A nice 3-0 NFL betting Sunday last week to go with the College Football winner on Saturday as Eastern Michigan got the cover at Penn State for a 4-0 winning weekend. Back to the gridiron Sunday in pros we go with three more plays that stand out to me as offering nice value.
It’s a strange situation in Minnesota as the Vikes have gone to the half leading all three games yet have managed to lose each of them. Now they head to the deflated Kansas City Chiefs, who hung tough enough to lose at San Diego last week, and it will be interesting to see how the Vikes respond. There is a good chance that they go to halftime leading there too – so as a bettor what is one to do? Play Minnesota (-2.5 for the game, -1 for the first half) in the first half and Chiefs in the second? You would be 6-0 if you had done that up until now. Or, if the Vikes are leading at the half do you figure the form has to revert to the “norm” and bet Minnesota for the second half? Things to think about.
10:00 Pacific: Buffalo Bills (-3 +100) at Cincinnati Bengals (43) – Paul Brown Stadium
The Buffalo Bills are a good offensive team and I think that RB Fred Jackson is underrated in terms of his role in the Bills scoring as much they have. When Buffalo spreads things out with their receivers they force teams to use their safeties or nickel backers to key on Jackson, and he hits the hole so well he’s getting chunks of yards. If teams focus on Jackson, the passing game opens up and we have seen how well that works for QB Ryan Fitzpatrick. Jackson is also quite versatile as a decent pass protector and he catches the ball well out of the backfield. I feel the Bills will move the ball well, they are simply too versatile to be bottled up, and will force Cincinnati to keep up by going to the air. Bengals have had success with rookie QB Andy Dalton going to WR A.J. Green and I expect the duo to continue to develop. Buffalo has tallied 41, 38 and 34 points through three weeks and has surrendered 31 and 35 in their past two games.
Buffalo-Cincinnati OVER 43 is my bet
1:15 Pacific: New England Patriots (-5) at Oakland Raiders (55) – Oakland-Alameda Coliseum
The New England Patriots have been able to score a lot of points thus far, but they haven’t been very good at preventing them. Even worse, in the case here, is that they really are not very good at the stopping the run, the statistics aren’t really that bad but the reality paints a different picture. The problem with the statistics is that they are clouded by the fact that teams have rushed against them the 7th fewest times in the league, because they have been throwing a lot. That is about to change as the Oakland Raiders will look to punish the Pats defense with Darren McFadden and in turn keep the New England offense on the sidelines while their own defense stays fresh. Against the pass it isn’t any better for the Patriots and I really like the confident, tough, Raiders in this spot, much as I did last week when they beat the New York Jets. When Oakland does go to the air they have WR Denarius Moore burning things up in addition to several talented pass catchers. Raiders TE Kevin Boss has been an underrated addition as he has helped the ground game a lot. I can’t see how a porous defense like this deserves to be laying this number in such a tough venue to play at.
My bet is on the Oakland Raiders +5
Teaser Time: New Orleans +3.5, Houston +7 with San Diego +3.5
I know, I know. This screams “square” or “sucker bet” all over it . . . but I can’t help myself – maybe that’s why they call it a “teaser” because I am counting the winnings already. Regardless, I am wagering on this 3-teamer as my Teaser play this week. Simply put I cannot see New Orleans losing to Jacksonville as they are a far superior team based on talent and have had a tough schedule so far (Green Bay, Chicago, and Houston). There is no “trap” or “look ahead” here as they go to Carolina next week. Same goes for San Diego who gets a hurting Miami team at home and won’t be caught looking ahead to their game at Denver next week. Chargers should be able to control the ball easily on the ground and air with WR Vincent Jackson having his way against the beat up Dolphins secondary. Miami will also be missing rookie RB Daniel Thomas leaving Reggie Bush in the backfield. Finally, I look for Houston to move the ball well against Pittsburgh with RB Arian Foster leading the charge, and the Texans aggressive defense to cause problems for the Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger and their struggling offensive line.
Three-team 10.5-Point Teaser -140: New Orleans +3.5, Houston +7 with San Diego +3.5