Our Thanksgiving Day Special delivered once again — 2-0-1 ATS. The Texans pushed and we hit on Redskins (+3.5) and Patriots/Over 41.5 teaser. This Sunday, I’m not crazy about any particular games. I’m pretty much taking most of the home teams here. I would probably tease Bengals (-2.5) with Broncos (-3.5), and would consider taking a shot on the Colts (-3), Seahawks (-2.5) and Packers (+3). Targetting the Eagles also makes a lot of sense to me as I’ve been witnessing their disgrace throughout the season.
CINCINNATI BENGALS (-9.5) over Oakland Raiders — Confidence: 5/10 — This is too many points for the Bengals to lay, but I just can’t take the Raiders with the points. The Raiders secondary is atrocious so Andy Dalton and A.J. Green will do some damage. The Raiders will be one-dimensional with Darren McFadden out once again. I would tease this spread down to Bengals (-2.5) to pair with another game such as Broncos (-3.5).
CLEVELAND BROWNS (+1) over Pittsburgh Steelers — Confidence: 5/10 — I’m putting a bit of blind faith in the Browns. Charlie Batch will be the starter in this one and the Steelers offense will be without Antonio Brown. Troy Polamalu will also be out once again. I liked what I saw from the Browns last week against the Cowboys and the Browns beat the Chargers and Bengals at home.
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (-3) over Buffalo Bills — Confidence: 7/10 — The Colts are 4-1 SU and ATS at home this season. The Bills are 2-4 SU and 3-3 ATS on the road. The Bills will hang around and will keep this one close, but I expect the Colts to pull this one out. Interesting trend that the Colts are 6-0 SU and 4-0 ATS following a loss. The Colts are coming off a punishing loss to the Patriots, but won the prior four games against Jacksonville, Miami, Tennessee, and Cleveland. Right now the Colts are a 5th seed in the AFC. Talk about a soft schedule.
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS (+4) over Tennessee Titans — Confidence: 6/10 — With Blaine Gabbert out and Chad Henne in, the Jaguars look like a completely different team and Henne is playing for a starting job next season. The Jags have been dismal and have lost 7 straight, but in a division game at home, I would favor taking the Jags (+4). The Jags topped the Titans last year at home 16-14. Maurice Jones-Drew is out though so I’ll stay away from this one.
Denver Broncos (-10.5) over KANSAS CITY CHIEFS — Confidence: 5/10 — The Broncos are red hot right now and I’ll take them in the pick ‘em league, but I just can’t lay the points to take this one. In a division game on the road, I’ll give the Chiefs a chance of covering the number — 27-17 and 34-24 seem like possible outcomes in which the Chiefs cover the spread, but I’ll give a slight lean on the Broncos winning somewhere in the ballpark of 34-17. The Broncos have scored at least 30 points in their last 5 games. I like Broncos (-3.5) in a teaser.
CHICAGO BEARS over Minnesota Vikings — Confidence: 7/10 — No spread has been released yet. I’ll take Bears less than (-4). The Bears D should bounce back at home and Percy Harvin will likely miss this game.
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (+1) over Atlanta Falcons — Confidence: 6/10 — This spread shows you that Vegas is confident in the Bucs and that’s who I’ll take at home. 64% of the public is taking the Falcons and this looks like a classic suckers pick. Home field is the key for me here. When the Bucs visited Atlanta last year, they got crushed 45-25, but when the game was in Tampa, the Bucs won 16-13. Asante Samuel and Sean Witherspoon are questionable for the Falcons. The Bucs are 4-0 SU and ATS in their last 4 games. Falcons seem due for a 2nd loss this season and that should come in a tough division game on the road against a team that is very hot right now.
Seattle Seahawks (-2.5) over MIAMI DOLPHINS — Confidence: 7/10 — The Dolphins offense looks lost right now. They’ve dropped three straight games against the Colts, Titans, and Bills. Unfortunately, Seattle is just 1-4 SU and 2-3 ATS on the road this season, which is holding me back from making this a stronger play, but Miami is just 2-2 SU and 1-3 ATS at home. Also note that it’s tough for West Coast teams to win on the East Coast at 1:00. With Miami’s offensive struggles against a tough Seattle defense, I’ll side with the Seahawks but have my reservations.
Baltimore Ravens (-1) over SAN DIEGO CHARGERS — Confidence: 6/10 — I’ll take the road favorite again here as the Ravens are playing playoff-caliber football and the Chargers are not. The Chargers have been a huge disappointment lately. They are 1-5 SU and 2-4 ATS in their last 6 games with their sole win coming over the Chiefs. Four of those games have been on the road though where they’ve really struggled. Before taking the Ravens, you have to check the injury report though because the Ravens have been hit badly by the injury bug. Ed Reed, Terrell Suggs, and Pernell McPhree are all questionable.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (-1) over San Francisco 49ers — Confidence: 6/10 — Ther 49ers D was unbelievable on Monday Night and I’ll be curious to see how they hold up on the road against the Saints. I’m taking the Saints since they’ve been the hotter team lately and have the advantage of playing at home. The Saints are 5-1 SU and ATS in their last 6. They’ve scored 28+ in all 5 wins and their sole loss comes on the road against the Broncos. If the Saints jump out to an early lead, I don’t see the 49ers making up lost ground. The 49ers will need a flawless defensive performance to come out of this game with a win.
ARIZONA CARDINALS (-1) over St. Louis Rams — Confidence: 5/10 — This is a toss up here. Both teams are atrocious. Pass.
Green Bay Packers (+3) over NEW YORK GIANTS — Confidence: 7/10 — Green Bay bested the Giants last December in New York 38-35, but the Giants beat them when it truly counted in the NFC Championship 37-20. The Packers will be out for revenge, but that’s an underrated factor. This is a slightly bias pick as I’ll be looking to pull for the Packers over the Giants for personal reasons. Unbiasly though, the Packers look like the hotter team right now. They are 5-0 SU and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games. The Giants have back-to-back losses to the Bengals and Steelers. Both games exposed the liabilities that the Giants have and those liabilities should lead to Aaron Rodgers having a big day against them.
Carolina Panthers (-3) over PHILADELPHIA EAGLES — Confidence: 7/10 — The Eagles are my team and I’m picking against them for probably the fifth straight week. The Eagles are 0-5 SU and ATS in their last 5 games. No Michael Vick. No LeSean McCoy. Their offensive line is the real problem here. They have 1 remaining starter on their offensive line. For the Redskins game, I believe they even called up an offensive linemen that was without an NFL job and eating Cheetos on his couch when the call from the Eagles came in to see if he had any plans for next Sunday. You can’t win in the NFL without a quality offensive line. Unless the Eagles find a way to patch up their offensive line this week, they should lose this game.