Peyton leading the offense, I can bet as competitive as he is, he won't let that DEF do anything to give up a possible lead. IND has very little run game, but without knowing what this new offensive coordinator is going to do it's hard to predict.

DEN is 7-0 TU, IND is 7-1 TU (only losing with another 3 score 4th quarter by Luck). That could all change with this new offensive coordinator coming to Indy.

I hate to keep harping on the new coordinator, but it leaves a lot of uncertainty for me. I 7 and would take under 58 but going to let him get a game under his belt before picking anything. If they do good against DEN then that tells me all I need to know.

12.) PHI (-3) @ DAL (+3) O/U 44.5
As long as Romo is out, bet against them. Typically a home team at anything higher than 14 is a solid pick but avoid it with their terrible backup play.

I would say under 57.5 because Dallas has put up a max of 20 in their last four and their defense has been pretty solid.

Take PHI +10 and under 57.5 if you want to bet but I try to avoid betting on my teams as well as this being an evening divisional game so good to avoid.

13.) CHI (+4) @ SD (-4) O/U 49
This will not be a very good Monday Night game for my money. Both teams seasons are over as far as I'm concerned being in divisions with undefeateds and being very unlikely to make the wild card.

CHI is 6-1 ATTS only losing against ARI in their great little streak they had. Their pass DEF is surprisingly good this year after being almost last, last year. The sacrifice appears to be the rush DEF which is 4th to last in the league. Usually a good pass DEF doesn't go with a poor scoring DEF but they're allowing just under 29 points per game. That combined with Forte being out tells me they do not stand a chance against this aggressive Chargers team.

SD despite being just 2-6 is 7-1 ATTS. They've put up 26 or more in 4 games this year not doing so against highly ranked DEF teams. Keenan Allen is out for the season though, Ladarius Green is questionable but Melvin Gordon is primed to have a big game against this Bad News Bears Rushing D.

CHI is 6-1 TO (being shut out at SEA), SD is 8-0 TO. Bad scoring DEF and Monday Night inflated scoring should lead this over.

Take SD +9 and over 36 for this one.

CIN +1.5
CLE/CIN O 32.5
PIT +8.5
NO +5
NE -1
ATL +6
ATL/SF U 57.5
SD +9